Ghurka Cellar Reserve 15-year-old - KOI cigar and Smokkelman Red blend pairing

Ghurka Cellar Reserve 15-year-old - KOI cigar and Smokkelman Red blend pairing

Posted by Francois Pistorius on 17th Mar 2022

Ghurka Cellar Reserve 15-year-old - KOI cigar and Smokkelman Red blend pairing

The Pigtail cigar shape is a perfecto. The cigar brand embodies luxury. You experience the smokey aromas mixed with wine cellar scents as you light up. You can unwind the pigtail or clip the cigar. The cigar is full of flavour and complexity. The vintage Cellar Reserve has 15-year-old aged tobacco rolled into an oily Criollo wrapper. The first puff is a blend of flavours that develop.

Ghurka Cellar Reserve 15-year-old - KOI cigar and Smokkelman Red blend pairing

Ghurka Cigars

Handcrafted cigars epitomise luxury.

Ghurka Cellar Reserve 15-year-old - KOI Cigar Look

The Ghurka Khoi 15 Oily chestnut brown wrapper glows in the sunlight. The prominent cigar veins highlight the sheen of the wrapper.

Ghurka Cellar Reserve 15-year-old - KOI cigar and Smokkelman Red blend pairing

Ghurka Cellar Reserve 15-year-old - KOI Dry Aroma


Pepper spice

Wine cellar scents

Ghurka Cellar Reserve 15-year-old - KOI cigar and Smokkelman Red blend pairing

Ghurka Cellar Reserve 15-year-old - KOI Dry Draw


Hay grass

Dry nuttiness

Citrus and spice combination

Toasted almonds and pistaccios

Ghurka Cellar Reserve 15-year-old - KOI cigar and Smokkelman Red blend pairing

Ghurka Cellar Reserve 15-year-old - KOI First Puff

The first puff delivers citrus and nuts with earthy spice.

The flavours develop into a nougat citrus sweetness. There are hints of wildflower honey and marinated barbecue sauce.

The draw is light and smooth, with a significant smoke volume from each puff.

Ghurka Cellar Reserve 15-year-old - KOI cigar and Smokkelman Red blend pairing

Ghurka Cellar Reserve 15-year-old - KOI Flavour Development

The cigar smells of smokey barbecue and has sweet barbecue sauce flavours. The aged tobacco enhances the smokey barbecue flavours. The cigar releases citrus scents with vanilla.

The cigar smoking experience develops into a classic creamy, nutty profile. The cigar has smokey tastes and light coffee and cocoa on the aftertaste.

The Ghurka Khoi 15 is a unique cigar offering distinctive developing flavours. Compared to most other cigars, the flavours are outstanding. It's a magnificent cigar. The cigar provides rich flavours and a medium strength full flavour smoking experience.

Ghurka Cellar Reserve 15-year-old - KOI

The Cellar Reserve is a delicious medium to full-bodied cigar. It is a pigtail shaped cigar with an aged Dominican colour binder. The cigar filler is 15-year old Dominican tobacco. Ghurka Khoi vintage Cellar Reserve has a beautiful oily Criollo 1998 wrapper.

Rated 97, Top 10 Cigar of the Year.

Wrapper: Criollo 98

Binder: Dominican, Olor

Filler: 15-year aged Dominican

Country of origin: Dominican Republic

Size Koi - Perfecto 4x58

Blend Strength Medium

In 1989, Hansotia decided to resurrect Ghurka cigars. A cigar brand with a rich history. Gurkha Cigars originated more than a century ago. The brand embodies luxurious handcrafted cigars.

Ghurkhas revival created cigars that were not a necessity but a luxury indulgence.

Today, Gurkha makes cigars for all price points and palettes. For many, Gurkha's are status symbol cigars and synonymous with exclusivity.

Smoking a Ghurka cigar is a memorable experience.

Click the link below to smoke a Ghurka Khoi 15

Experience Gurkha.

Ghurka Cellar Reserve 15-year-old - KOI cigar

Ghurka Cigar Brand Story

Gurkha Cigar Group has a reputation that stands apart from the rest. The Gurkha Cigar Brand has survived world wars, great depressions, recessions, trade embargoes, and the turn of two centuries.

Today, Gurkha is a name in the cigars industry synonymous with Rolls Royce of cars.

Kaizad Hansotia declares that Ghurkha is the first super-premium cigar. In the 1980s, most cigars sold between $2-3 per stick. Gurkha's cigars sold for $16-20. In 2012, Gurkha created the world's most expensive cigars. The Raja. The cigars sold for $500,000.00 per box.

Also, Gurkha continues to blend the world's rarest and most expensive cigar. The His Majesty's Reserve sells for over $20,000.00 per box.

Gurkha Cigar Group relocated

Kaizad Hansotia transformed the new facility into a palace. The interior has marble, stones, rare woods with a gold-dusted finish, and a hidden blending room. There's a private smoking lounge and a full top-shelf bar for entertaining.

"Gurkha is a lifestyle. Stability, Growth, and Continued Success. These are the goals that the Gurkha brand strives for daily.

The Beginning

A $143 drunken vacation buy in 1988 developed into a cigar company. Kaizad Hansotia and his impressive Gurkha team built an exclusive cigar brand.

In 1988, while on vacation in Goa, India, Kaizad Hansotia bought the brand. He stumbled into Portuguese vendors selling a brand named Gurkha. He bought all the cigars and company name.

Hansotia was in the watch business and offered cigars as gifts to his clients.

Kaizad Hansotia knew nothing about the cigar industry at the beginning. He started giving the cigars out to all his duty-free suppliers, and they liked it. They started asking for more. It was time to approach a tobacco grower friend. That's how it began and how Gurkha Cigars started.

Revolutionizing the Cigar Market

Kaizad Hansotia created the market for upscale cigars. In the late 80s, Davidoff cigars were $8. That was the most expensive cigar. His goal was to produce the most exclusive cigars and focus on quality rather than quantity.

Today Gurkha stands for high-end, small-batch cigars.

The first expensive luxury cigar was the Grand Reserve. Ghurkha infused the cigars with Louis XIII Cognac, which retailed for $12.

Ghurkha followed with the world's most expensive cigar called His Majesty's Reserve.

With fewer than 100 boxes made each year, the cigars sell for around $15,000 for a box of 20. An entire bottle of Louis XIII Cognac infuses into the 20 cigars making up a box.

The buyers range from Middle-Eastern Royalty, CEOs of Fortune 500 companies and cigar 


Ghurkha branding and Packaging

The brand packing and designs align with the ultra-premium cigar they produce. Ghurkha makes high quality and unique cigar boxes and bands to suit the brand.

Ghurka Online

The market shops online. Many brick and mortar stores incorporate online cigar sales with huge success today.

Gary Hyams is the company's new chief executive officer and president. He was chairman of CAO as International's before the brand sold to General Cigar Company. Gary has built several successful brands and embrace new sales channels for Ghurkha cigars.

Smokkel Man Cabernet Sauvignon & Cinsaut Red Blend

Smokkel Man wines originated during the COVID pandemic in South Africa. The start of prohibition during the lockdown in South Africa. The brand offers a red and white blend.

The backstory

Jozua Joubert and Barry Scholfield partnered to create the Smokkel Man wine brand. They like affordable wines. The two partners decided to create approachable wine.

In Europe, people can drink a bottle for lunch. The wine is light and compliments your food. South African wines are heavier because of the climate and sun exposure on the grapes.

Tassenberg used to be a good affordable, easy to drink red wine. An approachable wine should be light and fresh. Pop the cork and finish the bottle.

They want to create quality, easy-drinking wines for South Africa.

Wine Culture

The partners promote progressive Afrikaner culture moving away from the narrow-minded, conservative background.

"Smokkelman" idea originated from an American wine with a French label. The brand spoke about a 'pusher' or smuggler.

Smokkelman came to life during draconian, ill-thought-through lockdown laws. No one could move wine in the middle of hard lockdown, never mind sell it. It was the perfect time to release Smokkel Man wines.

There were plenty of buyers willing to buy-now-deliver-later. Mariel stepped into the team, ready to bend the rules for a small wage. Today, he is the full-time mixologist, host and trainee sommelier at Karibib Wine Craft. With a wry smile, they joke about fitting 43 cases of wine into a Mazda 3.

Smokkel Man Wines - There will only ever be two lines.

Smokkelman White is currently on Batch #3

The white blend is pale yellow like the faded police vans the partners evaded in their youth. The wine has aromas reminiscent of poaching orchard fruit on a hot summer's day.

White Blend Flavours

Ripe pear,


green apple,

fynbos white flowers,

a faint hint of gunsmoke,

waxy herbal finish.

The Smokkelman Red is on Batch #5

Bright red with a healthy blend of Cinsaut. With aromas reminiscent of smuggling wine gums in your Space Case under an old school bench.

Red blend flavours

Aromas of strawberry,



The wine has tastes of berries and cedarwood with a musky finish.

Smokkel Man Cabernet Sauvignon & Cinsaut red blend

Red wine Scents

The wine has strong damp wine cellar scents with prominent black fruit on the nose. There is an oaky scent mixed with berries and spice. The wine has a luminous deep red colour while swirling the wine.

Red wine Taste

The red wine is smooth and balanced with light acidity. It is a big alcohol red wine but balanced. The first taste has stilton cheese and blackberries. There is a dry fruit spice aftertaste.

The wine opens with time. A slight tingle develops on your tongue because of the spice notes in the wine. It is a salty, nutty and peppery spice that lingers on the aftertaste. The spice tastes emerge stronger combined with oaky cellar tastes and earthy spice.

The flavours pair perfect and compliment the Ghurkha cigar.

Ghurka Cellar Reserve 15-year-old - KOI and Smokkelman Red Blen Pairing

The cigar and red wine pairing are harmonious. The smokey steak flavours in the cigar enhance with each sip of wine.

The combination resembles a pannacotta dessert. A dessert with orange citrus and creamy, nutty flavours with a berry sauce.

Pairing Evolution

It is a bold red wine with beautiful luminous colour because of the Cinsaut. The blackberry flavours are delicious. The flavours complement the citrus and aged smokey tobacco taste of the Ghurka cigar.

The wine balance is perfect with the aged tobacco. Too bold red wines like a Syrah or Bourdeaux blend might be too big for the cigar. A Pinot Noir could also be a could pairing with the aged Ghurkha cigar.

Pairing Conclusion

The toasty, citrus and marinated barbecue flavours blend effortless together. Each puff has orange citrus combined with the smokey marinated flavours. The red berry flavours of the red blend drink easy. The wine is an excellent pairing while you puff on the Ghurka Cellar Reserve 15-year-old KOI. If you prefer to smoke during the day, a mild coffee is also a perfect pairing.

The cigar makes me think of sourdough toast with melted butter. Add a bite of pannacotta dessert with citrus and nuts. The combined flavours offer you one of the best cigars to enjoy during any time of the day.

Other Drink options with the Ghurka Cellar Reserve 15-year-old - KOI


Chenin blanc,

White blend

Aged Whiskey


It is a super flavour experience cigar that deserves to pair with your favourite cigar drink.

Experience Gurkha.

Click the link below.

Ghurka Cellar Reserve 15-year-old - KOI