Today’s choice cigar was the Gurkha Assassin, adorned in a Brazilian Mata Fina, a Dominican binder, and filled to the brim with a bunch composed of Nicaraguan and Peruvian tobaccos; indicative of a spicy and yet undoubtedly sweet cigar, with subtle tones of cedar, coffee (ground and whole beans), clove, peppercorns, and fresh earth.

The Assassin bares the atypical double band, one from the Legend & Special Edition series, and a second far more subtle band simply stating in embossed gold lettering “GURKHA ASSASSIN”.

The pre-toasting taste of the head led to hints of pepper and a Dijon honey mustard. After toasting the foot, I picked up hints of cashews, espresso, caramel, tanned leather, and toast. The initial draw after lighting yielded a heavy yet subtle presence of cracked peppercorns, leading to dark chocolate and saw dust.

On the third draw I was mesmerized by the swirling white billowing smoke, which smelled lightly of cedar, and greatly of cocoa.

A half an inch in, and while there isn’t a notable formation of rings it is apparent that the ash is quite solid as denoted by its salt and pepper complexion. The flavors shift at the three quarter mark of the first inch to vanilla, kiln dried cedar, paprika, and butter.

After having tapped off the first inch and a half I noted the common appearance of ligero, as well as a continuously even burn at the foot, with no notable change in the draw flavor, the smoke however changed to a rather palatable butter scent.

By the five inch mark I’ve finally been able to determine the strength of this vitola as a full end of medium strength with a full yet diverse body profile. Much of this is from the Brazilian Mata Fina, though it’s Nicaragua and Peruvian filler do bolster my findings. Most Mata Fina wrappers have the tendency to have a rather toothy grain, this wrapper however is quite smooth, and lacking any notable grain; which in turn makes the cigar feeling quite natural in the mouth.

By the four inch mark the flavors shift dramatically towards milk chocolate, stronger hints of vanilla and butter, subdued pepper, and a light hint of cedar. And the burn is still as persistently staying even, not even the slightest appearance of a canoe taking shape, and as with every cigar reviewed on my blog to date have each been toasted and lit by means of Swan Vestas. I tend to favor a soft flame mostly out of tradition, but also due to the fact that it is harder and nearly impossible to carbonize the tobacco by this means of lighting.

Here at the three inch mark, a sizable canoe has formed, and yet began to subside by its own accord. The flavor was consistent with those found in the fourth inch and the smoke was as plentiful and still sensuous as it has been throughout the whole length of this Churchill.

An odd occurrence happened the at two and three quarters, a venerable abatement of all of the earlier flavor and hints, giving way to a very light and very subtle pepper sense and burnt coffee. Though this pairing of flavor isn’t terrible, it’s just disconcerting as it went out. So it’s time for a relight and a little bitterness. A slight bitterness of burnt wood, which eventually yielded to leather, peppers, cedar, and 85% cacao at the two and a half inch mark; that sweet scent of vanilla still persists.

Roughly at the two inch mark, this Assassin continues to sweeten in it’s flavor profile with cacao shifting to cocoa, pepper to a sweet and spicy barbecue, fresh cedar; just plain delicious. An inch and half left to go, hints of anise adds itself to the menagerie of flavors and hints. This is a wholly multidimensional cigar, well worth savoring and much as I did with the Fonseca robusto, I too did with this Churchill, take it as far down as I could with my Don Salvatore awl.

And that's all she wrote.

Purchased from Davidus Cigars, Rockville, Maryland 20852. For 9.60$ before tax on 4/29/10.