Cigar Review: Davidoff Golden Band Awards

Each year at the IPCPR show, Davidoff hosts a dinner in which they give out Golden Band Awards to retailers from around the country. This year our own David Garofalo was a recipient of an award for his service to the industry for his battle of cigar rights throughout his home state of New Hampshire.

Once such story that he relayed to me this weekend was how in the state of New Hampshire you could only get a liquor license if you serve food. However, if you own a cigar shop you can’t serve food. So he took the fight to the state to allow cigar shops an exemption to get a liquor license without the serving of food. The state heard his argument and he won, upon winning they asked him if wanted a liquor license and his answer was “no, thank you”.  So he argued on behalf of his competition in the state giving them the right to put in a liquor license.

As a winner of the award, David Garofalo who owns Two Guys Smoke Shop was given the rights to sell the Golden Band Awards cigar for 1 year. If you wish, you can buy this cigar via the website.

Cigar: Davidoff Golden Band Awards
Size: 5.25 x 52 (Robusto)
Wrapper: Yamasa
Binder: Dominican
Filler: Dominican
Strength: Medium

The Look: The Yamasa wrapper on the Davidoff Golden Band Awards cigar is most notably used on the Davidoff Puro d’Oro. It is a tobacco that was first planted by Henke Kelner in 2003. Looking at it there is a nice oily sheen and it is much lighter in color then the Puro d’Oro. There is a slight tooth to the cigar and a thin infrastructure of veins that are noticeable on an otherwise pristine wrapper. The cigar features the classic Davidoff white label band with a secondary noting the Cigar Band Awards. In the hand the cigar has a slightly light feel to it with no soft spots.

The Notes: The cold draw of the Davidoff Golden Band Award cigar has a classic Davidoff flavor profile that is very barn like. There are notes of grass and hay on the foot as well. I like to call these notes the signature taste of Henke Kelner. Upon first light it looses a lot of those signature qualities and serves up some impressive notes of spice and cedar which is a departure for Davidoff in my opinion.

Smoking our way into the first third of the cigar, the spice begins to fade and there is a nice creamy note over cedar notes. As we develop further into this portion of the stick a wheat begins to to develop that reminds me of buttered whole wheat toast.

Entering the second third of the cigar with the ash still intact, the wheat note that was experienced in the first third becomes the dominant note. It’s wonderfully toasty and it actually takes me back to the Dominican Republic looking out over Santiago from the deck at Camp David. After the ash falls off at the half way point of the cigar, the spice kicks back up a notch especially through the nose and the cigar loses its wheat like notes, although the creaminess remains.

The last third of the Golden Band Awards cigar continues to serve up spice through the nose that isn’t overpowering but enough to let you know it is there. On the palate the notes of wheat an, continue with some white pepper and cedar sprinkled in before I put down the cigar which has been smoked down so about a half-inch remains.

The Burn: Davidoff and well contracted cigars have always been synonymous and this one is no exception. The solid almost white ash held for half the cigar and then until just after I removed the primary band. The draw was just what you would expect to find from Henke Kelner and company with a razor-sharp carbon line and burn.

The Finish: The Davidoff Golden Band Awards to me feels like the Puro d’Oro and Millennium Blend had a child. A limited edition in the sense that the 10 retailers who can carry the cigar a year changes, the Golden Band Awards cigar is worth tracking down and is easily my favorite Davidoff to date. The notes of the cigar are warm and inviting like an old friend who moved into a new home. While I tend to like a cigar that is highly complex there is something about the elegant simplicity that Davidoff brings to the table that always keeps me interested.

Score: 96
Price: $21.49


Davidoff Golden Band Award

Davidoff Golden Band Award

Davidoff Golden Band Award Cigar

Davidoff Golden Band Award Cigar

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