Posts Tagged With: Macanudo

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

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

Cigar of the month May

Over the last month I reviewed 14 cigars and the cigar of the month may is:

Balmoral Anejo XO FT Lancero with a 95 score.

This month I smoked a unicorn that scored high, something I never expected to smoke, I smoked the best lancero I had in a long long time, and the best cigar I’ve smoked this year and the three worst cigars I rated for my blog since my new rating system came in place. So the reviews were all over the board.

1) Balmoral Anejo XO FT Lancero (Dominican Republic) 95 points
2) Undercrown Manifesto (Nicaragua) 94 points
3) Alec Bradley Tempus Nicaragua Robusto (Honduras) 93 points
4) JSK CRNA NOK Toro (Nicaragua) 93 points
5) Perdomo Lot 23 Maduro Robusto Nicaragua) 92 points
6) Santiago Connecticut Robusto (Nicaragua) 89 points
7) Macanudo Inspirado Mareva (Honduras) 88 points
8) 708 Juniors Barber Pole (Dominican Republic) 85 points
9) Antonius Red Label Robusto (Dominican Republic) 85 points
10) Romeo Y Julieta Gran Reserva Wide Churchill (Cuba) 84 points
11) 708 Shaggy Barber Pole (Dominican Republic) 82 points
12) Macarena Maduro Toro (Mexico) 75 points
13) Macarena Naturel Toro (Mexico) 73 points
14) Gasparilla Pirate Fest Churchill (USA) 73 points


Balmoral is a Dutch company, so as a fellow Dutchy i’m happy that we still master the art of making great cigars.

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

Macanudo Inspirado Mareva

Macanudo, still rumored to be the best sold brand worldwide, but never has it been one of my favorite brands. I tend not to like cigars from the big companies as to me those cigars lack soul and character. I mean, compare it to McDonalds vs a one off hamburger joint with quality products and passionate staff, its a world of difference. Brands owned by the big companies tend to be the same, instead of making great cigars and earning a living with them its making as much money possible with tobacco no matter what, to satisfy the shareholders. Those companies have no pride in what they are doing, while the family owned companies pride themselves in the quality they produce. I mean, look what Davidoff did with Camacho, it was a great product, Davidoff bought it, rebranded and reblended it and now its nothing but a marketing product without a soul. The moment Imperial Tobacco took a 50% stake in Habanos the quality went down considerably and now its all about limited editions, regional editions etc but the quality and the soul of the cigars dropped or are lost. Scandinavian Tobacco, owner of General Cigars, is the worst and I lost all my respect for them when I found out that they supported the FDA ruling about premium cigars.


Now I’m not saying that everybody in those accountant & marketing managers run company have no passion about tobacco, I had the pleasure of talking with Benji Menendez while he was still working for General Cigars, I met Rick Rodriguez on several occassions and those guys have a passion for cigars, I bet there are more people like that but they don’t run the company. Ernesto Perez Carrillo sold his La Gloria Cuban to General Cigars and was contractually stuck there for 10 years but the moment the contract expired he started his own company again where he makes cigars with a soul, with character. Now there are always exemptions, a company like Gurkha is small and privately owned yet for me they fall into the categorie of the soulless cigars as its nothing but a marketing scheme and Hantosia doesn’t even smoke cigars as far as I know, thats a company without passion either.


Now on the cigar, a few years ago General Cigars released a new blend, at first just for the European market, Macanudo Inspirado. The blend consists from a mixture of Nicaraguan, Honduras and Dominican filler with a Jamastran, Honduras binder and a posada wrapper from San Augustin in Honduras. It later got released in the United States too, there were line extentions, a second and a third Inspirado line were released but this 5 1/8×42 mareva was created especially for the ‘cigar smoking world championship’ organized by my friend Marko Bilic. Now I see cigar smoking as relaxation and for me a competition with cigar is an absurd idea, but the world championship is a success so I’m probably in the minority with my opinion and that’s okay.


The cigar comes in cellophane and once unwrapped I see a medium brown but pale wrapper. The wrapper looks fine when it comes to veins and all, but the color is a little pale as I said. The construction feels good and the cap is beautifully constructed. The ring is fine, its a reddish orange with golden outlines, a golden macanudo logo and lettering over some faded white text, the gold print is actually very well done. The cigar has a pretty strong aroma that I can only compare with cow manure but I couldn’t smell any ammonia so thats good.

I cut the cigar guillotine style, the cold draw is very easy and I can’t imagine people being able to smoke this cigar over two hours. I taste some raisin, hay and a lot of pepper. I lit the cigar with a soft flame. I taste bitter coffee with a chocolate aftertaste. After a few puffs it’s bitter coffee with sugar aftertaste. The bitterness disappears and makes place for a mild freshness and a woody yet sweet flavor. After a third the flavors are sharp and a little harsh. Halfway the flavors are less harsh, I now taste cedar with herbs and spices. The sugary sweetness is still there too.


The draw is easy but not too loose. The ash is medium gray and layered. It’s also quite firm. The burn is a bit uneven. The smoke is plentiful and medium thick. The cigar is medium full bodied and full flavored. The body flavor ratio and the evolution are good. The smoke time for me is about an hour so if I competed I wouldn’t even be close to the top of the charts.

Would I buy this cigar again? I love the vitola, I don’t love the cigar though as it lacks soul and character.

Score: 88


Categories: 88, Honduran cigars, Macanudo | Tags: , , , , , ,

Macanudo Maduro Petit Corona

I visited a B&M in my home town. They act as a post office too and I needed to ship out an ashtray to someone. Me and the owner started to talk about cigars and he said he received good feedback on the Macanudo maduro petit corona, a 4×42 cigar with a price tag of € 5,50 here in the Netherlands. Now I am not a Macanudo fan, but open minded as I am, I decided to buy one and try it.
I start to appreciate this size more and more. The dark wrapper has some colour differences. The band is nice and simple and the construction feels goof. The cigar smells like straw and charcoal. The predraw I a bit tight and I taste some chocolate.
I taste a spicy and herbal earthy flavour, much stronger than I anticipated. After half an inch the flavors are less strong. I taste a bit more herbs and less earthy flavors. After that I taste wood, quite spicy.
After two thirds I mainly taste herbs, mild bitter and with a little bit of chocolate.
This cigar lasted me for about an hout. The draw is good. I got a lot of smoke and the light coloured ash is firm. The burn is straight. This cigar is full flavoured and medium bodied
Would I buy this cigar again? I’ll pass

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: 6 / 10

Categories: Dominican cigars, General Cigar Dominicana S.A.S., Macanudo | Tags: , ,

Macanudo BMM F3

You might think “what, a Macanudo Benji Menendez Master?” but remember, I am from Europe and so the copyrights to the name Partagas are owned by Habanos. Distributer Scandinavian Tobacco Group still wanted to release these cigars in Europe and decided to rename them Macanudo Benji Menendez master series. Normally I would not buy a Macanudo, but I have met Benji Menendez before and had a nice conversation about tobacco with him, the man is a living legend with incredible knowledge so I was really curious to smoke this 6×46 cigar. The cigar is blended with Nicaraguan and Dominican tobacco, an American Habano binder and Cameroon wrapper.
I smell a strong Cuban barnyard smell. The band is big and mentions Benji Menendez. The wrapper is chocolate brown and wrinkly with a big vein. The construction feels good but I notice a soft spot under the cigar band. The predraw is fine.
I taste coffee, earth and a hint of cinnamon. The cigar is slightly bitter and dry. The flavors get less intense after half an inch. After an inch I taste wood, an earthy flavor and citrus.
After a third I taste more spices like cinnamon and nutmeg with some pepper in the aftertaste. Wood is still a supporting flavor. Halfway the wood gets a bit stronger but the earthy flavor disappeared. The pepper in the aftertaste is white pepper. After two thirds the cigar gets more spicy.
This cigar lasted me for an hour and a half. The draw is great and I got a lot of smoke. The light colored ash is quite firm and the burn is straight and pretty. This cigar is full flavored and medium bodied.
Would I buy this cigar again? No, I wouldn’t for 9 euro

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

Categories: Dominican cigars, General Cigar Dominicana S.A.S., Macanudo | Tags: ,

Macanudo 1968 robusto

Macanudo’s newest blend, the 1968, is named after the year that Cifuentes created the original Macanudo Café and that makes it a tribute. The filler contains tobacco from the remote island Ometepe, located in the middle of a volcanic lake, which makes it special. The rest of the filler comes from Nicaragua and the Dominican Republic, the binder is a Connecticut Habano and the wrapper is a Honduran San Agustin Havana seed.
This 4 1/2 inch x 50 robusto, which has a price tag of 7 euro in The Netherlands, comes in a cellophane wrapper and once released from its coat you can smell a full and warm barnyard aroma. The construction feels good and the Honduran wrapper looks nice, oily and dark and only has some minor veins. This cigar is a looker! The predraw is fine and leaves me with a mild peppery wood flavor on my palate.
I get a mild bitter coffee flavor, not very pleasant but strong and full, with a peppery aftertaste. The pepper slowly gains some strength and a wood flavor joins the party. The bitter coffee disappears and I can even taste some chocolate on the background. And this all happens within the first inch of the cigar. The pepper disappears too and all I taste is wood and chocolate.
The chocolate is a bit creamy but also a support to the dominant wood flavor. At the end the wood gets support from some pepper, and the creamy chocolate is the aftertaste. The start of the cigar wasn’t very hopeful, but the cigar progressed to something very nice.
I get lots of medium thick smoke from the cigar. The draw starts out a little bit too hard, but it gets better the longer I smoked. The ash is medium gray and very firm. The burn is good and I would call this cigar full flavored and medium to full bodied.
Would I buy this cigar again? Probably a single every once in a while

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

Categories: Dominican cigars, General Cigar Dominicana S.A.S., Macanudo | Tags: , ,

Macanudo 1968 gigante *fresh rolled*

I went to see a roller, Christian Galvan, who works for General cigars at one of my favorite B&M’s in Amsterdam, Hartman cigars at the Beethovenstraat. Christian Galvan was there to roll cigars as part of the release of the Macanudo 1968 in The Netherlands. I smoked one right on the spot, and I brought one home to review and here it is.
Macanudo came with this new blend and named it “1968” as that was the year that Cifuentes blended the original Macanudo café, so this is a cigar in his memory. The cigar is blended with tobacco from the Dominican Republic and Nicaragua, part of the filler comes from the remote island of Ometepe, which is located in the lake of a volcano. The binder is a Connecticut Habano and the wrapper is Honduran San Agustin Havana seed.
The size of this fresh rolled cigar is 5.5 x 52 which is not a regular production size, it’s in between the 6 x 54 toro and the 5 x 50 robusto. The cigar smells like hay. The construction feels good though the draw is a bit on the loose side and gives me a mild peppery raisin flavor. The wrapper is smooth, oily and dark.

I can taste toast, coffee and some pepper at the back of my throat. After a few puffs I also taste some bean but that flavor disappears soon, just like the toast. A chocolate flavor shows itself through the peppery coffee. After an inch the pepper joins the flavors that disappeared before and all I can taste is coffee with chocolate, of which the chocolate is slowly becoming the dominant flavor, but the flavors are well balanced.
After reaching the 1/2nd point of the cigar I get some toast again and at 2/3rd the chocolate disappears for just a few puffs. The grand finale brings me some cedar with chocolate and later some nuts and chocolate.

I get a lot of smoke, the smoke is a bit thin though. The ash is silver-gray and firm. The draw is fine and the burn is great, straight and it won’t die easily. I didn’t need to purge this cigar and could still nub it. This is a full flavored full bodied cigar, but the full bodyness is sneaky, because of the overwhelming flavors you don’t notice and realize that this is a powerful stick.
Would I buy this cigar again? Yes, I liked it, but this was a 2 day old fresh rolled cigar, I don’t know if the cigars that are commercially available have the same flavor palate.

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

Categories: Dominican cigars, General Cigar Dominicana S.A.S., Macanudo | Tags: , ,

Macanudo petit corona tubo

This small 5 inch ring 38 cigar is made out of Dominican & Mexican filler, Mexican binder and a Connecticut shade wrapper. And boy, that wrapper is ugly, way too many veins. The predraw on this cigar is fine and it has an aroma of hay. It comes in a nice tube.
I taste a sweet wood flavor and it turns into musty leather pretty quick, not very pleasant. After little over an inch I can taste some chocolate and herbs, both still musty. Midway the mustiness disappears and I discover a nutty flavor, but instead of the mustiness I now get a burning sensation on my tongue. At 2/3rd the burning sensation disappears and I get a nice nut flavor, very full.
This small stick produces a lot of smoke and has a fine burn. The ash is firm and white. This cigar is mild bodied medium flavored.
Would I buy this cigar again? No, the fantastic finish doesn’t make up for the bad start, and petit coronas aren’t my favorite size anyway.
Appearance: 6 / 10
Construction: 7 / 10
Draw: 7 / 10
Burn: 7 / 10
Smoke & ash: 8 / 10
Aroma first part: 5 / 10
Aroma second part: 6 / 10
Aroma third part: 8 / 10

Categories: Dominican cigars, General Cigar Dominicana S.A.S., Macanudo | Tags: , , ,

Macanudo prince Philip

The wrapper isn’t very pretty, the edges of the leave are wrinkled just like it was too dry when the cigar was made, and the cigar looks messy and got lot of spots beneath the wrapper. The cigar feels good tough, very firm and the predraw and smell of manure is fine. The wrapper again, it breaks directly after lighting the cigar and leaves a crack from approximately 2 inch, but fortunately that doesn’t affect the smoking.

Then the flavors, I taste a sweet leather, it is a warm taste, not in temperature but in flavor. The leather is slowly growing in taste, but it’s never the strong leather which you usually find in Cuban cigars. After about three quarters I can taste a sweet creamy chocolate on the background for a few moments and then the leather became strong again.

The flavor is very consistent throughout the whole cigar, the smoke is medium and the ash is pretty and white. It took me about 70 minutes to finish the cigar.

Would I buy this cigar again? Yeah, not regularly though, but every once in a while

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

Categories: Dominican cigars, General Cigar Dominicana S.A.S., Macanudo | Tags: ,

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