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Room 101 – A Back-to-Back Review

Room 101 1January 2nd, 2017

Cigar Weekly’s Jeff Slatton (jefslat) kicks off the New Year by offering up his impressions of two Room 101 cigars – the Johnny Tobacconaut Fileroid and the Chief Cool Arrow Ranflajo.

Johnny Tobacconaut Fileroid

Size: 4½ inches by 52 ring gauge

Room 101 2

Before I cut or lit this one, I noticed rich tobacco aromas from the cigar. The dry draw was perfect, and tasted wonderful.

I am a big believer in giving every cigar a chance up front, and this one earned it. A little spice on the tongue, along with back flavors of holiday spice bread, made me want to smoke faster. But I resisted.

The entire Johnny Tobacconaut line is comprised of figurados, which (in my opinion) gives you the widest spectrum of flavors in a cigar. The Fileroid does not disappoint.

Think of Gramma's ginger bread cookies with lots of extra ginger, or maybe snickerdoodles with extra cinnamon, depending on your preference either for ginger or cinnamon. This cigar also smoked very smoothly.

Anyway, if you have been reading my Room 101 reviews lately, you won't be surprised at the 9.5/10 I gave the Johnny Tobacconaut for total quality. Joe Bob says, “Check it out!”

I will follow up this review with another piece (below) on the new Room 101 Big Chief Cool Arrow (snicker, ask a friend who speaks Spanish), this year's replacement for the Tobacconaut. Let’s see how that works out.

Chief Cool Arrow Ranflajo

Size: 5½ inches by 50 (maximum) ring gauge

Room 101 3

The smooth chocolate brown wrapper displayed some veins. I sensed very light aromas from the wrapper and foot, but it was chilly out. A perfect bias cut and pre-light draw evidenced the excellent construction of the cigar. I paired it with a Real Ale Benedictum sour.

The Chief line is a 2016 release, replacing the 2015 Johnny Tobacconaut. On the cigar's paper wrapper, you see a picture of the Chief with an astronaut (tobacconaut) head under one arm. In fact, I thought I could detect traces of blood and tomahawk (just kidding).

The early flavors showed nuts and cedar as well as a very creamy mouth feel. The beer, however, was almost too sour – something I was not expecting from Real Ale. But I didn't think it would unduly hurt the flavor of the cigar, which was burning fairly cleanly with a solid ash.

Some coffee notes began to emerge nearing the initial third. The cigar was still very smooth, giving off bountiful smoke. A very light white pepper note began to come out on the retro-hale.

By now, I knew I was wrong about the beer. Some of those sour notes were starting to transfer to the cigar. So I drank the Benedictum very slowly. At this point, I would certainly have not recommended a sour ale with the cigar.

This was a medium-bodied cigar with full flavors. A little more pepper was now noticeable alongside the rich tobacco and light nuttiness. The muted coffee notes also remained. At the halfway mark, the cigar still smoked coolly and smoothly.

At the two-thirds point, the smoke stayed very flavorful and smooth. This was a very pleasant cigar. The pepper continued to build, but not unpleasantly so. And the coffee notes remained muted as the tobacco grew richer. Meanwhile, the nuts all but disappeared.

I ended up putting the cigar down with one inch left because of wrapper heat. This was a very good cigar with an almost perfect burn and excellent construction.

I gave it a 9/10. Joe Bob says, “Check it out.”

Jeff Slatton (jefslat) resides in the San Antonio, TX area.

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