Tabacalera Vegas de Santiago

Vegas de Santiago, Santiago de Puriscal, Costa Rica

Vegas de Santiago D8 Robusto

When I was a novice cigar smoker I smoked a lot of Vegas de Santiago cigars from Costa Rica and always liked them. I reviewed quite a lot of them too but due to finding a job in the industry and having more cigars to smoke than is humanly possible and Vegas de Santiago not being available on the Dutch market I haven’t smoked one in years. Until now that is, I’m going to review the D8, made with undisclosed filler and an Ecuadorian binder and wrapper.


Why I went to the bottom of my humidor to grab this cigar? Pretty simple, I was talking with another cigar distributer in The Netherlands about employment and they asked me what brand I would suggest if they wanted something different and reasonably priced. I got them in touch with Vegas de Santiago and earlier this week I saw a post which suggested that Vegas de Santiago is coming to the Dutch market. Maybe I should have asked for a commission but that’s too late now (now please remind: this review has been written a few months ago, on may first, but I have a lot of unpublished reviews waiting to be published so there’s always a delay.


The Habano 2000 wrapper looks great, a medium dark brown but smooth looking wrapper with one medium flattened vein. The construction feels great with a nice cap and a beautifully rounded head. The ring is classic, white with a red centre, golden and black lines and letters but well printed. The cigar had a nice, medium strong, manure aroma.


I punched the cigar, my preferred way of decapping a cigar. The cold draw is perfect with a raw tobacco and mild peppery taste. I immediately taste a nice dose of full coffee after lighting the cigar with my soft flame. After a third I taste a buttery, creamy wood with pepper. Halfway I taste wood, herbs, spices and a little pepper, all mild creamy. Soon after it’s buttery wood with pepper. The final third star with walnuts and pepper, still a little buttery creamy.


The draw is great and the light gray ash is firm and dense. The smoke could be a little thicker but the volume is good. Later the smoke gets thicker. The burn is straight as can be. The cigar is medium bodied and medium full flavored with good evolution. The smoke time is an hour and forty five minutes.

Would I buy this cigar again? I liked this cigar a lot.

Score: 91
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Categories: 91, Costa Rican cigars, Tabacalera Vegas de Santiago, Vegas de Santiago | Tags: , , , , | 1 Comment

Vegas de Santiago Palmas torpedo

I thought I had smoked all Vegas de Santiago cigars in the past, but when Rudi send me this sampler that I’ve smoked the last couple of days I discovered the Palmas, a blend I never heard off and couldn’t find on the website and that made me very curious. I had the power to give the cigar quite some rest but today I just had to smoke it. I expect it to be something different from the other Vegas de Santiago smokes, as the band is completely different.
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The wrapper is a bit pale and has a lot of veins, but it is also oily. The construction feels good and the cigar has a pretty strong smell of wood. The predraw is fine and I taste tobacco.
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I taste a peppery and dry wood flavor with coffee and after half an inch some creamy but dry chocolate joins the party while the coffee disappears. After a third I taste a strong herbal flavor, mild creamy and quite spicy.

Halfway I taste wood and herbs and some time later some chocolate again. The chocolate disappears after two thirds and all I taste after that are wood and herbs.
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The smoke time of this 6×52 torpedo is an hour and a half. I got a decent amount of smoke, which is very thick. The draw is good just like the burn. This cigar is full flavored and medium to full bodied.
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Would I buy this cigar again? I liked these, but can’t find them on the website. It all depends on availability and price.

Appearance: 6 / 10
Construction: 8 / 10
Draw: 8 / 10
Burn: 8 / 10
Smoke & ash: 7 / 10
Aroma first part: 8 / 10
Aroma second part: 7 / 10
Aroma third part: 8 / 10

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Vegas de Santiago originales torpedo

And yet another revisit of a Vegas de Santiago torpedo that I smoked about 3 years ago, the 6×52 Originales. This cigar was also part of the sampler that I bombed about 20 of my friends and that showed up at my doorstep, courtesy of Vegas de Santiago owner Rudi. These Originales are a blend of Costa Rican ligero with Nicaraguan tobacco.
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The wrapper is mocha colored, oily, shiny and has a few thin and long veins. The construction feels good but the predraw, which tastes like dry raisin, wood and a mild pepper, is too loose.

I taste a spicy but dry wood, full flavored, which slowly gets spicier. After a third I taste more herbal flavors with wood, spices and a sweetness.
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Halfway I taste some earth too with the flavors mentioned before. Near the end the cigar gets a pepper flavor that grows strong, really strong.

Due to the loose draw, this cigar only lasted for an hour. The smoke was reasonable thick and I got it in a reasonable amount. The light colored ash is quite firm. This cigar is full flavored and full bodied.
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Would I buy this cigar again? I like the puros and chaman better, but I might order some of these too.

Appearance: 7 / 10
Construction: 7 / 10
Draw: 6 / 10
Burn: 7 / 10
Smoke & ash: 7 / 10
Aroma first part: 7 / 10
Aroma second part: 7 / 10
Aroma third part: 7 / 10

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Vegas de Santiago secretos del maestra torpedo

I used to smoke a lot of Vegas de Santiago cigars but hadn’t ordered in a while, so owner Rudy send me a 2 cigar sampler of his latest blend, Don Luis “los maestros del secretos” with a H2000 wrapper to renew my interest in these Costa Rican manufacturers.
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This 6 x 53 torpedo has a nice chocolate brown, smooth and oily wrapper with a few thin veins. The cigar has a nice barnyard aroma. The band is nice and simple, black & gold (there is also a Don Luis with a black & white band but that’s the Ecuadorian Connecticut version, the black & gold has a Nicaraguan Habano wrapper). The construction feels good and so is the peppery predraw.

I taste dry hay and a faint metallic flavor with some freshness and a hint of chocolate. After an inch the flavors change to dry wood with earthy notes and a mild chocolate aftertaste. Halfway the flavors change to a full chocolate flavor with some herbs on the background.
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At ⅔ I also get some pepper with the chocolate and herbs. The herbal flavors take over and become dominant. The pepper disappears after purging and the chocolate changes into a mint like freshness.

Smoke time: 1 hour and 45 minutes. The smoke is a bit thin, but I get enough smoke from the cigar so I won’t complain about that. The draw and burn are good. The light gray ash is quite firm. This cigar is medium to full flavored and medium bodied.
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Would I buy this cigar again? Yeah, these cigars are nice and very friendly priced.

Appearance: 7 / 10
Construction: 7 / 10
Draw: 7 / 10
Burn: 7 / 10
Smoke & ash: 7 / 10
Aroma first part: 6 / 10
Aroma second part: 8 / 10
Aroma third part: 7 / 10

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Vegas de Santiago Chaman torpedo

And yet another Vegas de Santiago revisit, this time I revisited the Vegas de Santiago Chaman, which I reviewed back in 2007. I revisited it because I decided to break open the sampler Rudi send me, as explained in yesterdays review of the Vegas de Santiago puro torpedo. This cigar has the same size as the Puros, 6×52.
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I like the band, simple but stylish. The wrapper of this cigar is smooth and silky, light colored and only has a few thin veins. The construction feels good. The predraw is fine too and I taste raisin with a mild pepper. The cigar has a wood smell.
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I taste coffee with some pepper on the top of my tongue. The coffee turns into an earthy flavor. The pepper disappears and I taste a mild chocolate on the background. The flavors remind me of a Cuban cigar. If this was a blind tasting, this part of the cigar would definitely put me on the wrong track. The flavors are dry and almost powdery, both the earth flavor and the chocolate.
100831vegasdesantiagochamantorpedo3The dry powdery earth and chocolate flavors don’t change for a while and then, somewhere between midway and two thirds the flavors change into wood and earth, the chocolate has gone and the cigar doesn’t taste like a Cuban anymore, although it is still very nice (I don’t go with that ‘Cubans are better than non Cubans’ stigma). Near the end the cigar gets more spicy and peppery.
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The smoke time of this torpedo is an hour and twenty five minutes. I got lots of smoke that was reasonable thick. The silvergray ash is quite firm. The draw is good and the burn is even better. This cigar is full flavored and medium to full bodied.
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Would I buy this cigar again? I might, seems like I like them better now then I did 3 years ago

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

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Vegas de Santiago puros torpedo *revisited*

This Vegas de Santiago puros torpedo was one of my favorite daily cigars when I started smoking and I reviewed back in the day. I still light one every now and then. They are affordable and nice. And about a year and a half ago I exchanged some mails with Rudi about sampler, when I decided to bomb 18 of my American friends with a Vegas de Santiago sampler. Rudi gave me a great deal on the sampler, which contained torpedo of all the 5 different blends that Vegas de Santiago released so far. Much to my surprise, one of those samplers arrived at my doorstep as Rudi found it appropriate to thank me for bringing business to his company and sending his cigars to my friends of whom most never heard of Vegas de Santiago before.
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The cigar is a 6×52 torpedo with a maduro wrapper, packed in cellophane. The torpedo has a nice shape and contains a few veins. The construction feels good and the cigar has a deep barnyard smell. I like the simple band, nothing fancy but it tells you all you need to know. The predraw is good and I taste a mild spicy tobacco.
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I taste a pleasant but dry wood flavor with some mild bitter coffee. After an inch the coffee turns into an earth flavor.

Some time later I taste mainly wood, dry but pleasant with a mild chocolate in the aftertaste and some herbal spiciness. Halfway and further it is only herbs and wood, the chocolate has gone and won’t return.
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The smoke time of this cigar is an hour and a half. The draw and burn are good and I get a decent amount of medium thick smoke. The ash of this full flavored and medium full bodied cigar is firm
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Would I buy this cigar again? I still have a few left, but once they are gone I will order a new bundle.

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

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Vegas de Santiago secretos del maestro corona

Rudy from Vegas de Santiago had sent me this new cigar to review, a corona with a golden band which said “secretos del maestro”. The wrapper looks rough & raw with some veins and some green spots on it. The aroma is full & heavy and reminds me of a stable, while the construction is good, no hard or soft spots in it. The predraw is fine and leaves a spicy aroma on the palate.

The flavor is full and tastes like dry leather but the leather is replaced soon by spices, but also a bit dry. The leather makes a comeback with a little pepper and halfway there is a quick appearance of something sweet, but it disappears just as quickly as it appeared. Unfortunately, the cigar mellows out towards the end instead of taking it to a climax.

The burn and the smoke are fine, but the ash is frayed and not really firm.

Would I buy this cigar again? I think I will stick to the Vegas de Santiago puros, although I would like to try a robusto from this secretos del maestro blend too.

Appearance: 6 / 10
Construction: 7 / 10
Draw: 7 / 10
Burn: 8 / 10
Smoke & ash: 9 / 10
Aroma first part: 7 / 10
Aroma second part: 7 / 10
Aroma third part: 6 / 10

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Vegas de Santiago originales torpedo

I reviewed 3 out of 4 Costa Rica’s Vegas de Santiago torpedos so far, and here is the 4th. The Vegas de Santiago Originales torpedo, 153mm long ring 50 made of 3 year old Costa Rican filler and binder with a Habano seed wrapper from Nicaragua.
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What a nice cigar, light wrapper, good construction, a close to perfect burn, light draw, thick white smoke and a firm ash. The flavor is leather and wood which are accompanied by a hint of toast and some cacao. Halfway the leather and wood are decreasing while the cacao grows stronger and near the end some herbs show up, combined with the cacao. The turning point comes very late.
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Would I buy this cigar again? Yes, this one is just as good as the Vegas de Santiago puros torpedo.
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Appearance: 8 / 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: 8 / 10

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Vegas de Santiago shaman torpedo

Vegas de Santiago from Costa Rica is one of my favorite cigar manufacturers, and they have 4 different brands, the Puros, Originales, Don Luis and the Chaman. The Chaman is made out of filler and binder from Costa Riga and Nicaragua with a Connecticut wrapper from Ecuador.
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I smoked the Torpedo, a 153mm ring 52 cigar which has a nice oily wrapper and the aroma of straw and hay. The first flavor is mild leather and halfway I could taste a pleasant sour which is gone pretty soon. There is not a lot of progress in this cigar, the flavor is very even. The smoke is thick and white and the ash is firm.
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Would I buy this cigar again? No, I prefer the other Vegas de Santiago brands.
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Appearance: 7 / 10
Construction: 8 / 10
Draw: 8 / 10
Burn: 8 / 10
Smoke & ash: 9 / 10
Aroma first part: 7 / 10
Aroma second part: 6 / 10
Aroma third part: 6 / 10

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Vegas de Santiago Don Luis torpedo

And yet another torpedo by Vegas de Santiago, this time a torpedo from the Don Luis line, Secretos del maestro, 153mm long and ring 50 thick cigar, made from Costa Rican and Nicaraguan filler with an Indonesian binder and the wrapper is Ecuadorian.

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When smelling the cigar, I can clearly smell a nice distinct barnyard aroma. The cigar looks fine, the wrapper is a bit oily and the feel is good, the cigar isn’t too tight or too loose. The predraw is smooth and easy but not too loose, as with all Vegas de Santiago cigars I tried so far. The first flavor that I can taste is full leather which smoothens and becomes a bit sweet pretty soon and halfway there is some cacao to accompany the smooth leather. The leather fades away and is replaced by a light toast and at 2/3rd of the cigar, the toast is replaced by a fresh mint flavor.
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The burn was a little bit crooked, I had to correct it once and the ash was pretty frayed. The smoke wasn’t as full and rich as with the torpedos from the other Vegas de Santiago brands, but this cigar is clearly the fullest bodied one from Vegas de Santiago.
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Would I buy this cigar again? Perhaps, if the Vegas de Santiago puros is out of stock
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Appearance: 7 / 10
Construction: 8 / 10
Draw: 8 / 10
Burn: 7 / 10
Smoke & ash: 8 / 10
Aroma first part: 8 / 10
Aroma second part: 7 / 10
Aroma third part: 8 / 10

Categories: Costa Rican cigars, Tabacalera Vegas de Santiago, Vegas de Santiago | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

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