Diesel Whisky Row Robusto

Diesel Whisky Row Robusto. Who owns Diesel Cigars is a bit of a mystery to most cigar enthusiasts. Despite popular belief, it is not a brand from A.J. Fernandez although Fernandez is the manufacturer responsible for the brand. But the brand isn’t in the hands of A.J. Fernandez, it’s just blended by his skillful hands. And the production takes place at his factory in Esteli, Nicaragua. The owner of Diesel cigars is Scandinavian Tobacco Group, through Meier & Dutch. STG is the parent of General Cigars, Cigar.com, Cigarsinternational.com Thompson.com, Cigarbid.com, and more. Last year, they acquired Royal Agio as well. Meier & Dutch is a wholesale company that operates under the STG umbrella. The original Diesel Unholy Cocktail was only available at STG owned internet retailers in the past.

The Diesel Unholy Cocktail is so popular that the Diesel brand spawned into a whole series. And not exclusive through the STG stores anymore, but everywhere. Some lines even made it across the ocean to Europe. For the Diesel Whisky Row, the Diesel brand and Rabbit Hole distilleries collaborate. Rabbit Hole distilleries, a bourbon manufacturer, sends used barrels to A.J. Fernandez. Fernandez uses those barrels to age Mexican San Andres leaves. He uses them as a binder under an Ecuadorian Habano wrapper. For the filler, he uses aged Nicaraguan tobacco from Jalapa, Condega, and Ometepe. Ministry of Cigars reviews the 5½x52 Robusto.

The first thing that makes this cigar stand out is the shape of the ring. It’s big and diagonally placed over the cigar. But then there is a partially round part as well. Pastel blue, brown, and gray. It has the Diesel logo and the Rabbit Hole Bourbon logo. The foot ring is big as well that says that the cigar is bourbon barrel-aged and it has the names of both Diesel and Rabbit Hole prominently on the ring. The Colorado Maduro colored wrapper is smooth looking. Right below the head, there seems to be a softer spot. The aroma is strong, barnyard, and manure.

The cold draw is great. There is a bit of an alcohol taste in the cold draw, but that could be just a mind trick. There is some spice on the lips as well. Once lit, there is leather, wood, soil, and citrus acidity. There is also an alcohol flavor to the cigar, so the barrel aging does work. The barrel aging brings out more vanilla from the wood. There is a nice toasted flavor, floral, with wood, leather, nuts, and that alcohol right on the edge. Halfway there is also some nutmeg in the flavor profile, or is it cinnamon? Slowly the flavors change to wood, leather, and chocolate. All with that alcoholic mouthfeel and slight pepper. The sweetness returns, the pepper gains strength, and all on a base flavor of wood and leather.

The construction is great. A lot of thick white smoke. Beautiful light gray ash. A great draw and a straight burn. The cigar is smooth, well-rounded flavors. The cigar is medium to full in body, full in flavor. The smoke time is three hours and fifteen minutes.

Would I buy this cigar again? On my next order

Categories: 91, Diesel, Nicaraguan cigars, Tabacalera A.J. Fernandez | Tags: , , , , ,

Diesel Unholy Cocktail

Before I got my job in the cigar industry, a job I’m no longer working in, I used to participate in ordering cigars from the USA even though that is legally not allowed in The Netherlands. It is allowed to bring in 50 cigars in person, but internet orders are prohibited. Yet I did it because of the huge difference in availability of cigars and the prices back then with a low dollar and a strong euro. And one of the cigars I bought often because I loved them for flavor and price was the Diesel Unholy Cocktail, made by A.J. Fernandez for Meier & Dutch, a wholesaler connected to cigarsinternational.com. But as soon as I landed my job I had to stop of course and hated that I could not buy these great cigars again.

After two years of nagging I finally got my employer so far that he said “ok, see if you can get in touch with them” and so happened, after a few mails and me accidentally running into my contact when I was visiting Esteli, Nicaragua, we agreed that we would distribute their cigars in The Netherlands. I made a selection from their exclusive cigars and of course I included the Diesel Unholy Cocktail and they were an instant hit in The Netherlands too, becoming a big part of our turnover. I just realized that I only have a few of these 5×56 belicosos left so I should do a review.

The cigar comes wrapped in cellophane and once I take the cigar out of that protective layer I see a dark  and rustic wrapper, very toothy and it feels a bit like sandpaper but the look fit the name and the flavor profile. The cigar only has a small foot ring, brown with a darker brown medieval font written Diesel and a smaller written diesel in a beige color. Simple but again, it fits the cigar. The construction feels great and the belicoso has a sharp head. The aroma is quite strong, I smell manure, a little ammonia and hay.

Since it’s a belicoso I have to cut the cigar and I do so with my Xikar cutter. The cold draw is perfect. I taste a spicy, peppery raisin flavor. Once I light the cigar I taste cocoa powder, dry cedar and coffee beans. Soon I taste pepper, a faint cocoa powder and a strong earthy flavor. After little over half an inch I also taste some nuts. After a third the main flavor is earthy with spices, peanuts, a little lemon and pepper. Every few puffs I taste some cocoa powder too. Halfway the cigar has a dark chocolate sweetness and bitterness with nutmeg, wood and pepper. The pepper is getting stronger just like the wood.

The draw is fantastic just as the smoke, which is thick and full. The ash is white, dense and firm. The burn is straight as an arrow. The cigar is so full flavored and bold that it tastes like it’s a very full bodied cigar but truth is, it’s medium full. There is a lot of evolution. The smoke time is an hour and twenty five minutes.

Would I buy this cigar again? Hell yeah!

Score: 95

Categories: 95, Diesel, Nicaraguan cigars, Tabacalera A.J. Fernandez | Tags: , , , , ,

Diesel Grind Robusto

The Diesel Grind is a spin-off from the famous Diesel Unholy Cocktail and comes from the same factory, tabacalera Fernandez in Esteli, Nicaragua. Alex Svensson of Maier & Dutch, the owners of the Diesel brand, gave me this cigar as a sampler. Unlike the Diesel Unholy Cocktail and the Diesel Unlimited, which you only find online, the grind will only be found in brick & mortar locations.
The cigar consists of an Ecuador Habano oscuro sun crown wrapper, a Habano binder from Honduras and filler from Nicaragua and Honduras. The cigar measures 6×50, as a proper toro should be. The dark wrapper has a mild shine to it and not a lot of veins, the cigar has a simple footband with the recognizable Diesel logo. The aroma is quite pungent and reminds me of a barnyard. The construction feels good, no weak spots, consistent. The predraw is very spicy on the lips and I get enough resistance, no complaints at all.
A strong pepper and wood combo straight from the start. But the pepper fades away and changes into a spicy herbal taste. After a centimeter and a half I taste a metallic flavor with herbs and wood, it’s not unpleasant. Soon after its a full oak flavor with a metallic aftertaste and some refined sugar sweetness.
After a third it’s a nice dry wood flavor with pepper and sugar. The pepper fades away again and the wood with sugar combination is very enjoyable. Halfway the cigar gets spicy again, with pepper on the tip of my tongue while I taste sugar in the rest of my mouth. I also taste a little nutmeg. After two thirds the sugar disappeared and its pepper and herbs all along with a woody aftertaste.
The draw is great and I get a lot of beautiful white smoke. The ash is gray with some black flakes and isn’t very firm. After an centimeter and a half the wrapper cracks, but it doesn’t continue to rip over the whole length so it’s not a problem. The burn is great, slow and straight as an arrow. This full flavored, full bodied cigar gave me over two hours of smoking pleasure.
Would I buy this cigar again? Yes, it’s not as bold as the unholy cocktail, which is one of my favorite cigars, and more refined but it’s still worth getting a box, or several boxes.

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

Categories: Diesel, Nicaraguan cigars, Tabacalera A.J. Fernandez | Tags: , ,

Diesel Unlimited Torpedo

I guess we all know the Diesel Unholy Cocktail, which stormed the cigar world with a blizzard. What a great cigar for a great price that is. Well, A.J. Fernandez decided to branch out, first with the Diesel Shorty and now with the Diesel Unlimited. I smoked a 5 3/4×54 torpedo.
The cigar has a nice foot band and a mild oily, chocolate brown wrapper with some thick veins. The construction is quite hard but the predraw is easy and sweet. The cigar has a wood and straw smell.
I taste sweet coffee with some sweet wood. After a third I also taste some cinnamon. Halfway I taste wood with some hay, some nutmeg and some cinnamon.
After two thirds I taste more spices with a splash of red pepper.
This cigar lasted me for an hour and twenty minutes. The draw is great and I got a lot of thick smoke. The ash is white coloured and reasonably firm. The burn is pretty and the cigar is full flavoured and full bodied.
Would I buy this cigar again? I’ll stick to the Diesel Unholy Cocktail

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

Categories: Diesel, Nicaraguan cigars, Tabacalera A.J. Fernandez | Tags: , ,

Diesel shorty

When I first smoked the Diesel Unholy Cocktail I fell in love with these tasty full flavored, full bodied yet friendly priced cigars made by A.J. Fernandez so when this limited edition Shorty, especially made for reality TV star Shorty Rossi, came on the market I was intrigued and I needed to try them. Unfortunately they aren’t available on the Dutch market, just like any other A.J. Fernandez blend, but a friend of mine got his hands on a box and gave me one at a herf we had last summer.
The shorty is a type of cigar made popular by Sam Leccia with his ‘invention’ of the nub, short and fat. This shorty is a 4½x60 cigar with a nice dark and oily wrapper with a few tough looking veins. This cigar looks bad ass due to that and the triple cap. The cigar has, just like most limited editions, a double band. The construction feels good but the predraw is loose. I taste a spicy and peppery tobacco flavor and I smell a barnyard aroma.
I get a lot of pepper with some coffee and after half an inch I taste wood with pepper, but the pepper isn’t as overpowering as in the beginning.
After an inch and a half I also get some sticky chocolate with the wood and pepper. The pepper gains some strength again. The chocolate quickly disappears and is replaced with a little sweetness.
Even though this is only a 4½ inch cigar, it still lasted me almost an hour and a half. I got a lot of thick white smoke. The draw is good and the salt & pepper colored ash is firm. The burn is ok, I had to correct it a few times. This cigar is full bodied and full flavored, a little stronger than the Diesel Unholy Cocktail.
Would I buy this cigar again? I liked the Diesel Unholy Cocktail better, that will be my next box purchase and I’ll leave the Shorty to those that love the big ring cigars, 60 is too much for me.

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

Categories: Diesel, Nicaraguan cigars, Tabacalera A.J. Fernandez | Tags: , ,

Diesel Unholy cocktail

The Diesel Unholy Cocktail is a Nicaraguan cigar that only comes in a 5 x 56 torpedo. The unholy cocktail has a Pennsylvania broadleaf maduro wrapper with some veins that give it character. The cigar comes packed in cellophane and once you take it out of its coat, you can smell a mixture of wood, hay and barnyard aromas. The construction feels good and the band is simple but that’s the way I like it. The predraw is just fine and leaves a cedar flavor on my palate and pepper on my lips.
I can taste a full coffee flavor with some wood. It’s all spicy, not a pepper of herbal spice though. The coffee slowly turns into a mix of terroir flavors, coffee and wood. After a centimeter the wood gets a bit stronger and I can even taste some liquorices on the background although that flavor disappears after just a puff or two. The texture is quite dry.
After an inch I notice that the coffee disappears and that the wood is slowly becoming the dominant flavor. The dryness turns into a creamy texture. I also get some nutty flavors, it reminds me of almond. The flavors are very consistent. At the end I get a bit of chocolate as a supporting flavor.
I don’t get Diesel fumes, but I do get a lot of medium thick smoke from this cigar and the draw is fine. I had some problems getting the cigar to burn right, but once that problem was solved the burn was great. The firm as is a bit salt & pepper colored. I would rate this full bodied, full flavored. I only get a small flame while purging, that must mean that there isn’t a lot of built up of nicotine.
Now the name “Diesel Unholy Cocktail” didn’t make me want to get up from my chair, run to the local B&M or pull out the creditcard and order it online, but once you get passed the name you’ll find a cigar that is definitely worth smoking, especially for the price. Hell, even if they doubled the price, you would still get value for money.
Would I buy this cigar again? Hell yeah!! AJ Fernandez did it again, another cigar I highly recommend.

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

Categories: Diesel, Nicaraguan cigars, Tabacalera A.J. Fernandez | Tags: , ,

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