Room 101 OSOK
I’ve read lots of online chatter about the Room 101 OSOK so when I was up in Louisville this past weekend I stopped in a local shop and picked one up. A little bit of backstory on this cigar. Room 101 is not only a cigar company, but rather a lifestyle company. The founder Matt Booth creates everything from jewelry and apparel all the way to cigars and unique cigar accessories. Most of the stuff he creates doesn’t really fit into my lifestyle, well everything except the cigars and cigar accessories, but it’s pretty awesome stuff none the less.
OSOK is an acronym for One Shot One Kill. I love the concept behind it, it’s truly a great marketing pitch and it obviously worked on me. This is the first shop that I have seen the Room 101 OSOK in so I knew I had to pick it up and review it. I’m hoping the cigar backs up all the hype I’ve seen online about the brand and everything that Room 101 is about. Lets dive into it and see what it has to offer.
You could notice the Room 101 OSOK from across the humidor as soon as you walk in. I picked up the Trucha vitola standing at 6.5″ with a 50 ring gauge. This cigar has quite a presence when holding it in your hand. The cigar is wrapped in a very loud paper wrapper that includes a design that very similar to pacific islander drawings. The main graphic is some sort of skull that reminds me of how Kevin Bacon looked in “Hollow Man“… Haven’t seen it? Trust me you’re not missing out on anything. Once you remove the outer paper wrapper you find the cigar wrapped in another light paper wrapper, similar to tissue paper found in Christmas boxes. I feel like I’m unwrapping a Christmas present here in mid June!
Finally once all the paper wrappers are removed a glorious cigar appears. The Room 101 OSOK is constructed in the obscure Salamon shape. It’s not a shape that you see very often and honestly this is the first cigar that I have ever smoked in the Salamon shape. I absolutely love the shape though, it’s off the beaten track of the normal Parejo shape that most cigars are constructed with.
The band on the Room 101 OSOK is simple yet incredibly bold. Personally I love the font used on the OSOK band, the black background is a bold and a dominating backdrop that lets the silver really pop off the band. The font on the band reminds me of a very tribal-esque look. I give the OSOK a 10 for packaging and presentation.
After a thorough examination of the Room 101 OSOK I couldn’t find any soft spongy spots along the barrel from the pinch test, or for that matter any flaws whatsoever. I nipped the cap of the head and tested the cold draw. It was slightly snug so I decided to take another 1/8″ off the top to see if that helped. I didn’t notice a huge increase in the cold draw, so I went ahead and lit up anyway. Once I got some fire at the foot of the cigar the draw was incredible. Smooth as as could be and pull a ton of smoke through the head. I could tell right away this was going to be a very pleasurable smoke and I would probably take it all the way down to the nub.
Smoking the Room 101 OSOK is almost effortless. Had it not been for the wind outside on my stoop I would say this was probably one of the easiest cigars I’ve ever smoked. The 1st third was burning perfectly and the the foot of the cigar left a crazy looking ash. It was do in part to the Salamon shape of the cigar. I was really intrigued by how the ash looked. I tried to snap a picture, but unfortunately I lost the ash when adjusting for the picture. So you’ll just have to take my word on it.
The 2nd third burned straight as an arrow. I was surprised that it burned this even given the amount of wind I was battling. I also learned that large veins can affect how fast the cigar burns. The veins tend to burn faster than the rest of the wrapper and this can lead to canoeing in the cigar. There was a rather large protruding vein on the wrapper but it had zero effect on the burn. So I guess I didn’t learn anything really.
The final third of the Room 101 OSOK burned just as even as the first two. I never had to touch this thing up and the amount of smoke even picked up towards the end. I was surprised that the final third was actually the best part of the cigar. Typically this is where the cigar can become a nuisance to smoke for me. Either the barrel gets too hot or the taste becomes too harsh, but this cigar was an absolute pleasure all the way down to the nub!
Right away on the pre draw I picked up on quite a bit of leathery and woody notes from the Room 101 OSOK. I was excited to get it lit to see what other flavors I was going to be introduced to. It was really hard to pick up other aromas because I was constantly battling the wind blowing all the smoke away from me. However, the retrohale was the smoothest I’ve ever had on a cigar which was a plus. Maybe it was because I was retrohaling with less smoke. I tried to release like 80% of the smoke through my mouth and then retrohale the remaining 20%. This seemed to work very well by the way! Anywho, the retrohale didn’t singe my nostrils like most cigars usually do so I was able to pick up those woody and leathery notes to add the completeness of the cigar.
The 1st third of the Room 101 OSOK was incredibly consistent. The taste I was picking up was very earthy with slight hints of coffee and mocha.The taste that I got was very smooth. Nothing harsh and almost zero spice. I was honestly surprised that I didn’t pick up much spice with this stick. By judging the color of the wrapper I was expecting a kick to the junk with this cigar, but it was uncommonly smooth.
I guess with all the intense artwork and the tribal art I expected this cigar to really kick my ass and I was surprised at how smooth and subtle it was. I actually began to really slouch in my chair and just soak in how great the smoke was.
The Room 101 OSOK stayed consistent all the way to the nub. No big flavor swings that made you stand up and notice it, just smooth subtle complexities. You could pull out a lot of different nuances, but nothing that just hit you in the face. It was blended wonderfully together.
Would I Buy It Again?
Without a doubt. This cigar is one that I will continually reach for, not only as a conversation piece but also as a great cigar. Even though the price is a little steep at $12 a stick it’s well worth it.
Is It an Every Day Smoke?
If you can afford to smoke this thing everyday, then yes I’d say go for it. They have 3 different sizes, the one I smoked was a solid 1.5 hour smoke. So you might want to opt for the smaller vitola if you’re wanting a great every day smoke.
Would I Buy a Box?
I certainly would, I’m actually actively looking to try and find a box online to buy. Typically I can find a box of 10 for $120 which is a little steep, but like I said it’s a great smoke and I want them sitting in my humidor!
The Room 101 OSOK is a great medium-full body smoke that isn’t overly complex, but has enough subtle nuances that will challenge even the most experienced smoker. If you’re new to smoking I’d say this might be a good cigar to use to dip your toes into fuller bodied smokes. Either way it’s worth trying. If you’re really up for a challenge you might want to pick up the beast size at 8″ and a RG of 60. That’s sure to put you down for the count!