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Caldwell Cigars, The King is Dead Escape Plan

When I think of Caldwell Cigars, I automatically associate the cigars with quality. I personally consider the brand to be semi-boutique in nature, however, their portfolio is quite extensive and certainly speaks for itself.

Coming to life in 2014, the Caldwell Cigar Company was founded by Robert Caldwell with the single focus to “…create special cigars using well aged rare tobaccos…” (Caldwell Cigar’s Website, see below link). The company prides itself on not only the aging of its tobaccos but the rarity in which the tobacco is procured.

Currently, the Caldwell Cigar Company produces the following lines:

· The King is Dead

· Eastern Standard

· Long Live the King

· Midnight Express

· Blind Man’s Bluff

· The Last Tsar

· Anastasia

· Savages

· Hit & Run

· The T.

· All Out Kings

· La Barba

For more information on the Caldwell Cigar Company’s portfolio, please visit their website at:

On to the review….

Note: For details on the bourbon, and how it paired with the cigar in this review, please watch the video review at:

The King is Dead Escape Plan Attributes

Size: Corona Gorda (Box Pressed)

Length: 5 ½

Ring Gauge: 46

Wrapper: Dominican Republic (Maduro)

Binder: Dominican Republic

Filler: Dominican Republic, Nicaragua, Peru

Country: Dominican Republic (William Ventura Factory)

Price: $14.00 USD each

Pre-light Inspection: The cigar sports a nice dark maduro wrapper with several veins visible throughout.The cigar has an excellent squared box press, making the size of Corona Gorda appear smaller than it actually is. The cap is nicely rounded and finished with a cute pigtail on top. The King is Dead Escape Plan cigar has a jam-packed foot, and the bands are very nicely detailed/textured, giving the cigar a profound shelf appeal. Pre-light smell is of deep fruits and remanence of an oatmeal raisin cookie. Cold draw showed a perfect resistance with tastes displaying a mild mix of earth and sweet tobacco.

Tasting Notes and Performance: The cigar opened with an effortless draw that provided a lot of thick, white, creamy spice. Tastes were initially a leathery earth that morphed into a peanut creaminess later in the smoke. Body was medium plus while the strength was full. The burn throughout was wavy but required no touch-ups. The white ash was extremely flakey and almost showed a flowering characteristic. During the smoking experience, tastes of roasted black coffee, spice, and an earthy nuttiness were enjoyed. During the second third a lead/metallic note did appear but dissipated quickly and the cigar’s finish was indeed harsh, showing notes of flint and charcoal. The aroma was very sweet and enjoyable with the burn and draw remaining top-notch throughout.

Overall Impressions: The King is Dead Escape Plan is certainly a full bodied, medium/full strength cigar. The performance (burn/draw) are of top quality and the cigar’s appearance/packaging is excellent. My biggest reservation with this stick is the price. At $14.00 each, this cigar falls into what I consider the “Premium” price range [see below for my market price category break down]. For what you get in the tastes + aroma (Flavor) I feel there are better options in this price category. Some folks may disagree; however, value does matter when it comes to reviewing and rating handmade products, and this one doesn’t quite measure up to "bang for the buck". Is the cigar good? Yes! Does it perform well? Yes! Is it a good value for the money? Maybe (not in my wallet’s opinion). Do I recommend this stick to others? Yes, give is a try at least once. Will I purchase it again? Probably not.

Cigar Score: 3 out of 5 boxes

~Dr. Kyle Andrew, CCST~

To see a video review of The King is Dead Escape Plan, and how it paired with the Elijah Craig Single Barrel, visit the Kentucky Colonel Cigar & Spirits Rumble Channel here:

Or visit us on YouTube here:

Cigar Market Price Category Breakdown

Value Cigars: $3.00 - $5.99

Market Cigars: $6.00 - $11.99

Premium Cigars: $12.00 - $20.00

Ultra-Premium Cigars: $2.001 - $35.00

Extreme Ultra Premium Cigars: $36.00 and up

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About Me


My name is Kyle and I have smoked classic cigars and enjoyed fine spirits for over 20 years.  Come to find out, there are a lot of other individuals in the wonderful Commonwealth of Kentucky who enjoy these same pastimes.  So, I decided to start a monthly group so all of us self-acclaimed aficionados could share quality banter over top notch cigars and spirits.  Thus, the Kentucky Colonel Cigar & Spirits Club was born.

Join in on our club happening through the Kentucky Colonel Cigar & Spirits Club website, podcast, or in-person meeting.  All are welcomed (of legal age) to enjoy in the great gifts of brotherhood, cigars, and spirits.


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