Blackened S84 Shade to Black

Cigar Review: Blackened S84 Shade to Black Toro

Blackened S84 Shade to Black is the followup to M81 Maduro to the Core which was released in 2022. The cigars are a passion project between Rob Dietrich, the Master Distiller & Blender of BLACKENED Whiskey; James Hetfield, Metallica co-founder, singer and guitarist; and Jonathan Drew, Founder and President of Drew Estate.

For those who think that James Hatfield is just a figure head for the line of cigars all you need to do is check out Metallica on tour where many videos have emerged of James enjoying a cigar before the band takes the stage.

Like the original Blackened release the cigar was introduced via a freestyle live pack where the cigars were offered without bands to be revealed on social media during a live event. For the record, I had predicted Blackened, Nothing Else Matters.

BLACKENED “S84 Shade to Black” by Drew Estate is available in the same beloved sizes as M81: Robusto (5 x 50), Toro (6 x 52), Corona Doble (7 x 50), and Corona (5 x 43).

Cigar Review: Blackened S84 Shade to Black
Size: 6 x 52 (Toro)
Wrapper: Ecuador Connecticut
Binder: Connecticut Broadleaf
Filler: Nicaraguan, Pennsylvania Broadleaf
Factory: La Gran Fabrica Drew Estate
Release Date: March, 2024
Box Count: 20

The Cigar: Featuring a Ecuador Shade Grown Connecticut seed the wrapper is what you would expect. A golden hue some significant veins, a subtle oil and visible seam lines. The cigar features a simple black and white band that denotes Blackened and a footband that denotes S84 Shade to Black. In the hand the cigar has an average weight but the roll feels a bit lumpy under the fingers.

The Taste: Fruity Pebbles. Yes, the cold draw reminds me of Fruity Pebbles. It is that simple. The foot of the cigar has a bit of mocha with a touch a peppermint and coffee grounds being poured into a coffee maker. Once the cigar is toasted and lit there are notes of apricots, subtle pepper and banana bread.

Settling into the first third third a delicious mocha note along with the occasional wisp of apricots continue where it is joined by toast, cedar and earth as the first third comes to a close. The retrohale has a nice amount of white pepper with hints of banana bread.

Moving into the chorus (second third) the mocha sweetness remains with growing spice in the forms of nutmeg and white pepper. Occasionally I still get some apricot notes but they are more of an afterthought at this time. Around the halfway point notes of freshly baked bread begin to become the focal point with notes of earth, and cedar. The retorhale increases the white pepper with continued notes of bread.

The last third sees the perceived strength kick it up a couple of notches with notes of earth, baked bread and chocolate. The cigar is a finger burner with a smooth balanced flavor profile that sees some black pepper emerge with a touch of oak and roasted coffee which is intensified on the retrohale.

Conclusion: As I get older, life, it seems, will fade away, drifting further, every day. Blackened S84 Shade to Black allows me to get lost within myself. While those who love stronger cigars might not love this pseudo ballad of a smoke, it probably should have been the initial release of the series. It has an incredible depth of flavor that builds up to a medium-full bodied finish. When it comes time to put down what little is left of the cigar emptiness fills me to the point of agony.

Score: 95
Price: $10.50 (Before local and state taxes)

Previous Post Next Post