Gurkha Evil (First Impressions)

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Gurkha Evil (First Impressions)

Gurkha Evil - 1

On Monday I was smoking an Illusione 888 and conversing on Twitter when a link came through from @LadyOfTheStick. The link was pointing to her weekly uStream cigar show entitled “Simply Smoke and Ashes“. Christine’s show generally goes live after I have walked away from the computer for the evening but with time to kill, I started watching some of her recorded shows.

I got into a grove with the shows and decided to hang out a bit longer and watch the live show later that evening. The featured cigar was the Gurkha Evil. The cigar sounded interesting and reminded me that I had one buried in my humidor. The cigar was a sample passed along to me from Kurt at Kensington Tobacconist.

After removing my Gurkha Evil from the cellophane, the first thing I noticed was the matte band. The great thing about this band was that photographing it was easy (no glossy glare) but at the same time it resembled a recycled paper grocery bag. The coloring of the stick was consistent from head to foot and medium sized veins were present.

When handled, the cigar had a bit of a lumpy texture. The weight felt good in the hand and seemed as though it was packed with plenty of tobacco. Both the wrapper and foot produced an earthy aroma. When clipped, this earthy quality came through on the cold draw. The draw was too stiff for my liking and required a second clipping of the torpedo shaped head.

Once lit, my Gurkha Evil produced a solid supply of smoke which was dense and easy to pass through the sinus. The finish was a bit on the dry side and was a minor irritant to the back of my throat. The minor irritation remained throughout the first and second thirds, finally clearing up in the final third. When the irritant cleared up, the smoke became creamy and enjoyable. The body was medium and remained that way until it was time to set the cigar down to rest.

The flavor profile was straightforward throughout most of the cigar. The flavor that jumped out at me reminded me of Earl Gray Tea. This was the dominant flavor until late in the cigar when it switched over to an earthy flavor. As the cigar progressed I felt as though the flavors were a bit muddy and lacked a crispness that I enjoy. Beyond the band I began to notice a dirty flavor that was rather off putting.

Overall I think that the Gurkha Evil was a decent smoke but not something that I would search out and purchase. Because I went into this review blind, not knowing anything about the make up or pricing, I am unsure if this stick it readily available at this point (Gurkha does a lot of small batch stuff). If you happen to come across one in your travels, it wouldn’t hurt to give it a try.

enjoying cigars since 2005

12 thoughts on “Gurkha Evil (First Impressions)

  1. Great informative review as usual, Walt, including the ‘off-topic’ stuff. I believe the flavor in Earl Grey tea is bergamot oil, a kind of citrus fruit. I’ve only had one Gurkha, the Triple Ligero, so I’m not familiar with the flavor profiles, but it seems I’ve read about this flavor in some of their other sticks. What’s with Gurkha and their huge freakin’ bands? Trying to remove that thing like you had to would just piss me off.

    1. jjo,
      I hate destroying bands. I try to get them off without too much damage and save them. Once my container fills up I either do something creative with them or hand them off to someone that will.

      Thanks for the comment. I’m glad you enjoyed the video, even if it was pushing 30 minutes.


  2. Walt,

    Thanks a good honest review that provided information about your personal buying preferences and why. These are the things we like about you guys nothing sugar coated and as always you leave it up to us to try. And we should always give something new a go. Thanks for the many reviews you provide Walt. It’s really appreciated all the way down in Oz.


  3. Walt ….this is a great topic….one i would like to hear all the reviewers talk about….you talked about the oliva you buy for 6 bucks as opposed to 5 bucks…I just cant justify paying an additional 20 percent for cigars. And trust me I would love to buy local and enjoy the B&M. Although it seems like yours is alot nicer and closer nit. No offense to Mike but to smoke higher quality cigars on a budget right now online is the only way to do it. I just dont enjoy smoking average to below avg cigars.

    Great review…real topics on reviews cigar related are what I watch these for

  4. I gave Gurkha enough chances.I find them to be sour and unbalanced.My local will not sell them.He calls them “Internet Cigars”.

  5. I bought a few of the New York exclusive Gurkhas. I just like exclusive things. The first half was good. The 2nd half was horrid.

  6. hey walt- your reviews are the best! I like the g5 avenger by ghurka best… do you have a good recommendation for a very strong, complex cigar? i enjoy the full- bodied ones best, like lfd double ligero chisel and the opus x lost city

  7. I on occasion smoke the Gurkha Evil. I smoke them at my B&M. I enjoy them. It is a change of pace from my usual smokes. (Perdomo). I also would not seek them out online or buy a box, but it’s a good smoke.

  8. I’ve never smoked a Ghurka, and I refuse to bye them. It’s interesting you bring that up. Partly is due to the fact that you brought up, and part is how they present themselves. For whatever reason the brand is very off-putting to me. They market themselves as the Rolls Royce of cigars, the fact that they make the most expensive cigar in the world and in almost a stuffy, snooty attitude. That and the fact that I feel as if I’m paying for packaging and not quality tobacco. The brand as a whole just rubs me the wrong way, and it’s the only brand I feel that way about.

  9. Walt, you have hit a nerve and opened a can of worms, when you asked, “Why do some Gurkha’s cost $3 to $4 at the internet stores vs. $11 and up at the B&Ms?” Well, the truth is they are not the same product, but disguised exclusive knock-offs and fakes (if you look closely they have a different ring size or length vs. the genuine limited production product offered at the B&Ms). How is that? The large internet shops who do huge volume, contract out Gurkha to produce an exclusive similar watered down cigar, glue the Gurkha band, and pass it on to the ignorant public an inferior product. The internet shops do a marketing and advertising blitz hawking it as the genuine Gurkha limited to 1000 boxes annually worldwide, even putting the MSRP of the genuine vitola and telling the public what a great deal they are getting. You get what you pay for, good and hard. LOL

    That is another reason to patronize your local B&M, they won’t cheat you or sell you dry or wet cigars, they will fill you on the best cigar news, and you can relax and smoke at their lounge. It is kind of sad watching the B&Ms going out of business while the big internet sites cheating the public, selling inferior cigars, pushing their private label blends, and prospering. Even sadder is watching the top manufacturers, churning out bad cigars, dyed cigars, and riding on their past great ratings, which now don’t really mean much.

    Walt, you should expose all these unscrupulous internet retailers, greedy manufacturers churning out poor product and claiming their past ratings to push their dyed fakes, claiming ten year aging while the truth is only two years. The cigar industry will continue to evolve, so it will be more and more difficult getting the “real product”, that tastes good and ready to smoke. That is why I don’t mind paying the extra overhead fee to the B&Ms for their honesty, cigar humidification, and leather couch. Let’s be realistic, the owner needs to make a living too.

    BTW Walt, was that a real Gurkha Evil cigar you reviewed, or an internet knock-off, LOL.

  10. Living in the land of cigars, I get ample opportunity to smoke the real deal.

    Just started an Evil that I bought in Florida over the weekend. Down about a 1/2 inch at this point. Nice light. Burning straight. Not much of an impression at this point, but this is a big cigar that might take some time to show it’s colours. I like a full body and the word “EVIL” would lead you to believe that you are into a power stick. So far I would have to say…where’s the beef”???

    Not too much smoke for a cigar this size…expected more at this point. Draw is moderate and not giving me much to go by. Down to an inch of burn…level ash, but nothing to go…WOW…I want another!

    Finished off the 1st third of the cigar and noting a change, although not a pleasant one. If anything, it is drying my mouth out. Kind of a sour taste note. Ash is still holding strong and a nice even burn, although a chore to get this thing to produce the smoke I would expect from a big cigar. Waiting for the “EVIL” to come forward. At this point I would rename the cigar…”Nice Guy”.

    Starting to get the smoke volume I was expecting from a big puppy, but taste wise, no big change, simply a bit drier on the tongue. Burn is even and the ash is hanging straight, something positive! Half an inch from the band and the ash is holding. Wish the rest of the cigar would be as impressive. I am really trying to like this cigar and giving it loads of opportunity….nothing yet! LOL

    Ah finally fell in a big clump down my shirt! Nice pyramid ember. Taking this opportunity to add a little heat.

    Starting to get bitter on the tip of the tongue…not something I would expect at the 1/2 way point.

    Well….into the final 3rd and I do not think I will smoke this much more (usually smoke down to the nitty gritty). Becoming way too acidic and I can say, like a movie that promises much and delivers little…this cigar follows that trend. A big company with big promises that once they have your money, delivers little in the way of satisfaction.

    Honestly, I gave this cigar lots of room to WOW me. What I got was an average smoke that had the looks…had the charm, but left me empty.

    Not on my recommended list.

    Cheers to all…

    From the island of cigars….

    PuntaCana Mike

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