Cigar Review – Punch Gran Puro Nicaragua

The Gran Puro Nicaragua, latest release from Punch cigars is more or less a line extension.  With re-envisioned coloring and packaging, the brand is trying to remain relevant among a sea of new blends for newer smokers who crave something different.

Using a USA Connecticut broadleaf wrapper and Nicaraguan binder, and fillers, the line isn’t a puro at all.  But it is interesting.  Measuring at 6X54, the cigar was supposed to be a blend of different things and have more complexity than the usual Punch smoker was accustomed to.

The cigar itself is rolled and constructed well, and a plethora of peppery smelling smoke emits from the lit foot. Flavors from the cigar aren’t overwhelming, so we may come back to this in a different size.  But what I did pick up included pepper, sweet molasses, wood notes and and if you reach, you can detect subtle hints of sweetness at the end.

Overall, decent but nothing I’d purposely write home about.

Cigar Review: CAO Zócalo

This is a monster of a cigar but it has flavor and some depth to it. I had this at Russia’s (Got Cigars?) in Decatur as we’re thinking of carrying it.

  • Wrapper: Mexican San Andrés Morron
  • Binder: African Cameroon
  • Filler: Nicaraguan
  • Factory: STG Estelí (Nicaragua)
  • Production: Limited Edition (3,500 boxes of 20 cigars)
  • 6X60 in this size and will probably retail for just around $9.

From CigarDojo

“As promised with CAO’s announcement of their Pan-Am Tour at the beginning of April, the company released details on a new limited release over the weekend. The CAO Pan-Am Tour is a virtual tour throughout the focal points of the Pan-American Highway, beginning in Mexico with the new CAO Zócalo.”

Now, the review:  The first thing about this cigar honestly is that it’s hella packed full of tobacco.  I used a V-cut and took a pull, getting nothing really special off the cold draw.

But that’s not how I judge a cigar anyway, so lighting it up, I took a puff.  Then another, and got it good and going.  The first thing to note was the sweetness from the Cameroon binder imparting distinctly.  The flavors were mellow and medium with hints of spice.  Consistent throughout the first third and a half, until warmer flavors pick up.  The taste of red pepper becomes evident.  The draw is excellent, and the cigar retains a good bit of ash before I knocked it off.

The Zócalo.finishes with a combination of that sweet, earthy taste and mild pepper notes.

 

Cigar Review – Rocky Patel 55

We recently received a box of Rocky Patel 55, a new release from Rocky Patel and Co. out of Esteli, Nicaragua factory.

Rocky Patel 55 – a multinational blend

This is a multinational blend consisting of Nicaragua and Costa Rican tobaccos.    This cigar was created to honor Rocky’s 55th birthday (this year!) and is part of the Artisan series.

Right from the start, the draw on this cigar is good, producing a good heft of sweet smelling smoke.  There is definitely a plum taste to it. The cigar feels thicker and better packed than the softer counterpart the Rocky Patel platinum. Hits of sweet cocoa light up the first few puffs.

As the cigar burns fairly evenly, the softness of the flavors really accent the smoking experience.  Unlike the Decade or the 15th, the 55 is much smoother.

Developing flavors include light cocoa or chocolate, almost like baking chocolate. Still with the easy draw. i’m really enjoying this cigar more than I thought I would.

The middle and final third produce

The burn line required a few touch ups, but was solid most of the way through.

baking chocolate. Definite baking chocolate.  Spice joins an earthy core for a medium finish that’s rather unique in that it lingers just on the palate without quite being annoying.

It’s a higher price point for a Rocky, but I feel it’s justified

Coming to Highland Cigar Company!