Blind Cigar Review: | Empire III

This cigar was reviewed blind (no bands) by a panel of at least 4 reviewers. They did not know what they were smoking beforehand. The scores are an average of all the reviewers' scores with outliers removed.

Vital Stats:

Length: 5.5″
Ring Gauge: 52
Country of Origin:

Wrapper: Costa Rican
Binder: Nicaraguan/Honduran
Filler: Nicaraguan/Honduran
Number of reviewers: 4 —– (bigslowrock) (Djangos) (shuckins) (72)
Price: $4.00
Age: 3 years
Contributed by: Emmett (rhetorik)


Blind Cigar Review: Gurkha Empire III

Blind Cigar Review: | Empire III

Initial Impressions

Appearance: 90
Aroma: 89
Construction: 90

“The wrapper is extremely dark almost to the point of being black. The wrapper is extremely toothy and a bit splotchy in color. There are only a couple light veins visible.” – (bigslowrock)

“Aroma of dark chocolate, leather and tobacco predominate. Dry puff is reminiscent of sweetened cocoa with a mild sweetness to the back of the tongue. Flavors of espresso and milk chocolate are also present.” – (Djangos)

“Appears well rolled with no soft spots. Very hard to tell if there is even a cap to the cigar.” – (72) Blind Cigar Review: | Empire III


First Third

Flavor: 89
Strength: Medium-Strong
Body/Complexity: Medium-Full

“Wow, I’m welcomed by this nice toffee blast for the first couple of puffs. A couple more puffs adds a sour citrus aftertaste. The third finally settles down to a coffee, pepper and a light caramel.” – (bigslowrock)

“Very smooth at the start with a tangy leather, dark roast coffee, and an almost sweet barnyard woodsy tasting tobacco. Enjoying lot’s of creamy leather with generous coffee flavors. The woodsy tasting tobacco has lost a bit of it’s sweetness as I get a third of the way in.” – (shuckins)

“The cigar begins with a burst of flavor chock full of cocoa and nuts. An almond nuttiness lingers in your mouth between puffs. A little pepper to the back of the throat is evident after the third puff that persists throughout the first inch. Definite sweet long finish with each puff. The burn line is sharp with a white grey ash that hold for an inch and a half before falling off. The burn is quite fast for the first third. Flavors of tobacco emerge towards the end of the third. There is an abundance of creamy white smoke.” – (Djangos)

Blind Cigar Review: Gurkha Empire III

Blind Cigar Review: | Empire III


Second Third

Flavor: 90
Strength: Medium-Strong
Body/Complexity: Medium-Full

“This third greets me with a nice chocolate, leather and light sweetness. It also seems to be hinting at a roasted nut flavor in the background. A very enjoyable third.” – (bigslowrock)

“The flavor is starting to change into a creamy/chocolaty flavor but without any sweetness. Towards the end of the third that flavor went away and changed to a slight pepper flavor before it went out on me and required a relight.” – (72)


Final Third

Flavor: 89
Strength: Medium-Strong
Body/Complexity: Medium

“This third is a little spicier as the creaminess fades and a dryness from the cedary tasting tobacco takes over. Less leather flavor allows more of the dark roast coffee I tasted at the beginning to come through. The closer I get to the end the spicier it’s getting. Leather has faded away leaving less creaminess to the coffee and letting more of the dry cedar tasting tobacco through at the finish.” – (shuckins)

“This third is giving me a bit of a fight. It needed a couple purges to relieve the harshness. There are some nice flavors in there of coffee, caramel and toasted walnuts, but something seems to be lacking.” – (bigslowrock)


Overall Impressions

Draw: 94
Burn: 93
Overall Strength: Medium-Strong
Overall Body: Medium-Full

“Draw was excellent from the start to the finish with absolutely no issues.” – (Djangos)

“The burn itself was perfect. The Ronson was not called back into service after the initial toasting of the foot. One draw back was the subpar ash retention. Never more than an inch.” – (bigslowrock)

Blind Cigar Review: Gurkha Empire III

Blind Cigar Review: | Empire III

Overall Experience: 90
Smoking Time (in minutes): 72

“This was a pretty good cigar. It has some nice flavors throughout the cigar and the burn/draw were near perfect. I would definitely smoke one again and would say that this may even be 5er worthy.” – (bigslowrock)

“I definitely want to try another one of these because I wonder if the detracting flavor was because the stick was too new? However the cigar delivers in most ways and is definitely worth giving this one a try.” – (Djangos)

“I enjoyed the flavor change ups and depth of the cigar. I would enjoy smoking another one.” – (shuckins)

“The cigar started out with a lot of power of strong coffee flavor. In the beginning of the second third I got a flavor I really enjoyed but that phased out quickly and it finished up as an unmemorable experience.” – (72)


Total Score: 90 (Very Good)

Link to full scores and notes on Blind Cigar Review: | Empire III: Full Notes