Rocky Patel Short Run Cigar Review

A supposedly ultra-premium line that Rocky Patel rejected himself, the Short Run is marketed as a limited yet heavily discounted release.

In this article, you will discover the Rocky Patel Short Run as I review it according to the following talking points:

You can use the links above to jump ahead or scroll down to learn more.

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  • Brand: Rocky Patel
  • Range: Short Run
  • Reviewed Vitolas: 6 x 52 Toro
  • Wrapper: San Andrès Oscuro
  • Binder: Honduras
  • Filler: Honduras
  • Factory: Honduras
  • Handmade: Yes
  • Body: Medium – Full
  • Estimated Smoking Time: 75  Minutes
  • Pricing: $3 / Single [Shop On CigarPage]

The story goes that Rocky Patel attended a black-tie event and when he saw that other guests smoked premium cigars from other brands, he went straight to his lab to produce his own. After production launched in Honduras, he discovered that it didn’t pair well with his favourite brand of caviar so he scrapped the whole project and liquidated the stock.

Rocky Patel Short Run Cigar Look & Feel

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Rocky Patel Short Run Look & Feel

  • Wrapper Hue: Chocolate Fondant
  • Rolling Consistency: Mostly Straight
  • Spring: Firm
  • Aromas: Liquorice, Leather, Anise

The cigar is dark and elegant with a rich wrapper that shines under the light. It appears to be oozing with oils that glimmer over its chocolate fondant hue. Its spring is firm but bordering on hard. It’s also a surprisingly heavy cigar and feels packed to the brim!

The veins are refined and those that are visible blend into the wrapper. In terms of aromas, its a gourmand expression of liquorice, caramelised tonka bean, and spicy anise.

Rocky Patel Short Run Review

As with all of our reviews, the Rocky Patel Short Run samples were stored for three weeks in a Boveda Acrylic Humidor with 69% RH Boveda Packs. They were monitored with a Boveda Butler until ready for the review.

Pre-Lighting Experience

  • Draw: Ideal
  • Aromas: Anise, Caramel, Liquorice

The prelight displays great airflow with rich notes of anise and liquorice again. However, caramel has taken the forefront instead of tonka bean. As a result, it’s sweeter and more syrupy.

1st Third Smoking Experience

Rocky Patel Short Run Cigar First Third

  • Notes: Liquorice, Cacao, Agarwood

A large stack of ash resembles a lunar landscape while the burn shows some signs of waviness. Some samples already needed touching up whereas others fared well so far. The first third’s profile is milder than expected with gourmand notes such as liquorice that have carried on from the prelight.

Meanwhile, there is also a cacao presence as well as agarwood. Also known as oud, agarwood is a resin that has a rich oriental fragrance of musk, vanilla, and leather.

2nd Third Smoking Experience

Rocky Patel Short Run Cigar Second third

  • Notes: Coffee Grounds, Cherrywood, Molasses

The burn line continues to be uneven and likely requires more touch-ups. However, the ash remains quite strong. There has been a noticeable change in flavour profile and coffee grounds now dominate it.

Meanwhile, it has also developed a bitter quality and the caramel sweetness has subsided. However, a hint of molasses does prevent it from becoming too bitter. There’s also a noticeable woodiness, which is reminiscent of cherry wood.

Final Third Smoking Experience

Rocky Patel Short Run Cigar Final Third

  • Notes: Oak, Pepper, Labdanum

Oak dominates the final third while hints of pepper reveal themselves in the retrohale. Meanwhile, a whiff of labdanum produces a musky presence that adds intrigue to the experience. While the body has grown to a medium-full experience, it’s not particularly full-bodied. In fact, although hard to explain, it feels like it’s restraining itself.

As a result, the Short Run feels like its lacking character and isn’t particularly complex. Although it isn’t bland, I’m left with the impression that it doesn’t quite have the intended personality. Nevertheless, the mouthfeel is smooth overall despite a little roughness around the edges.

While the palate stimulation does focus towards the centre of the tongue, it’s balanced overall and doesn’t cause any excess dryness or salivation. Furthermore, the finish is moderate and doesn’t last particularly long on the palate.

Finally, the residual scent in the room is strong and, admittedly, not overly pleasant.

Overall Burn

Rocky Patel Short Run Cigar Burn Quality

  • Ash Backbone: Mostly Strong
  • Burn Angle: Somewhat Wavy
  • Temperature: Mostly Cool
  • Draw: Ideal Airflow
  • Final Smoking Time: 75 Minutes

As mentioned earlier, the cigar tends to be quite wavy throughout the whole experience. The majority of the samples required touching up at least twice. However, the ash backbone is strong and it holds its shape well.

Otherwise, the temperature is cool and the draw is consistent.

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Overall Experience

Rocky Patel Short Run Cigar Band Design

The cigar is presented with two bands. The main “Rocky Patel” band and a secondary one that states the blend. They’re subtle and far from ostentatious for what was supposed to be an ultra-premium blend. The brown colour used is reminiscent of the oscuro wrapper.

There’s no box and the cigar is sold in bundles of 20. These are wrapped in cellophane with a paper band that states the brand and blend.

As mentioned at the beginning of this review, Rocky Patel supposedly liquidated the entire stock following his disappointment. It was then acquired by the Holt’s Liquidation Hotline.

On the website, the initial RRP is stated to be $600 for a 20-count bundle. Meanwhile, they are sold at an aggressive discount of $60, which comes to $3 a cigar rather than $30. While we’re all aware that retailers will inflate prices to give the impression of offering generous discounts, the discrepancy does feel quite extreme.

However, it could well be that the initial plan was to produce a $30 cigar that didn’t meet expectations. Nevertheless, regardless of all that, the $3 price tag offers excellent value whether it’s a discount or not!

While not a formal cigar, the Short Run is very versatile, especially given the price point. It’s a great evening cigar that can be enjoyed as a casual smoke when doing other things. Alternatively, consider enjoying it on the porch or after a barbecue with a couple of buddies.

Rocky Patel Short Run Pairings

Rocky Patel Short Run Cigar Chivas Regal Whisky Pairing

The Short Run pairs well with chocolate desserts. For instance, you could opt for just dark chocolate to impart additional creaminess and smooth out the mouthfeel. Alternatively, either a chocolate fondant or mousse would both be excellent for the same reasons. Meanwhile, you could choose something spicier like a sticky toffee pudding.

Continuing with this theme, hot chocolate would be a pleasant and opulent beverage. If you have a preference for coffee, I would suggest americano as espresso would probably be too short.

Otherwise, alcoholic suggestions consist of single malt whisky. If you’re fond of peat, go for something from the isle of Islay. While Islay whisky tends to be a dangerous combination that can overpower a cigar, it would fit right in here. Laphroaig or Ardberg would be my first choices but Laguvalin will also be great.

Closing Thoughts

Whether the story is true or just a marketing gimmick, the Rocky Patel is a great low-budget cigar that offers a pleasant experience overall. Although it certainly wouldn’t match luxury options, it fares extremely well next to other sub-$5 sticks.

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"Richly-flavoured with a solid body, the Rocky Patel Short Run is a pleasant budget-friendly smoke."
Bespoke Unit Rating: ★★★★

Further Reading

If you enjoyed reading this cigar review, feel fry to check out more related content:

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