Tag Archives: cigar reviews

Cigar Review: Romeo by AJ Fernandez

In conjunction with Groupo De Maestro, AJ Fernandez was asked to re-imagine several key blends for Altadis.  Made in Nicaragua at

Romeo by AJ Fernandez

the A.J. Fernandez Cigars de Nicaragua factory in Estelí, this cigar consists of Ecuadoran Sumatra wrapper, Mexican San Andrés binder and filler from Nicaragua and Honduras.

Romeo Crafted By A.J. Fernandez comes in five sizes: Churchill at 7 inches by 50 ring gauge; Robusto, 5 by 52; and Toro, 6 by 52, Belicoso, 6 by 52,
For this review, I smoked the Toro.  When I first picked it up, the cigar felt heavy and full of quality tobacco.  Medium chocolate color wrapper. Fruity on the cold draw, like plums or raisins.  This is a really different Romeo, more robust than any other blend of theirs.  It begins with heavy wood and black pepper. Cedar notes along with fruit on the back end of the exhale show up as well.
After the final third starts, the tone of the cigar changes and I picked up warm cinnamon spice with slow wisps of smoke. The cigar also sports notes of yeast and bread. Those become prominent flavors along with mellow red pepper until the cigar finishes.

Cigar Review – La Flor Dominicana Reserva Especial

As  we get further into the year and start digging in at newer releases, I find myself wanting to expand my regular rotation.
The LFD Reserva Especial was different from the start.
  • Wrapper: Ecuadorian Connecticut

    La Flor Dominicana Reserva Especial Gran Robusto
  • Binder: Dominican Republic (Estancia La Flor de Palma)
  • Filler: Dominican Republic (Estancia La Flor de Palma)

The Gran Robusto is 5 1/2X60.

I know I’m a bit late to the party but taking this blog more  seriously means rerouting energy previously unspent.  I’m glad for it.
The usual plum notes from a cold draw are interesting in that pepper is present as well.  Rich earth also.
This cigar starts off with much more mellow spice and flavor than most LFDs I’ve smoked.  Not weaker, just less. The leathery pepper taste is present, along with softer, almost rosado-like flavors of cotton candy.
Light mocha flavors join the leather and spice but all flavors are softer than normal.

Cigar Review – Masterpiece Gold Reblended

These came n a while back and I’ve been sitting on a few of them in the new lancers size, along with some of the minis which also are reblended.

As you know, Don Cervantes is a luxury blend put out by ACC Cigars and tend to consist of aged tobaccos, some of which may be as old as 50 years n age. The cost of their cigars is due in part to the age of the tobacco and the skill required to roll tobacco that old.

Per usual, the cigar has an even burn. The pre-light notes are typical of raisin and light stone fruit, but a torch to toast the foot reveals a semi-sweet smelling smoke. The first draw is easy, and the burn line is razor straight. Nots of wood, pepper, intense leather and hints of oak come from the cigar at various points, but the pepper and spice remain up front.

Masterpiece Gold Lancero

A medium finish with an easy draw makes this an even better cigar for those who don’t prefer the stronger taste of maduros.

Masterpiece Gold by Don Cervantes

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 on this blog.  

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

You know how you just crave something sometimes, be it Indian food or Paella?  The Presidente is kind of like that.  It’s reliable, but the richness of flavors are outstanding.

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

Luxury Cigar Review- ACC Special Edition 18 year

I first experienced smoking this cigar some time ago when a sample was sent for review, and I am now smoking the ACC S. E. 18 year.

ACC S. E. 18 Year – a testament to luxury

If you remember, I did a review for the ACC S. E. 12 year here.  I really enjoyed the robustness of flavor in the 12 year, but the 18 year is a different beast entirely.

Yes, vintage tobacco, and I mean maybe up to fifty years old vintage, rather than the industry standard when a maker (wine does this too) slaps the word “Vintage” on a cigar box.

With a beautiful, laser cut jacket that’s just as exquisite as the 12 year, and a secondary band proclaiming the age statement, this cigar’s wrapper is much lighter in color compared to the 12 year.

ACC S. E. 18 Year, a 7X50 Churchill for those seeking an exquisite experience.

Rolled entubado, this cigar is also triple capped to protect smoker, requiring another level of skill to not just blend, but roll this elegant cigar.  Cigars with tobacco this old require a lot more care, not just because of the need to be gentler with the leaf, along with making sure the cigar is consistent and remains in line with the creator’s vision.

The flavors of this cigar are much milder than the 12 year, also. Due to the age of tobaccos, the blend, the flavors are softer.  More of that cotton candy-like flavors, with very much a smoother profile too. Lighter on the pepper and spice, but damn tasty for sure.

1200 Cigar cabinet from ACC – a Luxury Lifestyle brand

Definitely a cigar that can’t be compared to anything else, really.

The packaging of ACC S. E. cigars is highest quality, using materials that only enhance the uniqueness and really look more like a lifestyle, than just a simple cigar.    The Accessories from ACC, such as custom humidor cabinets and ash trays are a perfect compliment for those seeking to upgrade their lives.

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.