Colon Especiales Lancero

I think it’s about 10 years ago that the Panamanian brand Colon was introduced to the Dutch market with the release of a super premium perfecto for a crazy €45+ price tag which created some buzz. But the cigar didn’t sell much and neither did their better priced non limited edition cigars even though they were a nice smoke. Maybe it was the unknown brand, the fact that they came from Panana or the market wasn’t ready for it yet but I haven’t seen the brand in the recent years.

The cigar is a Panamanian puro and you could call it organic as the manufacturer claims the tobacco hasn’t been treated with pesticides not grown on artificial fertilizer. The tobacco comes from the mountainous area of Panama and until the 70’s this was the official diplomatic cigar of Panama. I can’t recall how I got my hands on this lancero, but I am looking forward to smoking it. It’s been a while since I smoked the brand, and I recall liking it, and then in my favorite vitola, I have high expectations.

The 7 5/8×40 lancero doesn’t come packed in cellophane, like most non Cubans. The wrapper looks a bit pale but not Connecticut shade pale and has a silky touch.I see one spot at the foot of the cigar like something in the filler is trying to break out, its like a pimple on a teenager but otherwise the wrapper looks beautiful. The construction feels good too and the triple cap is applied perfectly. After all these years of aging without the cellophane the cigar has little aroma left, I only smell a little bit of hay. I like the ring, which is very simple with a white background, a brown band onderneath with white letters saying especiales. On the white ring there are golden dots in the shape of Panama with dark brown letters Colon with a yellow stripe inside and small letters Panama. Very simple yet tasteful and the Panama shape makes it special.

A 40 ring cigar isn’t easy to punch, unless you have a tiny punch, so I cut the cigar. The cold draw is easy with a mild citrus and pepper flavor. After slowly setting fire to the cigar I taste some citrus but after two puffs also coffee, leather and pepper. The strength of the flavors surprise me. After an inch I taste wood with some pepper. After a third I taste spicy and peppery nut flavor. I also taste some caramel. Halfway I taste spices, slightly bitter but in a good way, with just a tiny bit of wood and the pepper has gone. Soon after I also taste a hint of cocoa, the caramel sweetness is gone.

The smoke is quite thick and plenty in volume. The draw is great too. The burn is straight as an arrow. The light colored ash is quite firm. The cigar is medium bodied and full flavored but it could have a little more evolution. The balance is great though. The smoke time is an hour and fifteen minutes.

Would I buy this cigar again? I liked it but there are better lanceros out there.

Score: 89

Categories: 89, Colón, Panamanian cigars | Tags: , , ,

Colón Especiales III

Colón is a Panamanian puro by the German owned company Darier & Cleef. Their Colón Grand Vintage is their ultra premium and ultra expensive cigar. They also produce Marca Fina, a bundled budget cigar in several vitola’s and available as Panamanian, Honduran and Dominican puros, so you can really discover the taste differences in the tobaccos from these countries, Campo Verde, the first Fair Trade cigar ever and the Colón Especiales line which is much nicer priced with a price tag below 15 euro. I had a sit down with the owner and the Dutch representative Gerhard Weigl in the smoke lounge of restaurant Klein Kalfje in Amsterdam where we talked about cigars, promotion and so on.
First thing I notice is the nice band, which has nice lettering but what really got my eyes were the golden dots that create the shape of Panama on the band. I think that is a nice touch. The light colored wrapper has lots of small thin veins and some spots. The wrapper is oily. The construction feels good and the cigar has a mild barnyard and wood smell. I punched the cigar and got a great predraw with a mild wood flavor which is mild spicy. This Colón Especiales is 6 inch long and has a ring of 42.
I taste a warm coffee flavor with some wood. It strikes me again that tobacco from Panama tastes so different than tobacco from other countries, much smoother. The flavors are full and complex. After an inch the coffee has disappeared and I taste herbs with wood and some earth. The flavors aren’t Cubanesque but the complexity of the cigar is. The flavors are mild sticky.
Halfway I taste a nut flavor for a short amount of time as a support of the wood and earth. The herbal flavor is gone. The flavors are still full but smooth. After ⅔ the herbs return and become dominant rightaway with earth on the background. After ¾ the nut flavors return, I can taste hazelnuts and walnuts with the herbs.
The smoke time of this cigar is about 90 minutes. The cigar produces a nice amount of thick white smoke. The draw and burn are very good. The salt & pepper colored ash isn’t very firm. There is a built up of nicotine in the cigar which leads to a nice flame while purging. This cigar is full flavored yet mild to medium bodied and quite complex. I would not smoke this right after a heavy dinner, but this is a very nice cigar late in the morning, early in the afternoon or after a light dinner.
Would I buy this cigar again? Yes, I liked it a lot.

Appearance: 7 / 10
Construction: 8 / 10
Draw: 8 / 10
Burn: 8 / 10
Smoke & ash: 8 / 10
Aroma first part: 8 / 10
Aroma second part: 8 / 10
Aroma third part: 8 / 10

Categories: Colón, Panamanian cigars | Tags: , ,

Colón grand vintage 2001 double perfecto

This double perfecto from Panama looks fantastic, a dark oily wrapper and it’s strange shape with 2 closed ends. You light the fire-end without cutting it. That makes the draw hard to start with, but as soon as the cigar burst open at the fire end the draw is getting much better.

The flavor is very much a flavor which I haven’t tasted in any other cigar, maybe because it’s my first cigar from Panama. I can taste cedar wood with a little sweetness but some pepper on the tongue. After about one and a half centimeter a distinct vanilla appears and soon disappears again. Halfway the cigar I tasted some citrus and later on some hay. At the end there is chocolate and the final blow is a combined chocolate with hay.

Would I buy this cigar again? I liked it, but with a price of 43,50 euro, don’t think so.

Appearance: 10 / 10
Construction: 9 / 10
Draw: 8 / 10
Burn: 8 / 10
Smoke & ash: 8 / 10
Aroma first part: 8 / 10
Aroma second part: 9 / 10
Aroma third part: 7 / 10

Categories: Colón, Panamanian cigars | Tags: , , ,

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