September 11, 2001 is a day that changed the world as we know it, especially here in the USA. On that bright cloudless Tuesday morning, countless American lives were lost for doing nothing but going to work. Yes, mothers and fathers, brothers and sisters, aunts and uncles, going to work like they did the days, weeks, and months before that tragic morning. But this day was not the same, this day we were attacked on our soil with no early warning system and no defense to protect. In the end – 2,996 people died and more than 6,000 were injured. The injury numbers increase, even to this day, as we learn about post traumatic injuries and respiratory issues 18 years later.
Of those that perished, there were 343 firefighters, 72 law enforcement officers, 55 military personnel – 470 in total. These numbers have not been forgotten by Tom Werther, owner of Line of Duty Cigars. Tom is a retired New York City Police Detective and avid cigar smoker. When he created his cigar line Tom explained:
“I wanted a way to give back to all of the brave men and women that have made the ultimate sacrifice so that we may live freely… compiling a list of charities I wanted to donate to, there is no shortage of worthy charities for certain, and a lot of research and time went into compiling the list of chosen charities.
Every sale at Line of Duty Cigars, whether it’s cigars, or tee shirts, or hats or flags etc., is a donation to a charity. We provide you a list of charities to choose from and we will donate a minimum of 10% to that charity.”
The company has a number of lines in its portfolio. Each one honors the brave men and women who protect us every day, but the one that hits home the most is the Line of Duty 470. This cigar is specifically made to honor those 470 souls that were lost on 9/11. Tom was kind enough to send me some samples to review here on Stogie Press. I shared one of the two samples (they come packaged two in a pack) with my Stogie Press associate Mike Holmes and today I offer our take on this beautiful, 7 x 52 box pressed, barber pole cigar.
The Line of Duty 470 uses aged Ecuadorian and Brazilian wrapper leaf with Nicaraguan binders and fillers. Like all Line of Duty cigars, the 470 was blended by James Brown of Black Label Trading Co. and is hand crafted by Brown’s Fabrica de Ovesa Negra in Esteli, Nicaraugua.
The Line of Duty 470 is a beautiful and satin smooth, box pressed barber pole cigar. It has invisible seams from head to foot and is expertly finished with a triple cap. I should note that each pair of cigars has one that is evenly distributed between light and dark leaf and the other has a greater proportion of Brazilian leaf.
There are two bands that adorn the cigar. The primary band is the Line of Duty logo with its worn black and silver American flag with a blue, white, and yellow band below. The phrase “LINE OF DUTY” is printed on the bottom. The secondary footer band boldly denotes this as the 470 using a black and white motif.
Running the Line of Duty 470 along the nose, Mike and I immediately detected a pungent fermented leaf aroma along the barrel. The foot had notes of sweetness and earthiness.
We both went with a straight cut for this review, and the cold draw was perfectly restricted and we agreed the cold draw offered a distinctive tea note.
We proceeded to ignite the 470’s up using a triple flame torch and embark on a Line of Duty journey. This journey had us discussing a little about the events of 9/11, and I would think anyone who smokes this ciagr would do the same. In my case I recalled my older brothers first hand account of that morning as he was working on East 21st Street on a construction project. I can’t imagine the fear of those who knew their loved ones were in the Twin Towers, Pentagon, or on the planes themselves, but I do know, I feared the possible loss of my brother until I finally heard from him, late that Tuesday evening, that he was safe.
- Mike and I noted a natural tobacco sweetness in the first puffs
- I noted a mild pepper on the retro-hale and Mike said he got a nut and earth on the retro-hale
- There is a slight wave that develops early in the burn on both samples
- I picked up an added note of cream blending with the early sweetness
- A well defined white ash develops, resting on a medium char line
- Graham cracker notes are detected by Mike
- I pointed out the citrus peal that we both agreed was layered in the profile
- The ash fell early and revealed a slightly off centered burn cone
- Dry leather notes enter and we both declared that there is some dark bitter chocolate for sure
- The early jagged burn line is fixing itself with out a touch-up
- Ash falls again
- Flavors have stayed consistent going into the second third
- Earthy aroma build off the foot
- Cedar joins and brightens the profile
- It starts to get a little squishy and a hot to touch midway
- Herbal spice appears deep in the second third
- Dark chocolate enters again followed with hint of dry bitterness
- Burn behaving well in the second half
- Sweetness moves in through the final but the smoke is getting hot
- Medium in Strength
- Total Smoking time was 1 hour and 30 Minutes
Overall, the Line of Duty 470 was a delicious cigar that offered a mild level of pepper to start and then unfolded into a rich array of flavors that were well balanced. The flavors shifted as expected as the cigar burn through the barber pole wrapping. From a construction perspective, there was a jagged burn and fast ash drops especially in the first half and it also started to burn hot in the final. In any way, this is worth picking up a fiver for sure, or in the case of how they are packaged – six. We rate this a 90.
If you wish to buy a soldier a cigar, you can visit the Line of Duty Cigars page that works with Cigars for Warriors to help you get that done. https://www.lineofdutycigars.com/product/cigars-for-warriors-donation/
Point Deductions: (-1) Wave/Jagged burn; (-2) Ash drops early and often; (-1) Off Centered Burn Cone; (-2) Smoke is hot in the final