What the heck is an “Undercrown” anyways? As far as I can tell, before Drew Estate got it’s hands on the name the only other time in the history of mankind this term was used was for the creation of a clothing company that is “The brand for champions.” Alright, that is kind of disappointing. I was hoping that the term Undercrown had some sort of medieval history about it; maybe the Undercrown could have been an English king in exile. Even though there is no link for this name to anything historical I think it still makes sense.
According to the Drew Estate legend this cigar is the product of the creativity of their torcedores who were told they could no longer smoke as many Liga Privada cigars as they wanted. So, they did what any other enterprising employee would do and used the same tobacco to make a different cigar: the Undercrown. My only problem with this story is that just because the torcedores put the tobacco in a different cigar doesn’t mean they are smoking any less of that tobacco. I wonder what new cigars the torcedores will come up with once the bosses over at Drew Estate cut the torcedores’ personal supply of Undercrowns.
They’re solid cigars. The first one I smoked was at a cigar lounge in Fullerton and even though the air was more smoke than oxygen the cigar was pretty amazing. And it makes sense that it would taste so good when you look at it: perfect shape, the wrapper is smooth to the touch, it’s oily, evenly packed and no raised veins. Another reason why it isn’t a shocker I liked this cigar is because those industrious torcedores over at Drew Estate were Wile E. Coyote enough to put some of that delicious T52 Connecticut River Valley Stalk Cut tobacco into it. And I loved the T52.
Ring Gauge: 54
Wrapper: Otapan Negro Último Corte
Binder: T52 Connecticut River Valley Stalk Cut & Cured Habano
Filler: Brazilian Mata Fina and Nicaraguan Cuban Seed
Price:$167.00/Box of 25 | $35.50/Pack of 5
Coronal Mass Ejection Torch!
Isn’t all tobacco that is used to make a cigar cured? Don’t know why that was put in there but, hey, I just report in Cigar Stats.
When a cigar produces a tactile experience akin to smoking a pixy stick I love it. It’s almost like the flavor molecules have granulated and you can pick out each individual flavor granule. This is one of those cigars and some of the flavor granules I am picking up include: somewhat sweet spice, meat, yeasty sweetness as well and some cherry.
Pretty much the same during the second third but with some chocolate added into the mix. And that is fine. The flavors are still very good and the Undercrown is one of those easy going smokes that provides a lot of flavor.
As you near the end of this cigar the spice retreats into the background and leaves an earthy tableau in its place. Chocolate, meat and some sweetness for character. Each puff reveals some nuances to the flavor profile that puts a nice spin on the flavors I mentioned. Sometimes the flavors are more chocolaty and then at other times they are more meaty. I hate to say that the granulated effect has worn off now and in its place is creamy smoke, which is better than fine.
Ironically, this was the cigar that my friend found too strong when he first started smoking it. Personally, I think this is right in the middle of the medium bodied range. Keith, over at Tiki Bar Online, pegs this as a full-medium bodied smoke, which I think gives more credence to the thesis that strength is subjective. The draw was good and the burn was good as well, requiring a couple of minor touch ups at the end. Drew Estate’s Undercrown is a complex cigar with good smoking characteristics and enough variability in the flavor profile to keep even the most jaded cigar smoker interested for a couple of hours.