A couple of months back there was quite the buzz about Eddie Ortega separating himself from Rocky Patel. Not long after I learned that news, I learned that Eddie Ortega was striking out on his own with a line of cigars. I’ve known Eddie for a few years now and he is always a pleasure to talk to. Because of this friendship, and that he has a good reputation among the cigar community for his previous cigars, I was eager to get my hands on the new Serie D Cigars when they became available.
Like any new cigar company, the first release was limited and distributed to a small number of shops. Fortunately, one of those retail shops, Buckhead Cigar in Atlanta, is very active on Twitter and I was able to secure a 10 count box of the No. 10 format (6.00 x 52 Belicoso).
When those cigars arrived, I wasted no time and fired one up that evening. The first puff was light on the palate but heavy through the sinus. A little too much smoke through the nose left me feeling like I had been punched between the eyes. It was a surprise, but I enjoyed it very much.
As the cigar progressed, the balance between flavor on the palate and aroma through the sinus equalized. Through the sinus, I picked up aromas of wood and a dark, musty, sort of note. Across the palate, the wrapper shined and delivered a rich maduro-esque flavor mixed with a slight bitterness. These flavors and aromas remained the same throughout the cigar but built in richness and complexity.
Leading up to this review I smoked a total of four cigars. The only real complaint that I had was that the draw seemed to vary between those samples. Two were a little on the stiff side, one was beautiful, and the last was a bit loose. Normally I might chalk this up to the cigars adjusting to my humidor, but all four cigars were smoked inside of a week.
Construction on all four cigars was solid. Coloring was consistent within the box and from head to foot on each stick. Small veins appear on the wrapper but none protruded to give the wrapper a rough texture. Caps appeared neatly applied but did tend to pull away, on occasion, while smoking. The ash was medium gray in color and held firm for about an inch before falling. The burn line was thin and mostly even.
When it was all said and done, I think that these cigars are a complete hit. I thought that I may have set the bar too high in my mind but each cigar delivered plenty of flavor and complexity. The Ortega Serie D lineup seems like it may be a little tough to track down in its infancy, but I would not hesitate to pick them up if the opportunity presented itself.