Dissident Cigars is a company that was launched in 2013. They are run by two individuals known as “Gweedo C” and “Red Ryan”. The company itself has said it has a goal of “bringing unique, quality handmade premium cigars with a D.I.Y. punk rock style to the boutique cigar market.”. At the same time, the company seems to have aimed at producing some traditional styled cigars. Since the company has launched they have launched two lines – the Dissident Soapbox and the Dissident Bloc. Today we take a closer look at the Dissident Soapbox. Overall I found an excellent cigar that despite a very modern theme delivers a nice classic smoking experience.
The Dissident web-site goes into more detail on the company’s mission:
“We wanted to create a brand that kind of stood against the way the industry is currently, while maintaining quality in flavor, construction, and industry standards. We kind of felt like everything out there today is a copy of a copy of a copy, and we felt a responsibility to put something different out there. Something that represents our generation in this industry. Not necessarily in the traditional sense of creating a new style or shape, but taking it all the way through to the message, the soul and essence of the cigar. A punchy, strong message that our brand is defiant, rowdy, and not afraid to stay against the grain.”
In terms of the Dissident Soapbox cigar, the company explained a bit more behind this on a post that appeared one their Facebook page. The name Soapbox fits in with the theme of being “defiant, rowdy, and not afraid to stay against the grain.”
“Dissident Soapbox is about standing up for what you believe in. Making people listen, even if they don’t want to hear what you have to say. Always being yourself, and never worrying what others will think. Stand up. Speak on it.“
In terms of the Dissident Soapbox, let’s take a closer look at this cigar and see what it brings to the table:
The Dissident Soapbox is an all-Nicaraguan puro:
Binder: Double Esteli
Filler: Jalapa, Esteli, and Condega
The Dissident Soapbox is available in three sizes. Each sizes reflect the “soapbox” theme.
Rant: 4 3/4 x 46
Rave: 5 1/2 x 52
Tirade: 6 1/4 x 56
For this cigar experience, I smoked the 5 1/2 x 52 sized Dissident Soapbox Rave. The Jalapa wrapper of the Soapbox Rave has a medium brown, woody colored wrapper. There is a slight amount of oil on the surface of the wrapper. There are some visible veins, but the wrapper seams are actually decently hidden.
The band to the Dissident Soapbox is gray in color. On the front of the band is the text “SOAP BOX” (on two lines) in large yellow font. Slightly draped over the upper part of that text is “dissident” in a dark graffiti style font. Toward the back is a pair of white sneakers.
Preparation for the Cigar Experience
Before lighting up the Dissident Soapbox Rave, I went with my usual choice of a straight cut. Once I clipped the cap, I moved on to the pre-light draw experience. The dry draw provided a very classic profile with notes of wood, natural tobacco, and a bit of black pepper. Overall the pre-light draw to the Soapbox was satisfactory. At this point, I was ready to light up this cigar and see what the smoking phase would have in store.
I like to say the pre-light draw provides what I term a light “appetizer” for most smoking experiences, and with the Dissident Soapbox this is exactly what I got. The start to the Dissident Soapbox continued with the notes of wood and black pepper that I got on the pre-light draw. There was also a slight natural tobacco note on the finish.
As the Dissident Soapbox moved through the first half, a nut flavor emerged and went into the forefront. This joined the black pepper up-front. While the pepper was a primary flavor, it did not overpower the cigar. Meanwhile in the background there was a nice Nicaraguan earthy note in the background.
In the second half, the flavor profile continued to hold, but a floral note joined the earth notes in the background. There was a slight increase in pepper at the end. Overall, I found the Soapbox to remain flavorful right until the end. The resulting nub was firm to the touch and cool in temperature.
Burn and Draw
I found the Dissident Soapbox to be a low maintenance burn from start to finish. This cigar did not require much in the way of touch-ups. It produced a nice silvery gray ash with some darker streaks mixed in it. The ash was firm throughout the smoking experience with virtually no flaking and no flowering. The burn rate and burn temperature were ideal.
|Burn of the Dissident Soapbox|
I found the draw to the Dissident Soapbox to be “open”, but not loose. This made the Soapbox a very easy cigar to derive flavors from. The cigar itself produced a moderate amount of smoke.
Strength and Body
If you are looking for a cigar that is going to deliver a large nicotine punch, you are going to find this with the Soapbox. However, with this cigar it is going to produce enough strength to satisfy a wide range of cigar enthusiasts. I assessed this cigar as being medium in strength. The body to the Dissident Soapbox is going to start out medium. The flavors develop more depth slowly and by the last third, the cigar crosses into medium to full-bodied range. This cigar does a good job at balancing strength versus body throughout the cigar experience, but in the last third, the body has a slight edge.
With this cigar, I had no idea what to expect. With a bit of an edgy and modern theme, I wasn’t sure if this cigar was going to deliver something different in terms of its flavors. What I did find was an interesting flavor profile that wasn’t cookie cutter. At the same time, the characteristics of this flavor profile were very classic. This resulting in a very good cigar experience from my point of view. Overall this is the kind of cigar I’d recommend to both the novice and experienced cigar enthusiast looking for something very classic. As for myself, this is a cigar I would seek out – and certainly get a five pack to keep in my humidor on a regular basis.
Body: Medium (1st 2/3), Medium to Full (last third)
Assessment: 3.0 – The Fiver
Price: $8.00-$11.00 (for line)
Source: Samples provided by manufacturer (*)
Stogie Geeks Podcast: n/a
Stogie Feed: n/a
* The cigars for this assessment were given to Cigar Coop by Dissident Cigars. Cigar Coop is appreciative for the sample, but this does not influence this assessment.