Blind Cigar Review: Inca | Secret Blend ImperioCigar Info

Having been in the cigar industry for many many years, Mitchell Orchant of C.Gars LTD decided it was time to create their own brand, and they weren’t happy until they found a blend that they were 100% satisfied with. There are no other cigars on the market produced using 100% Peruvian filler/wrapper/binder tobacco. is named for after the native American Empire that encompassed what is modern day Peru. Tobacco growing in the region can be traced back some 5,000 years.

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.

In terms of introducing this unique project into the American market, Orchant explained, “I’m not trying to make a zillion cigars and a load of baseball caps to sell them with! I’m not trying to compete with anyone. I’m just trying to give the consumer a different choice that during extensive market research sampling across the USA makes me confident that this boutique brand will be well received and very popular.”

works with Alec Bradley to handle distribution. They handle their own marketing. The launched in two vitolas: Imperio (6 x 60, $10.25 each) and Tambo (6 x 50, $9.50 each), both of which are sold in boxes of 20. A third size, the Blend Roca (5 x 50) is expected to be added shortly, also in 20-count boxes. In addition, the first 500 boxes of each vitola have been marked as “Edición Limitada Inaugural,” although the blend is the same. The US version is a slightly different blend than the UK. While both cigars are Peruvian puros, the U.S. version has a different combination of viso and ligero fillers and less seco than the U.K. version. In addition, Orchant said that the U.S. version uses “natural Colorado maduro shade,” while the U.K. versions have various wrappers.

Blind Cigar Review: Inca | Secret Blend ImperioVital Stats:

Vitola: Double Toro
Length: 6″
Ring Gauge: 60
Country of Origin: Peru
Wrapper: Peru
Binder: Peru
Filler: Peru
Factory: Tabacalera del Oriente
Blender: Mitchell Orchant
Number of reviewers: 4 (McGreggor57) (ThaGreatWazoo) (Djangos) (irratebass)
Price: $10.25
Age: 1 Year
Release Date: May 2015
Contributed by:

Initial Impressions

Appearance: 88

“The wrapper appears a little rustic and patchwork at the seams. Tobacco extends past the unevenly cut foot. Based on the vitola, I’m settling in for a long smoke.” – (McGreggor57)

Aroma: 88

“There was a muted pepper aroma with a slight mustiness. The cold draw was somewhat mellow with a hint of cream and sourdough.” – (ThaGreatWazoo)

Blind Cigar Review: Inca | Secret Blend Imperio

Blind Cigar Review: | Imperio

First Third

Flavor: 87
Strength: Medium
Body/Complexity: Medium

“Eventhough the ring gauge was bigger, there was a softer profile to the cigar. The strength was mild medium with a nice clean finish. The flavor profile was very muted with slight hints of a black pepper, bread, and char. Decent amount of smoke is coming off the cigar.” – (ThaGreatWazoo)

“The initial third starts off with s mild sawdust like flavor that solidifies into woodsy notes of cedar and oak. There is also a slight nutmeg like zest that is coming through. However in less than a half inch the flavors took a turn for the worse with some harshness creeping in as pepper taking over almost completely. There is also a slight leather like component in the back ground. The cracking of the wrapper worsens but luckily corrects itself after the one inch mark. There is a lot of smoke and it is creamy smooth. The burn is skewed but I decided to not touch up even though it was at an almost 45 deg angle. The draw was almost perfect however.” – (Djangos)

Blind Cigar Review: Inca | Secret Blend Imperio

Blind Cigar Review: | Imperio

Second Third

Flavor: 86
Strength: Medium
Body/Complexity: Medium

“Grasses mix well with the leather at the start. Some toast in the background alternates with developing cedar. The mintiness from the first third returns at the halfway mark. So far the combination of flavors isn’t doing much for me.” – (McGreggor57)

“The middle third is like the initial with harshness and pepper. I think i may have enjoyed the pepper more if the harshness was absent. Also the leather is more prominent now. The woodsy note and spice are no longer discernible. The burn skews to a point that I have to touch up twice this third. The draw is good but all the other factors make this not so enjoyable.” – (Djangos)

Blind Cigar Review: Inca | Secret Blend Imperio

Blind Cigar Review: | Imperio

Final Third

Flavor: 86
Strength: Medium
Body/Complexity: Medium

“The final third is very bland. There are no changes or complexity towards the end. The cigar just kind of fades to the end.” – (ThaGreatWazoo)

“The final third is the same harshness and pepper. Also now the wrapper is beginning to split open and the last inch was not smokable because of the wrapper splitting completely open. Not very enjoyable.” – (Djangos)

Overall Impressions

Draw: 88

“Open draw, no issues with the draw. Lots of smoke on the draw.” – (irratebass)

Burn: 86

“No issues with the burn, no relights, ash stayed on for about an inch.” – (irratebass)

Construction: 86

“The construction was decent on this cigar. The wrapper seemed a little brittle with an offputting color. The stick smoked well for the large ring gauge and was not overly bitter or harsh.” – (ThaGreatWazoo)

Overall Strength: Medium
Overall Body/Complexity: Medium
Experience Overall: 84

“Despite some differences in each of the thirds, I found them all to lack much dimension. Only the final third offered a flavor profile I found appealing and balanced. A cigar lasting an hour and a half needs to offer enough interest to keep me engaged. While other may like this one, I did not.” – (McGreggor57)

“This was a very middle of the road smoke for me. There were no inspiring moments during the smoking experience. Very bland with a daunting size. I am not a bigger ring gauge cigar guy, but for the build, this cigar was better than most larger sticks.” – (ThaGreatWazoo)

“Over all a very subpar smoke due to the harshness as well as the construction and burn issues.” – (Djangos)

“Very boring smoke, some peanut flavor showed up at the beginning of the 2nd, but overall it was just boring tobacco flavor.” – (irratebass)

Smoking Time (in minutes): 74

  • Appearance 88% 88%
  • Aroma 88% 88%
  • First Third 87% 87%
  • Second Third 86% 86%
  • Final Third 86% 86%
  • Draw 88% 88%
  • Burn 86% 86%
  • Construction 86% 86%
  • Overall Experience 84% 84%

Total Score - Fair - 86



To view the complete scores and notes, click here.

Blind Cigar Review: | Imperio