The Rocky Patel Zen, also known as the Rocky Patel Xen, is one of the four newest lines just out in the market today. This particular line was created by the Executive Vice President of the company, Nish Patel (brother to Rocky). Over the past couple of years, Nish has taken on a more active role in the company involving a lot of travel for events and overseeing operations. This cigar is the first one to bear his name as the creator.
This beautiful, tan cigar, the Rocky Patel Zen, is considered medium bodied and comes in four different vitolas. The Short Robusto is only 4" by 54. The Robusto is a 5" by 50. The Toro is 6" by 52 while the Torpedo is a 6 1/8" by 52. These new Nicaraguan cigars have a silky, mustard colored Ecuadorian Connecticut wrapper showing a few light veins. It appears to be very smooth to the touch with a slight oiliness, but virtually flawless. The wrapper has a sweet smell to it with a little bit of a hay smell. The binder is Nicaraguan. The company is holding the filler as a secret. They all come box-pressed, the first in their line.
One reviewer felt that is was not a great roll but found it to be evenly solid and slightly spongy through and through. Other reviews stated that the foot exhibited an aroma consisting of nuts, spices and a hint of cedar. The aroma from the head was noted as a bit fruity with some cinnamon and spice overtones and an earthy undertone. This Rocky Patel Zen's cold draw enticed the nose with a mixture of the cinnamon and spice found at the head, along with lots of woody and cocoa scents. Once lit, as stated above, reviewers were surprised by the stronger concentration of being medium bodied, something not typical of the lighter 'Connecticut' shaded cigars. This stick produces a great amount of smoke while the ash will hang on for a little over an inch.
The excitement starts upon the second third of the Rocky Patel Zen. Staying consistent to being a mild to medium stick, the difference in flavoring begins to show maturity. The creaminess begins to overtake the nutty flavors found early on. The prominence in spices slowly gives way to a sweetness mixed with a leathery tone. The latter half of the second third all the way into the final third there is a rich and refined peppery flavor along with coffee and a sweet fruitiness. By the end of the smoke, many reviewers felt that this cigar had a grand mixture of flavors, not always blending perfectly, but a very good smoke. Through the entire experience with this Rocky Patel Zen, the smoke stayed solid, it burned evenly, and held its ash well.
This is a perfect gift for the beginner cigar smoker. They are affordable and have proven to be a great alternative to some of the other Connecticut wrapped sticks. Nish spoke with Smoking Hot Cigar Chick at the 2011 IPCPR and said that he really enjoys this smoke to start off his day!