Protocol Cigars showed off their latest addition to their core line in September of 2020, Protocol Cyber Crimes Unit. Due to production and shipping delays, the cigar didn’t actually ship until early 2021. This marks the fifth release in the Protocol Core Line. Protocol cigars always have a law enforcement theme, and this one honors co-owner Kevin Keithan’s occupation in Cyber Security. The charge of the Cyber Crimes Unit (CCU) Investigation squads are to conduct and assist in investigations where computers, networks, telecommunication devices, and other technological instruments are the vehicle or target for the commission of criminal acts against network resources critical to the function of corporate or government entities.
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.
As is the case with most other Protocol cigars, the Protocol Cyber Crimes Unit is rolled at La Zona Cigar Factory in Esteli, Nicaragua under the guidance of Hector Alconfo Sr. and Erik Espinosa. The cigar comes in one size, a boxed-pressed Short Churchill that measures 6 1/2 x 48. As with the other core line Procol cigars, this will come in 10-count boxes and will be priced at $10.50 per cigar. The blend is a Nicaraguan puro with a Nicaraguan Rosado wrapper, Nicaraguan binder, and NIcaraguan fillers.
Vitola: Toro Length: 6 1/2″ Ring Gauge: 48 Country of Origin: Nicaragua Wrapper: Nicaragua Rosado Habano Binder: Nicaragua Filler: Nicaragua Factory: La Zona Blender: Juan Cancel, Hector Alfonso Sr. Number of reviewers: 5 – Ryan H.(Ryan H.) Alan(Eulogy) Mickey T.(irratebass) John A.(Bostoneo) Doug S.(Unpossible_1) Price: $10.50 Age: 3 Months Release Date: January 2021 Contributed by: Protocol Cigars
Initial Impressions – Protocol Cyber Crimes Unit
“Well constructed box press with soft and smooth chocolate bar wrapper.” –Doug S. (Unpossible_1)
“On the cold draw, flavors of coffee, chocolate, malt with a light touch of leather create a balanced medium profile. On the nose, notes of cream and a soft barnyard profile leave me waiting to see what will bloom from this cigar when lit up.” –John A. (Bostoneo)
Flavor: 90 Strength: Medium Body/Complexity: Medium-Full
“There is something oddly engaging about this cigar. The draw is a little too loose, I’m hearing odd popping noises, and it’s going out if I set it down for more than a minute but there’s a nice set of core flavors. I find that there’s a mineral-style saltiness in the front of the draw and a slight piquant finish that’s not overpowering. Some malt, stone fruit, cedar, and spicy red pepper notes round out the core flavors. ” –Alan (Eulogy)
“On the cold draw, I pick up more barnyard flavors. Well, this isn’t starting out very well. I am having to puff 5-6x’s to get anything out of this cigar. When I do get flavors they are sweet raisin, oatmeal, and coffee, but I am working for these flavors. ” –Mickey T. (irratebass)
“Sweetness and spice went leaving leather and earth which combine to a good chocolatey note floral still noticeable barely. Very complex cigar. I don’t know why but this cigar doesn’t want to stay lit you really have to draw on it a lot to keep it going.” –Ryan H. (Ryan H.)
“The second third complements the first. Continuing with rich medium-bodied flavors of cream, coffee beans with a peppery finish continue. Remaining consistent, this profile continues throughout the entirety of this third, which is a very satisfying profile in my opinion.” –John A. (Bostoneo)
“Still burning terribly. The flavors are good and the smoke output is great though. The mineral notes are back with a rich woodiness that complements each other. A bit more red pepper on the finish is a nice touch with the now slightly sweet tobacco flavor. ” –Alan (Eulogy)
“The last third begins with a bump in strength and body. Flavors of cedar, pepper, and lightly roasted coffee are the playmakers here which last until the very end.” –John A. (Bostoneo)
Overall Impressions – Protocol Cyber Crimes Unit
“For a v-cut, it is wide open right from the start. Not a good sign.” –Doug S. (Unpossible_1)
“Required immediate touch-ups. The cigar also repeatedly went out on me, giving my lighter a workout. ” –Doug S. (Unpossible_1)
“Construction affected the burn and draw in a negative way.” –John A. (Bostoneo)
“With the burn/ smoke output problems it really kind of ruined the experience, but the profile was very enjoyable and full of character.” –Ryan H. (Ryan H.)
“I’m very conflicted. The burn required constant attention and more relights than I cared to count. The flavors were very good though and I found the profile shifted though out in engaging ways. I would smoke this again to see if the construction issues were a fluke but I would be wary of purchase if the price was high. ” –Alan (Eulogy)
“Sweet raisin, oatmeal, and coffee, but it was a chore to get these flavors. ” –Mickey T. (irratebass)
“Overall, this was a tasty cigar, however the lack in the construction quality prevented it from being a superior cigar. The flavor profile was there, however it was stifled from accelerating to greatness. I would like to try this sample again as I hope it was just a one-off issue.” –John A. (Bostoneo)
“This is one time that I wish I could have back. Musty oak is unpleasant, to say the least, and this cigar was loaded with it. Add in the fact that it refused to stay lit, this was a memorable experience in being one I would hope to not repeat. The only redeeming thing was the appearance of the cigar before I began to pick up the aroma or light it. Definitely, a tragedy that will take some time to get over.” –Doug S. (Unpossible_1)
To view the complete scores and notes, click here.
Protocol Cyber Crimes Unit – Blind Cigar Review
Protocol Cyber Crimes Unit – Blind Cigar Review
"I'm very conflicted. The burn required constant attention and more relights than I cared to count. The flavors were very good though and I found the profile shifted though out in engaging ways. I would smoke this again to see if the construction issues were a fluke but I would be wary of purchase if the price was high. " -Alan (Eulogy)