Rocky Patel, a name that can both evoke a positive and negative reaction, depending on the crowd. For those who have been around in the industry for a while now, we all can look back in fond agreement that the Vintage 92, inaugural Old World Reserve, and the original edge series were great cigars. Of course like many things in life, all that glimmers tends to fade, and those lines while still wildly popular have lost a lot of the taste profile that made them great. Blame it on mass production, selling out to the online market, or just becoming to big for their own good, but what made Rocky great in the past has sorely been missed in the current market.
All hope has not faded from the Rocky empire though, this year has shown some renewed promise and taste with the release of the Thunder and Xen. Both cigars are named, designed, and marketed by Rocky’s heir apparent’s Nish and Nimish. It is really a symbolic sign as well as a statement of what we can expect in the days ahead from the company, and I have to say that both cigars were rather good in their own ways. Today we focus on the Xen.
The Xen by Nish Patel has been advertised as “rethinking connecticut,” and the intention as a few others have been trying to do is equipping a connecticut cigar, which is traditionally mild, and then wrapping that golden wrapper around a medium body chassis. The Xen achieves that and does so fairly well. Looking at the Xen Reveals an ultra smooth box-pressed robusto with a fairly rigid body with only a few soft spots. Inspecting the foot reveals barnyard and cedar notes with a faint sweetness. Upon clipping the cap I find there to be an excellent draw that is the right balance between effortless and resistant.
So the real question is, how does it smoke? The Xen was a pleasant smoking experience from foot to nub. It starts off with a big burst of spice, which really does make you think, “is this a connecticut?” and then after the first quarter begins to taper into a more familiar connecticut body of cedar and barnyard notes. The first quarter is pleasant, and as I stated mostly spice, cedar, and barnyard in flavor, but as it transitions into the midpoint the sweetness really begins to pick up. I find the midpoint to be really enjoyable and pleasant as the notes of cedar continue, but notes of nutmeg and fruit slowly get introduced. By the last quarter of the cigar it is humming with flavor and as it draws to a close the sweetness diminishes a bit and the cigar returns to its cedar start point.
The Xen by Nish is a finely balanced smoke that really does provide the cigar smoker a mild + to medium experience. It is well constructed and has a great flavor profile that will really appeal to most novice and mild-medium cigar smoking enthusiasts. As I said in the beginning, the chief issue with Rocky cigars isn’t that their initial offering isn’t good, its just that over time they tend to lose the very quality which makes them great. The Xen is a great cigar so get one while you can, especially during its inaugural production. If your a fan of sweetness, some spice, and wood notes, then Rocky Patel has a great offering for you!
Size: 5 x 50 (Robusto)
Wrapper: Ecuadorian Connecticut