Protocol Probable Cause Cigar Review

It was back in May of last year when we posted the press release on the latest creation from Juan Cancel and Cubariqueño Cigar Company – the Protocol Probable Cause. I have wanted to treat my palate to this second creation from Juan Cancel and Bill Ives ever since. Lucky for me, there would be no more waiting, as I finally obtained some. I have to say patience is a virtue and the wait was well worth it.

Protocol Probable Cause

The Protocol Probable Cause is masterpiece, and for whatever reason I ended up pairing it with some classical music from Bach, Beethoven, and Tchaikovsky. I don’t know, it just went well together with all its transitions of flavor and aroma – it can only be described as an enjoyable symphony of taste.

The press release states:

The name, Probable Cause, stays true to the company’s law enforcement motif, with co-founders Bill Ives and Cancel both law enforcement officers.

As with the original Protocol, the Probable Cause is produced by the master Torcedores at Erik Espinosa’s La Zona factory in Estelí, Nicaragua and is being offered in two vitolas:

  • Robusto – 5 x 52 – MSRP $9.69
  • Churchill – 6 ½ X 48 (semi-box-pressed) – MSRP $9.89

The blend of the Probable Cause is described as:

  • Wrapper – Mexican San Andreas Maduro
  • Binder – Nicaraguan
  • Filler – Nicaraguan


The Protocol Probable Cause is adorned with a bold red, black, and silver band making up the Protocol logo and there is a secondary red and black band that declares it as the  Probable Cause. I have to say it would be hard to miss these on a shelf.

For this review I sampled the Probable Cause Churchill

Cigar Review Notes

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  • Medium brown wrapper with a touch of red clay hue in the light
  • It has a classic San Andreas grit to touch
  • Light box press and finished with a triple cap
  • I pick up a sweet fermented leaf on barrel and nut, fruit, and chocolate on foot
  • Slicing through the cap, the cold draw offered deep earthy notes
  • First few puffs provide blast of pepper with a chocolate and butter background
  • It takes no time for this delight to produce a full body of smoke
  • Fruit starts to wraps around the butter
  • The ash is light grey on a slightly wavy thin char line
  • Spice fills in the profile after the first inch
  • Smokes smooths out very well near the middle of the first third
  • The spice is shifting to a licorice at this point
  • Sugary sweetness builds as maple syrup aroma fills the air blending with the sound of the violins filling the lounge
  • Citrus peel enters at the start of the second third signaling to me a shift in flavor
  • Almond develops followed with a tasty black cherry note
  • Another wave builds in the burn as I give it a little touch up
  • The ash falls every inch and half or so and reveals a flattened and fairly centered burn cone
  • Savory and pepper spice notes enter at the end of the second third
  • The cigar is just absolutely enjoyable
  • The pepper increases on the nasal
  • Aroma shifts to a spicy nut and then mellows nicely at the end with a final sweet maple spice
  • Total smoking time was over 90 minutes
  • Well done gentlemen!

Overall, the Cubariqueño Cigar Company Protocol Probable Cause was an outstanding cigar that delivered a symphony of flavors and aromas throughout the hour and half smoking experience. Barring the few waves in the burn, I can only give my highest praise to Juan and Bill for their latest creation.  I have to say that if I had this in time for the top 25 it would have made the list, but I don’t always get cigars in time to make the list.

Protocol Probable Cause

Protocol Probable Cause

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