The MBombay Kesara is one of four lines currently offered by Bombay Tobak. The company is run by Mel Shah. Shah is a retailer who owns Fame Wine and Cigars in Palm Springs, California. After retiring from the IT industry in 2001, Shah opened his shop and now after more than a decade on the retail end, he has entered the manufacturing side. Shah produces his cigars out of Costa Rica – which has been a country producing some very good cigars as of late. Recently I’ve had an opportunity to smoke the MBombay Kesara in the Toro format featuring a shagged foot. Not only did I find this an excellent and enjoyable cigar, but I found this to be one of best performing shagged foot cigars I have had in a long time.
The MBombay Kesara joins the MBombay Classic (Ecuadorian Connecticut wrapped offering), MBombay Corojo Oscuro (Ecuadorian Corojo Oscuro wrapped offering), and the MBombay Mora (Dominican Corojo Claro) ofering. The Kesara also uses an Ecuadorian Connecticut seed wrapper called Ecuadorian Deas Florado 2002 wrapper. It currently is MBombay’s most premium offering in their portfolio.
Without further ado, let’s break down the MBombay Kesara and see what this cigar brings to the table.
The Kesara is a multi-national blend consisting of tobaccos from three countries. As mentioned, MBombay cigars are produced in Costa Rica.
Wrapper: Ecuadorian Connecticut Deas Florado 2002
Binder: Ecuadorian Havana
Filler: Dominican and Peruvian
Country of Origin: Costa Rica
Of the four blends we mentioned above, there two common things seen in the portfolio: 1) Each contain Peruvian and Dominican tobacco in the filler; 2) All use some sort of Ecuadorian tobacco in the blend.
The Kesara is currently available in three sizes that are packaged in 15 count boxes. At press time, there are more sizes planned.
Robusto Larga: 4 1/2 x 54
Toro: 6 x 52
Pyramid: 7 x 54
The Toro and Pyramid sizes feature an unfinished shaggy foot.
The Ecuadorian Deas Florado wrapper of the MBombay Kesara Toro has almost a butterscotch color to it. The wrapper was smooth with some oil on the surface. There are some visible wrapper seams and visible seams. The footer features about an inch of a “shagged” rough cut foot.
The band features a rose, red, and gold Indian-inspired mosaic design. There is red and gold trim across the top and bottom of the band. Prominently displayed on the band is the text “MBOMBAY” in large red font.
Preparation for the Cigar Experience
Prior to lighting up my MBombay Kesara Toro, I went with my usual choice of a straight cut. After clipping the cap, I moved on to the pre-light draw. The pre-light draw delivered a nice assortment of flavors including cream, wood, cedar, and natural tobacco. Overall I considered the pre-light draw of the MBombay Kesara to be excellent.
While some people opt to cut the off a portion of a longer shagged foot, I opted to keep the whole thing on as that is how it is intended to be smoked. At this point I lit up my Kesara Toro and was ready to move into the smoking phase.
The MBombay Kesara Toro started out with notes of wood and cedar. This was no surprise because the cigar experience of the unfinished foot. During this stage, some cream notes also surfaced (which did surprise me). Toward the end of the unfinished portion, the cream notes became primary with the wood and cedar secondary. The cedar did develop some sweetness and it was also present on the retro-hale.
As the Kesara moved to the main part of the cigar, the complexity increased. The cream notes remained primary. Some grass notes joined the wood and cedar in the background. The grassy notes had a slight evergreen taste to them. Toward the end of the first third, a natural tobacco sweetness joined the cream notes. There was also a slight fruit taste to the natural tobacco sweetness. There was now some pepper mixed into the retro-hale.
During the second third, the flavor profile remained, but I now also picked up a slight vanilla note in the background.
By the last third, the grass notes joined the natural tobacco. There was a slight increase in the pepper notes, but they never approached the forefront. The cream notes were now secondary with the cedar and vanilla. This is the way the flavor profile came to a close. The resulting nub was firm to the touch and cool in temperature.
Burn and Draw
Very simply, this might be the best burn I ever got on a shagged foot cigar. The burn line remained on a straight path from start to finish. It burned clean through the shag and transitioned to the base of the cigar nicely. There was a slight curvature from time to time, but this proved to be no problem. The resulting ash was tight and firm. The ash started out more salt and pepper color early and got more charcoal gray as the cigar burned. The burn rate and burn temperature were ideal. This pattern was consistent on each smoke I had. The MBombay Kesara Toro earns our highest rating for burn – “Exceptional”.
|MBombay Kesara Toro – Burn (Unfinished foot section)|
|MBombay Kesara Toro – Burn (Midpoint)|
The draw was stellar. &nIt had a touch of resistance – which is something I like. At the same time, this cigar produced a nice abundant layer of smoke.
Strength and Body
In terms of strength, the MBombay Kesara Toro is not going to be a power-house smoke. The strength level is going to start out on the mild to medium side for the first third. By the second third, the strength progressed into medium territory where it remained. The flavors are not going to weigh heavy on the pallet. I found the Kesara Toro to be mild to medium-bodied during the shagged portion. Once the cigar progressed to the main portion, it moved to medium-bodied. Overall, I found when it came to strength versus body, the body had a slight edge with this cigar.
Overall I was quite impressed with the MBombay Kesara Toro. &I found this to deliver one of the most unique flavor profiles I have had on a cigar in quite some time. This cigar has plenty of complexity delivering lots of flavor transitions and flavor nuances. I also found that this cigar’s “dialed back” profile in terms of strength and body worked perfectly. Finally, I cannot go without mentioning how well this cigar smoked with a shagged foot. Typically an unfinished footer leads to a very rough start that often continues into the full smoking experience. There were no such problems with the Kesara Toro as it was consistent each time I smoked this. This cigar will carry a higher price point ($16.00), but if you are looking for something unique and complex, this is a cigar I’d check out. As for myself, this is a box worthy cigar, and one I look forward to smoking again.
Strength: Mild to Medium (1st Third), Medium (Remainder)
Body: Mild to Medium (Shagged Foot), Medium (Remainder)
Assessment: 4.0 – Box Worthy
Source: Cigars Provided by Manufacturer
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