At the beginning of 2021, Protocol Cigars announced a new shop exclusive called the Protocol Coppers for Vintage Cigar Lounge and Club in Westerly, RI. Keeping with the company’s law enforcement theme, the name comes from the old time word for Police offers, “Coppers.” In Britain, police were called “Coppers” because of the color of their buttons on their uniforms and the metal used to make them. It was also this vintage look inspired the packaging.
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. All of our cigars reviewed are shipped to the panelists with Boveda packs to ensure optimal smoking experience.
Like most other Protocol cigars, Protocol Coppers is rolled at La Zona in Esteli, Nicaragua. The cigar comes in one size, a Corona Gorda that measures 5 5/8 x 46. Only 200 bundles of 10 were released in the initial batch and each bundle carries an MSRP of $95.00. The plan is to make the cigar a regular production exclusive with the shop, but so far they remain out of stock. The blend uses an Ecuadorian Rosado wrapper, Nicaraguan Habano binder and filler tobacco from the Dominican Republic, and from the Condega and Esteli region in Nicaragua.
Vitola: Corona Gorda
Length: 5 5/8″
Ring Gauge: 46
Country of Origin: Nicaragua
Wrapper: Ecuadorian Rosado
Binder: Nicaraguan Habano
Filler: Dominican Republic, Nicaragua
Factory: La Zona
Blender: Juan Cancel, Hector Alfonso Sr.
Number of reviewers: 4 – Sean F. (fullermaine) Matt Cade (CadeTNCC) Joseph S. (Bearded Bastard) Lauren S. (Lauren S.)
Age: 8 Months
Release Date: January 2021
Contributed by: Protocol Cigars
Initial Impressions – Protocol Coppers
“This extremely lightweight cigar features a medium shade brown wrapper with some pronounced veins and a few small lumps. The body of the cigar is a bit soft in some places as well.” –Matt Cade (CadeTNCC)
“Mild tobacco barn with a hint of graham” –Joseph S. (Bearded Bastard)
“There’s a sweet element detected on the cold draw and upon torching the foot I’m greeted by a spicy leather note through the nose with mild cedar and a touch of light coffee via the draw. Mineral enters the profile around the one-inch mark, it works well with the leather and it also tames the spice down considerably. Construction is very good with a smooth draw and attractive white ash being the early highlights.” –Matt Cade (CadeTNCC)
“Burnt toast, cinnamon style heat, red pepper heat” –Joseph S. (Bearded Bastard)
“All the present flavors are playing well together, the draw’s coffee and cedar notes are becoming more pronounced in the second third and a touch of cream has begun to develop on the backend. The retrohale is now almost entirely mineral with just a fraction of the spice that was there at the beginning of the smoking experience. Construction continues to impress in all aspects.” –Matt Cade (CadeTNCC)
“No change in the flavor notes as the oak notes remain.” –Sean F. (fullermaine)
“The pre-light notes return. Oak notes with a subtle hint of sweet tea.” –Sean F. (fullermaine)
“This has slowly developed into a very smooth smoking cigar. The primary coffee and cedar notes paired with the subtle cream and mineral have proven to be a winning combination overall. The initial spice also picks back up again in the final third which is a welcome transition as the end grows near.” –Matt Cade (CadeTNCC)
Overall Impressions – Protocol Coppers
“The draw was probably the best part of this cigar. Always an easy draw with plenty of smoke each puff.” –Lauren S. (Lauren S.)
“Needed a relight on the first third and several touch-ups” –Joseph S. (Bearded Bastard)
“There was no cracking or exploding and the draw was good but something in the construction led to some serious burn issues.” –Lauren S. (Lauren S.)
Overall Strength: Medium
Overall Body/Complexity: Light-Medium
Experience Overall: 87
“A nice quick morning smoke. A very simple cigar with notes of bread, sweet tea, and lots of oak. A minor touch-up is needed to help with the burn. A cigar I’d seek out and add to my humidor. Pairs well with a cup of coffee and a fire.” –Sean F. (fullermaine)
“This would make a very good morning cigar. As far as beverage pairings, I’d recommend a cappuccino if you’ve got things to do later or a screwdriver if the rest of your day is free. This cigar features enjoyable flavors that transition slowly but effortlessly, solid construction, and a pleasing aroma. I would certainly revisit this cigar again down the road.” –Matt Cade (CadeTNCC)
“Wasn’t bad, harsh at times, but if you are into black pepper, do it up” –Joseph S. (Bearded Bastard)
“Had this not been a review stick I would have tossed it after the first inch. The super bitter and acidic start was hard to push through. Though the flavor did somewhat improve by the end with a bit of mesquite and smokey pepper it couldn’t redeem the entire smoke. Add on the burn issues and I would have a hard time trying this cigar again. ” –Lauren S. (Lauren S.)
Smoking Time (in minutes): 80
To view the complete scores and notes, click here.