Cigars by country

PDR Dark Roast Robusto

Coffee flavored cigars are popular. Several popular brands have a coffee infused cigar line in their portfolio. Drew Estate even has two with the Tabak Especial and Isla del Sol. Plus they produce the Java for Rocky Patel. The Nub Cafe from Oliva is a popular coffee infused cigar, but there are more. And last year, PDR decided to jump on the train as well. But their coffee infused cigars are different.

Where the other brands choose to sweeten the wrapper, PDR decided not to do so. So their ‘roast series’ are natural cigars, just infused with coffee. No other techniques, no sweetened wrapper, pure cigars, and coffee.

The PDR Roast series come in three blends, just like the Nub Cafe. The Natural Roast has an Ecuadorian Connecticut Shade wrapper. Then there’s the Medium Roast with a Sun Grown Claro wrapper from Ecuador. The version that Ministry of Cigars is reviewing is the PDR Dark Roast. That one has a Brazilian Maduro wrapper and is supposedly the strongest of the blends. There are three sizes available. There are a 51/4×44 Corona, a 6×52 Toro and the 5×52 Robusto that we are reviewing.

The cigar looks amazing. A dark oily wrapper. Closed foot and a knot on the head. A dark glossy ring, simple and clear. A huge glossy foot ring with the PDR logo. This cigar stands out. There are a few veins on the wrapper, but for a Brazilian Maduro wrapper, it looks smooth. The construction feels good and the cigar has a nice bounce when you squeeze it. The cigar has a strong aroma of dark chocolate and coffee. More chocolate than coffee, which is quite surprising.

The cold draw is great, even with the closed foot. There is some artificial sweetness but it’s not on the lips as with other infused cigars. Once lit, there is dark roasted coffee as expected, with some artificial sweetness. The bitterness of the coffee is quite complex. Soon the artificial sweetness takes over, with coffee and chili pepper as supporting flavors. After a few puffs, there’s coffee with mud. That artificial sweetness does not do the cigar any favors. But at least it’s not stuck on the lips, something that happens with for example the Nub Cafe lines. Halfway the cigar gets spicier, the artificial sweetness is less. There’s coffee, pepper, herbs, leather, and wood. The mouthfeel is mild creamy. In the final third, the cigar turns a little bitter. With pepper, coffee and that artificial sweetness again. The pepper is strong. Near the end, there’s wood with the pepper. The sweetness disappears just like the coffee.


The draw is good, a bit loose maybe. And the smoke is fantastic, thick and white. The burn is wonky and had to be corrected. The light-colored ash isn’t very firm. This cigar is medium-full bodied. The flavors are medium. This cigar would have been better with less artificial sweetener. The smoke time is an hour and twenty minutes.

Would I buy this cigar again? No, I don’t think so

number89

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Categories: 89, Dominican cigars, PDR, PDR Cigars | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

Revolution Toro

As I mentioned in the previous two Revolution reviews, this cigar was part of a sampler with three sizes. I smoked the short robusto and the robusto previously. And they were night and day, even though both scored low with a 79 and an 82 score. Today, I’ll be reviewing the toro. And hopefully the progress continues, but my expectations are low.

If it wasn’t for the mixture of Nicaraguan and Mexican tobaccos in the filler, this cigar would have been a Mexican puro. The binder and wrapper are from Mexico. And the cigars are made at the Nueva Matacapan de Tobacos from A. Turrent.


The wrapper is extremely rough and that combined with the simple ring makes it an unappealing cigar. The construction feels good though and the aroma is strong, very strong. Barnyard, farm animals and swamp is what I smell.

The cold draw is great. I taste a little wood, some pepper, and tobacco. After lighting, I taste wood with cinnamon and leather. The cinnamon is quite nice, but there’s an overall flavor that makes that the cinnamon doesn’t shine. A little stale harshness. After a centimeter, I taste cinnamon with leather, sweetness and a little salt. The sweetness has some vanilla notes in it. I taste also some grass and a hint of chocolate. The salt gets a little stronger. The final third starts with a nice, sweet, coffee flavor with some green herbs and pepper. The cinnamon returns with earthy flavors and wood.

The draw is fantastic. The firm ash is white. The smoke is okay. The burn is good. This is a medium bodied, medium flavored cigar. The smoke time is an hour and fifty minutes

Would I buy this cigar again? Nope, no, njet, nee, nein.

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Categories: 82, Mexican cigars, Nueva Matacapan de Tabacos, Revolution | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

A.J. Fernandez New World Cameroon Churchill

I love Cameroon wrapper, that is my favorite wrapper in the world. And I love all cigars made by A.J. Fernandez. So when I heard that Fernandez was releasing a new cigar with a Cameroon wrapper, I was over the moon. Unfortunately, it took some time for them to reach Europe. And by that time, I had left Europe.

I was happy to see the cigars pop up at the webshop of a Malaysian cigar shop. I decided to drop a few dollars on this cigar. The price was a little higher than what I would pay in Europe or America, but I figured it would be worth it. And I know that the Malaysian tobacco tax is high, so I wasn’t being ripped off by the shop. They charged a fair price and carried some more rare cigars. Time to light this Nicaraguan filler, Nicaraguan binder and Cameroon wrapped 7×48 Churchill.


Let’s start with the ring. It is the regular New World ring with the classic artwork of boats arriving into the new world. The outside of the rings is green, instead of red that’s used on the regular New World line. And green fits, when I think of Africa, I think of green. The secondary ring is gold with green, and red letters. It fits the theme. The wrapper has a nice even color, it doesn’t look as rough and brittle as most Cameroon wrappers, it’s quite pretty actually. The construction feels flawless. The cigar has a dry aroma, dried wood, a little charcoal, those kinds of smells.

The cold draw is perfect. The flavor of the cold draw is plain and pure raw, well fermented, tobacco. After lighting, I taste some licorice, tobacco, and leather. Then the signature Cameroon spice joins green herbs and spices. That comes with coffee and pepper. There’s still some wood too, softwood like pine. And then I also taste some hay, with a mildly creamy mouthfeel. After a third, it is all spices and green herbs, with some citrus and sweetness. The mouthfeel turned to dry. The strength in body and flavor is medium so far. The sweetness reminds me of milk chocolate. In the final third, I pick up some pepper again with oak, spices, herbs and roasted coffee. Suddenly the pepper picks up and becomes the dominant flavor. I was waiting for that to happen. Near the end, I taste licorice through the pepper again, making the flavors go full circle

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The draw is perfect. The light-colored ash is coarse though. The burn is flawless and the smoke is thick. This cigar is medium bodied, medium flavored. It has that typical Cameroon spice and herb profile which I love. The smoke time is two hours and twenty-five minutes

Would I buy this cigar again? Yes, once in a while

number91

Categories: 91, New World, Nicaraguan cigars, Tabacalera A.J. Fernandez | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

Jas Sum Kral Toothpick 2.0 Habano

A few days ago, we smoked and reviewed the Jas Sum Kral Toothpick 2.0 Maduro. This is a medium filler from Tabacalera Aragon and Jas Sum Kral. It uses small pieces of tobacco in combination with long leaves, creating a medium filler. Or Cuban sandwich as it is called as well. The cigar comes in one size only, a 5×50 robusto. But in two blends, that Maduro version and a Habano version.

This is a review of the Habano Toothpick 2.0.

The blend for both cigars is exactly the same. But the wrapper is not. This Habano version has a Habano wrapper from Ecuador. And these two cigars are exactly the cigars to give to somebody who claims that cigar wrappers are only aesthetic and don’t do anything for the flavor. Because they do, and when they smoke these two cigars, they will know


The wrapper isn’t even in color. It has a gradually changing color from dark to lighter, which is clearly seen around the edging where the wrapper overlaps. It looks like a thin wrapper, with clear, fine veins. The cigar feels good, looks good and this time, the white part of the ring is on top. That and the lighter shade of wrapper indicates that this is the Habano version. The cigar has a leathery smell, like a horse saddle. That combined with hay and wood.

The cold draw is a bit tight and spicy. I taste pepper on my lips. After lighting, I taste leather, wood, soil with pepper and sweetness. Soon the sweetness turns to sugar, with wood and pepper. After a third, I taste hazelnuts and chocolate, almost Nutella like. With pepper. Very nice and flavorful. The cigar than evolves to more pepper, less chocolate. Some wood is noticeable too, with leather.

The draw is a bit on the tight side. The smoke is a little thin because of that. The burn is great though, as well as the ash. The cigar is medium bodied, medium-full flavored. There is a nice evolution in the cigar. The smoke time is one hour and fifty minutes.

Would I buy this cigar again? I have a box of 50, so, for the time being, I have enough stock.

number91

Categories: 92, Jas Sum Kral, Nicaraguan cigars, Tabacalera Aragon | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

Jas Sum Kral Toothpick 2.0 Maduro

Jas Sum Kral owner Riste decided to utilize leftover tobaccos from his other blends with this mixed filler called Toothpicks. The name probably refers to the small pieces of tobacco that can get in between your teeth while smoking shredded pieces of tobacco, used in short filler or medium filler cigar. He created a Maduro and a Habano blend, both with the same filler and binder, but with a different wrapper.

The wrapper from this Maduro comes from San Andres, Mexico. The cigars are rolled at Tabacalera Aragon in Esteli, Nicaragua. The filler is a mixture of three different Nicaraguan tobaccos. One from Jalapa, one from Esteli and the third one from Ometepe. Wrapped in an Indonesian binder and the Mexican wrapper you have the Toothpick Maduro. Only available in a 5×50 vitola.

I love the ring. The ring is mirrored in one white and one black side. The black has white letters, the white has black letters and they are exact copies. But when the black side is up, you’re smoking the Maduro, when the white side is up, you’re smoking the Habano. The ring is designed by the Singaporean designer Nuzli Hakiim. The wrapper is dark, oily and smooth. The construction feels good, the cap is nice. The cigar has a medium strong woody aroma.


The cold draw is good, with an oaky taste. After lighting, I taste nuts, earth, coffee, and wood. Almonds and cinnamon are noticeable too, with a little bit of pepper and some butter. The Maduro wrapper causes the cigar to have a mild sweetness. After half a centimeter, it’s a wooden, chocolate flavor with some nutmeg spices and a little sweetness from the Maduro wrapper. The second third starts with some salt, pepper, leather and a lower grade chocolate flavor. Not an unpleasant mix, but also not as pleasant as a dark chocolate flavor. The flavors aren’t clean and crisp. These flavors go on for the rest of the cigars, with sometimes some oak, sometimes some cedar. But mostly chocolate, nuts, and pepper.

The draw is amazing. The burn needed some corrections. The smoke is thick and full. This is a medium bodied, medium-full flavored cigar. The smoke time is one hour and forty minutes.

Would I buy this cigar again? Not for European or Asian prices, they are more expensive than premium longfillers. But for American prices, yes.

number90

Categories: 90, Jas Sum Kral, Nicaraguan cigars, Tabacalera Aragon | Tags: , , , ,

Hiram & Solomon Traveling Man Gran Toro

Hiram & Solomon Traveling Man Gran Toro. Hiram & Solomon is the brand of Fouad Kashouty and Nasir Dakrat. The couple met during freemason gatherings. And they became friends. Both cigar aficionados were surprised that they could not find any freemason cigars. So they decided to create a brand that uses the freemason shield in the logo. And in freemason spirit, parts of the proceeds will flow back into the community through charity.


The Traveling Man is made at the Plasencia factory in Esteli, Nicaragua. David Blanco from Blanco Cigars was involved in the blending of the cigar. And the blend is interesting because of the use of Indonesian Sumatra. Most Sumatra tobacco used comes from Ecuador. Yet for the Traveling Man, Hiram & Solomon use Sumatra from the Indonesian island of Sumatra. Add an Indonesian binder. And Brazilian, Dominican and Nicaraguan wrapper and you have the Hiram & Solomon Travelling Man. The Gran Toro size is 6×60.

The cigar looks good. I like the purple ring with the Freemason logo. The cigar has a nice shade of color and just two thin veins on the backside. The construction feels good. The aroma is strong. I smell hay and straw.

The cold draw is great. The hay and grass flavor is strong in the cold draw. After lighting, the first flavors are best described as dusty and earthy with some sweetness. There’s also a slight hint of pepper. The marzipan sweetness is fantastic. After a few puffs, some leather shows up too. And some grass. The mouthfeel is a little buttery. In the first third, the flavors stay consistent but that’s expected with a big ring cigar. The flavors maintain in the second third, although I taste some licorice too. There are slight changes, subtle, with some vanilla showing up every now and then. Same goes for pepper, but overall this is a consistent cigar. The final third is much better. The pepper picks up, allspice shows up and it’s good.


The draw is flawless. The burn is straight. The ash is light colored and firm enough. The smoke is quite thin. This is a medium bodied, medium flavored cigar. The smoke time is three hours.

Would I buy this cigar again? Only in a thinner version

number89

Categories: 89, Hiram & Solomon, Nicaraguan cigars | Tags: , , , , ,

Orchant Selección by Drew Estate Heavyweight

This is the third size of the Orchant Seleccion by Drew Estate and it’s called Heavyweight. The line is a limited edition, exclusively for C.Gars Ltd and will be sold online and in their Turmeaus shops. Managing Director for C.Gars Ltd is Mitchell Orchant and he’s been giving his name to hand selected boxes of Cuban cigars for a few years. And since 2014, a Non-Cuban limited edition is made for the Orchant Seleccion. In the past, Oliva, Davidoff, Regios, Alec Bradley and now the Orchant Seleccion by Drew Estate. In three sizes, all with a 46 ring. The Lightweight was reviewed two days ago. Yesterday Ministry of Cigars reviewed the Mediumweight. And this is the review of the Heavyweight.

The cigars are made at the La Gran Fabrica Drew Estate in Esteli, Nicaragua. That’s the same factory that’s used to make the highly-rated Liga Privada lines as well. For the blend, Drew Estate and Mitchel Orchant sourced tobaccos from Latin America, North America, and Southeast Asia. The wrapper is a stalk-cut Habano from the United States. Stalk Cut means that the leaves aren’t harvested separately but the whole tobacco plant is cut down and hung to dry. The binder comes from the South East Asian Indonesia, from the island of Sumatra. For the filler, some USA grown and some Indonesian tobacco was blended with tobaccos from Nicaragua and the Dominican Republic.

The cigar looks great. It has a dark, oily wrapper, which looks like leather. It feels good when touched, with the right amount of bounce. No real veins visible so the cigar looks smooth, yet dangerous due to the color. The aroma is quite strong. It has hints of soil, wet soil, and barnyard. The cigar that we are smoking has the factory ring, not the rings that they will be sold with.


The cold draw is great. The flavors are raw tobacco with some spice and sweetness. In the beginning, there is coffee, leather, and salt. The flavors are quite mild. Even the pepper isn’t ‘in your face’. After a few puffs, the flavors get more pronounced. And that’s when some hay and cinnamon show up too. Slowly some leather shows up and the pepper is dominant. After a centimeter, the cigar turns to toast, leather, wood, and pepper. The toast, with some slight cinnamon, and lots of pepper are the dominant flavors now. The cigar leans heavy to the leather, toast and pepper part of the flavor wheel, yet with very mild citrus and sweetness to balance it out. Halfway the toast turns to coffee, the cinnamon disappears. Coffee with pepper and a slight leathery flavor. In the final third, a nutty flavor shows up under the pepper.

The smoke is super thick and plentiful as you can expect from Drew Estate. The draw is good, a little tighter than the two other Orchant Seleccion by Drew Estate sizes. The ash is light-colored with darker smears. The burn is good. The cigar is full-bodied, full-flavored yet balanced. And it doesn’t feel as strong as the lightweight. The smoke time is two hours fifteen minutes.

Would I buy this cigar again? Yes, I want a box

number92

Categories: 92, Gran Fabrica Drew Estate, Nicaraguan cigars, Orchant Selección | Tags: , , , ,

Orchant Selección by Drew Estate Middleweight

Mitchel Orchant is the managing director of the British cigar distributor and retailer C.Gars Ltd. The company runs two La Casa del Habano stores, a few regular tobacconist shops, and a webshop. And they are known for their auctions of hard to find, vintage, and aged cigars. But Mitchell Orchant has his Orchant Seleccion as well. He handpicks boxes of Cuban cigars with the British Habanos distributor Hunters & Frankau to be sold under his name. And in the last few years, several Non-Cuban cigar companies made a limited edition Orchant Seleccion as well. The 2019 edition is the Orchant Seleccion by Drew Estate.


The lightweight isn’t a lightweight at all, and knowing this is the same blend, we expect a strong cigar as well. The combination of Nicaraguan, American, Indonesian, and Dominican tobacco make for a strong yet balanced cigar. And with a longer smoke duration than the lightweight, we made sure we started this review with a full stomach. The cigars should be available on the market soon, Mitchell Orchant told Ministry of Cigars that C.Gars Ltd is awaiting the shipment and that the launch should be anytime soon.


The cigar looks good. The colorado Maduro brown wrapper has an even color. The wrapper looks like dark leather. It’s oily but has 2 veins that the lightweight was missing. The triple cap is placed nicely. The aroma has a wood and barnyard smell.

The cold draw is great. The flavor is tobacco with pepper. After lighting, there’s pepper with coffee, leaves, and tobacco. The flavors than change to peppery and salty wood. The flavors then go to more leather, with salt and citrus. This is completely different from the lightweight. The flavors are not as strong and outspoken as the lightweight. More salt, more citrus, no coffee. A little spice, leather, and soil are the main flavors. After a third, there’s a mild flavor of cinnamon toast. The mouthfeel is dry. And then there’s a strong floral flavor with pepper, coming out of nowhere. Slowly some hay shows up too, and the pepper mellows out without becoming weak. The floral flavor disappears. In the final third, the cigar tastes leathery, peppery with spices and sweetness. Well balanced, and with enough minor flavor changes to keep the cigar interesting.

The smoke is amazing again, as always with Drew Estate. The ash is white and strong. The burn is beautiful and the draw is fantastic. The cigar is full-bodied, full-flavored. The cigar is balanced. The smoke time is two hours.

would I buy this cigar again? No, I prefer the lightweight

number92

Categories: Nicaraguan cigars

Orchant Selección by Drew Estate Lightweight

Orchant Seleccion by Drew Estate Lightweight. Mitchel Orchant is the managing director of C.Gars Limited, the leading cigar retailer in the U.K. With several shops, a great online presence and regular auctions of hard to find, aged, and vintage cigars. And he has loaned his name to the Orchant Seleccion series. It started with limited numbers of boxes with Cuban cigars that were handpicked by Orchant in cooperation with the U.K. Habanos distributor. But in recent years, Orchant worked with Davidoff, Regius, Oliva, and Alec Bradley for limited editions carrying his seal of approval. And the 2019 release is a collaboration between Orchant and Drew Estate. The cigars will be released soon, in three sizes. Ministry of Cigars will review all three of them, starting with the 3½x46 Lightweight.

The Orchant Seleccion by Drew Estate comes in three sizes. At the moment of reviewing them, the cigars have not been released. Our samples came with factory rings. Yet in our article of July 13th, some artwork is shown that might end up being used on the ring. All three cigars share the same blend and have the same 46 ring gauge. And it’s refreshing to see a full line with small ring gauges and only small ring gauges. The cigars are made in Nicaragua and will be sold exclusively by C.Gars LTD on their website and in their Turmeaus shops all over England. The blend consists of Indonesian, Dominican, Nicaraguan and American grown tobacco. The binder comes from the Indonesian island Sumatra. The wrapper is grown in Connecticut. It’s a Habano variety, harvested with the Stalk Cut method which is also used for the Liga Privada.

The cigar looks good. Small yet dark, with a leathery toothy wrapper. The wrapper is quite oily as well. No thick veins are visible and the shape is good. The cigar feels evenly spongy. The aroma is strong, oak and hay.


The cold draw is good, raw tobacco with a little bit of black pepper is the cold draw flavor. The first puffs are Cuban coffee, strong and sweet. The cigar is spicy, peppery. The flavors remain in the wood, animal, coffee, and pepper part of the flavor wheel. There’s even a very mind dark chocolate flavor, on the background. Halfway the cigar gets some floral and vanilla notes, with strong pepper and a mild fresh aftertaste. The wood is still there with some nuts. In the final third, the pepper becomes really strong.

 

The draw is flawless. The ash is white as snow. And the smoke is typical Drew Estate. Thick, full and plentiful. The burn is razor-sharp. The cigar is full-bodied and full-flavored. Don’t let the lightweight name fool you, there is nothing light about this cigar. It’s strong. The smoke time is one hour.

Would I buy this cigar again? I would like more yes.

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Categories: 93, Gran Fabrica Drew Estate, Nicaraguan cigars, Orchant Selección | Tags: , , , , , ,

Undercrown Flying Pig

This cigar was released in 2012, in The Netherlands. The name was Undercrown Flying Pig XRL. XLF stood for Extremely Rare Limited. Less than 200 boxes of 12 were released. And flew off the shelves like hotcakes. it was a release for Compaenen. Compaenen is a cooperation of independent tobacco shops in The Netherlands. They combine their buying power to negotiate exclusive releases for the participating shop. Pre-releases, private label cigars and limited editions such as the Undercrown Flying Pig XLR.

Two years later, Drew Estate released the Undercrown Flying Pig in the United States. And the cigar has been a hit there as well. And everywhere else where it’s been released. At first, it was a limited edition, now it’s a regular production cigar. The wrapper is a Mexican San Andres Maduro leaf. The binder is a stalk cut Habano from the Connecticut River Valley in the United States. The fillers come from Nicaragua and Brazil.

The cigar looks great. That shape, as we mentioned in the reviews of the Undercrown Shade Flying Pig and the Undercrown Sun Grown Flying Pig, is a favorite. And again, the color scheme of the ring fits the wrapper like a glove. The dark, matte, blue with the gold on that dark wrapper is a perfect match. The pigtail is a nice touch. The wrapper is leathery. The aroma is of dark chocolate and spices.

The cold draw is perfect. It has a flavor of raw tobacco. Once lit, it’s leather, chocolate, green herbs, and coffee. After a few puffs, leather and pepper are the main flavors. But on the background, there’s still faint dark chocolate as well. The flavors open up and become stronger. Pepper, wood, leather, chocolate, and hay. The flavors are spicy and full, with a mild buttery mouthfeel.

The draw is great and this is a classic Drew Estate smoke bomb. Thick, white, full smoke. Enough to get a response from the fire department. The burn isn’t perfect, but also not bad. The salt and pepper colored ash is firm. The cigar is full flavored and full bodied. The smoke time is two hours and ten minutes.

Would I buy this cigar again? Yes

number92

Categories: 92, Gran Fabrica Drew Estate, Nicaraguan cigars, Undercrown | Tags: , , , ,

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