Liga Privada T52 Flying Pig Short Cigar Review

September 23, 2013 · Posted in Cigar Review, Short Cigar Review · Comment 

Wrapper: Stalk-cut Habano Connecticut    |   Binder: Brazilian Mata Fina   |   Filler: Nicaraguan, Dominican & Honduran   |   Box of 12: $144.90; Single: $16.10  |   Perfecto   |   4.125″ x 60

Liga Privada T52 image

Liga Privada T52 Flying Pig (click on picture for more info from Drew Estate)

0/3: I received this cigar as a Christmas gift from a friend named Danny (Danny was gracious enough to do reviews for the Declaration by Jameson and the Sencillo Short Churchill a while back and those reviews are definitely worth checking out) almost two years ago and I have been anxiously waiting for the perfect time to smoke this cigar. However, the longer I thought about what that perfect time actually was I realized that the “perfect time” for what is by all accounts a great cigar would be a time when I can just sit down and enjoy it.

If you haven’t seen one of these cigars then all you have to do is think of what a cigar would look like if it were a pig. It’s short and stout and the foot terminates in a snout. Also, there’s a pigtail. This cigar has a ton of oil on it, it just glistens in the light. The wrapper does have a somewhat rough texture to it but the overall feel of the cigar is that it is an extremely well made cigar with just a bit of give to it when I pinch it. Now, I’ll warn you, I’ve been looking forward to lighting this cigar up so that might color my review but I’ll try to not let that happen.

Another reason why I am looking forward to smoking this cigar is because I have absolutely loved other T52 vitolas in the past, giving one a score of 94 points and I even made it my third favorite cigar of 2011.

1/3: It’s starting out as an extremely slow burning cigar, which is nice because if it were going fast then I wouldn’t get to savor this cigar. Savoring is something you need to do with this cigar that features chocolate, earth and a whole host of dark flavors that mingle well together. There is a nice helping of spice that serves as a superb accent flavor.

2/3: I didn’t think it was possible but the flavors are improving as they are working even better together now. I like the lively interplay between the spice and the chocolate especially. There’s also some meatiness there and I think I’m catching some mint in the background.

3/3: The final third was pretty close to the second third and that is fine by me because it was absolutely delicious.

4/3: Full bodied with a good draw and a decent burn that required a few touch ups; the Liga Privada T52 Flying Pig is an absolutely amazing cigar. It has all the power and substance of the rest of the T52 but in a concentrated form that never relents. Perhaps this cigar isn’t for most beginners but there’s just so much goodness going on here that I would hate for anyone to miss out on experiencing this cigar because they were trepidatious about the strength of this cigar.

5 out of 5 points – If you find these cigars then you should buy a couple, they may be expensive but they are definitely worth the price

La Hermandad Short Cigar Review

September 17, 2013 · Posted in Cigar Review, Short Cigar Review · Comment 

I received this cigar from the manufacturer, Primer Mundo Cigar Company; as always, all reviews are my own

Wrapper: Brazilian Arapiraca    |   Binder: Nicaraguan   |   Filler: Nicaraguan   |   Box of 24: $218.40; Five Pack: $45.50   |   Toro   |   6″ x 52

La Hermandad cigar logo

La Hermandad cigar logo (click picture to go to the company’s site)

0/3: Dark brown wrapper with a waxy, oily feel to it. There aren’t many veins here and the cigar feels well made to me with no soft spots if, perhaps, a bit under packed, which isn’t a bad thing by any means. (I must also note that while the cigar I’m smoking is most definitely 6″ x 52 there is no corresponding size on their site. It’s either a typo or there was a change in the vitolas they now officially offer.)

1/3: There’s a great sweetness coming through, which is probably due in no small part to the Brazilian wrapper’s influence. Bright sweetness to be more specific with a definite grape flavor going on. There are also some woody notes as well.

2/3: A misting a chocolate is coming through here as well as some mint as well. Unique mix of flavors and, so far, it’s enjoyable.

3/3: Chocolate still coming through. Mint is still kicking around as well. Also a bit of graham cracker.

4/3: Medium bodied with a good draw and burn; the La Hermandad is a good cigar. There is a bit of an aftertaste with this cigar that isn’t wholly enjoyable but the flavors are undeniably good.

3.5 points – Good cigar after a nice dessert

Carlos Toraño Casa Toraño Maduro Cigar Review

September 13, 2013 · Posted in Cigar Review · Comment 

The cigars for this review were provided by Thompson Cigar; as always, all reviews are my own

As you may know, I studied Spanish in high school for three years so I’m pretty good at it now and that is why I know “Casa” means “home.” I think. Well, that’s not really important. Or maybe it is! Here, from the Toraño website:

Casa Toraño appeals to all the senses. The Ecuadorian-Connecticut (or USA Connecticut maduro) wrapper is delicate, silky, and smooth. The binder is especially selected from the Toraño farms in the hills of Nicaragua; and the filler is a combination of Honduran, Nicaraguan, and a family blend of Central and South American tobaccos. Originally the Toraño´s private family blend, the Casa Toraño was made available to the smoking public and has received an enthusiastic reception.

So it was the family’s private blend; that’s cool. One could even say it was their “house” blend.

Looking at it you wouldn’t necessarily think it was anything particularly special. While it feels uniformly packed and there are a decent amount of oils on the dark brown wrapper it isn’t a smooth cigar. I’ve referred to cigars that look like this in the past as being “rustic” and that applies here. Lots of noticeable veins, some peaks and valleys and there are some stretch marks on the wrapper.

Carlos Toraño Casa Toraño Cigar

Picture: Carlos Toraño Casa Toraño Cigar (click to buy this cigar from Thompson)

Cigar Stats
Vitola: toro
Length: 6 ¼”
Ring Gauge: 50
Wrapper: USA Connecticut Broadleaf Maduro
Binder: Nicaraguan
Filler: Nicaraguan & Honduras & S. and C. American Friends
Price: $75.00/Box of 20 | $6.36/Single

Grace Potter’s Stars Conflagration!

This cigar starts out very well with notes of woodiness, mint and an overarching savory sweetness. It’s a good mixture of above average flavors that isn’t abrasive in the least.

Usually, when someone makes a point of saying there isn’t anything offensive or “abrasive” about something that is usually immediately followed by some variation of “but it’s boring.” This isn’t a boring cigar as the second third makes some pretty nice progressions. For example, the sweetness and woodiness have melded together very nicely and some mesquite is now coming through.

With the final third you will notice a pretty significant change. A dark earthiness starts to come through and it crowds out that savory sweetness that was such an important part of the first two thirds. Mesquite is the other major flavor at the end as well. (And, yes, I know that mesquite is a type of wood but earlier on in the cigar the woody flavor was more of a general woodiness.)

Medium bodied with a good draw and burn; the Carlos Toraño Casa Toraño is an enjoyable cigar featuring primarily savory sweet flavors until that earthiness kicks in during the final third. Interesting cigar and I’m glad that I smoked it.

89 points

Room 101 Namakubi Cigar Review

January 7, 2013 · Posted in Cigar Review · Comment 

For whatever reason I had assumed that I had reviewed this cigar for some time now. I went on reviewing other cigars and then, one day, while smoking another Namakubi, I decided to see what my review said. To my surprise there was no review. I mentioned this at the end of my Top 10 Cigars 2012 post and now I am rectifying that oversight.

This one is the very short vitola, called the Roxxo, and it is easily my favorite in the line. It doesn’t look perfect, perhaps a little rustic. There’s some bumps and veins and the color of the wrapper is a lighter than medium brown color. It has a little bit of oils on the wrapper and looks well made (well made at the Camacho factories by the way).

Here’s a little something from their website:

Although in many ways long gone, Samurai culture is believed to live on in spirit within certain groups. In ancient times when two Samurai clans would gather for competition there was a great deal at stake. Normally, the losing party would die as a result of wounds sustained in battle or be executed upon defeat. The Namakubi, or freshly severed head of the losing party would be prepared on a wooden tray then tagged in a regimented manner and presented to the leader of the winning clan as a gift. We, as modern day samurai, present to you our own Namakubi.

NamakubiCigar Stats
Vitola: short robusto
Length: 4”
Ring Gauge: 48
Wrapper: Criollo
Binder: Honduras
Filler: Dominican and Honduran
Price: $126.00/Box of 20 | $35.00/5 Pack

Animal Farm Blast Furnace!

I don’t get to say this much about cigars but this one has a refreshing flavor profile. Bright flavors but also very strong. Visceral spice, which could be too strong and unruly on its own, is retarded by what I can only describe as minty effervescence (I spelled “effervescence” correctly on my first try! Now if I can only learn how to spell “occassion” [sic]). With the larger vitolas I think the flavor profile skews too far towards the minty pole but with the smaller ones the balance is just right.

During the second third the spice gets notched up a peg or two and vice a versa for mint, which is fine by me. There’s also some oak that comes on during this third. Basically, this is still a bright and refreshing cigar. Very enjoyable.

The final third isn’t refreshing but it’s still enjoyable (to a lesser degree than the first two thirds however). The spice has fallen into this milieu of mint, bread and perhaps a little meat and earth as well. Unfortunately, more flavors doesn’t always mean that the flavor profile has improved; this is one of those times. Still good, I just preferred the refreshing profile from the first two thirds.

Full bodied (just barely) with a good draw and burn; this cigar was a definite joy to smoke during the first two thirds and finished unspectacularly. In no way is that a condemnation of this cigar because even if the cigar had only had the flavor profile of the final third it would have been a very good cigar. Add in the first two thirds, which were excellent, and we have a great cigar.

91 points

Padrón Serie 1926 80 Years Maduro Short Cigar Review

February 12, 2012 · Posted in Cigar Review, Short Cigar Review · Comment 

Wrapper: Nicaragua   |   Binder: Nicaragua   |   Filler: Nicaragua   |   Box of 8: $250.00 | Single: $31.00   |   Perfecto   |   6 ¾″ x 54

0/3: That price for a stick is misleading. I paid about $40 for this one at a local B&M and I’d bet that there are places around the country that charge more than that for one of these special edition Padrons. But that’s the way it works, right? When you limit production and create scarcity the prices will necessarily rise; this only happens if the cigar is good, of course.

It is a beautiful cigar to look at. The perfecto shape is one that I particularly like in a cigar because they look special and I have had a lot of luck with this vitola. It has a box press and the wrapper is toothy. There are no raised veins and the wrapper has a chalky, dark brown color.

1/3: After lighting this cigar I am immediately hit by just how much is going on. Bold spice with a light complexion starts off but then fades some during the first third. Rich earthiness with some chocolate takes over. Sweet mint note as well.

2/3: Very complex flavor profile with an above average level of evolution. It has gone from strong yet balanced spice to deep earth and chocolate and now, during this middle third, leather and acute beef notes. A dash of sweetness is lurking in the background like a scared kid at a playground where a bunch of older kids are playing but even with that tertiary role the sweetness does provide some balance to this cigar.

3/3: The flavor profile becomes a bit drier during the last third. A little bit of spice coupled with a faint woody note. It’s an interesting ending that I’m not quite sure was as excellent as the first two thirds of this cigar. Still good, just not as excellent.

4/3: It is a great cigar and a worthy tribute to Jorge Padron. Medium-full bodied with nary a moment of rest for the flavors. The burn and draw were both perfect. This is a special cigar and I cannot imagine many cigars being better.

5 points

PS: For an alternative opinion check out this.

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