I received samples from Felipe Gregorio; all reviews are my own.
Is this cigar somehow related to the Pedro from Napoleon Dynamite? But the Pedro in that movie wasn’t black so I’m guessing that there’s something else going on here, maybe a comment from someone in the know would help elucidate the etymology of this brand of tasty cigars.
The cigar is a good looking specimen. This particular cigar, named “Gitano” is a 6″ x 54 torpedo, which is part good and bad for me. Personally, I love torpedoes. For whatever reason, probably due to the fact that since torpedoes are more difficult to roll more experienced torcedores roll them, I have had a better smoking history with this vitola. On the other hand, the ring gauge is on the big side for me now. Earlier on in my smoking career (Really? A career?) I liked the bigger ring gauge smokes but now I find myself going for thinner cigars.
Evenly packed with some stretch marks around the veins this dark, dusty brown maduro wrapper gives off a rustic impression as if embodying the hard scrabble lifestyle that many people in the cigar industry come from. It is a bit hard to the touch but there are some oils on the wrapper and the wrapper itself feels a little rough.
Ring Gauge: 54
Wrapper: Sumatra Ecuador
Binder: Dark Nicaragua Habano
Filler: Corojo Dominican & Nicaragua Habana 92
Price: One of each four sizes + 2 others for $27.00
Pulling John Flame!
When I looked at these cigars the first time and saw the ominous name – “Black Pedro” – I thought “uh oh, this is going to be one of those kick you in the teeth kind of cigars.” But that isn’t the case. It actually has some refinement to it, some nuance. Black pepper may be the leading flavor here but the smoke also has a creamy feel to it and there are other moderating flavors to notice like tobacco and coffee with cream. Black pepper really is the leading force in this cigar though and I’m thankful for that. It may be a bracing flavor for some but I like it… a lot.
Entering the second third I thought that there was going to be some flagging of the black pepper flavor but there was no such thing. It’s quite astonishing that something so simple, black pepper, could be so enjoyable but that is where I’m at. Black pepper isn’t the only flavor I have observed. There are also flavors in the nut spectrum and creamy coffee. Very good mix of flavors but without a lot of complexity and, so far, no evolution in flavors.
One of the things that separates the good from the great cigars for me is how the flavors manifest themselves. With great cigars the flavors are strong and clean and those little flavor molecules permeate around every taste bud wrapping them in a tasty cocoon. This is one of those cigars.
Unfortunately, as is sometimes the case when there is one predominant flavor, even when that flavor is a great example of its archetype, it can become too overpowering by drowning out the other flavors. That happened with this cigar a little ways into the final third. My cocooned taste buds have become numb to all the other flavors and has decreased my enjoyment of this cigar a little bit.
Overall, I can safely say that I have enjoyed this medium-full bodied cigar with its good draw and burn, which only required minor course corrections a couple of times. If there had been a little more complexity and evolution to the flavor profile this would have been an amazing cigar. As it stands it is still a great cigar because it is one of the best examples of black pepper that I have had in a long time and there was enough complexity in the early goings of this cigar to make it interesting. If you can find some then do yourself a favor and pick a couple up.