The Blackened M81 Robusto is a cigar born from a passion project, a collaboration of three renowned and dedicated cigar enthusiasts: Jonathan Drew, the Founder and President of Drew Estate; James Hetfield, the Co-Founder and Front Man of Metallica; and Rob Dietrich, the Master Distiller and Blender of BLACKENED American Whiskey. The journey of this cigar began with Hetfield and Dietrich, who share a love for cigars. After enlisting the expertise of their friend Drew and two years of meticulous tobacco exploration, they gave birth to this powerful blend.
The Blackened M81 Robusto presents itself with a dark chocolate-colored wrapper, giving it an alluring and rich look. The cigar feels solid and well-packed, free from any noticeable blemishes or defects. It boasts a slight sheen that hints at the quality that lies within.
Upon lighting, the Blackened M81 Robusto hits you with an assertive black pepper kick, reminiscent of the opening of “Master of Puppets.” The dominant pepper note is accompanied by a robust spiciness, earthy undertones, and a hint of saltiness. As you delve deeper into the first third, you’ll encounter subtle hints of leather, cherry, and even some floral notes as you transition to the second third.
In the second third, the black pepper, while somewhat calming down, still maintains its strength, ensuring a spicy taste that persists throughout. The leather notes intensify, and the cherry notes evolve, taking on the character of a Dr. Pepper-like profile. Nutty undertones, akin to cashews, make their presence known, and a hint of cinnamon emerges towards the end of this section.
As the final third unfolds, the leather notes continue to drum on your palate, while the black pepper and cinnamon linger, now in a more subdued manner. The spiciness mellows out, offering a complex blend of flavors reminiscent of charred steak, a pinch of salt, and hints of coffee.
The Blackened M81 Robusto offers an overall good smoking experience. The cold draw immediately captivates with a nostalgic taste of Coco Pebbles. However, once you ignite this cigar, the strength surges to high levels, occasionally distracting from the flavor notes. This cigar is not for beginners, as its bold and intense character demands the experienced palate. Most reviewers note that the cigar exhibited a great burn line and excellent construction. However, some faced challenges with a tight draw and wished for a slightly lower strength profile turned down from 11 to avoid the face melting solo the Blackened M81 can deliver.
In conclusion, the Blackened M81 Robusto is a cigar that pays homage to the passionate collaboration of its creators. With its powerful flavor profile and exceptional construction, it’s a treat for seasoned cigar enthusiasts who appreciate bold and complex experiences. If you’re ready for an adventure that mirrors the energy of Metallica’s music, this cigar will give you a head-banging experience of robust flavors.
Overall Score: 89.56 out of 100
Overall Strength Score: 6.11 out of 10
This blind review (Cigar #4-A) was conducted by the Cigar Review Team comprising of: Paul Nabs, Drew Seruya, The Scuse, Scott Trepow, Joe Hallett, Chris Leblanc, Shayne Diersen, Chris Safranski, Brett Yannalfo, & Rob Smith.