Cheshire Imperium: Marrakech Dark Reserve
This is the second of two reviews this week dedicated to the more expensive “top shelf” eliquids on the market. If you missed the first, my review of Trabuco Vapor Company’s “Capistrano” you can read it at the link.
Today, I’m tackling the more expensive and harder to acquire liquid of the two, Cheshire Imperium’s, “Marrakech Dark Reserve.” Going for a cool $36.50 for 30ml (or almost $1.22 per milliliter) this is one of the most expensive eliquids I’ve ever reviewed, surpassed only by the even-harder-to-obtain “Castle Long Reserve” by Five Pawns.
You may be wondering why I would review liquids that are so infamously hard to get and so heavy on the budget. The answer is simple: almost nobody has reviewed them. And somebody should, don’t you think? When there are eliquids going for this much scratch, shouldn’t somebody be offering at least a subjective opinion about whether or not they’re worth it?
I think somebody should. And since almost nobody else is, that somebody might as well be me. Let’s get to it, shall we?
Marrakech Dark Reserve (from now on, I’ll refer to it simply as Marrakech, or MDR, to save keystrokes and time) was tested on my usual setup: A Kamry K100 powering a single <0.5 ohm coil sporting hemp wick and powered by a Sony VTC4 battery outputting an unregulated 3.7 volts.
The liquid itself sports a 6mg nicotine strength, along with an undisclosed PG/VG ratio which I will attempt to estimate in the Appearance section.
The presentation of Cheshire Imperium liquids is one of the nicest, if most completely conventional, I’ve ever seen. Standard round bottle shape composed of amber glass, topped with a convenient pipette “dripper” cap — a note, by the way, on the cap: It is collared in shrink-wrap on arrival to guard against tampering. However, it is not a child-resistant cap, so if you have youngsters in the house, keep this liquid secured appropriately. This is a bottling that does nothing to draw the buyer’s attention away from what’s most important: the liquid inside.
Marrakech Dark Reserve differs from its siblings in the Cheshire Imperium lineup in that it sports a white label where theirs are black. Additionally, the label is adorned with a subtle stacked-chevron pattern which creates a white pinstripe effect when viewed from a distance.
The layout is simple and clean: Front and center is what appears to be a “coat of arms” style emblem with “Cheshire Imperium” in stylish navy blue typeface underneath, above a blue line, above the motto: “Vivo. Veniam. Vaporem.” I’ll take a little poetic license with the translation: “Live. Come. Vape.”
Beneath that, we arrive at the name of the liquid, written in the same typeface as the text above it, but differentiated by color: while the rest is navy blue, the name of the liquid appears in a subtle gold-to-gray radial gradient.
Supplemental information is found by rotating the bottle counterclockwise and tilting it to the horizontal axis. This reveals the company’s web address; to the right is the universal symbol for poison, which is a reinforcement of the nicotine warning below. Beneath that warning appears the ingredients list, which is satisfyingly complete (the company duly warns us that the product also contains Love, but does not specify at what percentage per milliliter this ingredient is present.)
Further, the label provides the “Born On” date for the liquid, the Batch Number, and a poison control hotline number, presumably in case of accidental ingestion and or an overdose of Love. Finally, the company provides the description of the liquid’s flavor profile, which reads as follows:
Cheshire Imperium Says
Building on the Foundation of our Black Label Marrakech, we travel deeper into the Mystic. Incorporating The World’s Finest Extracts to obtain a Richer Tobacco Base, Mother Nature will envelope your & your senses will be dazzled by notes of rich lager.
The hue of this liquid is impossible to gauge inside the bottle, owing to the amber glass of the bottling. Examining it in the clear glass pipette cap, however, reveals it to be a medium copper in hue. Tilt and shake tests reveal nimble movement with little to no residual clinging, while the rotational test reveals a dead-flat horizon but a strong ripple pattern. Based on these tests, and with no other solid data to refer to, my estimation is that this liquid uses a 50/50 PG/VG ration, plus or minus 5% tilt in favor of one or the other.
The nose on MDR is deceptively simple in light of the flavor. What I pick up just from the nose is strong, sweet cherry and light, dry tobacco with a strong coumarin character.
The visual vapor output of MDR is fully satisfying, if not exactly the sort of thing cloud chasers will flock to. This is a level seems to be intended for private enjoyment and social vaping — and we’re talking about a vape that goes for pretty nearly $40 a bottle here, so that’s entirely appropriate. I wouldn’t imagine anybody wanting to burn this on a cloud competition.
The flavor carriage is where this vapor really stands out. It’s potent, delicious, and lingering. This vapor remodels the scent of a room with the same power and persistence of a fine traditional pipe tobacco. In a private or social setting among fellow vapers, you’re going to hear plenty of compliments about this one. Conversely, because it is an identifiably tobacco scent, you’ll want to be courteous and discrete about vaping this in the presence of nonsmokers.
Due in large part, I suspect, to the estimated 50/50 PG/VG blend of this liquid, throat hit is full, firm, and quick to arrive. Each hit produces just the right level of “thump” to the throat hit — yet, due to the sweeter side of the flavor, it satisfies without being abrupt or overpowering.
It seems to be a trend in the more expensive vapes I’ve reviewed that they are products of the absolute masters of mixology. Marrakech Dark Reserve continues that trend in every way, to wonderful effect.
On the inhale, I detect a blend of a lighter loose-leaf tobacco like Virginia and a bittersweet shisha. At the midpoint of the hit, the cherry comes alive and remains on the exhale, where it is joined by a coumarin note that reminds me of the smell of fresh cut wheat, as well as the faintest ghost of hops.
The overall impression all these characteristics add up to is that of a satisfying puff from a tobacco pipe taken at exactly the same instant as a long, refreshing drink of Samuel Adams Cherry Wheat lager. Overall, it’s an amazing flavor that, combined with the other characteristics described above, adds up to an amazing vape.
Recommendation & Conclusion
Would I recommend this eliquid? With a series of qualifications, yes. They are these:
–If you like tobacco/fruit fusions
–If you have the kind of hardware setup to fully unlock the entire experience this vape provides: i.e. a rebuildable dripping atomizer and a mod that can power it appropriately
–If you are seeking the very best liquid to match to that setup, regardless of price
Then I would recommend that you try this liquid. A reminder: This liquid is $36.50 per 30ml. That puts it in a tier beyond merely, “premium.” Additionally, its availability is limited, which means that you have to keep an eye on it and get it when it’s there to be had.
But if all those qualifications above describe you, then this is absolutely worth having. You can get Cheshire Imperium “Marrakech Dark Reserve”, and all their other offerings, from The Drip Club or, alternately, from Giant Vapes.