Rocky Patel Quarter Century Cigar Review

October 17, 2022

Rocky Patel Quarter Century

Anniversaries are considered significant milestones for many cigar makers, and fewer reflect that sentiment more than Rocky Patel. A sizeable portfolio of blends for both significant birthdays and momentous anniversaries alone, the Rocky Patel Quarter Century is lauded as among Rocky’s best in a sea of top-rated Rocky Patel brands.

Like many during the time, Rakesh “Rocky” Patel saw an incredible opportunity during the cigar boom of the 1990s. Unlike countless cigar companies that started during that time, Rocky Patel Cigars stood the test of time off the hard work and dedication of Patel to learn the art of crafting fine handmade cigars.

Released in 2020, the Quarter Century is the summation of everything Rocky Patel has learned since leaping into the cigar world in 1995. A quarter century is longer than most companies of any industry last, and to make reaching such a milestone all the sweeter nothing was held back in the making of the Rocky Patel Quarter Century.

At its core lies Nicaraguan and Honduran long-fillers that have been aged for an extensive 10 years. Joined by an earthy Honduran binder and a top-shelf San Andres Mexican wrapper, each cigar was aged an additional two years after rolling, which further matures and unifies the tobaccos.

I especially enjoyed Rocky Patel’s ALR Second Edition, which also featured a San Andres wrapper and was aged after rolling, so I am excited to try out another luxury blend from this now quarter-century-old brand.

Without any further ado, let’s dive right into our review of the Rocky Patel Quarter Century!

Cigar Specs

Country of Origin: Nicaragua

Wrapper: San Andres Mexican

Binder: Honduras

Filler: Honduras/Nicaragua

Cigar Strength: Full

Smoke Time: 80 minutes

Sizes Available:

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Cold Draw Impressions

Before I clip the cap, I take a couple of whiffs from the foot. I get faint notes of earth, leather, and a hint of barnyard mustiness that reminds me of walking through a humidified cigar shop. Aromas from the wrapper are also faint, giving off a leathery aroma.

The seamlessly applied wrapper has a slight oiliness to it. It has a darker brown color, but certainly not dark enough to call it a Maduro, more like a Colorado Maduro shade. There is a slight tooth to the wrapper as well. I do not pay too close attention to band designs, but the vibrant red and brownish-gold highlights boldly stand out over the wrapper’s chocolate-brown shade.

After delivering two v-cuts, my favorite way to cut a cigar, I take a few cold draws. The most prominent flavor I get is leather, followed by some earth, cocoa, and cream. The draw is just ever so slightly tight, just shy of flawless, so I do not foresee it causing any issues down the line.

First Third Impressions

At first light, spice, and earth coat my palate in a rush of flavor, presented atop a leathery creaminess. The smoke has a dense, thick texture, even with slightly above-average smoke production. Secondary flavors include cedar, espresso, and a touch of a unique musty flavor that is a tell-tale of aged tobaccos.

When I perform a retrohale, a dried fruit sweetness, a more defined peaty earthiness, and touches of red pepper flow through my nostrils. I could not be more pleased by the balance the flavors are exhibiting.

About an inch through, I knock off the ash. Had I not intervened, I have no doubt it would have held on for at least another half inch. The ash has a brilliant white color with a shade of gray, and the burn line has been going slow and steady without any need for a touch-up. Coming to the close of the first third, the flavor is firmly medium-full, and the body is shy of medium-full.

Second Third Impressions

Coming into the second third, the spice and pepper build to a more forward presence on my palate. Hints of cocoa also start to enter the mix, vying for space with the espresso. The cedar is also taking on more of a charred quality to it as the body builds. Main flavors of pepper, spice, earth, and leather still lead the way, with some nuttiness moving in and out, but no one note completely dominates the profile.

As I reach the midpoint of the cigar, the burn line begins to lean ever so slightly to one side, however it never runs too far away that a touch-up is required. Crossing the halfway mark also introduces a unique sweet and savory flavor; it almost reminds me of vegetables sauteed in olive oil.

Closing out the second third, I remove the secondary band, which comes off exceptionally easily; there was no overabundance of glue, and the band peeled right off. Core flavors remain the same but have grown more robust and bolder on my palate. The flavor is now in the full-flavored arena, with the body not far behind just short of full-bodied.

Final Third Impressions

As the burn progresses into the final third, the espresso note returns in a big way. It shoots to the front of the pack of complex flavors, leading to a medley of spice, earth, pepper, and slight mustiness. The profile has grown to be full-flavored and full-bodied, growing ever more pronounced on my palate.

The slightly uneven burn of the second third has also evened itself out, closing with a burn line sharper than even the first third. The finish is also starting to linger longer on my palate with leather, espresso, and spice flavors leading a tapestry of roasted nuts, cedar, cocoa, pepper, and dried fruit.

After moving into the final inch, the smoke is starting to get too hot for my palate to bear, so I finally put it to rest after an 80-minute session. The burn line remained flawless throughout the final third and was impeccable throughout, save for the slight wavering in the second third.

Pairing Options

A suitable pairing for the rich medium-full to full-bodied flavors exhibited by the Rocky Patel Quarter Century would be a spiced rum or a whiskey, especially bourbon or scotch. The sweetness of bourbon or rum will complement the cocoa, pepper, and dried fruit notes, while a scotch whiskey will accent the earthy, leathery parts of the profile.

Whatever you choose for a pairing, make sure your drink is flavorful and bold enough to stand with the richness of the Rocky Patel Quarter Century. A stout beer or a dry red wine would also be a fine companion to this blend,

Final Thoughts

Rocky Patel knows how to do an anniversary cigar right, and the Rocky Patel Quarter Century is exemplary of that. Although there was not much in terms of significant flavor transformations or transitions, the experience was far from linear. The cigar was incredibly complex, and the flavors played on each other, grew, and evolved as the smoke progressed.

Despite a price tag hovering close to $12 per stick, trust me when I say that this cigar is worth every cent. The balance, richness, and complexity all summed up to an exceptional smoking experience, one well deserving of its accolades.

A cigar that lives up to its grand expectations to celebrate a quarter century in the business, Rocky Patel Quarter Century is deserving of a spot in any connoisseur’s humidor. Be sure to order yours online from JR Cigar, and do not hesitate to check out the wealth of information provided right here at The Blending Room!


One response to “Rocky Patel Quarter Century Cigar Review”

  1. Arturo says:

    great review and video

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