CAO L’Anniversaire 1968-1998 Maduro Belicoso Cigar Review

June 17, 2009 · Posted in Cigar Review · Comment 

Before I took a couple of months off from posting reviews I had forgotten about all the CAOs I had smoked. I’m looking through my review book and there is only this one and one more from CAO and then there are some really interesting reviews after that.

The maduro wrapper looks mostly good. There are some spots on it and there is a tear near the foot. It’s a box pressed cigar. The cap looks a little misshapen but there is a good amount of oils on this cigar.

Cigar Stats
Torpedo
Length: 6″
Ring Gauge: 54
Wrapper: USA/Connecticut
Binder: Ecuador
Filler: Dominican Republic, Nicaragua
Price: $8.00

OC Lights!

First impressions: decent draw, mild earthiness, a gritty cocoa flavor as well. Medium-full bodied. Nothing really special.

The cigar is burning evenly and there is a mild sweetness. But my overall impression of these flavors? So-so. Nothing to write home about.

Halfway through and things have not changed all that much. There’s a slight chocolate flavor that is coming through but, besides the chocolate, it’s boring. I also have to mention that it is medium bodied at this point and has been for about an inch.

Perhaps the only good thing about this cigar is that I am smoking it while watching the movie “Orange County.” It’s a hilarious movie and you should watch it. If you do pick up the DVD then the best parts, besides the movie itself, are found in the “Interstitials.” Oh, yeah, I’m still smoking a cigar.

The cigar doesn’t get harsh but it does get bitter after the halfway point. Specifically, it’s a chalky bitterness that completely ruins any good feelings I may have had about this cigar. The previous CAO L’Anniversaire Maduro I had was much, much better.

84 points

The price point for this cigar demands a higher quality cigar than this one. It’s also worth pointing out that the previous one I had scored 93 points. There really shouldn’t be this kind of disparity between scores for the same vitola of the same cigar. For my money the Cameroon line is a better choice than the maduro one.

CAO L’Anniversaire 1968-1998 Cameroon Belicoso Cigar Review

March 10, 2009 · Posted in Cigar Review · Comment 

Yes, I just did a review of this cigar last week in which I gave it 92 points. It’s a good cigar but I smoked another one and the score came out substantially different so I decided to post this review as well. Here it is:

Looks like it has a slight box press. One small tare on the wrapper, not a major concern. The cap does not look good either though, which is somewhat concerning. There isn’t that much oil on the wrapper. Just drinking water.

Cigar Stats
Torpedo
Length: 6″
Ring Gauge: 54
Wrapper: Cameroon
Binder: Nicaragua
Filler: Nicaragua
Price: $8.50

Afternoon Light!

Great draw. Decent amount of spice at first but that quickly fades into the background. The main flavors are warm and strong but by no means overpowering. Solidly a medium-full bodied cigar.

There is this mildly sweet flavor as well. Sweet and bitter. Cocoa, that’s probably the flavor. I am also getting a good amount of spice on the roof of my mouth now that I am halfway through. Man, my mouth is really watery! Not a dry smoke at all.

It’s fair to call this a full bodied cigar after the halfway point because it has gotten somewhat stronger. I’m still tagging it as medium-full but it is a judgment call for sure. Another flavor that I am getting is graham cracker – never got that flavor from a cigar before. It gets mostly bitter three-quarters of the way through though – not good.

As I am nearing the end of the cigar that bitterness gets worse. Just like something that is too sweet a cigar can get too bitter. Maybe I just smoked it too long but it’s definitely going to hurt the score.

88 points

Other Takes

My previous review of the Belicoso

My previous review of the robusto that I gave 90 points to

Alan Barber: “On a scale of 1 to 5 I would give this cigar a 2. There were small hints of flavor but the woodyness with strong hits of spice in my limited experience was just too overpowering. With the irritation I found myself experiencing I found it hard to completely enjoy the cigar when I kept needing to clear my throat and get a drink of water.” So it might be too much for a newbie.

Daniel B. Honingman: He liked it: “When I started the CAO Cameroon, I found it to have hints of cinnamon; but as I smoked it down, it smoothed out all the way to the nub. With this cigar, you’ll really able to appreciate its caramel and coffee overtones. I recommend pairing it with a cup of coffee.”

Cigar Student liked it

CAO L’Anniversaire 1968-1998 Cameroon Belicoso Cigar Review

March 6, 2009 · Posted in Cigar Review · 2 Comments 

This is the torpedo vitola and I have smoked the robusto vitola in the past. I gave that cigar 90 points, here’s what I had to say about it:

    Lots of smoke and an excellent draw. There is spice, which tastes like red pepper flakes, and the flavors are crisp – not muddied down at all. The flavors just explode on the tongue. It is medium bodied.

That was one of those I smoked a while ago so my notes were a little sparse. Here’s my review of this cigar that I thought was even better.

Milky brown wrapper. Good amount of oil with a box press, which I have grown to really appreciate. Perfectly good construction, no problems with it. Drinking Makers Mark with some water.

Cigar Stats
Torpedo
Length: 6″
Ring Gauge: 54
Wrapper: Cameroon
Binder: Nicaragua
Filler: Nicaragua
Price: $8.50

Afternoon de-Light!

Peppery and leathery. It has a perfect draw. Warm, moist smoke. Medium-full bodied with a bias towards being more full bodied.

Slightly salty undertones. There is also this molasses-like sweetness to it. Very complex array of flavors.

Inch in now. The molasses sweetness, which is very rich and deep and is actually quite good is the main flavor now. Next is spice with a small side of saltiness. Still a very most cigar and the saltiness isn’t anywhere near the point of being a nuisance.

A third of the way through and the saltiness is gone. It’s a net plus that that flavor has left but it wasn’t too much of a problem since all the other flavors are great. The burn is fairly even, haven’t had to touch it up.

Nearing the end now. I love this deep, molasses sweetness because there’s also some peppery flavors remaining. It really is an enjoyable cigar. The complex flavor profile stays for nearly the whole length of the cigar.

92 points

Other Takes:

My Previous Review

It got great ratings from Epinions.com

Blank Mind Blog gave the toro vitola a 9.3/10 saying “From the initial light up the C.A.O L‘Anniversaire 1968-1998 Cameroon Toro teased my palate with a toast and straw base and slowly built up a caramel sweetness. I noticed that the caramel revealed itself when I rested the smoke for more than a minute or two. The sweetness would last for several draws before crossing back over to the toast and straw flavor.”

CAO L’Anniversaire Cameroon Robusto Cigar Review

February 24, 2009 · Posted in Cigar Review · 1 Comment 

This is one of my older reviews but I think it matches up fairly well with my previous reviews of these cigars. I gave the maduro version of this cigar (torpedo vitola) a 93 a little over a month ago. Here is the review:

    Well crafted, I can only see one blemish. Solid brown wrapper and from a very solid lineage. Most CAOs seem to be very good.

Cigar Stats
Robusto
Length: 5″
Ring Gauge: 50
Wrapper: Cameroon
Binder: Nicaragua
Filler: Nicaragua
Price: $7.50

Ze Lights!

Lots of smoke and an excellent draw. There is spice, which tastes like red pepper flakes, and the flavors are crisp – not muddied down at all. The flavors just explode on the tongue. It is medium bodied.

Like most CAOs this is a great cigar. It might actually be better than most I have smoked.

90 points

Alright, this wasn’t much of a review. So here are some others who have reviewed this cigar:

Stogie Guys: “The flavor thankfully builds over the next few inches to include notes of almond, graham, and honey.” They thought it was mild-medium bodied and, given the price, do not think it’s a great cigar.

Her Humidor: “The cigar picks up a spicier profile in the second half as well as a leathery and vanilla spice base flavor. I had some ice water on hand to quell the heat to the back of my throat. The cigar also shows some nuttiness to go along with the aged leather flavor.” She thought it was medium bodied and, if you can get this cigar cheaply, you should go and get some.

Alright, there you go. I have some more recent reviews of this cigar in the pipeline. So stay tuned and I’ll get ‘em out!