Alec & Bradley Gatekeeper Robusto Cigar Review

The Alec & Bradley brand is named after Alan Rubin’s two sons, who built the said firm without their dad’s help. Their dad is none other than the person behind the most famous cigar brand in the cigar industry, which is Alec Bradley. We all know that Alec Bradley cigars are great, but was the Alec & Bradley cigar brand the same?

The Gatekeeper Robusto is one of Alec & Bradley’s brand’s most popular products, as it is made with high-quality tobacco. This cigar received high scores from multiple cigar reviewers who have already reviewed this one. So for this cigar review, we will try the Alec & Bradley Gatekeeper Robusto cigar.

Wrapper Origin: EcuadorianShape: Robusto
Length: 5Ring: 50
Wrapper: HabanoList Price: $252 (Box of 24)
Origin: Dominican RepublicStrength: Full

Appearance of Alec & Bradley Gatekeeper Robusto

The Alec & Bradley Gatekeeper Robusto cigar, uses an Ecuadorian Habano wrapper leaf that is in beautiful dark brown shade color. There are minimal veins showing and seams as well. It’s also a little bit oily to the touch, and I detected no soft spots. The cigar is compact and firm.

As for the cigar’s band, I actually find the band weird since there are no phrases or words written on it. The band just simply features an image of a man or a Greek God, like a man in the middle with his eyes closed and mouth open. The image is in grayscale with gold details, as if the gold part is dripping.

Moreover, the background of the overall band is black, and considering how dark the cigar’s wrapper is, it’s actually not a nice blend of colors, and it doesn’t make the cigar more appealing. It’s just too plain and boring, and it doesn’t reflect the quality of the cigar at all.

I think Alec & Bradley should consider redesigning the cigar band for the Gatekeeper Robusto. There is nothing else on the cigar band that caught my attention.

Smoking Experience

Upon lighting the Alec & Bradley Gatekeeper Robusto cigar, the flavors that I got were chocolate, cocoa powder, and coffee. There’s also a hint of pepper at the back of the palette and retro-hale. So far, this offers dark flavors that don’t have a punch. The flavors are just right, not giving me any wow factor or something that will surprise me. The only downside in this part was that I tasted no sweetness or creaminess on the wrapper.

For my first third of smoking the Alec & Bradley Gatekeeper Robusto cigar, the first thing that I immediately noticed was the sweetness finally emerging after being absent during the light-up, which makes the dark flavors now balance. Speaking of, the flavor profile continues to be the flavors I picked up during the light-up, which are chocolate, cocoa powder, and coffee. So far, I can’t exactly pinpoint which is the dominant flavor since their richness is all at the same level; no flavor is being placed on the front nor the back of the palette. The pepper is still on the retro-hale as well, but it got a little bit strong, something that is not overpowering.

For my second third of smoking the Alec & Bradley Gatekeeper Robusto cigar, the cocoa powder flavor mellows down a little bit, giving it a nice transition, but the other flavors remain the same. There’s also no added flavor joining the profile so far. The pepper notes are still on the retro-hale, and the sweetness of this cigar is also on the same level as it was during the first third. As for the cigar’s construction, the ash of this one holds on very well, and it burns almost evenly. On the other hand, it doesn’t produce an ample amount of smoke, but the draw is great as it didn’t require me any resistance to get the flavors properly.

As for my final third of smoking the Alec & Bradley Gatekeeper Robusto cigar, the flavor profile continues to be the same, so consistency-wise, this performs well. However, in terms of the richness of the flavor, I don’t think this one performs that well. The sweetness of this cigar mellows down a bit, which I find not good considering how dark the flavors are and especially how the strength in this part started to become strong. Still, this cigar is indeed full-bodied. For the construction of this cigar, I can say that up until my last few puffs, it does an excellent job. The draw is great, and it still burns evenly. The ash continued to hold very well, but I had to toss it because of how huge the chunk was already. Lastly, the smoke output continued to produce a minimal amount of smoke only, but I didn’t really mind since it didn’t affect my smoking experience.


Based on how well it performs in the second and last thirds, the Alec & Bradley Gatekeeper Robusto cigar is full-bodied overall. There were only five flavors that I tasted on this cigar: chocolate, cocoa powder, pepper, coffee, and sweet. However, the sweet and pepper notes lacked the richness that the other flavors between puffs possessed.

The pepper taste began to mellow in the second third, while the sweet flavor did the same in the final third, which I find disappointing because it was also the time when the cigar’s strength rose. I could have used the sweetness to counterbalance both its strength and dark flavor profile, but it was absent when I took my final few puffs.

In addition, while this cigar performs quite well in consistency, there’s also not much flavor transition happening, and no other flavors emerge between thirds. Basically, the flavors that I got during the first third were also the flavors I had in the final third; the only difference was the richness of some flavors. Again, the pepper and sweet mellows down a bit, but that’s it. While the cocoa powder mellows down, too, it gains back its peak during the final third, along with how the strength becomes full.

As for the construction of this cigar, I don’t have any complaints. The draw is excellent, enough to make me pick up the flavors properly, and it burns almost evenly. The ash also held on very well, which I find surprising. However, if you’re a cigar aficionado who enjoys smoking a cigar that produces an ample amount of smoke, you will not be happy with how minimal the smoke is being made on this one.

I would recommend this one if you enjoy smoking a full-bodied cigar that consists of a dark flavor profile. However, if you’re a beginner or someone who wants to try a cigar from the Alec & Bradley brand, this is not a good introductory cigar for you. As for myself, I’m kind of in the middle in terms of deciding whether I would purchase one in the future. I find the flavors okay, but I’m mostly up for the wow factor a cigar would bring to me. Still, I think I will purchase one in the future if ever I’m in the mood to smoke something that has a dark flavor profile.

Other Cigars Reviews

Other Alec Bradley Cigar Reviews

Alec Bradley Maxx The Fixx

This AB cigar is a fat 58 gauge cigar that isn’t overpowering. It has a nice creamy, medium-bodied smoke. The filler tobacco in the Alec Bradley Maxx the Fixx is a blend from five countries: Costa Rica, Colombia, Honduras, Mexico, and Nicaragua. The five-country blend makes for a complex and enjoyable smoke that could be appreciated by any cigar enthusiast or casual cigar smoker. It really is a great cigar.

Alec Bradley American Sun Grown Robusto

The Alec Bradley American Sun Grown cigar is from Nicaragua and is wrapped with a sun-grown Habano. Both its binder and filler come from Nicaragua. Every stick gives you a consistent and easy draw. Its base flavors are wood, cream, and pepper, with a spicy and woody aroma with a hint of cream. It has a very dark brown wrapper, which can be very oily as well. The Alec Bradley American Sun Grown uses 100 percent sun-grown tobacco; hence, it is aptly named. Its spiciness is just right and not overpowering. Its creaminess is exacting, which is something you can expect from a Habano. For about $5 a stogie, this review of Alec Bradley American Sun Grown Robusto makes it hard to find a better-priced cigar for the quality. Its flavor and price make it a great cigar, worthy of any cigar smoker’s humidor.

Other Dominican Cigar Reviews

Macanudo Vintage 2006 Toro

The Macanudo Vintage 2006 Toro presents a delightful smoking experience with its medium strength profile and light, consistent flavors that carry throughout the smoke, appealing to both novices and seasoned aficionados. Its unique metal band adds a distinctive touch to the presentation, while the cigar itself displays a Connecticut shade wrapper with a smooth burn and good draw, despite an uneven ash. Flavor notes of sweet grass, hay, earth, cedar, along with a creamy vanilla spice, make for an intriguing and balanced blend. Although the smoke output may not impress those who prefer a voluminous cloud, the overall construction and flavor composition make it a worthy choice. This cigar promises a satisfying experience with its gentle yet flavorful character, which this review of Macanudo Vintage 2006 Toro finds commendable for potential repurchase consideration.

La Flor Dominicana Double Ligero No. 654

La Flor Dominicana’s reputation for crafting potent cigars is embodied in the Double Ligero No. 654, a favorite among aficionados seeking robust, earthy, and spicy flavors. Wrapped in an oily Ecuadorian Sumatra leaf, this full-strength Toro boasts a densely packed blend of Dominican filler and binder that delivers a tapestry of wood, pepper, and subtle coffee notes with a pleasantly spicy finish. Smokers will notice the classic look with the oily Maduro-colored wrapper and distinctive LFD branding, which speaks to its quality and the manufacturer’s attention to detail. Throughout the smoking experience, it maintains a full body without being overwhelming. It offers a complex profile that includes a minty, oaky wood leather touch, a transition to sweet spice, and a final third highlighted by green, wood, and coffee flavors. The La Flor Dominicana Double Ligero No. 654 is a testament to its balanced strength. It is a must-try for those ready to step up in cigar strength, ensuring a rich and rewarding smoke that is intensely satisfying right through to the end, as noted in this review of La Flor Dominicana Double Ligero No. 654.

For more information about the best cigars and other ways to relax make sure to come back to Scotch & Cigars here.

Maria Morales

Maria Morales