Cigar Reviews

Bombay Tobak – Mbombay Classic and Mbombay Maduro – Quick Draw

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Bombay Tobak recently released the Mbombay Classic line, and the Mbombay Maduro line which are both already making quite a stir. Today, I take a quick look at both of these blends and provide you with some quick thoughts on what to expect from the new company.

Mbombay Cigars

PRESS RELEASE

A truly boutique cigar, MBombay, just hit the shelves of retailers in Southern California within last couple of weeks. MBombay Cigars are made in a very small factory in San Jose, Costa Rica.

In a recent interview with Mel Shah, owner of MBombay Cigars, expressed “Cigars are embedded in my memories since childhood. I can still smell the lingering mild smell of Cubans that my grandfather and my father smoked when I was a kid. After graduating college in India, my father offered me my first cigar in ’96, which he got from Dubai. I retired from IT industry in 2001, and opened a cigar shop that year in July. I enjoy retail even today, but I believe manufacturing aspect of cigars was supposed to happen. Touching, feeling and smelling of tobacco in the factory takes me right back to my grandpa’s room. I do miss him and classical music that he used to listen while smoking a fine cigar.”

The owner, Mel Shah, is a Palm Springs based tobacconist and a wine retailer for last 15 years, commented on the line “… our philosophy is simple, acquire the best quality of tobaccos and focus on quality than quantity. The wrapper tobacco used for our classic line is Ecuadorian Connecticut Shade from 2001, binders and fillers are well aged from 2006 and 2007. After the cigars are rolled by only four to five rollers in the factory, the cigars are kept in the “caparate” for more than 6 to 7 months before we start to import to the United States.” With production of merely 1000 boxes a month (boxes of 20), Shah does not plan to distribute the line to more than 200 to 250 stores nationwide.

Mel had reached out to me a few months ago with information about his new endeavor. We posted a press release, along with some detailed information on both of the lines (read that here) and many of you have asked what we thought about the cigars. Thanks goes out to Mel who hooked us up with a few samples so that I can finally answer that questions. Here we go:

Mbombay Classic:

Mbombay Classic

Size: 7 x 48
Wrapper: Ecuadorian Connecticut 2001
Binder: Dominican Republic
Filler: Honduras, Nicaragua, Dominican Republic and Peru
Body: Medium
Strength: Mild/Medium
Pairing: Water

Prelight: The Mbombay Classic line starts out with a very smooth, very silky light brown wrapper. This cigar has oil seeping through it’s pores. Outside of the oiliness, the wrapper is very smooth and thin dropping off the body of the cigar forming an unfinished foot. The body is very thin for a Churchill which I personal enjoy as smaller ring gauge cigars are my preference. The slender body leads up to a perfectly round triple cap. The Mbombay lines are both polished off with the absolutely beautiful Persian Rug style design on their rather large bands.

Flavors: The Classic Line Mbombay’s name fits it very well as it has a very classic profile. Light cedar, mild tobacco, earthiness, grass and nuttiness with a bit of pine on the finish. The flavors were pretty solid all the way through with a bit of a spice ramp up towards the very end of the experience.

Burn/Draw: The burn on the Mbombay classic line was razor thin, and solid the whole way though. I never once had to relight nor touchup the cigar the entire hour and a half it took to take it down. The draw was just as good. Each draw produced a good amount of thin while smoke. I was a bit surprised how quickly the smoke dissipated.

Thoughts: Again, this is a classic style cigar through and through. The flavor profile is very mild, but tasty. While It’s not the strongest cigar out there, it’s an ideal candidate for an afternoon break with a nice cup of coffee. This cigar will be a hit.

Mbombay Maduro:

Mbombay Maduro

Size: 7 x 48
Wrapper: Brazilian Mata Fina 2007
Binder: Peru
Filler: Honduras, Nicaragua, and Dominican Republic
Body: Medium/Full
Strength: Medium
Pairing: Water

Prelight: First off the Mbombay Maduro is an incredible looking cigar. We’ll start with the wrapper. So dark, so consistent and so oily. Like the Classic line, I could probably grease the bearing in my car with the amount of oils on this cigar. I love it. The presentation is incredible starting with an unfinished foot extending passed the body of the cigar. The body is very slender for a Churchill (as I said, I’m a fan of smaller ring gauge cigars, so that’s a win). There are a few smaller veins running through the body leading up to a perfectly round triple cap. The cigar is finished off with this absolutely incredible looking, Persian style pattern on a rather large band. While some may think it’s overdone, I think it absolutely fits the cigar’s character.

Flavors: The Mbombay Maduro line carries some strong cedar, cocoa, and coffee flavors with some strong cinnamon and spice during the first third which began to transcend into a more leathery mixture as I got halfway through the cigar. The cigar starts full in body, but mellows out as you smoke on finishing right in the middle of the medium category.

Burn/Draw: The burn on this cigar was a bit mild in the samples I smoked. This isn’t a big deal for me as it takes a lot of relights before I get annoyed. Luckily, I only had to touch up the Mbombay Maduro once, while touching it up twice. The burnline was all sorts of wavy and would correct itself before going wild again. Again, the draw on this one was flawless kicking out tons of smoke with each little puff.

Thoughts: While I enjoyed both of the blends, the Maduro line has my heart. The flavors are exactly what I would look for. First, they are bold, and they are complex. The profile is extremely well balanced despite being so bold, and the actual flavors are incredibly enjoyable. The burn could have been a bit better, but I’m not really complaining. The construction is fantastic, and again, the product design is some of the nicest I’ve seen this year. I’d lie if I said I wasn’t eager to try one of these cigar and I’d be lying again if I said I wouldn’t smoke a whole lot more of these.




Tony Casas is a 32 year old Creative Managing/Webdesigning/Craft Beer Drinking Cigar smoker from El Paso, Texas. When he isn't loving his wife he is either sleepy, hungry, or suffering from a headache.

8 Comments

  1. CigarCraig

    July 30, 2014 at 10:34 am

    These are very tasty and refined cigars. The factory in Costa Rica where these are made are turning out some very high quality cigars, and these are up there with the best of them. I thing the Peruvian tobacco in the blend really adds something special. Like you, I lean toward the Maduro, but the Classic is very smooth and enjoyable.

    • Tony Casas

      July 30, 2014 at 10:41 am

      Thanks for the read Craig! I know there was something extra in there and my thoughts were right in line with yours as I researched the blend. It had to be the Peruvian tobacco. A few cigars I have smoked included tobacco from Peru and I can’t think of one that I didn’t enjoy. Maybe it’s just the change of pace, or maybe the region needs a bit more exploration in terms of tobacco usage.

  2. jjo

    July 30, 2014 at 10:38 am

    It’s great to hear that the experience matched the impressive presentation. Do you think more humidor time for the Maduro would help with the burn?

    • Tony Casas

      July 30, 2014 at 10:40 am

      Possibly. Again, it wasn’t very annoying, it just didn’t have a burn that was on par with the classic line. Could just be a characteristic of the Brazilian Mata Fina.

  3. Curtis Lee

    July 30, 2014 at 7:07 pm

    I just finished smoking 2 of the light wrappers, I have been smoking these for about 2 months, what a great smoking experience. Great body and burn, the flavors transition very nicely. It is like maxwell house coffee, this cigar is great until the last draw. Try it you will like it!

    • Tony Casas

      July 31, 2014 at 8:49 am

      Thanks for the read man, and I couldn’t agree more. Great all around.

  4. Cigar Inspector

    August 3, 2014 at 3:36 pm

    After seeing these mentioned in a couple of blogs, I gave them a try. Loved them both, especially the maduro.

    • Tony Casas

      August 4, 2014 at 7:38 am

      Thanks for the read man. I absolutely loved them both, but that maduro is something special.

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