Origin : Cuba
Format : Lonsdale
Size : 165 x 16.67 mm
Ring : 42
Weight : 10.8 g
Price : $8 each
More info about purchasing Bolivar cigars...
Bolivar Gold Medal disappeared from local cigar shops more than year ago. Nobody seemed to know what happened. Recently I have seen it on sale again and jumped on the occasion to purchase a few samples. Rumour has it that the regular production is far inferior to the 2004 release exclusive to Germany and also that the 2007 production was a flop. Unfortunately I don't think I'll be able to verify this information as the '04 cigars aren't available anywhere and the ones I have are from a '08 box.
The presentation is certainly original. Golden foil covers a slightly rustic yet soft almost maduro wrapper (by the way, it requires some serious skill to remove the foil without damaging the wrapper - I struggled!). As soon as the wrapper is naked, it starts propagating aromas of mature tobacco. There are almost no veins visible and the cigar seems to be very well rolled.
The pre-draw, predominantly spicy, is a tad tight. Fortunately, it opens up as soon as the cigar is lit. The burn is not perfect but self-corrects nicely. Do not leave it for more than one minute as it goes out quite easily.
After some surprisingly moderate spice in the first puffs, powerful woody and earthy notes take over the flavor profile. The smoke is medium-bodied so far, but I can feel the approaching of a full-bodied Boli. The second third brings some variety in the flavor department - I can detect leather and black pepper. The Bolivar Gold Medal becomes even more powerful in the last third, to the point of being difficult to nub.
Nice value for a Cuban lonsdale. If you are a fan of strong Bolivars, you won't be disappointed.
Overall Rating :
I tend to like slightly less powerful cigars, however I can't deny Gold Medal's obvious complexity. It will without any doubt appeal to you if you enjoy the Royal Coronas or Belicosos Finos. Furthermore, the value is quite interesting. Worth a try.