Origin : Nicaragua
Wrapper : Connecticut
Binder : Sumatran
Filler : 5-year aged Dominican and Nicaraguan
Source : Purchased from Famous Smoke Shop with my own funds
I am going to do a little different write up for your reading pleasure today along with doing this vertical tasting of the Journeys line of cigars.
Journeys are a cigar made by Flor De Gonzalez using 5-year aged Dominican and Nicaraguan fillers, Sumatra binder and a Connecticut wrapper. These cigars come in three sizes: Robusto (50×5.5), Toro (50×6.0), and a Churchill (50×7.0). In the video I will be smoking the toro size but will also talk about the other sizes and compare and contrast along the way.
As far as I can tell these cigars are an exclusive to Famous Smoke Shop.
When looking at the Journeys cigars I notice that every one of them is pretty veiny and has a very silky texture to it. I am only getting natural tobacco from the wrapper and foot of all the ones I have smoked.
I have to remark about the bands on these. I think they are a nice looking band but it doesn’t seem like the paint is sticking very well in certain places. In the first part of the video where I show you the band, you may be able to see how the white doesn’t look like it is fully printed on the label. It will have no effect on the quality of the cigar itself, but some people are very interested in the bands for doing craft projects, etc.
Fired up my torch lighter and put the flame to the foot. Lighting these has been very easy on all nine I have smoked.
Upon lighting up my Journeys, I am first hit with a bit of natural tobacco and some mild pepper tastes. I will say, the robusto really comes right out of the gate with the full on pepper taste, while the churchill is even more relaxed than this toro with the flavor being even less present in the beginning.
Coming to the end of the first third and I am getting a bit of nuttiness along with a lot stronger pepper. In the robusto it was very hard to distinguish separate flavors due to the pepper being so strong, at least for me. When I smoked the churchill I was getting some nuttiness along with a milder black pepper and some earthy notes in the first third. All of them dropped the natural tobacco flavor after the first few puffs.
I will note that I do not use spices on any of my food unless absolutely necessary. I do not use salt or pepper on a regular basis, so this could be why I could not get past the pepper taste in the robusto to pick out other flavors.
Starting into the second third of my Journeys cigar and the pepper taste is picking up a bit but in this toro size, and the churchill, I would still call it a mild cigar. I would point out that the robusto had an abundance of pepper from the third puff or so that made the body seem almost medium to me.
Finishing out the second third the pepper was of course in the forefront, but I am still getting a bit of nuttiness out of the cigar. I can taste that unknown spice a little bit yet also. I got about these same flavors from the churchill, but as stated above, the robusto was all about pepper. I am noticing a roughness at the back of my throat that makes me want to keep clearing a frog out of there.
So far this cigar is at most a medium with a full flavor profile due to the pepper.
Ash has been holding on for between a half of an inch and an inch but I’ve got a pretty thick mascara burn line with the toro and churchill’s that I have smoked. I honestly can’t remember about the robusto but i have no notation in my notes about it being there so I am thinking the burn line was fine.
As we enter the final third of the Journeys vertical tasting, I am confronted with the blasts of pepper that have built from the beginning. I am hoping it settles down a bit as I smoke through, but it does not look like it will. I am getting the roughness at the back of my throat like stated above also and I do not enjoy that very much.
Winding up this Journeys cigar just a bit early because it is getting really overpowering with pepper and a little bitter. I have had this problem with most of them but the churchill had the most noticeable bitter ending of all.
After all the Journeys were smoked, I have to say I liked it. I would not pick up boxes to keep around for a daily smoke but if I found them on sale, I would snag some for when I am in the mood for a good mild-medium cigar with pepper.
I would vote the Toro as my favorite just because the robusto was a bit much the whole way through and the churchill really got bitter towards the end and also it started pretty slowly.
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Purchase this album –Greatest Hits: Journey
6 thoughts on “Journeys – A Verticle Tasting”
Hey Mike, I’ve been enjoying your contributions to Stogie Review. Keep up the great work, dude!
Good Job. Nice review.
Hey. I like the vertical tasting idea, and unless the difference in size equates to a marked difference in taste, best to summarize the differences and review in video the size you most liked. Like you did.
I hear ya on that “frog in the throat” phenomenon. I find it, often times, a little annoying. It doesn’t generally compromise my enjoyment of the stick, but it’s still not a sensation I find particularly pleasurable. I have found that drinking fruit juices really helps with the tingling and sometimes scratchy feelings. I have been told by some frequent smokers that drinking juices can lead to phantom psuedo flavors in the stick. I disagree with this. In fact I feel the natural sweetness of juices brings out the natural tobacco flavors without masking more subtle flavors. In any case, juices will coat your throat and help with the scratchiness in my experience. Also better for you then coke 😉 (just kiddin man lol). Anyways, great review as always and keep up the good work.
PS. I am buying you a quieter clock, holmes lol.
Nice and right to the point review Mike. I think I would like this cigar for a change of pace. Once in a while, I like something a bit more on the mild but not boring side.
I think all of the Famous exclusives are way over priced. Like you said, it was a decent cigar; but give me 90-$100 and I’ll be able to find some pretty damn good smokes. I remember getting a sampler where all of the cigars were Famous exclusives and I only could stand one of them. I don’t want to come off as a cigar snob, but it’s stupid to me for Famous to be selling these unknown brands for any amount over $50. This doesn’t seem like a bad smoke, but it definitely doesn’t look like it’s worth seeking out. Thanks for letting me rant, lol. And thanks for the review Mike!