Posts Tagged With: toro

Buffalo Ten Maduro Toro

Buffalo Ten Maduro Toro. When the first rumors about this release surfaced, the name was a mystery. At first, the suggestion was made that it is a cigar for the Buffalo Cigar Festival. But in a conversation with Ram Rodriguez from Tabacalera El Artista, the truth was revealed. The name is chosen because it’s a cool sounding name. Of course, the people behind Buffalo Cigar Festival love the name, but they are not the inspiration. Rodriguez wanted to make a value cigar, one size, simple packaging, and simple artwork. The 10 in the name comes from the first proposed packaging. Bundles of 10 cigars. But eventually, the cigars were released in bundles of five cigars.

The cigar measures 6×52 and is box-pressed. Almost rectangle, much like the Factory Press from La Flor Dominicana. Very sharp edges. This is a five-country cigar blend, with a Mexican wrapper. A Maduro from San Andres. The filler comes from the Dominican Republic, Colombia, and the USA. The Colombian tobacco is used for the slightly acidic flavor, that helps to bind all flavors together. But the tobacco that is most rare is the binder. It’s a Dominican Negrito. Very dark tobacco that was popular 50 to 60 years ago. But it disappeared. Tabacalera El Artista and the Dominican Agricultural Society brought it back to life. It’s hard tobacco to grow, with relatively low yields. So it’s not used often.

The cigar looks amazing. Not just to smoke, but also to eat. The sharp box-pressed shape and the dark chocolate color make this cigar look like a candy bar. Add a simple, clean, and slick white ring and you have an amazing looking cigar. The wrapper is Colorado Maduro colored, with one flattened vein. It’s toothy and feels like fine sandpaper. The ring is white, simple, clean with print in the same color as the wrapper. The two components on itself look fine, yet the combination is extremely pleasing on the eyes. The box press is so sharp, it is almost as sharp as the La Flor Dominicana Factory Press cigars. The construction feels good. The aroma is earth and leather.

The cold draw is flawless. The flavor is earthy. Once lit, the cigar has coffee, soil, sweetness, and herbal spices. The flavors then change to soil, leather, chocolate, pepper, and spice. Leather gets stronger with cedar and pepper. The mouthfeel is dry. The second third starts with cocoa powder. Dry. Add some leather and a hint of acidity to bind everything together. The flavors slowly change to more leather, spices, soil, and wood. With still a hint of chocolate, pepper, and acidity. The final third starts with that dry chocolate or cocoa flavor again. Pepper, leather, and wood are there too. With a hint of sweetness. The mouthfeel is still dry now, but also sticky. There is a spice flavor that is hard to describe, with wood, pepper, and chocolate.

The draw is fantastic, the right amount of airflow and resistance. The burn is straight as an arrow. The cigar produces plenty of thick white smoke. The ash is almost white as well. Firm also. The cigar doesn’t have a lot of evolution. But it is balanced and flavorful. The Buffalo Ten Maduro Toro is a medium-bodied, medium flavored cigar. The smoke time is three hours and fifteen minutes.

Would I buy this cigar again? A 92 rated cigar for a value price? Damn right!

Categories: 92, Buffalo Ten, Dominican cigars, Tabacalera El Artista | Tags: , , , , ,

Casa Cuevas Reserva Maduro Toro

Casa Cuevas Reserva Maduro Toro. A cigar that as far as we know is only available in the United States, New Zealand, and the Dominican Republic. And it’s a relatively new brand yet not a new family. The Cuevas family is growing tobacco and making cigars for decades. Since 1890 to be exact. In the early 2000s, the Casa Cuevas brand was sold for a while. But then the family returned to making cigars for others. Until 2016, when the Casa Cuevas line returned. In a way, the story of the Cuevas family is similar to the El Artista brand and even Plasencia. All three are around for a long time, but only recently started making cigars for themselves instead of just producing for others.

This Casa Cuevas Reserva Maduro Toro is made with a Mexican San Andres wrapper. The binder is Piloto Cubana from the Dominican Republic. The filler contains tobacco from Ometepe, Nicaragua, and from the Dominican Republic. For this review, I smoked the 6×50 Toro. Other sizes available are a 5×52 Robusto and a 6¼x52 Torpedo.

The cigar looks good. The wrapper is dark, very dark. But evenly dark, and a bit on the dry side. The blue, white, and silver ring is similar to the new world Romeo y Julieta ring. The construction feels great and the triple cap is flawless. The cigar smells like dark chocolate and soil. Bittersweet and intense.

The cold draw is a bit tights. Quite spicy yet with a dark chocolate undertone. After lighting the cigar gives dark chocolate, earthiness, coffee. Bittersweet flavors with black pepper. In the second third, the dark chocolate is still the main flavor, but now with hay, coffee, and soil. The pepper tones down a bit. There is a hint of citrus. The cigar is balanced, yet not smooth. Halfway it’s still possible to retrohale without too much spice in the nose. The mouthfeel is still dry. In the final third, more wood shows up with some leather. But the spice and the dark chocolate are still going strong as well.

The draw is good, better than in the cold draw. The smoke is thick, white, and full. The burn is straight. The ash is almost white, yet it breaks quite easily. This cigar isn’t very strong, but the flavors are bold. The cigar is balanced. The evolution isn’t spectacular, but the overall flavors are good. The smoke time is two hours and thirty minutes.

Would I buy this cigar again? Yes

Categories: 90, Dominican cigars, Tabacalera Las Lavas | Tags: , , , ,

Gilberto Oliva Reserva Toro

Gilberto Oliva Reserva Toro. A tribute to the man who started the Oliva Cigar Company in Nicaragua in 1995. But that doesn’t mean that the family wasn’t in tobacco before. It all started with Melanio Oliva in 1886. Melanio Oliva, the family patriarch, grew tobacco in Pinar del Rio, Cuba. Gilberto, Melanio’s grandson, fled to Spain and later Nicaragua after the Cuban revolution and after his family’s plantations were taken from them by the thieving Cuban regime. In Nicaragua, he became a tobacco grower again. With his sons Gilberto, Carlos, and José, he created Oliva Cigars. In 2017, at age 86, Gilberto Oliva passes away. Ministry of Cigars was lucky enough to have sat down with this industry legend at the Tabolisa factory in 2014.

To honor their father, Jose, Gilberto Jr, and Carlos created the Gilberto Oliva Reserva line. In the same way, as they did with their great grandfather Melanio. For the Gilberto Oliva Reserva line, they turned to an Indonesian Sumatra wrapper. The binder is from Ecuador. The filler is Nicaraguan, with at least some but probably all coming from the Oliva family farms. Besides producing cigars, Oliva also grows tobacco in Esteli, Condega, and Jalapa. The Oliva Cigar Company is now part of the Belgian family-owned J. Cortes brand.

The cigar is quite good looking. A smooth and oily Colorado Maduro colored Indonesian Sumatra wrapper. At first glance, cigar smokers might not recognize this as an Oliva cigar. The classic logo with the big O is missing from the ring. Dark red, gold, and brown create a more classic looking logo. The construction feels immaculate. A nice triple cap finishes the look. The cigar has a mild spicy aroma.

The cold draw gives a bit more resistance than desired. After the cigar is lit, there is a beautiful mixture of sugar, grass, and dark spices. Full, rounded, smooth. Slowly a little pepper and leather show up too. Black pepper. The spice is a mixture of nutmeg and cinnamon. It is more pronounced in the retrohale. After a third, cedarwood shows up as well. The dark spices remain, with sweetness, and there is even a hint of vanilla. If there is any cigar that makes resembles Coca-Cola in a dry form, this is it. But better. Because there is also cedar, black pepper, and some earthy flavor. The Final third has all of the flavors mentioned above, with some citrus and floral flavors. These flavors remain until the end. Only the mouthfeel changes and becomes a bit dry.

The draw is good. The ash is white as ash can be, a sign of tobacco from potassium-rich soil. The burn is straight and slow. The smoke is thick. It’s white and there is a lot of it. This is a cigar medium in body yet full in flavor. Well balanced and very pleasant, yet the cigar could use a little more character. The smoke time is three hours and twenty minutes.

Would I buy this cigar again? I want a box

Categories: Oliva, Tabacalera Oliva | Tags: , , ,

Kristoff Vengeance Toro

Kristoff Vengeance Toro. A cigar introduced in 2018, even though the name is much older. The name was discontinued in 2011, but the blend wasn’t. The old Vengeance blend is now the Kristoff GC Signature Series. Ministry of Cigars reviewed that cigar before. But the name was put on ice for seven years while Kristoff was focussing on further building the brand on the global market.

In 2018 the brand was re-introduced. But since the original blend is still in use, it came with a new blend. A dark Connecticut Broadleaf wrapper over an Indonesian binder. Nicaraguan and Dominican tobaccos are used as filler. The Kristoff Vengeance is available as a 6½x60 Perfecto, 6×60 Gordo, 5×50 Robusto, and a 6¼x54 Toro. The last size is the one that is being reviewed.

The cigar looks scary. The very dark wrapper. The black ring with the silver-colored print. The oiliness of the wrapper. The closed foot and the rugged pigtail. This cigar just looks intimidating. The construction feels good. The strong aroma has hints of a barnyard, oak, charred wood, and roasted coffee beans.

The cold draw is surprisingly loose. Usually, a closed foot will give some issues in the cold draw. There is a fresh woody flavor in the cold draw. Once lit it has sweet, yet strong, coffee. The mouthfeel is dry, with coffee, nuts, a little black pepper. A hint of milk chocolate shows up too, with more black pepper. There is some sweetness of dried fruit. Acidity shows up with wood. Almost like red wine vinegar. The cigar mellows out when it comes to dynamics. Wood, earthiness, leather with black pepper, and a hint of milk chocolate are what remain in the first third. The chocolate slowly gets stronger, just as the sweetness. There is still a lot of wood, supported by earthiness, leather, and dried fruits. In the final third, there is nuttiness behind the chocolate. All with wood, black pepper, and earthiness as supporting flavors. Coffee returns.

The draw is fantastic. The pepper and salt colored ash has thick rings but it is firm. There are copious amounts of thick, white smoke. The burn is good. The cigar isn’t as strong as the looks. It’s medium to full-bodied. Medium to full-flavored as well. The smoke time is three hours and thirty minutes.

Would I buy this cigar again? I would pick the GC series. This is good, but the GC Signature series fit my profile better.

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

Davidoff Puro d’Oro Eminentes

Davidoff Puro d’Oro Eminentes. The eminent is the toro in the line up of the Davidoff Puro d’Oro line. The line was introduced in 2010, with the Eminentes as a line addition in 2011. This particular cigar is a well-aged cigar from the personal collection of the Managing Director UK for Davidoff Distributors U.K. For some reason, the golden Davidoff ring is missing except for the foot ring. According to the Managing Director UK, this cigar is from 2009, making it a pre-release. And that could be the reason for the missing ring.

The cigar is slightly larger and thicker than a regular 6×50 toro. It measures 6¼x52. And it’s one of the Dominican puros from Davidoff. All the tobacco in the cigar is aged for a minimum of five years. And the wrapper, hailing from Yamasa, is developed by no other than Henke Kelner himself.

The cigar looks good. It looks better with just the foot ring in extremely glossy gold color. The embossing on the ring gives the ring more grandeur. The Colorado colored wrapper is smooth, oily, and silky. The little pigtail is a nice touch. The construction feels great. A mild yet spicy aroma finishes the pre-light experience

The cold draw is easy. The cold draw gives a spicy wood and soil flavor. Once lit, it’s all about strong black coffee. Coffee, coffee, and coffee. Slowly some soil and charred wood join the coffee. The flavors are dark yet very pleasant. A faint nut flavor shows up as well, with some spices. Slowly some sweetness shows up too with faint leather. But the coffee never disappears completely. The coffee remains the base flavor, but now with a little more spice, some grass, earthiness, and leather. Halfway the flavors turn. The coffee mellows down, wood becomes more dominant with some sweetness, white pepper, and spices. The final third is more wood, with still some coffee, and an increasing dose of pepper.

The draw is great. The smoke is thick and full, and plenty in volume. The burn is slow and straight with firm white ash. This is indeed a full-bodied cigar from Davidoff, full-flavored as well. Even though the cigar packs a punch, it never gets mean. The balance is fantastic. The smoke time is four hours.

Would I buy this cigar again? Yes. This is a Davidoff I truly enjoyed.

Categories: 91, Cigars Davidoff, Davidoff, Dominican cigars | Tags: , , , ,

Barreda O21 Toro

Barreda O21 Toro. Until a year ago, this brand wasn’t on our radar. We had never heard from it. But at Intertabac 2019, we met Oscar & Stephanie from Barreda Cigars. Barreda Cigars is a small boutique factory in Esteli, Nicaragua. They provided us with a few samples. We reviewed and liked Don Chico Ecuador. Art Garcia’s Antigua Esteli is made at the Barreda factory as well. That cigar also scored high when we reviewed it.

The next cigar from Barreda is this O21. It comes in three sizes, we have the 6×52 Toro. It’s made with Nicaraguan fillers. The binder comes from Indonesia. The wrapper is Ecuadorian Habano, Sun Grown. The cigars come in boxes of 21. Another play with the O21 name. You have to be 21 to legally smoke a cigar in many American states and many other countries around the world.

The cigar looks good, very good. A dark, oily wrapper. Smooth, almost no veins. The triple cap looks great. But the color on the wrapper makes the cigar look cheap, to be honest. The purple and silver just don’t work on this cigar. The name is good though, as in many countries or states you have to be 21 to smoke. The cigar has a good aroma of hay, straw, and barnyard.

The cold draw is great. The flavors in the cold draw are vegetal with coarse black pepper. Once lit, the cigar releases a mild coffee flavor, creamy but also with some leather. The cigar slowly moves towards more wood and earthiness but still with creamy coffee. The next flavor that shows up is honey roasted almonds. Sweet yet roasted nuts. The second third starts with coffee, honey, black pepper, leather, and earthiness. Those flavors remain until the finale when pepper becomes the main flavor.

The construction is good. Good draw, good burn. Nice white yet coarse ash. Enough smoke, and it’s thick enough too. The cigar is balanced, smooth yet could use a little more character. This is a medium-bodied and medium flavored cigar. The smoke time is two hours and thirty minutes.

Would I buy this cigar again? I would pick the Don Chico Habano/Ecuador if I smoke another Barreda.

Categories: 90, Barreda, Nicaraguan cigars, Tabacalera Barreda | Tags: , , ,

Montecristo Double Edmundo

Montecristo Double Edmundo. In 2004, Habanos introduced the Montecristo Edmundo. A slightly longer and thicker robusto size, with a 52 ring gauge. And in 2006, they followed that up with the Montecristo Petit Edmundo. A slightly shorter, yet thicker robusto, again with a ring gauge of 52. 2010 saw a limited edition Grand Edmundo, almost 6 inches long and again with a 52 gauge. In 2013, Habanos released this Montecristo Double Edmundo, a 6⅛x50 Toro size. The first Edmundo with a ring gauge different than 52. The cigars are named after Edmundo Dantes, the hero of the Alexandro Dumas novel “The Count of Montecristo”. And that’s where Montecristo got his name from.


Mexico had three regional releases called Edmundo Dantes. Edmundo Dantes was released in 2007 and created by Max Gutmann, owner of the Mexican Habanos distributor. Because of the design similarities with Montecristo, people believed that these were Montecristo cigars, sold under the Edmundo Dantes brand. But that’s not the case. There are only three Edmundo Dante releases to date. As for the Montecristo Double Edmundo, it is a globally available cigar except for the United States. It is a regular production cigar so it’s being produced constantly. This cigar was a gift from the Cohiba Atmosphere Kuala Lumpur.


The color of the wrapper is nice, Colorado. And the wrapper is quite oily. But there are plenty of veins, it isn’t the prettiest wrapper out there. The ring is a classic, yet simple. Brown, white and gold. But the print quality is high. The cigar feels very soft, very squishy. There is no ammonia aroma, so that’s a plus. The cigar smells like hay, farm animals and barnyard. The aroma is quite strong.


The cold draw is very good. With vegetal and leather flavors. Salty and leathery are the first flavors that show up after lighting the cigar. After a few puffs, there is more leather, more salt, and some pepper. There’s also sugar. The flavors grow in strength, and some young wood shows up as well, just like green herbal flavors. The retrohale gives cedar and leather. The second third starts with leather, pepper, wood, soil, and a little coffee. Now and then there’s a hint of vanilla. Coffee, leather, and wood are the main flavors now. The final third starts harsh and rough. There is some vanilla, but the harshness is overpowering it.


The draw is great. The light-colored ash is dense and firm. The smoke is good. Thick and enough in volume. The burn is pretty even. It’s a medium-bodied, medium flavored cigar with a smoke time of two and a half hours.

Would I buy this cigar again? No, for half the price I can get a new world cigar that fits my palate much better

number89

Categories: 89, Cuban cigars, Montecristo (Habanos) | Tags: , , , ,

Gurkha Marquesa Toro

Gurkha Marquesa Toro, a cigar released by Gurkha Cigars in 2018. In three sizes, 5×52 Robusto, 6×54 Toro, and 5×54 Belicoso. All that Gurkha revealed about the production is that the cigars are made in the Dominican Republic. But since Gurkha doesn’t have a factory, they have to be made at a third person facility. Yet, that facility has not been disclosed. Gurkha uses a lot of producers, and by knowing who’s responsible it’s easier to weed out the bad Gurkha cigars from the good ones. Without knowing the manufacturer, smoking the Marquesa Toro is a gamble.

Gurkha is a very old brand, but the Gurkha brand we know now has been around for 30 years. It started when Kaizad Hansotia bought the brand for a few hundred dollars while enjoying a vacation. He met a guy making the cigars on the beach and bought the whole stock, including the brand name. And in thirty years, he built the brand into a powerhouse with many fans and even more haters. But one thing can’t be denied, if you haven’t heard of Gurkha cigars, you’re not a real cigar smoker. Whether you like them or not is a different question.

This is a beautiful cigar. A smooth, dark wrapper, oily, with little to none imperfections. A beautiful, vintage-looking ring finished this 6×64 Toro. This is an eye-catching cigar. The cigar feels well constructed, with the right bounciness when squeezed gently. The cigar doesn’t feel plugged or underfilled. The aroma is medium in strength. It has manure and a damps forest smell.

The cold draw is great. The taste of the cold draw is dry hay with red pepper. The first puffs give dried out leather with a little vanilla. Some nutmeg shows up too, with a very dry mouthfeel. Some powdered sugar sweetness is there as well. A charred wood flavor is next with lemon-like acidity. After a third, there is a flavor of low-grade chocolate on the back of the palate, with something that comes close to old paper. A very dusty flavor with a little bit of white pepper. The final third starts with softwood, black pepper, and some mild sweetness. The pepper grows in strength, with some herbal sweetness as a supporting flavor.

The draw is good, good resistance in airflow. The burn is straight and slow. Even after the cigar dropped from the ashtray on the desk to the floor. The smoke is good. There is enough volume although the smoke is a little thin. The light-colored ash is firm. The Gurkha Marquesa Toro is a medium-bodied, medium flavored cigar. The smoke time is two hours and thirty minutes.

Would I buy this cigar again? No, it scores high due to the construction and the looks, but flavor-wise it’s a middle of the road cigar at best

Categories: 90, Dominican cigars, Gurkha | Tags: , , ,

Undercrown Dogma 2019 Toro

Undercrown Dogma 2019 Toro. This box-pressed toro was released in 2019 to commemorate the 5th birthday of the collaboration between Drew Estate and the online cigar community Cigar Dojo. In 2014, the two teamed up for the initial release of the Undercrown Dogma, and that collaboration has been repeated several times since. The cigars are expected to be released in The Netherlands soon, as a limited-edition. Although the coronavirus pandemic may cause some delay in the planning.


The cigars are box-pressed. It’s a 6×56 Toro made at Gran Fabrica Drew Estate. The cigars use a Mexican San Andres wrapper. The binder comes from Connecticut. It’s a Habano binder, harvested using the stalk-cut method. That means that the whole plant is cut at the stalk, instead of leaf by leaf. And then hung upside down to dry. For the fillers, Mata Fina from Brazil is used in combination with Nicaraguan tobacco.


The box-pressed cigar has a rustic, rough-looking wrapper. Dark and oily. The rustic look and the darkness make the cigar look very tasty. The rings are impeccable. Dark blue and gold, all printed in high quality. The cigar feels a little soft though. But box-pressed cigars are made with less tobacco than round cigars, so that’s no surprise. The cigar has a strong aroma of hay.


The cold draw is perfect. The flavor is a mixture of raw tobacco and dusty milk chocolate. Very unusual. Once lit, the cigar has a sour coffee and wood flavor. Slowly pepper and sweetness come into play as well. The sourness fades away and is replaced by soft floral notes. There’s even a hint of milk chocolate. The cigar balances out with coffee, sweetness, and wood. But it is a bit rough in the back of the throat. There is also a flavor best described as old leather. The roughness in the back of the throat fades away. The cigar gets more pepper, wood, and leather. But the sweetness hasn’t disappeared either. The second third starts with leather, pepper, and more milk chocolate. American milk chocolate, which is a world apart from European milk chocolate. The cigar moves to a more woody flavor profile, with some acidity soon after. In the last third, the mouthfeel is dry. There is a distinct nut flavor, with leather, wood, and pepper.


The smoke is superb, as is always the case with Drew Estate. Thick, full, and enough to make the fire brigade drop by. The draw is great. The ash is white and firm. And the burn had to be corrected once or twice. The smoke time of this full-bodied, full-flavored cigar is two hours and fifty minutes

Would I buy this cigar again? Nah, I will stick to the regular Undercrown Maduro

number90

Categories: 90, Gran Fabrica Drew Estate, Nicaraguan cigars, Undercrown | Tags: , , , , ,

Gurkha Treinta Toro

Gurkha Treinta Toro. This cigar was released late 2019 to commemorate the 30th year since Kaizad Hansotia bought the Gurkha brand for $300 while on vacation. He noticed a man rolling cigars under the Gurkha name and selling them. He bought a few, loved them and offered to buy the brand. For just 300 US dollars he got the name and the rest is history. From that, he built a brand that is loved and hated in equal parts. Some swear by Gurkha, others hate the brand with a passion. But everybody has an opinion about Gurkha cigars, there is no in-between.

For the Gurkha Treinta, Hansotia worked with Aganorsa Leaf and the cigars are rolled at Aganorsa’s TABSA factory. That factory produces a lot of great private labels and is highly respected in the cigar community. The cigar utilizes an Ecuadorian Habano Rosado wrapper. The fillers and the binder are from Nicaragua. The binder is an Aganorsa Corojo 99. The fillers come from Esteli and Jalapa and include Criollo 98 and Corojo 99. The Toro is 6×54 in size.

The cigar looks good. The Habano Rosado wrapper doesn’t look oily but has a nice deep color with a reddish glow to it. There are a few thin veins. The cigar feels well packed. The white and gold ring features the Gurkha logo on the ring but is quite modest for a Gurkha cigar. The aroma is deep, manure and dark wood. It’s medium-strong in smell.

The cold draw is on the loose side. The cigar has a dry and slightly spicy tobacco flavor. From the start, the cigar has grass, coffee, leather, wood, and pepper. But all nicely balanced, although there is a little harshness on the back of the throat. But not unpleasant though. There is some nutmeg too. The cigar then turns smooth with lots of spices and a little wood and leather. Slowly some cocoa flavor shows up on the background as well. The flavors are smooth, it’s easy to retrohale this cigar. The second third starts with that beautiful mix of spices, some sweetness, hay, leather, and soil. The mouthfeel is creamy. Slowly there’s a toasted flavor that starts to emerge underneath the spices. The toast is becoming stronger, with more wood and still those nice, balanced mix of spices, pepper, and sweetness. In the final third, the flavors intensify. Still leather, wood, spices, and pepper but stronger. The finale is a little darker in flavor, more soil, wood and leather, fewer spices.

The draw is a little loose, but still within margins. The ash is white, dense and firm. It’s a stack of dimes. The smoke is good in volume and thickness. The burn is razor-sharp. This cigar is well balanced, smooth, and very pleasant. The cigar is medium-bodied, yet full-flavored. The smoke time is two hours and fifty minutes.

Would I buy this cigar again? Yes

number91
Categories: 91, Gurkha, Nicaraguan cigars, TABSA | Tags: , , , , ,

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