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I recently smoked the Hammer & Sickle Trademark Maduro Toro, a mediocre cigar at best. I have provided my full review below. This content uses referral links.

Hammer & Sickle Trademark Maduro Toro

Estimated Reading Time: 4 minutes

A recent shipment from Cigar of the Month included the Hammer & Sickle Trademark Maduro Toro. This was a mediocre cigar at best. While others have rated it well, I was not nearly as impressed.

Hammer & Sickle Trademark Maduro

A Dominican cigar made with Dominican long-fillers, a Dominican binder, and a San Andrés Maduro wrapper, this cigar was just mediocre. I don’t really understand what all the hype is about. 

Cigar of the Month recommends pairing it with an Old Fashioned, which probably would have been good. As is my usual habit when tasting cigars, however, I enjoyed mine with a good cup of coffee. They went together fine.

In my grading system and review below, I have adopted the Cigar Journal: For the Discerning Aficionado method. It provides an excellent system for keeping track of my favorite smokes, and I recommend it to any cigar smoker.

Look of the Label

Ugh. This is a category that usually provides gimmie points unless there is something about the label that I just hate.

I hate this label.

It would almost be as bad as smoking a cigar with a swastika on its band. A cigar labeled with the symbol of a cruel political system that murdered tens of millions of people is just grotesque. Even if I did like this cigar, I would never buy a box.  

1/3 points

Condition of the Cigar 

The Hammer & Sickle Trademark Maduro Toro was bumpy throughout with very distinct seems and massive veins. It was not a great-looking cigar, but it wasn’t ugly, either.

5/7 points

Feel of the Cigar 

I found the cigar to be a bit too firm, and the wrapper itself felt like sandpaper. Still, it was consistent throughout and obviously well-constructed.

2/3 points

Aroma of the Wrapper 

The pre-lit cigar smelled like bitter earth with some hints of floral notes.

Good, but not great.

2/3 points

The Cut 

The cut was perfect. I was able to slice off the cap quickly and without issue, leaving the structure of the cigar completely intact.

1/1 point

The Light  

The Hammer & Sickle Trademark Maduro Toro was very stubborn in some places. I had a difficult time getting it to light up evenly.

0/1 point

The Draw 

The draw was excellent from beginning to end, maintaining just the right amount of resistance from the first puff to the last.

5/5 points


On the retrohale, the Hammer & Sickle Trademark Maduro Toro had overwhelming hints of black pepper, if not some other kind of spice. It was abrasive, way too strong, and irritated my sinuses. It mellowed up a bit later, however, which salvaged it some.

3/9 points

Hammer & Sickle Trademark’s Flavor 

On the cold draw, I picked up the subtle taste of dried fruit. After the light, the Hammer & Sickle Trademark Maduro Toro had hints of dark coffee and earth. It had an interesting flavor profile, but it was stronger than I like.

15/21 points

Aroma of the Smoke 

After the initial light, the cigar’s smoke smelled of coffee. Like the rest of the cigar, it was dark and a bit too strong.

6/7 points

The Burn

The burn started off just a little uneven at first, which is not atypical of premium cigars. This one, however, was worse than usual.

Eventually, it evened out and burned fine the rest of the way. After it overcame its trouble, the burn also maintained a consistent heat, making for an enjoyable smoking experience.

1/2 points

The Ash 

The ash was fine. It was nothing impressive, but it also didn’t cause any trouble.

1/1 point

Effect of the Smoke 

I know that this is a bit of an odd category to consider. As the author of The Cigar Journal: For the Discerning Aficionado notes, however, if the best-tasting cigar in the world makes you sick, it’s not a great cigar for you. 

This area is, therefore, very personal. Some low-quality cigars will make most people sick. Still, when you’re talking about premium cigars, different people will react differently to different cigars.

The Hammer & Sickle Trademark Maduro Toro left me feeling relaxed and mellow, precisely what I want.

30/30 points

Hammer & Sickle Trademark’s Tobacco 

The Hammer & Sickle Trademark Maduro Toro showed itself to be well-made here. No flakes of tobacco found their way into my mouth at any point during the smoke.

7/7 points

Hammer & Sickle Trademark Final Grade 

Overall, this was a mediocre cigar at best. It was well-constructed and had some good qualities to it, but it was overpowering for my tastes.

Also, the manufacturer’s statement about the hammer and sickle not being a political statement doesn’t fly with me. While that didn’t affect my scoring of the cigar outside the label category, it left me with a general dislike for the brand.

Final Grade: 79 / C+

Cigar of the Month Club   

As always, I recommend Monthly Clubs’ Cigar of the Month Club. I’ve been a member for years, and I love it. If you join, you’ll get five premium cigars delivered right to your door every month for just $32.95, including shipping.  

(There’s also a slightly more expensive Rare Cigar Club available, for those who are interested.)  

The opportunity to try a variety of high-quality cigars and to learn more about cigars in general through the accompanying tasting notes has been an invaluable experience for me. I have enjoyed being a member, and I recommend giving it a try.  

If you’re interested and would like to use my referral link, I would appreciate it. Just click here. If you do, I may receive a commission at no extra cost to you.  

If you’d prefer not to use my link, however, I still recommend the Club. Just go to Monthly Clubs’ Cigar of the Month website to explore Monthly Clubs’ offerings.  

Join Cigar of the Month Club Today>>

See Also: 

Perfect Scores 

A-Rated Cigars

B-Rated Cigars

C-Rated Cigars

D-Rated Cigars

Great Values

Categories: Cigars


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