A few years ago my friend Kolja introduced me to Jesper Petersen during a dinner hosted by Rocky Patel. At the time I was working for the Dutch Rocky Patel importer/distributer while Jesper is the Danish importer/distributer for a handful of brands including Rocky Patel. He started his distributing business approximately 7 years ago, after doing cigar events in restaurants and bars for a few years. And now Jesper decided to bring his own brand to the market, first in Denmark, then Germany and slowly take over Europe in true viking style.
The brand is named Splendid after his company and there are two vitola’s, a 4.75×54 Robusto Grande and a 5×52 Torpedo. Today I’m smoking the Robusto Grande that Jesper gave me at the Intertabac trade show in Dortmund last september. The sample I got came without a band but on Jesper’s Facebook page I saw pictures of the bands so I could include those in my rating. Jesper told me it took him three years to create this blend of Dominican tobaccos from the Navarette y Mao region and the Cuban seed wrapper from the Los Reyes family to create the smooth medium cubanesque he wanted to introduce to the Danish and European market. The expected retail price of the cigars will be between 9 and 10 euro per stick.
The wrapper looks great, dark and oily without big veins. The head is well rolled and quite flat so this is the perfect cigar to be punched. There is a strong hay aroma coming from the cigar. The construction feels good, no soft spots or plugs, all evenly packed. The cold draw is a little on the loose side and except for a very mild pepper on the tip of my tongue I don’t taste much.
You have read this before but I grabbed my trusted vintage Ronson, older than both me and Jesper and probably still in a better shape, to light this cigar. It’s easy to light the cigar and I taste a very nice and full coffee flavor with a hint of red pepper. After half an inch I taste a dark wood with a little pepper. The cigar gets a little spicier too with walnuts on the background, very mild though.
After a third the walnut flavor is growing stronger, well matched with the equally strong wood and a little pepper. Halfway walnut is the dominant flavor. After two thirds I taste a strong citrus with the nuts, overpowering the nuts a little.
The smoke is thick and luscious and white as can be. The ash is also very light colored and quite firm. The burn is good and the draw is better than during the cold draw. This cigar is medium plus bodied and full flavored. The smoke time was little over 90 minutes.
Would I buy this cigar again? Yes, this is a very nice smoke