James Brown, creator of Black Label Trading Co. (BLTC), and partner at Fabrica Oveja Negra, launched Black Works Studio (BLK WKS) in 2016 as a showcase for the boutique cigar factory in Estelí, Nicaragua. At this years IPCPR, BLK WKS announced the addition of S&R, Boondock Saint, and Sindustry to its lineup, as well as additional vitolas for NBK and Killer Bee.
We sat down with James at the show and talked about this new venture and how the FDA is impacting the overall cigar market.
“Part of the motivation for opening our own factory, Fabrica Oveja Negra, was to experiment and develop unique blends highlighting Nicaraguan tobacco. Black Works Studio (BLK WKS) is my first opportunity to use our factory as my playground. Blending cigars is my passion and I ended up with several blends and ideas on the shelf, the time was right to launch a new brand. My inspiration comes from many things; art, movies, music, etc. that ultimately result in a new cigar blend. I have always looked at cigar making as an art form and BWS is another expression of what I can do as a cigar maker and brand owner.”
Today we review one of these new creations – the BLK WKS Studio Killer Bee. It is a 5 x 48 extension, to the Killer Bee line, and nicknamed the Green Hornet, because it is finished with a Candela linear cap and foot. It is available in 20-count boxes. The original Killer Bee was available as a 4.5 x×46 petite corona.
The blend for the Green Hornet is described as:
- Wrapper: Ecuador Maduro w/a Candela linear cap & closed foot
- Binder: Nicaraguan Habano
- Filler: Nicaragua
The Green Hornet retails for $9.50 and are distributed by Boutiques Unified, www.BoutiquesUnified.com.
Cigar Review Notes
- Closed candela foot
- Linear candella cap
- Dark Maduro
- I picked up sweet hay along the barrel
- Cold draw offered earthy pepper
- I strangely got some sea weed (kelp) flavor during initial light
- Followed by intense pepper
- Rich creamy smoke
- Medium grey ash and fairly thin char line
- Early case of “nicups” – wondering if I got stung already
- Chocolate note hiding in the midst of pepper
- First inch is a true nasal cleaner
- Dark espresso as the pepper pulls back
- If you get past the nasal routing the flavors start to develop
- Espresso citrus and oak
- There is a soft spot I feel mid way
- Smoke is smoothing out well after inch and a half
- Ash fell after first third
- Wrapper showing nice sheen
- Spice enters in second half wrapped in notes of cedar and citrus
- The burn is perfect – flawless – trouble-free
- Smoke is full and strength is medium-full
- Nutty aroma fills the air around me
- Coffee sneaks back in at the finish
I never had the original Killer Bee but I thoroughly enjoyed the Green Hornet. The flavor transitions were sensational and the burn was impeccable. I highly recommend picking up some of these, before they are no longer available. If you were to pair this, I would go with a sweet espresso to enhance the coffee flavors that linger in the background.