I’m switching things up and am going to start publishing my Week in Smoke on my Monday spot. With so much going on I like to devote as much of the weekend to family time (although as I type this I’m at W.Curtis Draper watching football). So my Thursday spot will now be my review spot on Monday will be Week in Smoke. Most don’t care either way but I’ve received a few questions about when my next review will be. In that same line of questioning I’ve been asked what I’m reviewing next and/or how I decide what to review. Well, to be honest. I don’t know what I’m reviewing next. I smoke a fair amount during the week, taking notes and after consulting the Stogie Review Cigar Index look to see what we haven’t reviewed or haven’t reviewed in awhile and go from there. I think most of us here at Stogie Review don’t know what we are reviewing until a few days before. Like I said during my October 15th appearance on Kiss My Ash Radio…you never know what we are up to.
Brickhouse by JC Newman – With so many appearances in the Week in Smoke series and amount of praise I give the Brickhouse I’ll have to sit down and do a proper review of it. Its definitely one of my favorite cigars to reach for and keep in my humidor. Its an easy and relaxing smoke. Not intimidating for the new cigar smoker but complex enough to be enjoyed by the seasoned experienced crowd as well. Well balanced and consistent from cigar to cigar with a attractive price tag.
Benji Majestuoso Partagas – The Master Series is such a special cigar. After the Partagas 150, probably one of the best cigars ever made by General Cigar and probably in any discussion for best cigar of all time. In fact I was surprised none of us mentioned it in the last episode of Your Questions, My Answers when talking about Hall of Fame worthy cigars. This is actually a Toro sized version of the Master that was made exclusively for W.Curtis Draper and the Benji Menendez event a few weeks back and its pretty close flavor wise to the original with a bit more floral notes.
Tatuaje Wolfman (Monster Series) – Who doesn’t love Hello Kitty? She’s a fixture in my house with Gracie and my wife. Maybe Pete should do a Hello Kitty cigar to appeal to the female demographic? Pete is pretty popular in Japan…it could work. And before anyone says anything about marketing tobacco to kids using Hello Kitty; first I’m joking and second, if they can make Hello Kitty adult toys why not a cigar? Just saying…As for the Wolfman, probably the most flavorful of the Monster Series to date with a lot of strength behind it. Much better than last year’s Face and a world of difference from The Drac. I’ve only smoked two and I think its pretty close to competing with The Frank for best of the Moster Series.
Undercrown by Drew Estate – The Undercrown was one of my favorite cigars coming out of IPCPR. I was sad when I ran out of all my samples from the show and had to wait till they were released earlier this month. The first I smoked after their release was a bit disappointing. I was worried that these would be one of those cases of the show samples being stellar but then actually sucking when released. After letting them rest a week and it was the bliss I remembered. Maybe it was a bad stick, maybe they just needed time to rest after being packaged. Still one of my favorites this year. I’m sure a full review will be forthcoming. Hopefully none of the other yahoos on here beat me to it.
Toraño Loyal – I keep going back and forth about the Toraño Loyal. Sometimes I really enjoy it and at other times, I’m unimpressed. Sometimes I find the “wow” factor and other times, I’m left looking for more. I can’t place my finger on it. Is this a cigar that stands out or is part of that endless list of “okay” and “pretty good” cigars. A nice smooth chocolate flavor and like Brian Hewitt mentioned in his Week in Smoke, a muddy woody flavor that I wish was a bit smoother and cleaner. Inconsistent from smoke to smoke is how I can best describe the Loyal. I still think The Master is the crown jewel in the Toraño Family lineup.
Camacho Corojo – I took a little flack in my review of the CAO OSA Sol when I said that Camacho Cigars has become a non-factor since being acquired by Davidoff. I guess I meant in the context of new releases. When hanging out at W.Curtis Draper and I assume its the same elsewhere, but the most popular question you hear being asked is, whats new? In that context, you have to admit, Camacho has been pretty quiet unless you count Room101 but I look at Room101 as a separate brand. Now the Camacho Corojo is still a gem but with so many options out there, the Corojo and for the most part, the Camacho brand is overlooked on the shelf.
Tortuga Edicion Limitada 2011 – I’ll admit. I know absolutely nothing about this cigar. I’ve never heard of the Tortuga brand let alone have any information on this Edicion Limitada. I did what I said above. I walked into W.Curtis Draper and said “whats new?” George Brightman showed me the Tortuga Edicion Limitada 2011 and said it was new so I gave it a shot. I had very low expectations but upon lighting it and after that first puff, I was intrigued. First, the Edicion Limitada band is played out. I know you see it on a lot of other brands but can’t we come up with something unique? Second, I was impressed with this cigar. Flawless construction with a complex, balanced flavor profile thats reminiscent of something out of the Davidoff stables. I liked it and can’t wait to try more.
AVO 85th – Since its release in March the AVO 85th has been a steady companion and a great cigar out of the box. Fast forward six months and its sublime. I love the unique woodsy profile. I can only imagine how stunningly beautiful this cigar will taste in another six months. Hefty price tag at $20 a piece but well worth it. No complaints as you get every penny worth.
Week in Smoke Summary:
Best Cigar of The Week – Benji Majestuoso Partagas
Worst Cigar of The Week – Toraño Loyal
Surprise Cigar of The Week – Tortuga Edicion Limitada 2011