Jim's C&D Small Batch Sun Bear Review.

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jiminks

Preferred Member
Aug 31, 2012
34,242
10,203
The tangy dark fruity, earthy, woody, bready, lightly floral, slightly spicy, slightly citrusy red Virginia takes a tiny lead over the other components at times. Strongly vying for attention for the first slot and often getting it are the dry, sour, lightly tangy sweet, woody, earthy, floral, spicy, smoky Basma and Izmir. The bright Virginia provides some tart citrus, grass, a floral and spice note in an important support role, and ranks a slot below the Orientals and the red Va. The smooth, sweet honey is the most obvious topping, while the lightly fruity, earthy tequila rises a little above the “whisper” mentioned in the blend description. Its effect tends to vary a tad, though it seems just a little more potent half way through the experience. The tart, grape and berry-like, acidic, floral, herbal, sweet elderflower is always in the background. The toppings sublimate the tobaccos to a moderate degree. The strength and taste levels barely reach the medium threshold. The nic-hit is just past the center of mild to medium. No chance of bite, and while it’s not exactly smooth, there’s very few rough edges, and has potential for a hint of harshness that chiefly comes from the Izmir. The flakes easily break apart to suit your packing preference. They are lightly moist, but needs no dry time. Burns cool, clean, and a little slow with a modestly sweet, minimally sour and savory, mildly inconsistent, complex and nuanced flavor. Leaves little dampness in the bowl, and requires some relights. Has a pleasant, short lived after taste. The room note is a rung stronger than the after taste. Can be an all day smoke. Three and a half stars out of four.

 

perdurabo

Preferred Member
Jun 3, 2015
2,981
553
Yep, I get the floral. I’m not well versed with the orientals used, so your guide here is well noted. Im glad you got the tequila Jim, as I was scared of wishful dreamings.

 

jiminks

Preferred Member
Aug 31, 2012
34,242
10,203
Thanks, Perdurabo. I was looking for the tequila very intensely. Same for the elderflower topping. That was a little harder for me.

 

craig61a

Senior Member
Apr 29, 2017
462
997
Just getting started on the second bowl. There’s a lot going on there. Overall very well balanced tobacco. I do occasionally note a light tequila aftertaste, but it works well. I can’t add to Jim’s review, I pretty much agree with it. A whole potpourri of flavors.
I gave it about 10 minutes dry time in the sun, because while it’s not overly humid today, that just works better for me in my location.
A top shelf smoke...






 
Reactions: aquadoc

mso489

Preferred Member
Feb 21, 2013
27,003
1,732
Hmmm. It certainly sounds interesting, something to sample at the pipe club or show, but also a mite busy, not just with different flavors but with seemingly incongruous flavors. jiminks may have been a little more receptive to this blend than I would be, but I'll see how others react over time. C&D is usually dead-on with its burley blends. Others can be hit or miss for me.

 

lightmybriar

Preferred Member
Mar 11, 2014
775
268
I love the stuff! Possibly my favorite C&D Virginia. Tons of flavor variety while never intruding on the Virginia taste. C&D Virginias tend to hit me as earthy, and this one has a very delightful brightness to it. I hope they do another run sometime!

 

fightnhampster

Junior Member
Aug 14, 2019
75
50
Scooped up 5 tins before they were gone. The tin note is amazing! It does seem a little rough but should age wonderfully. If they ever make some more (like they did carolina red flake) I will definitely get some more.

 

scloyd

Preferred Member
May 23, 2018
2,250
543
Jim, how is the honey flavor compared to SG Black Forest? I smoke Black Forest for the honey hit, which I don't get with every bowl. I read your review of Black Forest and I'm thinking that Sun Bear might have more honey flavor. Thanks.

 

jiminks

Preferred Member
Aug 31, 2012
34,242
10,203
SCloyd: I'd say the honey is about a step or two more obvious in Sun Bear. It seems to be a touch richer, and it seems to me that the tequila carries that flavor a tad more throughout the smoke while adding its own mark on your taste buds. The honey in Black Forest as I recall seemed to weaken a little toward the finish.

 

scloyd

Preferred Member
May 23, 2018
2,250
543
@Jim- The honey in Black Forest is pretty weak and my tastes aren't that refined. Thanks for the response...much appreciated.

 

zitotczito

Preferred Member
Aug 12, 2014
1,087
4
Well I am having my first bowl and am trying it kinda of cube cut first in a new legend cob. I am in no way a reviewer like Jim but I get it and I like it. I can see myself having many bowls of this. I can detect the honey and I thought the tequila would be off putting but it is not. It does indeed have a lot going on. Good thing I got 50 tins. LOL

 
Reactions: cshubhra

h3rodotus

New member
Jun 7, 2019
37
1
I concur with Jim here--Hello sir! I hope you are well. 3.5 stars is a high score from the legend, IMO it's amazing. I need more, I only was able to get 5 tins!!!


 
Reactions: lightmybriar

perdurabo

Preferred Member
Jun 3, 2015
2,981
553
The tangy dark fruity, earthy, woody, bready, lightly floral, slightly spicy, slightly citrusy red Virginia takes a tiny lead over the other components at times. Strongly vying for attention for the first slot and often getting it are the dry, sour, lightly tangy sweet, woody, earthy, floral, spicy, smoky Basma and Izmir. The bright Virginia provides some tart citrus, grass, a floral and spice note in an important support role, and ranks a slot below the Orientals and the red Va. The smooth, sweet honey is the most obvious topping, while the lightly fruity, earthy tequila rises a little above the “whisper” mentioned in the blend description. Its effect tends to vary a tad, though it seems just a little more potent half way through the experience. The tart, grape and berry-like, acidic, floral, herbal, sweet elderflower is always in the background. The toppings sublimate the tobaccos to a moderate degree. The strength and taste levels barely reach the medium threshold. The nic-hit is just past the center of mild to medium. No chance of bite, and while it’s not exactly smooth, there’s very few rough edges, and has potential for a hint of harshness that chiefly comes from the Izmir. The flakes easily break apart to suit your packing preference. They are lightly moist, but needs no dry time. Burns cool, clean, and a little slow with a modestly sweet, minimally sour and savory, mildly inconsistent, complex and nuanced flavor. Leaves little dampness in the bowl, and requires some relights. Has a pleasant, short lived after taste. The room note is a rung stronger than the after taste. Can be an all day smoke. Three and a half stars out of four.
Jim I was out and about last night and had a beverage that had Elderflower in it. My taster went crazy with memories of Sun Bear. The Elderflower weaves around the honey. Smoking Sun Bear right now. Reminds me of those Christmas Almond cookies and Ennerdake Flake, ate the almond cookies one Christmas and I’ve been able to detect the almond oil in Ennerdale ever since.