Up for review this week is the Top Shelf Signature Select – Blue Label. This particular cigar is the House Blend created for Jim Cronin, owner of Top Shelf Cigars. The cigar is hand rolled in Honduras by the Tropical Tobacco Company and is comprised of Corojo 99’ Wrapper, Corojo 99’ Binder, and 98’ Criollo Filler, all of which come from the Jalapa Valley. The stick weighs in at 6.00 inches long with a 52 ring gauge.
At first glance I found the cigar to be consistent in color (rich medium brown) with a few medium sized veins. The wrapper is what I refer to as a coarse wrap (meaning I can easily see the seam spiral down the length of the cigar). When running my fingers over the wrapper I found it to be fairly smooth and lightly oily. When pinched the cigar felt very firm and completely packed with tobacco. When clipped the draw was free and produced a mild sweet flavor. All in all the cigar was very attractive and seemed to be constructed very well.
After a quick toast and light I had the cigar evenly burning and producing loads of thick flavorful smoke. The base flavor consisted of a rich tobacco flavor with sweet tones. In addition, I was also detecting a black pepper flavor that was a minor irritant to the back of my throat but seemed to round out the flavor profile very well. The finish was short and soft on the palate, only lasting for a few seconds before fading. The body was in the Medium to Full range and rounded things out very well.
Overall I think that this was a very enjoyable cigar. If I were going to pair this with a beverage I think it would go very well with a cup of coffee in the mid Afternoon timeframe. With a price point of $23.80 per 5 pack I think that they are a good buy for the money. I would definitely recommend giving them a try if you enjoy Medium to Full bodied cigars with rich tobacco flavors.
Also, these cigars are only available at Top Shelf Cigars. If you would like to give them a try, contact Jim Cronin and he would be happy to mail out your order.