A few years ago Ashton decided that they wanted to release a new blend on the market and asked the then rising star Don Pepin Garcia to help them out and he created this Nicaraguan puro with the leathery Nicaraguan corojo wrapper. Too bad Ashton didn’t really put thought in the blend name, because Habanos S.A. has the rights to the name San Cristobal everywhere except in the USA, Ashton can’t release this cigar in Europe. I brought this cigar with me from my trip to the USA in 2009.
The wrapper looks quite leathery with just a few veins. The cigar is a 7.2 x 49 churchill sized stogie with a fine construction. The cigar has a mild barnyard aroma and a pretty yet busy band. The top of the cigar isn’t as flat as the average churchill which makes it a bit hard to punch. The draw is way too hard, I can taste some raisin with a mild pepper.
I can taste a medium strong earthy flavor with leather. After an inch I decided to use the draw tool as the draw was horrible. After using the draw tool the flavors taste a bit burned and I get a bit of chocolate on the background. The leather, which doesn’t taste anything like the leather in Cuban cigars, slowly grows in strength. The chocolate flavor sticks to the palate. The earthy and leathery tones are perfectly balanced and full flavored.
The flavors change to leather and herbs. The herbal flavors are most dominant. The chocolate disappeared completely. The leather wins the battle with the herbs and becomes the dominant flavor again and it even starts to taste like Cuban leather now. The earthy flavors make a comeback too, only to support the leather though.
The draw was very hard, so I used my cool draw tool to rescue the cigar and it worked like a charm. The burn is good and the ash is light colored. The smoke starts out poor, but that has everything to do with the bad draw, once I fixed that, the amount of smoke was good too.
Would I buy this cigar again? Yes, it is a slow starter but the finish is worth waiting for.
Appearance: 8 / 10
Construction: 6 / 10
Draw: 6 / 10
Burn: 7 / 10
Smoke & ash: 7 / 10
Aroma first part: 6 / 10
Aroma second part: 7 / 10
Aroma third part: 8 / 10