I’ve heard a lot of rumblings about this cigar when Cigar Aficionado named it #9 in their Top Cigars of 2011 list. While I don’t pay much attention to any particular top cigar list other than my own, my interest was naturally piqued about this especially when I saw the Warlock being sold for less than $7.00 at my favorite local cigar shop. Now that it’s had some resting time in my humidor, it’s time to see what the fuss is all about.
WOW. Talk about an oily and toothy wrapper! Aesthetically speaking, the Warlock looks quite stunning. I didn’t see any wrapper imperfections or any big veins, though the seams could use a little bit of work. The cigar felt heavier than it looked and also sported a very solid feel all over. A pungent earthy compost scent permeated from the body, while the foot carried scents of cocoa. Unfortunately, the pre-light draw that carried a faint hint of raisin notes was tighter than what I was expecting.
Leather, earth and coffee are essentially the flavors from the first third with a slight peppery aftertaste from each puff. The pepper then gives way to nuts and a floral aroma around the middle of the first third, and interestingly, a hint of raisin starts popping up every now and then especially as an aftertaste from a clean medium finish.
The second third presents a slightly salty aftertaste mixing with the raisin flavor, and the leather note becomes less apparent as more coffee and earth flavors come into the foreground.
Unfortunately, there’s not a lot of flavor shifts or changes in the last third of the cigar. The only notable thing is the disappearance of the raisin flavor, which is again replaced by a floral aftertaste. Clearly, the Warlock presents an upper medium body and strength.
The Warlock started out with a beautiful even burn line and continued to hold it until the end of the smoking experience. While it was relatively even, it wasn’t as razor-sharp as the Man O’ War Virtue which we reviewed yesterday. Nevertheless, the problem-free burn was still quite impressive. Its ash was also not bad at all, falling first around the midpoint of the cigar and once again around the middle of the last third. However, the smoke–though ample and creamy–could use a bit more thickness.
Quite honestly, the Warlock is quite a decent cigar. While I find nothing bad to say about its qualities, I also find nothing to really be impressed about. The flavors were OK, and though there’s a level of complexity in its flavors that one can appreciate, it tries hard to show off a few flavor shift tricks that it unfortunately couldn’t carry through properly. At a price of around $6.50 per stick this cigar certainly doesn’t ruffle any feathers. I could be encouraged to buy more if the price went down a little, and if so, it’ll stay in the third drawer of my humidor.