Cigar Review: Hammer & Sickle Cigars Tradición Churchill

Cigar Review: Hammer & Sickle Cigars Tradición Churchill

Hammer + Sickle Cigars
Country: Dominican Republic
Wrapper: USA (Connecticut Shade)
Binder: Dominican Republic
Filler: Dominican Republic
Size: 7″ x 48
Strength: mild to mild-medium
Price: $9.00

Overall Rating: 9.0

With all the recent turmoil in Ukraine, I don’t know many people who are real supportive of Russia right. As a guy who dates a lot of Eastern Europeans and has several Latvian friends, I’m not exactly the biggest fan of the former Soviet Union either. Still, it’s hard not to like the Hammer & Sickle Cigars Tradcion. Few mild cigars manage to have so much flavor. Blended in the Dominican Republic by Henke Kelner, the Hammer & Sickle Tradicion has all the flavor and quality of a Davidoff at half the price. This is a mild to medium bodied cigar that is definitely worth trying if you can find it at your local brick and mortar retailer. Hammer & Sickle has been making some very good cigars (see my earlier Moscow City review) that haven’t gotten much recognition.

Pre-Light: The large red and yellow Soviet Hammer & Sickle on the band can be a bit off putting for some, but there is something nostalgic about it at the same time. An extremely veiny Connecticut wrapper covers the Tradicion.

A very mild hay aroma can be picked up from the wrapper of the Tradicion. A sweet tobacco flavor comes from the unlit foot of the cigar. The cold draw is a bit tight and lets through a sugary sweetness.

Burn: Few cigars have as easy a draw as the Hammer & Sickle Tradition. I often punch the end end of the cigar to try to limit slightly the amount of smoke produced. (Although I always straight cut cigars when reviewing them.) The burn isn’t perfect, but it does remain pretty even from start to finish. The gray ash clings nicely to the Tradicion Churchill.

Flavor: The Hammer & Sickle Tradicion begins with flavors of hay, oak, fresh cut grass and mild leather. A mild white pepper and herbal spice is noticable on the retrohale. About an inch and half into the cigar a shiitake mushroom flavor becomes the dominant flavor with oak, leather and grass in the background. Entering the second third the mushroom flavor fades into barley, hay, mild anise, oak sans leather.  The halfway point sees the herb, mushroom and oak flavor pick up and is joined by a background note of olive oil. At the start of the final third a slight peatiness joins herbs, spice, grass, cedar and leather. Towards the final inch and a half of the Hammer & Sickle Tradicion Churchill white pepper begins to dominate with notes herbs, spice and peat.

Overall: Typically the name Hammer & Sickle would be a reason to avoid a cigar, but like Vladislav Tretiak, there are some things from the CCCP that are just too good not to like. The Hammer & Sickle Tradicion is a great full flavored mild cigar that comes right up to the border of medium. Herbal spice, oak, grass, mushroom and mild white pepper give the Tradicion much more flavor than most mild cigars. Since the were first released in 2009, I’ve been buying the occasional box when I can find them. They make great cigars for the golf course or when boating with friends. If you’re a mild to medium bodied cigar smoker, the Tradicion is a must try rarity.

Pairing: A good island single malt is the best choice for pairing with the Hammer & Sickle Tradicion. My personal favorite choice is the Tobermory 10 from the Isle of Mull. Other notable scotch pairings are the Bunnahabian 18, Tobermory 15, Isle of Arran 14 or Talisker 10.

Reviewed by Jonathan David (@JonDavid1210)