Tag Archives: cigar reviews

Cigar Review: Raices Cubana Distributed by Alec Bradley

Raices Cubanas 1941 starts with a medium-brown Honduran wrapper that’s glistening with oils. A careful blend of Nicaraguan and Honduran long-fillers lies just beneath, encased in a Nicaraguan binder.

Raices Cubana – Distributed Alec Bradley

The review:  This is the 6X60 size and normally I shy away from that large a ring gauge (with the exception of Padron) but this cigar definitely didn’t disappoint.

Pre-light draw is very raisiny. The initial puffs are nutty and semi-sweet   Black pepper features prominently up front once the cigar gets going.  A good amount of smoke plumes from the foot.

The cigar has a very easy draw for being packed so full of tobaccos.  The burn line started off uneven but I chalk that up to my lighting technique, and a touch up fixed that.

Flavors at the second third include cocoa spice and red pepper. The cigar becomes mellow at this point while maintaining softer flavors wth hints of wood and black pepper.   By now I’m really enjoying the complexity of the cigar.

The final third of the cigar is where it gets interesting.  First, we had that red pepper bit, then black pepper, and finally?  Vanilla Coffee Bean!  YES!  ha!

This is definitely a medium to full bodied smoke though.

Cigar Review: Montecristo by AJ Fernandez

The Montecristo line isn’t a line I normally gravitate to, not with all the boutique blends coming out from some of today’s hottest blenders, but I picked it up in my local shop here in Decatur.  (Got Cigars?  232 Ponce De Leon) at the suggestion of the owner.

What can I say to start with?

Montecristo by AJ Fernandez

The backstory:

Made in Nicaragua at the A.J. Fernandez Cigars de Nicaragua factory in Estelí, Fernandez worked with Altadis’ Grupo de Maestros to develop this new Montecristo, which consists of Ecuadoran Sumatra wrapper, Mexican San Andrés binder and filler from Nicaragua and Honduras.

Montecristo Crafted By A.J. Fernandez will come in five sizes: Churchill at 7 inches by 50 ring gauge; Figurado, at 4 by 52; Gordo at 6 by 58; Robusto, 5 by 52; and Toro, 6 by 50. The Montes, which are all box-pressed, are set to retail from $9.95 to $12.50 and come in 10-count boxes

The Review:

This oscuro cigar starts off with solid wood and white pepper notes.  The box press is firm in the hand, but not razor sharp like the Padron Anniversarios for example.  Light brown in color, with a solid pre-light draw, the flavors emerging from that were pretty light to my taste.   Upon lighting, the cigar showed not only an even burn, but consistency of the following:  Said white pepper, wood, with a touch of honey and bread at the back of the tongue.

 

The second and final third of the cigar maintain that consistency with one exception.   The flavors balance out more and the Montecristo draws better.   I’d say this is a medium-bodied cigar.  Would I grab another?  I sure would.

Cigar Review – Don Cervantes Presidente

I can’t believe I’ve smoked like a dozen of these beauties and never once reviewed the cigar here.  

This is the Don Cervantes Presidente Churchill, a 7X50 cigar made in conjunction with ACC Cigars and the folks at MATASA, specifically, Manuel Quesada, of FONSECA and Casa Magna fame.  

Blend information:

Filled with rare aged tobaccos from Nicaragua, and the Dominican Republic, Presidente is wrapped with an aged, golden Ecuadorian Sumatra wrapper. In demand by almost every top cigar brand in the world, the Presidente’s tobacco is fermented for nearly a year, then bundle aged for an additional year. The Presidente’s ash burns white and beautifully, and this outstanding cigar’s long finish is unique among cigars.  The Presidente comes wrapped in the famous “P” Cigar jacket.

Presidente by Don Cervantes – a Premium aged handmade in conjunction with Manuel Quesada of MATASA

The notes on the cigar are as follows:  It starts off with a spicy kick to it, my thoughts are this is Quesada’s signature, and I taste red and black pepper, along with mulled wine.  The pre-light draw is airy, with notes of leather and very faint cedar.

Upon lighting, the cigar draws perfectly and the ash holds very steadily due to entubado bunching used to create a more complex blend.  Once the cigar gets going, the consistency of flavors are as follows:  Definite pepper notes, red and black of course, with hints of white pepper and mellow wood notes.  The cigar also has meaty notes.  I’ve heard roast beef, but I personally can’t place that all too familiar and delicious taste, yet I won’t lie. It’s damn fine. The ash holds on quite well and when I can find my picture of this cigar literally standing on its ash, I’ll post it

Look at that ash!

The cigar mellows over the course of the smoke, becoming more balanced and refined thanks not only to the various blends in the cigar but the extensive age of the leaves used to make it. An average age of 12 years, along with a longer fermentation period only enhance the cigar.

Honestly, like everything else I’ve smoked from ACC, this is a very welcome addition to my humidor, even at the premium price one would pay for it.

Cigar Review – Oliveros Gran Retorno

Created by industry talent Rafael Nodal, the man behind Aging Room, and the owner of Boutique Blends, this new line extension provides cigar lovers with a new experience.

The Gran Retorno is a new line extension from Oliveros and Rafael Nodal.

The Oliveros line I’d smoked a few years back and while thought the line was solid, was unimpressed, but that may just be my tastes.   This cigar, on the other hand, was a definite winner.

The pre-light draw shows leather along with spice and that rich raisin or plum. Lots of chocolate too.
The initial light is a good mix of tobacco, wood, light nuanced spice and maybe cocoa. The leather/cedar combo makes for interesting taste with a background of something floral.  Then the taste changes to wood.
Then the taste sweetness up. Not cloyingly but more muted.
About the beginning of the second third, the spice is light but present.    The cigar had a great burn and draw, along with a solid feel in the hand.
The final third grew in intensity but wasn’t over the top. More prominent pepper and more floral, almost like wintergreen

Cigar Review – La Jugada Habano

I picked up this cigar in an assortment for a really good deal from the fine folks at Tampa Humidor and I must say, the unknown sampler bags are out of this world in value.  You have to make sure you can get them, as they tend to fly off the shelves quickly.

Anyway, the La Jugada cigar was new to me.  Moya Ruiz cigars makes this powerhouse of a cigar and I must admit, the overall impression of it left me wanting more of them.

The prelight draw has a really sweet taste o it. Light and free I expect the draw to be very good. The cigar feels light in the hand.
The first few puffs are really wood heavy with pepper on the back end. The Habano wrapper flavor really comes through wot almost loam?  Smoke in the mouth is rather thick.
The second third continues with the same, flavors being consistent and balancing out with white pepper coming out on top and continue into the final bit of the cigar.  I’d also detected some cashew notes, almond notes.
Overall, this is going to be a cigar I keep in my regular rotation.

Cigar Review: PROPIO Léon by ACC Cigars

This is a fun review, because I did it in three parts in a video!  This is another release from ACC Cigars – you remember my interviews with Max Myers.

Part Two:

And Part III:

This honestly is, as much as I hate to betray my beloved Platinum (he already got me to betray it with the Tres Maduro haha) at LEAST up there as a favorite of mine.

For other reviews:
Don Cervantes Masterpiece Platinum

Don Cervantes Tres Maduro

Don Cervantes Masterpiece Gold

More about ACC Cigars

Boutique Blends G5 by Rodrigo Cigars

Hola Amigos!

That’s how George Rodrigo, head Amigo at Rodrigo cigars greets his customers.  And I’ve gotta say, I’m glad to be an amigo here.

Rodrigo G5Rodrigo 5X56
The prelight draw coated my mouth with chocolate raisin flavored air.  I suspected this new blend was going to be interesting.  So far, only a few cigars have I had, gave raisin notes – more  likely were dark fruits.
The initial draw is good. Cigar is a little harder than I expected but presentation has no major veins or flaws. Sweet but pronounced wood flavors start the palate off along with almost milk chocolate?
The construction is solid with a mostly even burn.  The line had to be corrected once but after that, it burned well.    The first third showed strong white pepper but that dissipated as the cigar burned down to the second third.
The final third, that’s where that red chili pepper taste emerged, a smokiness that was not boring.

Cigar Review – Nestor Miranda Danno One Life Edition

Nestor Miranda Danno – a Nicaraguan blend with a broadleaf wrapper and pig tail cap.   The cold draw produces flavors of light dark fruit with something mellow, maybe spice?  The wrapper looks a little rough, few IMG_3578veins.  Very dark chocolate color. 
The first few puffs start off with wood flavors-the dark fruit is definitely present along with muted spice. Not that power heavy stuff one gets from cigars from My Father factory.   In fact, I tasted plum on the initial few puffs.
Hints of leather appear along with a stronger sense of black pepper. This is just the first third. It actually paired well with the Laughing Skull beer (IPA) I had that night with it.
Starting the second third, the flavors give way to wood and the spice takes a back seat. The burn was slightly uneven.
The wood notes grow slightly in intensity. The smoke is cool. I was surprised at the construction.  If you’ve seen my rants on FB or twitter, you’ve seen that a number of cigars close to this size I’ve smoked have been duds, a disappointment considering they’re coming from some of my favorite makers.  Regular sizes (Toro, proper Churchill, etc) smoke just fine.
IMG_3579The final third is a mellow version of all the previous spices, chocolate and balanced bitters bonus the deep wood from earlier.  The burn line self corrected. Overall, a well made, tasty release with plenty of complexity from Nestor Miranda.

Cigar Review – Casa Magna Colorado

When it comes to a robust cigar, I used to think of stuff that was too strong initially.  JdN, LfD, etc.  The problem I had as a beginning cigar smoker was the nicotine kick overpowered the flavors and I often got light headed.

casa-magna-colorado

Not so with this release from Manuel Quesada.  Casa Magna Colorado features a Cuban Ligero seed Colorado wrapper, Viso and Ligero fillers from Nicaragua, this cigar starts off with plenty of balanced spices.

The packaging is elegant, yet simple at the same time.  The large band is striking and lets you know you’re smoking something with heft.

A good bit through the cigar is a plethora of earthy notes combined with the spice.  The smoke to me smells rugged, in a really good way.  As in, no one will mistake this cigar for something else, because it’s just that good.

Even better, the cigar burns really slow.  The draw is excellent.   This is one to be a permanent staple in any respectable cigar smoker’s rotation.