Montecristo Open (Guest Review)

Guest Reviews Reviews16 Comments on Montecristo Open (Guest Review)

Montecristo Open (Guest Review)

Disclaimer: This review was originally published at Cigar Tower after the Habanos Festival in Cuba. This review (text and pictures) is being republished on Stogie Review with the full approval of its creator, Peter Agardi. I want to thank Peter for bringing this to our attention and for filling in for my usual slot as I was away traveling this past weekend and didn’t have time to record two videos this week.

One of the most awaited announcements during this year’s Habanos Festival was the introduction of a new series in the original Montecristo family. Although there has been a number of new sizes in the Montecristo brand, it has been 74 years since the last new line came out.

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The new cigars, called Open, will be easy to recognize as they’re all equipped with a second green band under the usual Montecristo band. The second band has two golden strokes, the golden Open label and white name printed on it. The cigars are targeted mainly at the occasional smokers, who are only smoking cigars during special events like celebrations or other freetime activities. Habanos would like to get them more involved in the cigar culture.

There are four sizes in the Open series:
– Junior: 110mm (4 1/3 inches) x 38rg
– Regatta: 135mm (5 1/3 inches) x 46rg
– Master: 124mm (4 7/8 inches) x 50rg
– Eagle: 149mm (5 7/8 inches) x 54rg

So the market goal sounds exciting and the design looks like it’s ready to support it. I was very excited to try how all these come together when I received the Junior and the Eagle, the smallest and the largest ones in the series.

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Montecristo Open Eagle

This oversized robusto has a very nice silky wrapper with a lighter tone, rolled in a good quality. It had a clear dark chocolate smell before lighting up. Since it’s a relatively fresh cigar, I expected a powerful start. However, this was not the case. After a few puffs it set it’s strength to a medium level with cedary, sweet notes. This was a quite nice aroma, rich but I wouldn’t call it too complex. It just delivered what it wanted in a clean, moderate way. I was interested to see if that changes in the second third, so I slowly continued.

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Although the draw and the smoke was perfect, I had problems with the burn quality. The Eagle burnt aside in the beginning, and it didn’t rush to correct itself. The ash as a bit loose but it had a nice texture. The cigar seemlessly entered the second third, where it was still very gentle and creamy. The aroma didn’t change a bit, it continued evenly. I guess I expected a more complex blend from a size like this, but I have to say I really liked the simplicity I got from it especially in the second third. Now don’t get me wrong: by simplictiy I don’t mean losing the quality even a bit, it just focuses on a few selected notes in a very good way. Because of this I think it’s enjoyable even for beginners as their first Cuban cigar.

The last third brought the wooden aroma in front, it got a little bit stronger and that’s how it finished. Montecristo clearly continues the trend of middle-bodied blends it set with Edmundo, but the Eagle is definitely an improved cigar that I would recommend.

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Montecristo Open Junior

The small Montecristo cigars always came as a surprise to me, as one wouldn’t expect that these are such powerbombs. Just think of the No. 5 and you’ll know what I mean. The small sized Junior cigar is no exception. You can only smell natural tobacco before you light the cigar. Also, the wrapper leafs have a more raw look then on the Eagle. The overall look was good.

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The cigar gets right in the middle after lighting. The sweetness of the Eagle can only be found in traces, the dominant notes are oak and leather. It burnt precisely leaving a strong, dark ash behind. By the second third it slowly turned into a toasty, middle-bodied smoke. The draw was good, but the agressiveness stopped the development of any clean aromas or complexity. The last third seemed a bit more gentle and creamy. Overall the Junior is a very well constructed cigar with a less interesting characteristics then the Eagle.

16 thoughts on “Montecristo Open (Guest Review)

  1. I purchased the Monte’s Open Junior and I did get the some of the traditional Monte’s flavors, but I did expect a little more. Clean burn, and nice draw.

  2. Ive just tried the Junior and was absolutely disappointed.
    It clearly shouts Montecristo – and of course it is still very young – though it doesnt really excites me, it doesnt shine. It is lighter, than classic Montecristo without the superiority and without potential.

    There are loads of cigars which are more interesting and I wont buy it anymore….

    1. I have to agree with Dominik, the draw was very light, it burnt cleanly but no real flavor to speak of, bitter tasting, it was a big disappointment as I was expecting a little more to come through but was just left with a bad taste in my mouth, last third just turned harsh. Wouldn’t buy again.

  3. I just smoked an open eagle and it was one of the best smokes Ive ever had. Tops even the cohiba sublimes from 6 years ago. Perfect size, beautiful smoke, not too spicy, just right.

  4. I tried one and I got exactly what I expected. A cigar that I would certainly not try again, but I would give it as a gift to a friend who isn’t a regular cigar smoker.

    I think the reason they created this cigar is what is said in the beginning of the review:

    “The cigars are targeted mainly at the occasional smokers, who are only smoking cigars during special events like celebrations or other freetime activities.”

  5. So I took the time to grab a Monty Open Eagle at my local Cigar shop “Cigar House” in Tbilisi (the capitol of the Republic of Georgia). The wrapper looked great. It started up nice and drew real well. I waited the customary inch to let the stogie warm-up, and it burned nice and even all around with a nice dark grey ash which was solid. Being a Maduro fan I didn’t expect this stogie to please my palate in particular. I was rather surprised as the cigar warmed-up and began to produce nice clouds of solid smoke and aroma. The taste was good and a light flavor of what I can describe as peppery flavor with light some dabs of almond in it. At least to me it did. It stayed lit even after a near five minute bathroom break…that’s bonus points from me! I hate having to re light a stogie every few minutes. It finished solid with the flavor being consistent throughout its repertoire. I give it four of five stars with one problem: the cigar is way-overpriced for its value to a seasoned cigar fan. There are numerous Dominican, Nicaraguan and Honduran cigars with far better flavor and aroma for the price. That’s my two cents gentlemen! Enjoy your smoke!

  6. Ok so I was extremely shocked at how strong the open junior cigar is, the term powerbomb hits the nail on the head in the review, wow. I shall not be purchasing 1 of those again. I have the rest of the open’s to sample yet, lets hope the open eagle is on par with the Edmundo.

  7. Just had my first Eagle today….. The cigar itself was constructed very well, a tight wrap with a nicly trimmed cap…..but like most monecristo’s even if they are stored in a perfectly run humidor their wrapper tends to peel and split a bit at the seems….. Once lit, it was a very smooth draw, with hints of wood and pepper. The smoke throughout stayed somewhat consistant in taste. As some have said, I too did expect it to have a bit more power to it……but as the brand suggests, and I need to remind myself, it is for the occassional smoker, thus… for those who smoke to smoke then those who smoke to satisfy their palate. My only dislike was that I found the burn to be very uneven, and it required the torch to even it out on more than one occassion. Overall…..nice cigar, hoping it will be better with age.

  8. I have recently bought both of the reviewed cigars and have smoked the junior. However, the junior itself was a great disappointment flavor wise. Not as disappointing as the Cohiba BEHIKE, which is easily the most disappointed I have been this year, but none the less a poor cigar in that size and price range. The junior and eagle both burnt very well and as stated the aroma of the eagle pre-torch had me expecting a complex palate. Although simple is a correct word for the flavor another would be ‘elegant’. For those looking to try the new line I recommend it to you wholeheartedly, for those looking to add either to their collection of special occasion cigars look else where.

  9. I had one in Seoul last month and its burn was very even, overall and OUTSTANDING smoke! Where do I buy them in the states? 😉

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