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Rocky Patel Royale Robusto

Back in the day, while I was working for a cigar distributer I ran into Rocky Patel at Intertabac. At that time Rocky didn’t have a distributer in The Netherlands, a small player was interested but I snatched Rocky away from him and brought him to us. And we did quite alright, Rocky wasn’t our biggest selling brand but it was getting momentum and we did some great events with his European director Kolja Kukuk and even Rocky managed to do a few events in The Netherlands and it was always fun.


One of the cigars I smoked most was this Rocky Patel Royale, made in his Nicaraguan factory, a factory I visited, with an Ecuadorean Sumatra wrapper and filler tobacco from Nicaragua and Honduras. This cigar made it to the top 10 of Cigar Aficionado’s top 25 a few years ago and I did do a review of the toro some time ago but have never reviewed the robusto and never done a review with my 100 point scoring system so here we go.


When I release the 5×52 box pressed cigar from the cellophane I notice a beautiful, dark, mild toothy and oily wrapper that just looks amazing. The construction fels great and the triple cap looks good too. The ring is beautiful, golden with a dark reddish brown color writing and RP logo although the print quality could be a little better around the letters. The second, smaller ring, is in the exact same style and says Royale. Simple yet tasteful. And the aroma is strong and a classic stable and barnyard smell.


I punched the cigar, the cold draw is perfect and flavorful. I taste hay, raisin and wood. After lighting I taste coffee and peanuts. Slowly I start tasting herbs and pepper too while the coffee disappears. After a third it’s spicy green herbs with some peanut, salt and pepper. Halfway there is a stronger nut, not just peanuts, flavor with a hint of chocolate and still the green herbs with some white pepper. The pepper slowly builds up to a nice and strong flavor.


The draw is fantastic, just the right amount of resistance. The smoke is thick and full. The light gray ash is firm. The burn is good yet not perfect. This cigar is medium bodied and medium full flavored. The smoke time is an hour and a half.

Would I buy this cigar again?  Yes, I will always have some in stock.

Score: 92
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Categories: 92, Rocky Patel, Tavicusa | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

La Flor Dominicana Airbender Villano Lancero

My previous employer was, for some time that I worked there, the distributor of La Flor Dominicana and through my work I had the pleasure to meet Litto both in my home country of The Netherlands, in Germany during the Intertabac trade shows and in the United States where Litto went out of his way a few times and cut into his secret family time to meet me for a lunch. That’s where I also met his sons, Litto jr and Antonio, who’s now heavily involved in the business as a blender of the Capitulo, Chapter and La Nox lines
While I was employed with that company La Flor Dominicana released the ‘airbender’ series, some say its named after Litto’s favorite Avatar  cartoon character but according to Litto the name comes from the fact that we bent the air when we smoke.


We carried 3 sizes and once they released the lancero the begging started. Me begging my employer that is. I love lanceros while my previous employer hates them as they are hard to sell. Eventually he caved, ordered 40 boxes, which I all sold. Well, I sold 38 to accounts and bought 2 myself. The cigar is made of Dominican filler and binder, all from the La Flor Dominicana farms wrapped in an Ecuadorean Habano wrapper.


The wrapper is nice and dark, shiny with a leathery look. The construction feels good and the cigar is well made with a nice pigtail to top. There is a mild aroma that smells a bit like an open field early in the morning, right around sunrise when the dew is still lingering. The ring has a black oval in the centre with the curly LFD letters in gold surrounded by golden leaves on a medium brown background. On the bottom is says La Flor Dominicana in white and air bender in golden letters right above an Egyptian looking golden decoration. Next to the LFD logo, on both sides, there are two ninja swords in white and a small golden tobacco leaf. The ring is well printed on good quality paper.


Due to the small ring gauge and the pig tail I have no choice but to cut the cigar and I used my Xikar to do so. The cold draw is perfect and peppery. My trusted Ronson was used to light the cigar. I instantly taste espresso with a little chocolate aftertaste. After a centimeter I taste vanilla, cocoa, pepper and a little lemon. After a third it’s mainly pepper with just a little bit vanilla and some leather with a lemonade aftertaste. Halfway I also taste a little bit of sweetness but the pepper is still very dominant with leather as the main support. The pepper remains dominant but the leather disappears, just like the sweetness. Only the nice citrus flavor remains in the aftertaste. After two thirds I taste a little spice too, cumin to be more precise. Slowly I also taste some wood.


The smoke is thick and full but the ash is quite dark and a bit flaky yet still firm. The draw is perfect. The cigar is full bodied, full flavored and quite well balanced. The burn is sharp. The smoke time is an hour and forty five minutes.
Would I buy this cigar again? It’s no longer available on the dutch market but I still have a box left.

Score: 92

92

Categories: 92, Dominican cigars, La Flor Dominicana, Tabacalera La Flor | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Oliva Master Blend 3 Torpedo

After the 2003 release of the Oliva Master Blend 1, the 2005 release of the Master Blend 2 Oliva released a third Master Blend, the Master Blend 3 in 2006. The company did not disclose how many cigars were released but next to the box releases in the robusto, torpedo and Churchill sizes they also released a sampler with those three vitolas and a 5×54 double robusto.


The cigars aren’t tattooed as explained in the Master Blend 2 review which I published yesterday. And in the last 11 years there has been no follow up to the Master Blend series, so we are still waiting for the Master Blend 4. The Master Blend series consisted of 3 vitolas, I smoked the Churchill for the Master Blend 1  review, the robusto for the Master Blend 2 review so lets go for the torpedo for this Master Blend 3 review, then I covered all vitolas and all releases


The sharp head of the cigar is what I notice first, combined with the box pressed with rounded corners it makes the cigar quite unique in shape. The ring is almost identical to the Master Blend 1 and 2, except for a little difference in color and a 3 of course. There is no mention of the number of released cigars though and the tattoo is missing. The construction feels good and the dark wrapper feels a leathery. The cigar has a strong aroma, it smells like walking through the woods early morning after a rainfall, wood, plants and animal droppings.


I cut the cigar. The perfect cold draw is spicy and peppery with sultanas. After lighting it with a soft flame I taste a nice smooth mixture of coffee, honey, cedar, cumin and lime. After an inch I taste cedar, nutmeg, pepper and lime. Halfway the pepper gets stronger with cedar. The final third starts with wood, a little pepper and a little lemon. Near the end I taste coffee again.


The draw is fine and the smoke is medium plus thick, medium plus in volume and beautifully white. The ash is dense and white but not too firm. The burn is pretty straight. The cigar is medium plus bodied and full flavored. The smoke time is an hour and a half.

Would I buy this cigar again? It’s a good cigar but I like the 1 and 2 better.

Score: 92
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Categories: 92, Nicaraguan cigars, Oliva, Tabacalera Oliva | Tags: , , , , , | 1 Comment

Illusione ~HL~ Maduro

After releasing the Illusione ~HL~ natural Dion Giolito, owner of the brand, had some empty boxes left over and instead of letting them go to waste he decided to create the same vitola in the candela and maduro blends he already made for other vitolas of Illusione. As a certified lancero whore I’m not complaining about this decision.


Like the other lanceros from Illusione, this one is made at Raices Cubanas in Honduras too. So it classifies as a Honduran cigar even though the wrapper is from Mexico and the filler and binder are Nicaraguan, no Honduran tobacco is used for this 7 1/2×40 elegant cigar. The Mexican San Adres wrapper is stalk cut, a technique where not the individual leaves are picked but the whole plant is cut down and hung to dry upside down.


The wrapper has a mild oily shine to it and is beautifully dark, like a thin chocolate bar. Unfortunately the cigar wasn’t wrapped in cellophane and that caused a little damage at the foot. The tiny pigtail is a nice detail. The construction feels great. The cigar has a mild floral aroma. The ring is identical to the regular Illusione ~HL~ ring but only in a different color, brown with golden letters and black outlines instead of white with golden letters and golden outlines.


I cut the cigar and the cold draw is great. I taste a little pepper and a little citrus before lighting the cigar. After lighting with a soft flame I taste coffee. Soon I also taste chocolate. After a centimeter I taste spices with cedar and a little pepper. I also taste a tiny bit of chocolate sweetness. After a third I taste cedar with some spices and a little white pepper in the back of my mouth. Slowly a chocolate flavor returns. The flavors then change to toast with pepper and citrus. The flavors don’t change much anymore but become stronger and only some citrus shows up. Especially the pepper grows in strength.


The draw is just fine, no complaints at all. The smoke is thick and plentiful. The ash is fragile and light colored. The burn is straight as an arrow. The cigar is medium bodied yet full of flavor. The smoke time is an hour and fifty minutes.

Would I buy this cigar again? I like this one the best from the three blends and all three are worthy of another purchase.

Score: 92
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Categories: 92, Honduran cigars, Illusione, Raices Cubanas | Tags: , , , , | 1 Comment

Lars Tetens Steampunk Toro

Infused cigars, I have reviewed a few because a friend, who sadly passed away a few months ago at the early age of 55, send a few as a joke, but I hate them. I mean, why would you mess up beautiful tobacco? My guess is that the infused cigars use low quality tobacco and mask the taste with chemical enhanced flavors. I mean, you don’t see beautiful single malt whisky being infused right, only low grade industrial made vodka or low grade white rum get that kind of treatment and in my opinion its the same with tobacco. Either smoke the good stuff or don’t smoke at all but leave the chemically ‘enriched’ crap alone, that stuff is bad and gives traditional cigars a bad reptutation, attracks minors to try cigars and therefore causes politicians and FDA to screw with our hobby. Infused cigars are the bridge between cigarettes and cigars and there shouldn’t be a bridge, there should be a lot of distance between those two.


Now, years ago I wrote a horrible review on the Lars Tetens Gorillafinger and a few months ago I was approached by Josh Allison from Lions of Luxury who asked me if I was willing to review some other Lars Tetens cigars. I agreed and he send me the traditional Greenwich torpedo and the infused Steampunk toro. Infused you say? Yes! Did I jump from joy, exited to try another infused cigar by Lars Tetens? No! But at least this isn’t a fruit flavored, tropical or vanilla infused cigar, actually, it doesn’t even say what it’s infused with and that by itself is a little intriguing. So I’m writing this review with an open mind and I really hope that this is the first infused cigar that I will like. And if you’re curious about this cigar, surf to urbanluxlife.com and order, use ja10 for a 10% discount, but please keep in mind: if you’re not in the USA and it’s not legal to order online/import tobacco, don’t do it, I am not responsible if you willingly break the law.


The first thing I did when I released this 6×50 toro from the cellophane is smell the cigar, as the infused thing made me curious on what the smell might be, and I didn’t even had to smell up close, as soon as the cello was removed I smelled an aroma that was a mixture of fruity white wine, apple and stale beer. The aroma is strong but I don’t like it much and the cigar loses points on that (read [this] on what I rate on). The construction feels good though and the cap is nicely placed. The Pennsylvania broadleaf wrapper looks very tasty, beautifull dark wrapper with thin veins, a nice oily glow and a leathery touch. The cigar has two rings, the top ring is a beautiful dark metallic ring with metallic red outlines and a dragon and golden letters on beautiful paper but the 2 inch big foot ring is multi colored on a much lower grade paper and looks like a elementary school project. If the footband was as beautiful as the top ring I would have rated it higher, this is another quarter of a point lost so even before lighting this cigar already faces a lower score, the smell and the foot ring already cost a full point of the final result.


When I wet the cap to punch it I taste a mild tangerine sweetness. The cold draw is fine and I taste a mild fruity and peppery flavor, but the fruit isn’t a terrible chemical flavor though. I lit the cigar carefully with a soft flame and I taste a metallic flavor, wood and a hint of tangerine. I also taste some pepper. After an inch I taste the pepper with some wood and some creamy berry flavor, like ice cream. Soon after I taste nutmeg with cedar and pepper. I like the creaminess of the cigar, a mixture of butter and ice cream and after a third it’s clearly a peppery blackberry flavor that I only tasted in the original release of the Don Pepin Garcia Black Robusto. Halfway I taste a mild freshness in the aftertaste and the main flavor is now a spice mix with the blackberry flavor as support. There’s also some pepper. Some time later I taste something that reminds me most of paprika potato chips with pepper, cedar and that blackberry ice cream in the aftertaste. Slowly the pepper gets stronger with the berry as aftertaste.


The smoke is thick, white and full. The draw is perfect, the right resistance. The ash is gray and firm with a perfect burn. This medium bodied cigar is complex and without the smell and the mild tangerine and berry flavor it could pass for a traditional cigar. The cigar has plenty of flavor and an hour and a half smoke time.

Would I buy this cigar again? Yes, much to my surprise I really liked this cigar.

Score: 92
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Categories: 92, American cigars, Lars Tetens, Lars Tetens Factory | Tags: , , , , | 1 Comment

Tatuaje Cojonu 2012 Capa Especial

A few days ago I wrote about, and reviewed, the Tatuaje Cojunu 2012 and in the past I would have used the same introduction for this cigar, but late last year I decided to upgrade my blog, not only with a 100 point scoring system, a regular schedule of reviews, a monthly lancero review but also decided that my reviews needed to become a bit better, less lazy, more personal so I can’t get away with that anymore, and I don’t even want to get away with that anymore. So for the background story on the box and the Cojonu, please check my review from a few days ago.


Now the Tatuaje Cojonu 2012 Capa Especial, what’s so special about it? Well, first of all, its special because of the wrapper used. Instead of an Ecuadorean Habano that was used on all previous Cojonu releases Pete Johnson decided to make a trio of cigars, one with the regular Ecuadorean Habano but also one with a Connecticut Broadleaf (see previous review) and this one, with a Sumatra wrapper from Ecuador. The size is, just like the Connecticut Broadleaf version 6 1/2×52 and box pressed. The wrapper is a little lighter in color than the broadleaf version but still relatively dark and it looks quite leathery, but still beautiful with no big veins. I do feel a little dent in the cigar right in the middle, hopefully that won’t affect the draw, smoke and smoking time. I have the same issues with the ring as with the Reserva, the bottom ring doesn’t fit the regular Tatuaje ring although because of the color white instead of black it’s less of an annoyance. The aroma is quite nice, like an earthy cacao aroma, medium strong.


Once again I used my punch, which has lately been my favorite way of decapping a cigar. The cold draw is great, with a mild taste or raisin and some ground white pepper. I used a soft flame to light the cigar and I taste a soft coffee with milky chocolate and nutmeg. The cigar is friendlier than the broadleaf version. The nutmeg replaced the coffee completely, the chocolate is still there but very weak, i also get some citrus. There’s also a hint of cinnamon in the flavor palate. The flavors are quite dry.


After a third I taste some toast with some hazelnut and still some of the spices. Halfway the cigar gets more toasty with some cedar and a cinnamon nutmeg mixture. Every few puffs I taste chocolate too. The cigar also gets spicier with mild pepper on the background. After two thirds I taste cedar with spices, a mild white pepper, citrus and a little freshness but it’s all replaced soon with nuts, pepper and citrus.


The smoke is medium thick and a decent volume. The draw is great. The ash is white, dense and firm. The burn is straight, but not as slow as the reserva. The cigar is very well balanced with plenty of evolution. The smoke time is an hour and forty minutes.

Would I buy this cigar again? I prefer this blend over the reserva with the Connecticut broadleaf.

Score: 92

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Categories: 92, My Father Cigars, Nicaraguan cigars, Tatuaje | Tags: , , , , , | 1 Comment

Arturo Fuente Añejo 77 Shark

There are a lot of cigar groups on Facebook and in some of those groups people like to combine days with cigar brands, like Tatuaje Tuesday and Fuente Friday. Since I have so many unpublished reviews and need to post a lot I decided that this week will be a week dedicated to the weekday – cigar combinations and I came up with a few of my own.

This week I will post a review every day, monday to sunday, all with the name tied to the weekday, here’s the list:

Murcielago Monday
Tatuaje Tuesday
Warped Wednesday
Taboo Thursday
Fuente Friday
Santiago Saturday
Sosa Sunday

Fuente Friday – Fuente Añejo Shark

Within a year after lighting my first cigar, which was a Cohiba Siglo II by the way, and reading a lot of information about the hobby I decided to smoke an Arturo Fuente Opus X because that was supposed to be the bomb. I can’t say that it was a bad cigar, because it wasn’t, but it was a let down, it’s an expensive cigar, the expectations were sky high and it didn’t give me the satisfaction that I thought it would give me so I stayed away from Opus for a few years until I was given an Opus X Shark. The size was intriguing, a box pressed foot with a torpedo top? How cool! And after smoking that cigar I was a believer, what a great stick, still expensive but worth the money. I guess I was just too unexperienced when I smoked my first Opus X.

 


And then you tell everybody that the Opus X shark is one of the best cigars that you’ve ever smoked until a few friends, who’s opinions about cigars I respect highly, say “nah, good cigar but the Fuente Anejo shark is better”. So the hunt began and I found some that I loved. About 3 years later my then employer got a lot of boxes is for a decent price of €22.50 per cigar so I bought a few and tonight I feel like lighting one for a review. Now if you don’t know the story about the Anejo, a hurricane left Fuente with a shortage of Opus X wrapper and instead of halting the production they decided to use a different wrapper, a 5 year old Connecticut Broadleaf that had been aging in cognac barrels and called the line Anejo. So in essence it’s an Opus X with a different wrapper.

 


The wrapper is beautiful, a flawless, dark, rustic wrapper with a silky touch and a little oil. The construction is unique and very good with that box pressed foot and the torpedo head. The aroma is mild and reminds me of a barnyard. The cigar has a cloth foot ring to protect the foot and a red ring with the golden Fuente logo and white letters A. Fuente Anejo. It surprises me that they went for the regular Fuente logo and not a twist on the Opus X logo as this cigar comes closed to Opus X than to a regular Fuente.

 


I had to use my xikar cutter instead of my preferred punch due to the vitola. The cold draw is fine and I taste a sweetness with some pepper and a bit of a cognac flavor, very mild though. I taste coffee with some metal and peanut shells.  After three puffs I taste coffee with some pepper and a little natural sweetness. After a centimeter I taste a caramel like sweetness with wood and a hint of cognac. Slowly the flavor changes a little with a little citrus added to dark oak, mild caramel and some black pepper. Halfway I taste caramel, lime, pepper and nuts, all subtle and soft yet not mild. A little later I taste coffee again with some chocolate and pepper. The final part is nice salty, nutty, peppery and woody.

 


The white ash is super dense and very firm. The smoke is medium thick, I prefer more smoke, but the draw is great. The smoke is great, slow and pretty straight. The cigar is flavorful yet subtle, a cigar for experienced smokers, not because of the strength but because of the complexity. The cigar is medium full bodied and full flavored. The smoke time is a hour and forty five minutes.

Would I buy this cigar again? Every once in a while as a treat.

Score: 92
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Categories: 92, Arturo Fuente, Dominican cigars, Tabacalera A. Fuente y Cia | Tags: , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Murcielago Churchill

There are a lot of cigar groups on Facebook and in some of those groups people like to combine days with cigar brands, like Tatuaje Tuesday and Fuente Friday. Since I have so many unpublished reviews and need to post a lot I decided that this week will be a week dedicated to the weekday – cigar combinations and I came up with a few of my own.

This week I will post a review every day, monday to sunday, all with the name tied to the weekday, here’s the list:

Murcielago Monday
Tatuaje Tuesday
Warped Wednesday
Taboo Thursday
Fuente Friday
Santiago Saturday
Sosa Sunday

Murcielago Monday – Murcielago Churchill

I guess I got this cigar back in 2012 when I met Eric Espinosa at a small party at the Miami cigar lounge El Clique where I was hanging with Frank Herrera, Jonathan Drew, Jorge from Havana Sabor and some friends and since then the brand has disappeared and reappeared but with a rebranded logo and a little changed blend because Espinosa and his business parter Eddie Ortega parted ways after Rocky Patel discontinued distributing EO brands, or maybe Rocky Patel stopped because Eddie and Eric wanted to part ways, I don’t know all I know is that Espinosa now has a great factory, La Zona, in Esteli and gained control over the Murcielago brand.


But since this is the old blend I figure this one comes from the My Father factory where EO brands had their cigars made before La Zona started, but that’s no disqualification because My Father Cigars is one of the best factories in my opinion, yet La Zona is great too, uncomparable by size and location, My Father Cigars is impressive and the flow within the buildings is so well thought off yet La Zona has the charme of an old building, the coziness of a small factory and the best deck in the whole of Esteli to enjoy a cigar although the deck at Drew Estate isn’t too shabby either.


The 7 1/8×48 long cigar looks beautiful yet the Mexican binder in rough and that creates a very uneven surface underneath the oily and dark Mexican San Andres wrapper, that is pretty though without any real veins, just a few baby ones. The construction feels good and the cap is placed perfectly. My initial thought when I saw the ring was ‘Bacardi” because of the red background and the black bat. On top is says espinosa y ortega and murcielago at the bottom surrounded by a golden ring. Simple yet functional, but that Bacardi feel …. i’m not a Bacardi fan, for years I said I didn’t like rum because the only rum I tried was Bacardi and I missed out on some great stuff because of that. The cigar has a medium strong aroma that is a mix between manure and smokey wood, almost charred.


I cut the cigar and the cold draw is great with a peppery, mild acidic, raisin flavor. Right after lighting I taste coffee with some chocolate. The chocolate is growing a little stronger with pepper and some wood. Suddenly I taste a strong barbecue wood flavor with a hint of chocolate and a strong peppery aftertaste. After a third I also taste some mint with the pepper. Halfway the main flavor is wood with a faint chocolate flavor, with pepper and a fresh aftertaste. The pepper is slowly taking over. The last part starts with a peppery wood with still a faint chocolate. The pepper grows stronger and stronger and it might be the most peppery finish I ever tasted in a cigar.


The draw is great, the smoke is medium thick and medium in volume. The light colored ash is dense and quite firm. The burn is great, straight as an arrow. This is a full bodied and full flavored cigar, Nicaragua at its strongest but well balanced. The smoke time is little over two hours.

Would I buy this cigar again? I need to smoke the new blend, but would love some of these old ones too.

Score: 92
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Categories: 92, Murcielago, My Father Cigars, Nicaraguan cigars | Tags: , , , , , | 1 Comment

Perdomo Lot 23 Maduro Robusto

When I started smoking Perdomo wasn’t available on the Dutch market, but I read about the brand a lot on Facebook, Club Stogie and later Cigar Asylum. Then I got bombed a few times so I had my chance to smoke a few Perdomo cigars but the brand didn’t impress me much and even after my first trip to the USA, back in 2009, where I tried a bunch of other Perdomo cigars it was just an okay brand for me. But then I smoked the Lot 23 maduro and I liked it a lot, and in my memory it is the best Perdomo cigar that I have smoked. Now in the most recent years Perdomo became available here, the company I used to work for distributed them so I tried several new Perdomo lines and even though its been a long time since I smoked that Perdomo Lot 23 Maduro, in my mind it’s still a great cigar. I wonder if I still like it so much, so I grabbed one for a review.


Now, what I remember from the conversation I had with Nick Perdomo about this cigar at Intertabac years ago, is that all the tobacco comes from a specific piece of one of his fields, lot 23, and the line started as an experiment. I guess the experiment was a success since the line had been available on the market for years and with three different wrappers, a Connecticut Shade, a Sun Grown (or Habano as its called in the USA) and this maduro wrapper and in an array of sizes. I picked the last 5×50 robusto I had in my stash, I still have a toro that I may or may not review in the future. As all the tobacco comes from Lot 23, which is on a farm in Nicaragua this is automatically a Nicaraguan puro.


In the cellophane and with my humidor lights the cigar didn’t look at that dark but once I get it out of the cellophane and in good light I notice how dark and oily the wrapper is, it’s almost black. It has two medium thick veins on the back of the cigar and a leathery feel to it. The construction is great with a neatly placed triple cap. The ring is about an inch in height, it’s pretty simple with a thick brown ring at the top and bottom and beige in between. On the top brown line it says Perdomo in beige letters, the bottom says Esteli, Nicaragua. On the beige there is a simple black drawing of a tobacco barn and a few palm trees. The paper is quite thick and has some embossing. The aroma is medium strong and all I can say is barnyard.


I punched the cigar, the cold draw is great. I taste a mild pepper with some cocoa. Right after carefully lighting the cigar with my Ronson varaflame I taste Cuban coffee, strong yet sweet. After a quarter of an inch i taste caramel with oak. After half an inch chocolate shows up too, dark chocolate. After a third I taste caramel, some citrus, wood and some toasted bread. Halfway I taste wood, toast and a little black pepper. Slowly the wood gets stronger with spices like nutmeg and a little cumin. A little later, but still in the second part, I start to taste nuts, walnut and hazelnut to be more precise. The final third starts with the nuts, cedar and a little bit of pepper. A few puffs later I taste peanuts with a little salt and more pepper.


The ash is almost white with darker smears, it’s firm too. The smoke is white, thick, full and it makes my air purifier work at full speed. The draw is flawless but all Perdomo cigars undergo a draw test before the wrapper is applied so that’s no surprise. The burn is pretty straight. This medium to full bodied cigar is very flavorful. The cigar has a lot of evolution. The smoke time is an hour and forty five minutes.

Would I buy this cigar again? Yes, this is a medium priced cigar yet very flavorful and good.

Score: 92
number92

Categories: 92, Nicaraguan cigars, Perdomo, Tabacalera Perdomo | Tags: , , , , | 1 Comment

Bolivar Especiales No.2 Exclusivo Alemania

This is the fourth lancero review and it’s a Cuban cigar, a German regional edition. When I started to smoke cigars and was uneducated I smoked a lot of Cubans and my favorite brands were H. Upmann, Bolivar and Punch. And I fell for the marketing too, hunting down regional editions even though it’s not made with limited tobacco, alternate blends, it’s just the regular blend is a limited made vitola, nothing special and nowadays Cuba seems to produce more limiteds than regular production cigars with the anejados, limiteds, gran reserva and regional editions. Once I realized the bull shit of the regional editions I stopped chasing them but when I read about the Bolivar lancero aka Especiales No.2 as a regional edition for the German market in 2009 I knew I had to buy a few as I love that vitola.


So once they were released I got in my car and drove all the way to Dusseldorf, to the biggest lounge in Europe with the biggest selection in Germany including a lot of shop exclusive cigars. Cigarworld is more than just a shop with a huge selection and a beautiful and big lounge, on the second floor they have a smaller lounge and a smaller humidor that is reachable either by a stair from the lounge or from a separate entry on the side of the building and that humidor and lounge are an official La Casa del Habano with all the unique LCDH releases. Since I’m not into Cuban cigars a lot it doesn’t mean a lot to me but I can understand that it’s a great move from owners Marc & Patricia Benden to include a LCDH at their location because it still appeals to a lot of people and now they get all the LCDH releases and way more of the limited editions than non LCDH shops. Completely off topic, but if you are traveling to visit a LCDH, check out the one in Almere, that is most likely the most beautiful shop i’ve seen in my life, their downstairs lounge is the bomb.


Now the wrapper is a nice milk chocolate brown with a few veins and a mild reddish glow, some parts have an oily shine while others don’t. It’s not the most beautiful wrapper I have ever seen but also not the worst. The construction feels good but the proof is in the pudding, especially with Cuban cigars and double with hard to roll vitolas like the lancero. The rings, printed by Vrijdag printing in Eindhoven (NL), are well known amongst cigar smokers, a yellow circle with the picture of Simon Bolivar with a golden dotted outline. The golden outline continue to the back while the inside is red and white striped and covered in the medaille d’or that Bolivar won in the past. The second band is silver colored with a white dotted line on both bottom and top, a big red band with white lettering exclusivo Alemania. The cigar measures 7.6 inch with a ring of 38. It has a triple cap like all Habanos hand made cigars. I cut the cigar with a straight cut and I just took the cap off. The cold draw is good and taste hay with a mild freshness and some spices. The cigar has a mild barnyard aroma.


I lit the cigar with my trusted vintage Ronson soft flame. The first flavor is a spicy yet sweet coffee. It’s a little bit bitter. After a few puffs the flavor changes to a little cedar with far far on the background some milk chocolate but the chocolate disappears quickly. I now taste cedar with dried grass soon to be followed by a cumin flavor. This cigar is dynamic to the extreme and a testament of why I love these thin sticks. After a third I taste spicy wood with a very mild cumin and a little bit of honey. The cumin changes into nutmeg and the wood loses its spice. In the aftertaste I get some black pepper. Halfway I taste spices with caramel and there’s a mild pepper on the back of my throat. Sometime later the flavor changes to salty nuts with some pepper. That is to be replaced with oak and pepper a few puffs later. After two thirds the salty nuts are back with a little bit of lemon.


The draw is surprisingly good, I was expecting the worse. The smoke is thick and abundant, nice and white colored too. The ash is salt and pepper colored and you can see the layers. The ash isn’t too firm at the start, later it is. The burn is straight as an arrow. This is a medium to full bodied cigar and full flavored. The smoke time is an hour and forty five minutes.

Would I buy this cigar again? It was a regional edition, they can’t be found anywhere unless you go to the collectors market and pay more than top dollar. But this is a great Cuban cigar and it shows that they still can make great cigars.

Score: 92

92

Categories: 92, Bolivar (Habanos), Cuban cigars, Partagas Factory | Tags: , , , , , , | 1 Comment

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