Stallone Castaño San Andres Robusto. Up until a few months ago, we never heard about this brand. Only when Todd Vance joined Stallone Cigars the brand came on our radar. Vance is an industry veteran who spent time with A.J. Fernandez, Cornelius & Anthony, and Padilla Cigars before joining Stallone Cigars. And our first thought was “Sylvester has a cigar brand”? But this brand has got nothing to do with the movie star. It is the brand from an Italian American, Tony Barrios, who’s a rodeo champion. He loves his stallions, and the world for stallions in Italian is Stallone. But skeptic as we are, we suspect that the fact that Sylvester Stallone is a famous brother of the leaf did play a part in picking the name.
The Castaño San Andres is part of the Cowboy Series. It features a Mexican San Andres wrapper over Nicaraguan filler and binder. The cigars come from the small Tabacalera La Perla. The same factory as the Muestra de Tabac. And that’s another brand whom we suspect picked the name to rub shoulders with a well-known brand. But again, we suspect, we don’t know for sure. But let’s focus on this 5½x52 Robusto, one of the three sizes available. Our experience with the cigars coming from Tabacalera La Perla is positive, so we have high hopes.
The sun-grown San Andres wrapper from Mexico has a leather-look, dry leather. Like the face of an old cowboy or fisherman, who’s been beaten by the sun for decades. It gives the cigar character. The triple cap is a bit rough on the eyes as well. The copper and gray ring has the silhouette of a stallion and the name of Tony Barrios. The secondary ring is in the same style and color as the name of the cigar. The cigar feels evenly filled. The aroma is medium strong and quite dark. Like a forest in the early morning, when everything is still wet from the night.
The cold draw is a bit on the loose side and leaves a dry leathery flavor on the palate. The first puff is soil, coffee, and sourness. Strong coffee. But then the leather starts to shine, with citrus, oak, and pepper. Soon the cigar starts to mellow out a bit. With dry flavors, leather, and earth. But with citrus acidity and some sweetness. The citrus is becoming quite strong, with a nice sweetness to balance it out. Then the leather and pepper grow stronger while the citrus disappears. The mouthfeel is still dry. There is a nutty flavor in the retrohale. The second third starts with the nuttiness, dark spices, pepper, and hay. The cigar is a little rough, not smooth, or with a lot of nuances. But it does not bite or leave a tickle in the throat. Halfway there is a hint of chocolate behind the leather, pepper, soil, and oak. Hay and pepper are becoming the dominant flavors. There is still some nuttiness as well. The last part of the cigar is wood, leather, soil, and pepper.
The cigar produces a lot of smoke. Beautiful blue smoke. The draw is fine. The dense ash is light in color. The burn is straight. It is a medium to medium-full cigar. Both in body and flavor. The smoke time is two hours and twenty minutes.
Would I buy this cigar again? I liked it but want to try a few other Stallone Cowboy Series first.