This week’s group cigar review is of the Castle Hall by Gurkha. These are affordable cigars, so we’d like to know if they are a diamond in the rough. Prior to lighting, the cigar has good construction and a nice looking wrapper. It has a somewhat musty smell to it and a slightly loose draw after cutting. Once lit up, we got a graham cracker like flavor – toasty, creamy, and with some spice on the finish. A little later, a nutty flavor came in, along with a bitterness on the finish. The flavor stayed much the same throughout the entire cigar. There were no construction issues with either of our sticks. Overall, this is a very well made, but average tasting cigar. Decent flavor, great price, and great construction – we say it’s worth trying out.
Flavor and Taste: 15/20
Price Point: 10/10
Would I buy a Box: 3/5
Flavor and Taste: 14/20
Price Point: 10/10
Would I buy a Box: 2/5
StraightUpCigars: Did a shallow cut on the Castle Hall and the draw is still a little loose. Good looking wrapper and minty tobacco smell though.
Terry1: My Castle Hall has a good draw. It looks well constructed. I get a weird musty vegital flavor from the cold draw. The last time I got that note the cigar ended up being pretty good. I’m ready to light up and find out.
StraightUpCigars: Nice. Lighting up.
StraightUpCigars: This one reminds me of a graham cracker. Toasty and creamy with a faint sweet/spice mix.
Terry1: That’s a good description, graham cracker. The cigar has started with a simple profile. Nothing bold but nothing quite bland either. Just a simple creaminess with a hint of sweet/spice.
StraightUpCigars: Yeah, real mild but very good. I am getting a nutty flavor now as well. Off to a good start.
Terry1: Now that you mentioned it, I can detect a hint of nut in the aroma. I’m noticing a bitterness on the finish. Hopefully it fades away soon. Burn line is mostly straight.
StraightUpCigars: There is some bitterness, I agree. It isn’t too bad though. I have noticed it on virtually all Gurkhas, I call it the Gurkha stank.
Terry1: I didn’t know this was a Gurkha. That’s funny, Gurkha stank. I was just reading my notes about the Gurkhas I’ve tried and, you’re right, for most of the cigars I commented on a bitterness. I never made the connection with Gurkha before.
StraightUpCigars: Lol. I don’t have any answers for why it is, just an observation I’ve made over the years. Interesting that you’ve found the same thing. A coworker refuses to smoke them b/c he says his wife won’t touch him after he’s had a Gurkha.
StraightUpCigars: My cigar has crept into the medium body category. More of the nuts and earth flavor than anything else right now. No construction issues thus far.
Terry1: I’m over halfway. Burn is near perfect. No strength. Flavors are still mild with a mild creamy nuttiness. I’ve noticed that the bitterness seems to be related to how hot the cigar is. If I take more time between puffs the bitterness is almost gone.
StraightUpCigars: I agree on the bitterness I’ve slowed down too and it is better.
Terry1: I’m struggling with how I feel about this cigar. I don’t hate it but I don’t like it much either. Price is attractive at $2, it’s well constructed but the flavors are forgetable. Maybe a yard gar at best?
StraightUpCigars: Yeah, I did really like that first third. This second is nothing to write home about. For $2 I’d say it’s a safe buy.
Terry1: Yeah I’d say try one before buying a bundle.
StraightUpCigars: But we’re assuming this final third won’t be the best we’ve ever had…. is that too much to ask for?
Terry1: Lol. For this cigar…yes it’s too much.
StraightUpCigars: Hehe. I am very happy with the construction. Good smoke output and burn.
StraightUpCigars: Getting coffee flavor and earth now with a lot of spice. Some bitterness too. Not a bad ending at all.
Terry1: Got to the nub and I’m setting mine down. I did get an earthy note, no coffee thou. Still has that creamy nutty note. The Castle Hall was a well made average cigar.
StraightUpCigars: I agree with that, well made average cigar. I really liked that first third, but the rest was just ok.