I have been smoking cigars since I was a young Private in the Army some 30+ years ago. Since joining Cigar Dojo, I have met some very nice people and through them have expanded my humidor inventory and my palate by leaps and bounds. One such cigar is the Surrogates brand and the Skull Breaker in particular.
Tale of the tape: Blended by Pete Johnson of Tatujae fame and handmade at the My Father factory in Esteli Nicaragua.
Wrapper: Connecticut Broadleaf. Binder: Nicaragua. Fillers: Ligero blend from Nicaragua. Shape: Belicoso 5 1/6 x 52.
I picked this up at my local B&M and was immediately attracted to the “Bad to the Bone” band. The construction of the cigar looked to be top notch and it felt good in the hand. The wrapper is a dark brown with reddish tint and had a rustic feel with small to medium veins. Off to the humidor it went.
After about a month in the humidor, I had to try it. The smell coming off the foot was Earthy with hints of hay and cocoa. I used a straight cut and pre-light draw was a little firmer than I like but perfectly acceptable.
Upon lighting, I was blasted by black pepper with an abundance of smoke. The retrohale brought tears to my eyes. I’m just glad I like pepper. To my surprise, once the stick warmed up, the pepper settled a little and I was getting sweetness on the finish. The sweetness lingered on the tip of my tongue and my lips. I liked it. A lot! As I smoked the 1st third, I was trying to compare the Skull Breaker to other cigars I have smoked in the past. What I came up with was a Liga of the #9 variety. Although not the same, the profile was very similar to me.
As I progressed into the 2nd half, the pepper subsided a little but, not much. The sweetness I associate with cedar became more prominent as well. Don’t get me wrong, the pepper was still there in bunches. This is a full bodied cigar for sure.
In the final 3rd of the Skull Breaker, I noticed the pepper once again start to amp up. The cedar sweetness I noticed in the beginning started to remind me of cocoa powder at this point but it was definitely on the back burner of the flavor profile. The pepper to sweet ratio was blended well and provided me with a very enjoyable smoke. Thick smoke bellowed from start to finish and the burn needed no attention.
Would I smoke this cigar again?
While not a daily smoke, definitely! Surrogates have a winner in the Skull Breaker.
- Thick, billowing smoke
- Affordable broadleaf
- Well balanced
- Tight draw
- Not complex