Posts Tagged With: Connecticut

Balmoral Añejo XO Connecticut Rothschild Massivo

Since Balmoral started with the Añejo series, several releases have been done. It started with the Añejo 18, which got a follow-up release a year later in another vital. Then the Añejo XO was launched. An Oscuro version came on the market and now a Connecticut version. It was launched in the USA in 2018, and in 2019, some European countries saw the cigars appear.


The wrapper is American grown Connecticut Shade. From the Connecticut River Valley. As a binder, Indonesian Sumatra was used. And the filler for this blend comes from Pennsylvania, Brazil and the Dominican Republic. The Brazilian tobacco comes from the Mata Norte region and is one of the more exclusive Brazilian tobaccos.

The wrapper is pale. It has a cheesy brownish color. The bright white and blue ring, with the embossed gold letters, is clean and contemporary. The cigar feels well constructed, the triple cap is nice. The cigar has a strong aroma. It smells like fresh cut young wood, pepper and sawdust.

The cold draw is good, with a mild tobacco flavor. After lighting, I taste a sweet young wood flavor, mildly bitter. Then a mild peppery harshness shows up too. I taste a strong dry leather flavor as well, with wood. After half a centimeter my fear becomes reality. That slightly sweet yet clearly musty flavor that is typical with Connecticut Shade wrappers shows up. I also taste some cinnamon. The cigar has young wood, leather, cinnamon, pepper, salt, and that mustiness. The flavors are balanced, nuanced and there is plenty of dynamics going on. In the final third, I still taste a mixture of the flavors mentioned above, but with a growing pepper and peanut. The peanut flavor disappears quickly. The finale lacks pepper, but taste more grassy and leathery.


The draw is great. The smoke is very thick, and a lot when it comes to volume. The burn is razor sharp. The ash is dense but breaks off easily. The cigar is mild to medium in body, medium-full flavored. The blend is fantastic if it wasn’t for my personal hatred towards the mustiness.

Would I buy this cigar again? Due to the mustiness, no. But it is an interesting blend with perfect construction

number91

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Categories: 91, Agio Caribbean Tobacco Company, Balmoral, Dominican cigars | Tags: , , , ,

Macanudo Inspirado Gold Robusto

I have a man cave, the only place in the house where it’s allowed to smoke, even for my cigarette smoking wife. It’s a decent size room with a desk, a walk in humidor, my dedicated lancero humidor, a tv and four comfortable chairs. Once every few weeks some friends drop by for an evening of banter, cigars, booze and laughter and often they show their gratitude of me inviting them into my house by giving me a cigar. Now thats not needed, I have over 5000 cigars, but I appreciate the fact that they take time to either select a cigar from their stash for me or take the time to go out to a cigar shop and buy something for me, it’s the thought that counts even when I get a cigar that is way out of my comfort zone, like this Macanudo Inspirado Gold Robusto.


Now you wonder why this Macanudo Inspirado Gold is out of my comfort zone? Because of the brand and because of the wrapper. Let me start with the wrapper: Connecticut shade, the wrapper I hate more than any other wrapper. And then the brand, it’s a Macanudo and the best Macanudo I have ever smoked didn’t rank higher than “decent”, heck, anything from the General Cigar factories never ranked higher than decent in my book, decent or less. And I think that has to do with the sheer size of the company and the shareholders, the passion is not in the tobacco but in the money, now I’m not talking about everybody in the company, I know there are passionate tobacco people employed by General Cigars/Scandinavian Tobacco, but they are outranked by the bookkeepers, marketing managers and accountants. And when money is the main factor passion goes down and so does quality. I mean, go to a passionate ‘one off’ hamburger joint and the hamburgers are so much better than those McDonald’s or Burger King patties, a craft beer is so much better than a Heineken, Coors, Miller or Budweiser and a Flor de Cano rum is nicer than Bacardi because you taste the passion and craftmenship, the people behind the smaller companies take pride in their work and not only look at how much a product can make them.


The wrapper has a pale and brittle appearance, the wrapper is far from even, has unevenly placed pockets of tooth and just looks like its sick. The construction feels good but the triple cap is placed uneven and ugly too. The aroma is quite strong for a mild, Connecticut shade cigar but its not pleasant, an acidic ammonia and barnyard smell. The ring is simple, a matte gold ring with shiny gold outlines and the macanudo logo in shiny gold with red. The dull gold makes the wrapper even look more pale, the designers of the ring should have picked another color in my humble opinion.


Because the wrapper is so brittle and delicate I devoted to cut the cigar instead of punching. The cold draw is fine with a little chocolate flavor and a peppery aftertaste. The first puff give an unpleasant hay flavor, musty as all Connecticut Shade cigars and a little harsh. The harshness is only for a few puffs, after that I taste a mild but musty chocolate flavor and a little bit of pepper. After an inch I taste autumn leafs with some nutmeg and some sweetness. It’s not as musty as in the beginning anymore. It’s actually not bad what I’m tasting now. Halfway I taste sugar with the leafs, some nutmeg and cedar. The flavors then turn sweet and nutty with a little pepper on the background. The pepper is getting stronger while the sugar turns to caramel. Near the end the cigar gets harsh again so it’s time to put it in the ashtray and let it die.


The ash is silver colored and firm. The smoke is medium in thickness and volume. The draw is perfect and the burn straight as an arrow. This cigar is mild in body and medium in flavor but well balanced. The smoke time is an hour and fifteen minutes.

Would I buy this cigar again? No, but if someone gives it to me I’ll smoke it again on a Sunday morning. And this is why I like getting cigars that I would normally dismiss if I shop myself.

Score: 86
86

Categories: 86, Honduran cigars, Macanudo | Tags: , , , , ,

Cigar of the month May

In may I published 19 reviews and this is the the list, ranking from best to worst.

The cigar with the highest rating last month is:

Jas Sum Kral Red Knight Lonsdale with a 96 score

Now as for the complete list of cigars I published:

1) Jas Sum Kral Red Knight Lonsdale (Nicaragua) 96 points
2) Goviado Lancero (Nicaragua) 93 points
3) Jas Sum Kral Zlatno Sonce Soloman (Nicaragua) 92 points
4) Viaje Platino Lancero (Honduras) 92 points
5) Goviado Torpedo (Nicaragua) 92 points
6) La Flor Dominicana Andalusian Bull (Dominican Republic) 91 points
7) Eiroa the first 20 years Prensado (Honduras) 91 points
8) Alec Bradley Post Embargo Robusto (Honduras) 91 points
9) Mayimbe Robusto (Nicaragua) 91 points
10) La Sirena Merloin Robusto (Dominican Republic) 90 points
11) Aging Room Solera Fantastico (Dominican Republic) 89 points
12) Brick House Connecticut Toro (Nicaragua) 89 points
13) C.A.O. Pilon Robusto (Nicaragua) 89 points
14) La Gloria Cuban Duke (Cuba) 87 points
15) Don Ibarra Natural Belicoso (Dominican Republic) 86 points
16) Don Ibarra Natural Robusto (Dominican Republic) 86 points
17) Undercrown Shade Gordito (Nicaragua) 86 points
18) Don Ibarra Natural Gordo(Dominican Republic) 85 points
19) Gurkha 125h anniversary Rothschild (Dominican Republic) 79 points

 

 

Categories: Cigar of the month | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Santiago Connecticut Robusto

At Intertabac 2016 I met the guys of Santiago cigars who shared their booth with Gerard from Nicoya. As we were talking about cigars, about their brand, a private label made by Plasencia as so many others they gave me a few of their cigars to review. I had very good cigars made by Plasencia, I had bad ones and I probably had a lot of Plasencia cigars without even knowing they are made by this very influential family that are the biggest growers of tobacco in Nicaragua and Honduras with huge cigar factories on both sides of the border too. If you ever happen to be in Esteli, try to visit the cathedral of tobacco as the Plasencia factory is being called by everybody and do yourself a favor, peek at the daycare centre Plasencia founded across the street too, if you’re lucky the kids will sing a song and do a dance for you, its adorable.


Now Roberto from Santiago handed me their three blends, a habano, a maduro and a Connecticut. I warned Robert as I hate Connecticut. To me it’s a demonic invention and I picture hell as a huge hipster filled cigar shop with nothing but Connecticut shade cigars, an alcohol free bar and only vegan food. But, and I have heard this from many manufacturers including some big names, Roberto swore me that their Connecticut shade is different than all other. None of the manufacturers that said this to me were right though, there is something about Connecticut shade that makes me despise it, the musty taste, the pale look, its not my thing but the same tobacco grown broadleaf is a whole different thing though, that I love.


The Santiago Connecticut Robusto is a 5×50 box pressed cigar, made in the Nicaraguan factory of Plasencia with Nicaraguan filler, a double binder, both from Nicaragua and a Connecticut Shade wrapper from the Talanga region of Honduras. The wrapper is typical Connecticut shade, pale, thin and it has a few veins. The construction is flawless though with a beautiful triple cap. The ring is beautiful, its a dark green, close to grey, with golden linings and white letters Santiago de Los Caballeros Nicaragua but what makes the band stand out is the shiny, black and slightly raised cross. The bottom ring is the same greenish gray with golden lining and red letters Connecticut, something I would have done in white to make it matching. This is the exact same comment as I made for the Habano version of the cigar btw and I do understand why they didn’t do it in white but in different colors to make the cigars stand apart more in a humidor, but I think the different colors of the wrapper should already do that. The aroma is a like walking into a dry barn where the farmer just put down some fresh hay before the sheep or cow come back in.


I punched the cigar and the cold draw is great. The flavor is mellow except for a strong pepper on my lips. I lit the cigar with my vintage Ronson, my favorite lighter. The flavor is actually quite nice, sweet coffee with some cinnamon except I also taste a little bit of the typical Connecticut Shade mustiness. After a centimeter I taste some cedar with a little bit of salt and sweetness but unfortunately the mustiness gets stronger too. After a thirds the mustiness is getting to the level I expect from a Shade cigar but surprisingly I also taste a pretty strong red pepper. Halfway the mustiness tones down, I now taste cedar again with cinnamon, some sweetness and a nice amount of pepper. Near the end I taste the mustiness again with some pepper and nuts.


The smoke is medium thick and medium in volume. The ash is light colored, dense and firm. The draw is just perfect. The burn is fine, not razor sharp but also not crooked. The cigar is mild bodied but medium plus flavored. The smoke time is an hour.

Would I buy this cigar again? No but if someone gifts me one I will smoke it again and that I don’t say about a lot of Connecticut Shade cigars. Roberto was right when he said that this cigar isn’t the same as other Shade cigars.

Score: 89

Categories: 89, Nicaraguan cigars, Santiago | Tags: , , , , ,

Lynn Nicaraguan Connecticut perfecto

I got this unbanded and 6×60 perfecto from a Dutch cigar aficionado and all I knew that it was a Lynn houseblend which comes dirt cheap. After smoking I found out that it has a Connecticut wrapper, and regular readers of my reviews know that I hate Connecticut, but this cigar I liked.
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The wrapper is light colored, thick and fat with lots of veins. It is also mild oily. The cigar has a strong aroma of soil and a barnyard. The construction is good and the raisin flavored predraw is fine.
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I taste wood with a hint of pepper and the pepper slowly grows in strength. After a quarter of an inch I also taste some citrus. After half an inch the cigar has a flavor palate of sweet wood and nuts and after an inch I also taste chocolate. The sugary sweetness grows in strength with some wood, chocolate and some herbs. The mixture of these flavors are good, everything is well balanced.
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Halfway I get some more nuts while the chocolate has gone, the flavors are a bit sweet and I taste herbs in the aftertaste. The nuts and the sweetness become the main flavors with some herbs in the aftertaste.
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This cigar was good for an hour and thirty-five minutes. The draw and the burn are good. I got enough smoke, which was reasonably thick. The light colored ash is extremely firm, as the pictures show. This cigar is full flavored yet medium bodied.
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Would I buy this cigar again? Yes, especially for the price!

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

Categories: Lynn, Nicaraguan cigars | Tags: , , ,

Taboo limited reserve Connecticut robusto

I think that it’s about two years ago that Taboo released the “limited reserve” and I ordered a sampler. I smoked one that had a terrible draw, so the rest of the sampler ended up at the bottom of my cooler. Recently I found the sampler again and decided to give the 5×50 robusto with the Connecticut wrapper from Ecuador a try. The filler is 3 to 5 years aged Dominican tobacco.
101106taboolrconnrobusto1
The cigar looks nice with the light colored oily wrapper. The wrapper is quite smooth and doesn’t have any big veins. The construction feels good and the cigar has a nice aroma that reminds me of hay. The predraw is a bit on the loose side and I can taste dry wood and raisin.
101106taboolrconnrobusto2
I can taste a mild bitter coffee flavor and dry hay. After a few puffs I also taste some herbs, but the mild bitter coffee is the main flavor.
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After an inch the bitterness disappears, just like the coffee. I can taste a hidden sweetness and the flavors are mild creamy, buttery creamy.
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The smoke time of this cigar was quite short, a robusto usually lasts me for over an hour but this medium to full flavored and mild to medium bodied cigar lasted only 50 minutes. The draw is good, just like the burn. I got a lot of smoke. The firm ash has a pepper and salt color, but more salt than pepper.
101106taboolrconnrobusto5
Would I buy this cigar again? Don’t think so, the cigar was nice but the cigar is a bit on the mild side and I am not a fan of Connecticut wrappers.

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

Categories: Honduran cigars, Taboo | Tags: , , , ,

Arganese Connecticut robusto

This is another review in the series of 6 Arganese robustos that I am reviewing and this was the one I had most prejudice about. Connecticut wrappers (with an exception for broadleaf Connecticut) just aren’t my cup of tea, so I dreaded this 5×50 robusto, especially after tasting the Double Wrap, in which the Connecticut wrapper ruined the cigar.
100915arganeseconnecticutrobusto1
The wrapper is pale, almost yellow but also smooth, silky and almost completely veinless. The cigar has a nice hay smell. The construction feels good and the predraw is fine. I taste tobacco with a little pepper punch.
100915arganeseconnecticutrobusto2
I taste a harsh and bitter coffee flavor, strong and powerful but unpleasant and that flavor gets accompanied with some sweetness. After half an inch the flavors lose a lot of strength but they are still unpleasant.
100915arganeseconnecticutrobusto3
After an inch and a half the bitterness disappears and I taste an earthy flavor with some chocolate and the flavors are mild metallic. Halfway the earth flavor turns a bit sour and even though I lose the chocolate I get some wood too and a nice sweetness, a bit like cotton candy. After two thirds I taste wood and herbs and these flavors are spicy.
100915arganeseconnecticutrobusto4
This cigar lasted me for an hour and five minutes. I got a lot of smoke from this cigar and the pepper & salt colored ash is firm. This cigar is medium to full flavored and medium bodied. The burn and the draw are good.
100915arganeseconnecticutrobusto5
Would I buy this cigar again? No, this cigar made it clear again that I just don’t like Connecticut wrappers.

Appearance: 7 / 10
Construction: 7 / 10
Draw: 7 / 10
Burn: 7 / 10
Smoke & ash: 7 / 10
Aroma first part: 4 / 10
Aroma second part: 6 / 10
Aroma third part: 6 / 10

Categories: Arganese, Arganese Dominicana, Dominican cigars | Tags: , ,

Nub Connecticut 358

Some time ago I got a sampler with several nubs as I was curious to see if they lived up to the hype. I have reviewed the Habano and the Cameroon before, now it’s time for the Connecticut and I smoked the 354.
090807nubconnecticut1
The wrapper is nice, light colored, smooth, and hardly any veins. The cigar feels well constructed even thought the predraw is a bit hard. I could taste raisin in the predraw. The aroma is hay & straw.
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I could taste woody flavors and after a few puffs I discovered a light leather. The flavors aren’t really nice. Further down the cigar I could taste some ashy herby flavor, sometimes accompanied by some chocolate. This is by far the least of the Nub series, I didn’t nub this cigar as there was completely no reason to do so, I didn’t like it at all.
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The draw was a bit tight, but it wasn’t plugged. The smoke was ok, could and should have been much more. The ash was, as expected from a nub, very firm even though the cigar had some burning issues.
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Would I buy this cigar again? No, I am not impressed by any of the nubs I smoked so far, and the Connecticut is the least of them all

Appearance: 7 / 10
Construction: 7 / 10
Draw: 6 / 10
Burn: 6 / 10
Smoke & ash: 6 / 10
Aroma first part: 6 / 10
Aroma second part: 5 / 10
Aroma third part: 5 / 10

Categories: Nicaraguan cigars, Nub, Tabacalera Oliva | Tags: , , ,

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