E-liquid review: Balboa (Trabuco Vapors) 30 ml – received by the manufacturer

Declared base: n.a.

Batch: 18

Nico: 3 mg/ml

Expiry date: 05/2018

Devices: Wismec Predator 228w + Hobo 3.1 RDA single coil 0.4 ohm (Kanthal A1 24 awg 0.50 mm ) with Cotton Bacon V 2.0

Tell me the truth, how many of you reading the name of today’s product Balboa have thought to Rocky Balboa character? And how many of you then have thought of a strong and vigorous e-liquid?


Well, let’s start by telling you that Rocky Balboa does not have anything to do with Balboa by Trabuco that we are going to review. Balboa by Trabuco is a peninsula in the residential area of Newport Beach in California, south of Los Angeles. A small corner of paradise.


The Balboa bottle in our possession is 30 ml transparent glass with childproof cap; The dropper has a medium sized beak tip. Well done and pleasing the label, with the name of the liquid in the foreground and in the background the stylized design of an anchor to symbolize the town lying on the ocean.

Although the bottle of the review is not TPD ready, we want to reassure you: the manufacturer has informed us that the new TPD ready formats are coming. So good!


Trabuco thus describes his Balboa:

Aromatic and mild; this aged Virginia tobacco extract has been masterfully blended with the tart, natural sweetness of berries and complimented by smooth cream.

On the smell, on a thinly vaguely vegetal and rather dry layer you can see the gentle scents of red fruits, which carry a touch of succulent and interesting acidity. The kindness of the red fruits is amplified by round and easily perceptible creamy notes that create a balanced blend in the whole, with a rather cool and summer timbre. Perhaps here is why the name chosen for this e-liquid! Although it is a Trabuco, in this case the smell test would seem to indicate a creation that differs from the typically warm and enveloping profile that distinguishes the company’s products. Even the official description seems to announce a gentle lightness.

For Balboa I chose a configuration with a lower profile: Hobo RDA with 0.4 ohm resistance. I start the test at 25 watts and I note immediately that e-liquid has an incredible softness, perhaps too much. The aromatic characteristics officially described by the manufacturer, and also perceptible to the smell, appear too soft, lacking in this case the aromatic load and especially the shades of the red fruits that should characterize the blend decisively. As is, the aromatic structure seems wrong, weird for such a meticulous and careful company in the packaging of its e-juices.

I bring it to 35 watts and … now here We are!

hcigar vt inbox

The blend thought and created by Trabuco takes shape. At too low a power, the mix fails to structure properly. At the right power the head notes show all the freshness and freshness of freshly harvested red fruits, among which the sweetness of the blackberries and the slight sharp tips and raspberries flavorings stand out. The weave and the mix of red fruits harmonize effectively with tobacco-based ingredients: an air cured Virginia with discrete and perhaps somewhat timid features. Yet it feels … a slight woody perception on a bed of blackberries and raspberries.

But this Balboa also has a soft heart. A creamy amalgam dough, encloses and completes the aromatic structure, with a softly soft, soft and invasive contribution. We pack up a clean and very refined drain, if we want, a variation on the theme of the typical Trabuco style. Balboa stands out for roundness, emerges for aromatic finishes, sometimes even vaguely pungent, and exalts in general for its sinuous and soft curves. Sinuosity that is achieved thanks to the perfect balance between small and large agro-sweet contrasts.

Aromatic steaminess and persistence are not the strong part of Balboa but, as I see it, are not even able to adversely affect the overall judgment of the product. If you are looking for greasy and cloudy steam, turn your attention elsewhere. If, on the contrary, in the summer you will find yourself seated by the sea to sunburn, to enjoy an excellent artisan ice cream, and I would recommend you to accompany it with a few clouds of vapor from Balboa’s scent.

Lovable, gentle, summer, another precious gem of the Californian manufacturer.

ico 4

Pro: A delicious fruity-creamy with lightweight, tasty tobacco background.

Cons: The Virginia tobacco is a timid ingredient and just mentioned in the blend.