Alec Bradley Prensado Short Cigar Review

November 1, 2012 · Posted in Cigar Review, Short Cigar Review · 1 Comment 

I received the cigar used for this review from Cigars Direct. All reviews are my own.

Wrapper: Trajes, Honduran   |   Binder: Nicaraguan   |   Filler: Trajes, Nicaraguan & Honduran   |   Box of 20: $175.00; 5 Pack: $47.00   |   Churchill   |   7″ x 48

0/3: Looks well made, slightly darker than medium brown in color, no noticeable imperfections on the wrapper, fairly hard packed with a soft box press. I should note that I am shocked, SHOCKED!!!, that I haven’t reviewed this line before. I thought I had (maybe that’s why I never did a review because I thought I already had).

1/3: Starts out very well. Coffee, earth and some sweet spice. It’s got a bit of strength but not so much as to overpower.

2/3: Flavors are pretty much the same as before but the spice does pick up a little in intensity. With the increase in spice it does add to my enjoyment of the cigar because the extra spice adds an extra dimension to the flavor profile.

3/3: Bitter earthiness is the main force in the flavor profile during the final third. I like it because the flavors are deep and work well with the spice and the hint of chocolate that is starting to break through now. I did have to touch up the burn line a couple of times but this is a rather long cigar and it wasn’t too much of a hassle.

4/3: It is pretty easy to see why a certain publication that has been around for two decades likes this cigar so much. Medium-full bodied with a good draw and decent burn, this cigar has a lot of flavor in what I like to refer to as the dark end of the flavor spectrum.

4.5 out of 5 points – a cigar most everyone will like

Guayacan Cigar Review

September 14, 2012 · Posted in Cigar Review · Comment 

When I went to the #CHAtweetup2012 three weeks ago (damn, it’s already been three weeks) I had never heard of Guayacan Cigars. Then fate interceded, I won a raffle, and I picked up a five pack of cigars I did not recognize named Guayacan. It was either fate or I didn’t want a shirt that would never fit me; it was an easy choice.

I didn’t think the cigars were going to be anything special when I lit the first one up a few minutes later but I quickly found out that I was wrong. That day I definitely spent more time smoking than not so by the time I lit up my first Guayacan cigar I did so because I didn’t want to waste one of the cigars I bought; I just wanted to smoke another cigar. And then something strange happened: I tasted great flavors. Wonderful flavors, flavors that I wasn’t expecting.

Well, that’s enough of this trip down memory lane. I ended up liking this cigar so much I had to meet the man who created these cigars and after meeting him I was truly impressed. Noel Rojas was born in Cuba (a place ruled by a government he has nothing but antipathy for) and was able to break out of that Hell hole about half a decade ago. Seriously, if you get a chance to meet him please do yourself a favor and introduce yourself.

His cigars are all artfully constructed with a good amount of oils and a semi-waxy feel to the wrapper. This particular cigar, the churchill, is a (mildly) box pressed cigar with a minimal amount of veins and a medium brown color to it.

Unless you act fast and get your hands on one of these churchills from the first batch produced you will never get a chance to smoke this cigar as each vitola, of which there are four, have unique blends and, starting with the second batch, the blend will be unified and based off of the blend for the current torpedo. (h/t halfwheel) Still, I have tried each vitola and there’s more similarities than there are differences so I don’t have a problem reviewing this cigar.

Cigar Stats
Vitola: churchill
Length: 7”
Ring Gauge: 50
Wrapper: Ecuadorian Habano
Binder: Nicaraguan Corojo ’98
Filler: Nicaraguan Corojo ’98
Price: MSRP $7.00/Cigar

Guayacan Twitter Torch!

The flavor profile is a nice mix of sweetness and spice. It’s a very refreshing cigar; lightness plus strong flavors. There is also some oak hanging around. Very good start to the first third but, if I do have one quibble, it’s that the draw is a little tight during this first third, which is something I haven’t noticed from any of the other vitolas.

During the second third I am getting more of the same sweet spice and that is perfectly fine with me. I am also getting this doughy flavor intermittently. The draw opens up during this third and that is an improvement but, still, the flavors were very nice during the first third as well.

As I enter the final third a floral sweetness starts to come through. It’s a good way to end this cigar because it puts a nice cap on this light, refreshing cigar. There’s still a bit of spice but it’s not a big part of the flavor profile at this point. The draw does get a bit tight again.

Medium bodied with a slightly tight draw and a good burn what I like the most about this cigar is that the flavors are very alive from the first puff to the nub. Personally, I like draws to be a little loose and every other vitola in this line had a good draw by those standards but, for whatever reason, this one was just a little tight. However, the slightly tight draw did not affect the flavors or my enjoyment of this cigar all that much. Overall, I thought that each vitola was great. Find this cigar, which probably won’t be too much of a problem now that Emilio Cigars is now distributing this cigar. I’m eagerly looking forward to trying more from the next batch.

92 points

Iron Horse Cigar Review

May 8, 2012 · Posted in Cigar Review · 3 Comments 

Full Disclosure: I received samples to use for this review. All reviews are my own.

My impression of cheap cigars is that most of them are not worth it. When I say “cheap” I mean the kind of private label cigar you can find on many websites being sold as an “everyday” kind of cigar. Basically, that translates into “It’s not a great cigar but if you smoke it while mowing the lawn or picking up dog crap you won’t think the cigar is bad by comparison.”

That was why when I received the Iron Horse from Famous my cigar id put on the brakes. Even though it doesn’t look like a bad cigar, with it’s nice maduro wrapper and few imperfections, I just couldn’t shake that feeling you get when you enter a dark room and you just know that there’s a monster you won’t be able to kill waiting to rip you open and use your intestines to do some knitting.

Oh well, let’s see how this cigar smokes.

Cigar Stats
Vitola: churchill
Length: 7″
Ring Gauge: 50
Wrapper: Ecuadorian Sumatra Maduro
Binder: Dominican Republic
Filler: Dominican Republic
Price: $50.00/Box of 20 | $19.00/5 Pack

Hilux Inferno!

It starts off well sticking mainly in the chocolate and earth flavor-sphere. The earthiness is tinged with a bit of grass and I think the best way to describe this cigar so far is by saying it’s pleasant. Being “pleasant” isn’t a bad thing but that limits the kind of role it can play. If you’re watching an episode of Top Gear then this cigar would work. If you’re outside doing something then it would probably lack enough oomph to make an impression.

During the second third the flavor goes more towards chocolate, which, while not my preferred option, isn’t horrible either. It’s a very dark chocolate flavor too; kind of chalky.

It slags off a little during the final third but, I have to admit, this cigar did perform better than I thought it would. Even though it won’t be a cigar I will ever seek out again I wouldn’t be aghast if I had to smoke another. And for those of you who want a pleasant cigar with earth and chocolate flavors this might be something you find you like.

It was a medium bodied cigar with a good draw but the burn was a little off. You pretty much already know what I think about this cigar but I do have one last piece of advice. Do not go out and buy a box before trying any of these. I have made the mistake of buying a box of cheap cigars off my experience with one or two. Try a five pack before you commit to any larger purchases not because $50 is a big outlay but because if you find you don’t like the cigar after the third or fourth stick you will be stuck with another 16 or 17 you will have to smoke (or throw away).

84 points

Oliva Connecticut Reserve Short Cigar Review

December 14, 2009 · Posted in Asides, Short Cigar Review · Comment 

Pre-Smoke

Silky, light brown Connecticut wrapper. Oily, veiny and there are a couple of dark color splotches. The feel of the cigar is a little spongy.

For this review I am smoking the churchill (7″ x 50) vitola. It costs about $7.00.

Smoke

A burnt oak flavor is the first and main flavor to start off and it is pretty good. It burns evenly and the draw is great.

The cigar stays very consistent throughout. Oak is the mainstay and, if you like that flavor a lot, then you will like this cigar a lot. It ranges from burnt to sweet but it’s oak all the way.

After-Smoke

For the Oliva Connecticut the complexity is confined to its oak flavors. It’s a fine cigar and an enjoyable enough cigar. Now, if you are thinking there are going to be a lot of flavors then you need to look elsewhere.

3 points

Carlos Toraño 1916 Cameroon Cigar Review

September 1, 2009 · Posted in Cigar Review · 1 Comment 

From the Toraño website:

    The 1916 Cameroon commemorates the beginning of a legacy with the year of Don Santiago Toraño’s emigration from Spain to Cuba. A slow burning, well balanced cigar, the 1916 is a medium-bodied blend with distinctive hints of pepper, caramel, nuts, and sweet spice. The premium Cameroon wrapper makes for a long and smooth finish which completes this irresistible smoke.

The wrapper is very toothy (lots of little bumps) so that means it is also very oily. It is somewhat veiny and a little misshapen nearer the foot. Tobacco packed well.

I had one of these a couple of weeks ago at a cigar event and it seemed like a great cigar. But, to be honest, I started smoking it after quite a bit of tequila so this could really be a horrible cigar. Something tells me it is anything but horrible though. I hope.

Cigar Stats
Churchill
Length: 7″
Ring Gauge: 48
Wrapper: Cameroon
Binder: Nicaragua
Filler: Nicaragua and Honduras
Price: around $7.00

Tequila Torch!

Extremely creamy smoke. The main flavor is a sweet vanilla that is very rich. Almost tastes like cake batter.

After a while an unexpected flavor comes in: alcohol. I don’t know how to explain it; I am not drinking any alcohol with this cigar. Sort of like that sweet taste you get from a high proof bourbon. And let me be clear, when I say this cigar is sweet I do not mean the kind of sweetness you expect from a pixie stick. It’s an adult sweetness that, upon reflection, was a perfect match for the tequila we had a couple of weeks ago.

Past the halfway point and the vanilla flavor moderates and a couple new flavors enter the mix. Spice is evident in the aftertaste and gets stronger the longer I smoke this cigar.

What I really like about this cigar is that the flavors are alive and they linger. It’s not streaky and the flavors never fade. The flavors evolve from the sweet vanilla to a more spicy flavor profile.

Actually, some black cherry flavors are beginning to check in near the end of the cigar. It is a medium bodied cigar that has a good draw and burn.

90 points

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