Viaje Circa 45 No.1

Now here is a cigar I know nothing about, well, almost nothing. All I knew was what Andre Farkas told me when he gave me this cigar at Intertabac 2016 and that was that this cigar is made for the European market and that it’s made by PDR in the Dominican Republic. Thank goodness for my (little yet sufficient) understanding of the German language and the cigarworld Dusseldorf website so I can provide some information on this cigar. The blend is named Circa 45, I don’t know if I would mention 45 in a cigar that is mainly for the German market but thats just me, and that it consists of a Ecuadorean Corojo wrapper, an Indonesian binder and Dominican fillers and that the line consists from 3 vitolas, of which I’m smoking the 5×52 No.1.

I met Andre a few years ago, when he came to The Netherlands to promote the Viaje brand and I was working for what was then his importer/distributer. That relationship well through, Viaje is no longer available on the Dutch market, but I still hang out with Andre for a bit when we run into each other at the Intertabac trade show in Dortmund. I know Viaje is available on the German market, I have no idea what other countries carry Viaje. The wrapper on this Circa 45 isn’t the prettiest, the color is a bit pale brown and it has a big ugly vein on the side of the cigar, the triple cap is nice though. The band is simple, it doesn’t distinguishes the cigar, at first glimpse I thought it was a Jose Marti or Punch, while the sides and the back are a copy of a Cuban Bolivar ring. I’m used to better rings from Viaje. The construction feels good, not soft spots, no knots and the aroma is a medium strong ammonia.

I used my butterfly cutter from Xikar and that created a loose cold draw without a lot of flavor. I lit the cigar with my soft flame. I taste a nice, strong espresso right from the start, slightly bitter on my tongue. After a centimeter I taste wood with a little lime on the roof of my mouth. I also taste a very mild creamy chocolate flavor. The chocolate disappears quickly and I now taste dry spices like nutmeg with some wood. It bites a bit in the back of my throat and makes my mouth very dry.

Past a third the cigar turns sour and bitter and it’s because I’m reviewing the cigar otherwise I would have put it away. I think Andre had an off day when creating this blend, this is so sub par for Viaje. The bitterness disappears halfway while the sour flavor tones down. Now it’s wood with some lemon. After two thirds I taste some charred wood with the lemon flavor that is gaining strength again.

The smoke is thick and there is a lot, the color is off white. The draw is a bit loose. The ash is light gray with black stripes and clearly layered. It is still firm though. The burn is great on this medium bodied, medium flavored stick. The cigar does has evolution and the ratio is oke. The smoke time is about an hour and fifteen minutes.

Would I buy this cigar again? No, I had many great Viaje cigars that I would love to smoke again but this isn’t one of them.

Score: 83


Categories: 83, Dominican cigars, PDR Cigars, Viaje | Tags: , , , , , | 1 Comment

Viaje satori karma

Viaje is the hottest boutique brand in the cigar industry at the moment, not for sale in The Netherlands, but on my last trip to Florida I got my hands on a few, some I bought, others I got bombed and this Satori Karma was a bomb. Satori means enlightment and all the cigars from the series have Buddhist names too like “Zen” and “Karma”. The Karma is a 5×52 robusto, which is made from Nicaraguan tobacco with an oscuro wrapper.
The wrapper is flawless, dark and oily with a nice band. I see a few thin veins and the wrapper is shiny too. The smell is mild and smells like moist wood, like a walk in the forest after the rain in the summer. The construction feels good and the predraw is fine.
I taste coffee and an earthy flavor with some floral notes. I also taste some wood and some sweetness that reminds me of powdered sugar. After a quarter of an inch the coffee disappears and I get a fresh citrus flavor instead. After half an inch I taste wood with some pepper in the aftertaste. After a third I taste wood with something sour and nutmeg. I taste some white pepper in the aftertaste. The sour flavor disappears near halfway.
I keep tasting wood with nutmeg, mild spicy. I taste herbs and some pepper in the aftertaste. After two thirds I taste cedar with nutmeg, the aftertaste is mild acidic with herbs.
This cigar lasted me five minutes short of two hours. The draw and smoke are great. The gray ash is frayed but firm. The wrapper rips open, which caused the burn to be a bit crooked. This cigar is full flavored and full bodied.
Would I buy this cigar again? I wish, the small batch is sold out.

Appearance: 9 / 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: Honduran cigars, Raices Cubanas, Viaje | Tags: , | Leave a comment

Viaje skull & bones

Viaje is the newest hype in the cigar world, limited produced boutique cigars and their Skull & Bones is the hardest to find cigar. Only 150 boxes of 25 of these Nicaraguan puros were made. I got one of these highly sought after cigars at the EPIC herf in Ocala, Florida last November. As I was the whipping boy at the herf and got smacked over and over again, I can’t remember who gave me this cigar but I really appreciate it.
The cigar looks great, the wrapper is dark and oily with some black stripes and smears. I can’t see veins. The darkness of the wrapper combines well with the skull & bones pirate style band. I smell stray and a barnyard. The construction feels good, the predraw is fine and I taste something floral. The foot of the cigar is folded tight.
I taste a sweet and mild spicy earth flavor with some floral hints and soon I taste coffee with a bit more spicy and honey like sweetness. After half an inch my mouth gets dry. I taste some wood with herbs, a little bit of citrus and a little bit of chocolate on the background. After an inch I taste a pleasant nut flavor with some herbs and honey, a little bit of pepper. The cigar is mild spicy. After a third some toast joins the previously mentioned flavors. The flavors are full yet subtile.
Halfway I taste a herbal toast as main flavor with some honey and citrus, although both are very mild. After two thirds the sweetness gets stronger with some herbs and oak. The flavors are quite complex. After that the herbs are getting dominant, soon to be replaced with coffee. The sweetness disappears, I still taste the herbs with a hint of dark chocolate. After that I taste herbal toast again, the flavors change almost with every puff, amazing.
This cigar comes five minutes short to be a two hour smoke. The draw was great and I got a lot of thick smoke. The ash is dark gray, coarse but firm. The burn is great too. This cigar is full flavored and full bodied.
Would I buy this cigar again? I wish, they are nowhere to be found.

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

Categories: Nicaraguan cigars, Raices Cubanas, Viaje | Tags: , | Leave a comment

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