Joya de Nicaragua Antaño 1970 Cigar Review

September 20, 2013 · Posted in Cigar Review · Comment 

I’ve reviewed a few lanceros lately so I figured that I might as well do another. But before I get on with the review I would like to say a little about trying different vitolas. So, here it goes. Try different vitolas and you might be surprised in a good way. The more you know.

Rustic looking darkish brown wrapper with some oils on it. I do have to note that none of these (this is my fifth) have looked very good. Actually, each one of these I’ve smoked looks like it has gone through the ringer a few times. Veiny, bumpy, feels a bit soft and a couple of these cigars, including the one that I am set to smoke shortly, has had a crack at the foot. And there’s a pigtail on the cap.

One last thing: I have reviewed a Joya de Nicaragua Antaño 1970 before and I loved it, making it one of my Top 10 Cigars of 2012. Wow, I should start thinking about my Top 10 for 2013 soon….

Joya de Nicaragua Antano 1970

Joya de Nicaragua Antano 1970 (click picture to go to Joya’s site)

Cigar Stats
Vitola: lancero
Length: 7 ½”
Ring Gauge: 38
Wrapper: Nicaraguan Habana Criollo
Binder: Nicaraguan
Filler: Nicaraguan
Price: $110.99/Box of 20 | $31.99/Pack of 5

Walking Dead Spinoff Conflagration!

The draw is loose and, even though I like my draw to be a bit on the loose side, this is much too loose. It takes too much effort for me to get the smoke going but, when it finally reaches my taste buds, it’s pretty good. Very much like the other vitolas but with more of a moistness to the flavors. Spice, a cross between oak and cedar and leather make up the flavor profile at this point. It’s an aggressive flavor profile but, probably because of the extra effort I have to go through to get the smoke to come through, the flavors don’t stick around for very long.

I like the flavors, especially the powerful spice (with an edge of oak) but it’s just not as strong as it normally is in the other vitolas. The only conclusion I can draw is that since this is a lancero it’s having an affect on how much power is actually able to come through. In and of itself, less power is not a bad thing but, unfortunately, it’s also affecting how good the flavors are.

With the final third comes a better draw and a return to the spicy, dry earth flavor profile that I’ve come to expect from the Joya de Nicaragua Antaño 1970. It’s a good ending.

Medium-full bodied with a loose draw but a good burn; the Joya de Nicaragua Antaño 1970 starts out unspectacularly but finishes well. And I’m not just saying that I didn’t like the first two thirds because I was expecting one thing and got something else. The draw was just too loose and that significantly affected my enjoyment of this cigar and this happened with each one I tried.

87 points

Top 10 Cigars 2012

January 4, 2013 · Posted in Cigar Review, The Perfect Draw · 4 Comments 

Another year is over and that means it’s time for another Top 10. For review, here are my previous Top 10s:

A few notes of caution: 1. I didn’t review a ton of cigars in 2012 and 2. Taste is subjective. You already knew that but it had to be said. Also, this ranking isn’t just straight from my scores. Rather, I use a very unscientific methodology that includes memorability, price and my ratings of these cigars.

Without further ado, here’s my Top 10 Cigars of 2012:

10. Liga Privada Undercrown

A very solid offering from Drew Estate that made me really appreciate medium bodied cigars again. As the rest of this list will attest, I prefer stronger cigars but this medium bodied cigar hit the spot. I purchased a box and went through it too quickly. Fortunately, I still have a couple of sticks hiding somewhere.

9. Tatuaje La Dueña

I have to admit that I could have made a Top 10 with just those cigars made by My Father Cigars. This one is also in the medium bodied realm and was blended by Pete Johnson in honor of Janny Garcia.

8. Illusione hl

The “hl” stands for Holy Lance (if memory serves) and this was an excellent cigar. Gifted to me by a friend, I smoked a few of these cigars and enjoyed each one immensely.

7. 601 La Bomba

In my opinion this is the best value on this list; it’s ridiculously cheap (less than $4 a stick on occasion) and packs a ton of flavor. It is fairly full bodied but not overwhelmingly so.

6. Guayacan

Great story behind the maker of this cigar and the cigar was pretty amazing too. I won some at the Chattanooga Tweetup and was kind of indifferent about my winnings because I did not recognize the cigar in the least. And then, after a long day of smoking, I lit one up and the flavor profile just cut through the detritus like a laser through a sheet of paper. It’s a special cigar.

5. Joya de Nicaragua Antaño 1970

Full bodied, tons of flavor and a good price. This review was of the 4.5″ x 40 short corona and for months it was my go-to cigar.

4. Tatuaje Black Label

This blend has reached something of an iconic status amongst cigar smokers and for good reason. Extremely flavorful cigar hovering on the border of medium and full bodied this cigar should appeal to every smoker.

3. Padron Serie 1926 80 Years Maduro

Extremely expensive and extremely good. If you are looking for a refined cigar experience for a special occasion then you should give serious consideration to this cigar. (I’ve always liked the maduro Padrons the best but you might prefer the naturals.)

1. Tatuaje Fausto Avion 11

That is not a misprint; this year I am awarding two #1 cigars. (HACK!)  The Tatuaje Avion 11 actually scored the highest out of all cigars I have ever reviewed earning 98 points. It is an amazing cigar and I have since purchased a box, which is a rarity for me for a cigar that is this expensive (like many cigar smokers I buy in ones and twos and, sometimes, threes). Full bodied, spicy and loads of flavor makes this one of my two most favorite cigars I have ever had the pleasure of smoking.

1. La Flor Dominicana Litto Gomez Diez 2012 Chisel

In a cigar of equals this is perhaps the most equal cigar I have ever smoked. Even though I gave it a rating of 97 points, which is one point lower than the Avion 11 earned, my opinion has slightly switched where I could be swayed into saying this is my favorite cigar of all time. (But then I will smoke an Avion 11 and get swayed a little in the other direction.) Like the Avion 11, this cigar is full bodied, spicy and has loads of flavor packed into it. Like the Avion 11 it has a special shape (trademarked in the Chisel’s case). Basically, I can’t go wrong with either of these cigars so I’m giving them both top honors this year.

LFD Litto Gomez Diez Chisel (click picture to go to La Flor Dominicana's site)

LFD Litto Gomez Diez Chisel (click picture to go to La Flor Dominicana’s site)

Cigars I didn’t Review but they Deserve Recognition

I smoked these cigars but, for whatever reason, I didn’t review them. That’s an oversight on my part and one I intend to rectify as soon as possible.

  • Cromagnon Aquitaine: Superb cigar and I liked it better than the original CroMagnon (which was 7th on my 2011 Top 10)
  • Room 101 Namakubi: This was just one of those cigars that clicked for me and when I was smoking one late last year I went to check my review and found out that I haven’t published one. Room 101 has some excellent cigars (the Daruma just missed my list this year).

There’s probably some others that I have smoked but haven’t reviewed yet that will be strong contenders for the 2013 Top 10 but I cannot recall them at this time.

Love it? Hate it? Fortunately, there’s literally dozens of other cigar lists of varying length and quality for you to peruse. I’m not going to link to them lest you find one you like more and cease coming to this site from time to time.

Here’s to a great 2013!


Joya de Nicaragua Antaño 1970 Cigar Review

August 6, 2012 · Posted in Cigar Review · Comment 

At the end of last year I was looking for a small cigar that can be smoked in about an hour and have enough strength to stand up to walks in the park with a pair of wild chocolate Labradors. After trying a couple small cigars I came across the Joya de Nicaragua Antaño 1970 Machito.

Here’s a little about the brand from the creators:

Antaño, in Spanish, means “yesteryear”, a word that perfectly expresses the soul of the Joya de Nicaragua Antaño 1970.

Crafted as a tribute to recapture the power and essence of the puro that made this legendary brand the most sought after cigar in the United States in the post Cuban Embargo 1970′s.

Made exclusively by hand and entirely of Nicaraguan harvested tobaccos, this cigar is an ultra robust, spicy smoke with unbridled body and aroma that is best suited for the most experienced of cigar connoisseurs.

It has a dark brown wrapper with a lot of oils on it. There aren’t very many imperfections; just a couple of small veins and some other tiny blemishes. Let’s find out how it is.

Cigar Stats
Vitola: short corona
Length: 4 ¾”
Ring Gauge: 42
Wrapper: Nicaraguan Habano Criollo
Binder: Nicaraguan
Filler: Nicaraguan
Price: $140.00/Box of 50 | $16.95/5 Pack

Even More Expendable Flame!

When I first smoked one of these I was expecting something more menacing but what you do get from this cigar is quite different and very good. Spice, earth and rich wood. It’s a very gritty cigar and while it is definitely strong it’s not just about the strength. Flavors are well rounded and it definitely stands up to the elements.

The burn line does go a little awry at the beginning of this third but that wasn’t something I usually ran into… even when I would smoke one whilst walking. I’m thinking that the burn went wonky because it has been sitting in my humidor for about 10 months.

It’s still a spicy cigar during the second third and the other flavors – earth and wood – are still there but in less force. I like this mix. Also, there’s a leather flavor coming on strong during this third.

There isn’t much change during the final third, which isn’t a putdown because I like them immensely. One thing that has caught up to me is the strength. It’s fine for me but it is still a strong cigar.

Good draw with a decent burn this full bodied cigar is great and is even better if you’re looking for a cigar that takes 45 minutes to an hour to smoke. While it won’t be right for everyone, fans of stronger cigars will love this cigar.

93 points