There’s a chance you haven’t heard. Mexican San Andreas wrappers seem to be the new hot trend in the cigar world. As I was preparing for this review, I was able to count off, by memory, four cigars introduced at this year’s IPCPR trade show that are sporting this fashionable leaf. And yes, the cigar I’m reviewing today happens to be one of them.
I asked Willy Herrera of El Titan de Bronze about this trend when we were talking about his new Redemption Maduro. He told me it was an “accident” that he was part of this new wrapper craze, that he didn’t realize just how much Mexican wrapper was going to be display at the show.
The El Titan De Bronze Redemption Maduro will be available in the same vitolas as the Sun Grown Habano, and carry MSRP’s in the $6.50 to $9.00 range (before taxes, of course). If you’d like to know more about the Redemption Maduro, I can think of no better source than the Bronze Titan himself in our recent IPCPR interview. Check it out if you haven’t. Now let’s get smoking.
Size: 5 x 50
Wrapper: Mexican San Andreas
Smoking Time: 1 1/2 hours
Price: MSRP $7.00
When I had my first look around the El Titan de Bronze booth at IPCPR, I was a little disappointed. I didn’t see any new cigars. But then Willy grabbed a Redemption from the decorative cigar molds and started talking to us about his new Redemption Maduro. From a distance, it looks very much like the Redemption Sun Grown Habano. The same two white bands, and wrappers that even side by side are a little tough to tell apart (I am looking at both as I write). Fortunately, the second band takes out all the guesswork, plainly stating that you are in fact holding a maduro cigar in your hands.
As I mentioned, the wrapper is a little darker than the Sun Grown, and appears to be a little oilier as well. The wrapper had few veins (some with a twisted appearance), and showed no signs of damage, in spite all the extra handling involved with being trade show samples. Testing the firmness of the cigar, I found it to be uniformly nice and firm.
The wrapper had a potent aroma of rich chocolate and compost and the cold draw offered up sweet cocoa flavors.
There was not a lot to complain about in the burn department. The cigars I smoked for this review burned evenly, and produced a reasonably solid (though slightly flaky) white ash. I never had to relight or touch up any of the cigars and the draw was flawless.
The only glitch was a cosmetic one. One cigar formed a hairline crack in the second third that was large enough to notice, but had no impact on the evenness of the burn or the volume of smoke provided by each puff. If I weren’t keeping a close eye on the cigar for this review, I might not have even noticed.
There was no delay in the delivery of rich flavors with the Redemption Maduro. In no time I was in the thick of a full, but complex combination of flavors that kept me thinking about how to put them down in words. At one point, I noted cocoa, nuts, coffee, Earl Grey tea, sweetness and pepper as I rolled the smoke around and slowly exhaled. My previous experiences with that “gamey” Earl Grey flavor weren’t positive ones, but it seemed to work in this combination, possibly because it wasn’t a dominating element.
In the second third I started to notice more of what Senior Cigar Technician, Dogwatch Dale coined “Nicaraguan Zing” in the flavor profile. The coffee flavors seemed to come out more at this point and were often creamy and sweet, and that Earl Grey element was long gone. It also struck me how long the finish was, starting with pepper and easing into espresso.
Just a bit before the final third the flavor shifted toward bittersweet chocolate and pepper and was pretty consistent right through to the end, with the occasional pocket of sweetness.
The price for the Redemption Maduro is a tad higher than the Sun Grown Habano, but I still think it’s reasonable for this cigar.
I’ve been a fan of the Redemption Sun Grown Habano for a while and the new Maduro did not disappoint. If anything, I like the Maduro even more than the Sun Grown. Good construction and burn, and full rich flavors that will wake you up and keep you interested for the duration. Given the cigars smoked for this review were IPCPR trade show samples that had maybe a week to recover from the mayhem of the show and a prolonged stay in a FedEx box, I have high hopes for what we’ll see on the B&M shelves when the orders arrive. And I have my suspicions that they may be even better with a little aging.
Liked It: Yes
Buy It Again: Yes
Recommend It: Yes, but it may be a bit potent for mild cigar smokers.
Tower of Burn
Here for your viewing pleasure is my trademark Tower of Burn.