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So many of you have asked why we don’t review new cigars that we received samples of at IPCPR. I know Walt and Charlie each touched on this a little bit. Our motto is to be fair and honest when it comes to reviewing cigars. Lets be honest, the samples you get from IPCPR or from your local rep’s trunk probably aren’t stored in the most optimal conditions. Some manufacturers believe that there is a “sickness” period a cigar goes through. I don’t know the science behind it or even if there is any science behind it but when you receive a freshly rolled cigar the advice given to me by many manufacturers is to smoke it within the next day or two, possibly three days or let it sit and rest in your humidor for thirty to sixty days. So when given a sample at the show that was “just rolled in time for the show” there is a chance the cigar is in that sickness period. Like I said, some manufacturers believe in the sickness period and others don’t. We like to give every cigar a fair shake and that means waiting for a cigar to hit the shelf before we review it. Its never about being first for us, its about being fair and honest.
Don Abram Harris El Jefe – My good friend @HumidorMuse gifted me this cigar a few months back. I had forgotten all about it until recently when he asked me if I had smoked it. I have no idea who Don Abram Harris is let alone heard of this cigar before. Typically when those two things are combined, I’m a bit hesitant. Smooth and mostly earthy, slight sweetness with a nice aroma. The cigar was spongy to the touch and as typical with most box pressed cigars I had to keep my torch handy to keep it burning straight. Overall a nice cigar that I will have to try again and maybe dry box to see if that helps with the burn.
La Flor Dominicana Limitada V – One thing about having a Press badge at IPCPR is that you get into the show floor early. Sometimes though, that information doesn’t trickle down to the convention center security staff who do the badge check before entering the show floor. Such was the case one morning for Walt and I. As we waited to enter, @LFDAndrew snuck up behind me and gifted me this Limitado V. Layers. Thats the best way I can describe the Limitada V. Layers of flavors that build on each other. Combine that with the signature strength of La Flor Dominicana makes for a bold flavorful cigar that doesn’t disappoint.
La Flor Dominicana Ligero Torpedito – Thanks to @LFDKyle for gifting me this cigar as he and @LFDAndrew were visiting W.Curtis Draper recently. Beautiful oily Ecuadorian Sumatra wrapper. Creamy and smooth whose rich flavors coat your palate nicely. A bit snug on the draw earlier on but eventually opens up. Lots of smoke and like I always say, where there is smoke, there is flavors. Enjoyable till the end.
Gurkha Ghost – I think this is the first Gurkha cigar to make an appearance in my Week in Smoke series. For the most part I enjoyed the Ghost. There were a few spots where the Ghost felt a bit young and was harsh. I would be cruising along the flavor highway and bam, some harsh sour note would come out of nowhere and quickly pass. Burned beautiful with smoke billowing out of it. The amount of smoke, razor sharp burn and aroma had me confused and I thought I was smoking a Liga #9 at times. The Gurkha Ghost may have me going outside my usual channels to find and pick up. I think with a little more time, the Gurkha Ghost can be amazing.
CAO MX2 Box Pressed – At some point CAO is going to have to start paring down their portfolio. I mean its been five years since Sopranos ended right? When was the last time you smoked an Italia? With La Traviata and La Traviata Maduro is anyone really reaching for the Gold, Gold Vintage or Gold Maduro anymore? Concert, OSA Sol, La Traviata, LX2, MX2 and Brazilia. Thats the core of CAO in my opinion. Maybe the numbers say something different. The MX2 Box Pressed is an amazing smoke. The press on it really adds a twist and intensity when it comes to depth of flavors. The entire box pressed series hasn’t gotten any love and if Team CAO hasn’t put it on their calendar yet, they should consider updating the Box Pressed sampler (keep the cool packaging) like they recently did with the Champions set.
Tatuaje Little Boris – Nothing has really changed from the pre-release version I reviewed awhile ago. I will say that the first one I smoked after they were officially released wasn’t as a awesome but after letting them sit for a bit, they are everything I remembered that pre-release being. In all, the Little Boris is still the perfect cigar for me. Just enough pepper and spice without going overboard. Perfect medium in body with a balanced, smooth, full flavor profile. Lots of rich natural tobacco flavor with a slight sweetness that tempers the pepper early on. Throw in a sprinkling of creamy and nutty notes makes for a winner of a cigar. I’m hoping Pete does decide to do another batch.
Santos de Miami by Jameson Cigar Co. – I guess it was a natural progression to release the Santos de Miami is a non-box pressed version. Lovely cigar but I felt this non-box pressed version was missing some intensity and depth in flavor that the box pressed version has. This new round version makes for a pretty ordinary cigar that is missing that ‘wow’ component that the box pressed version has. Maybe this was just a bum stick that didn’t hold up from IPCPR travels.
La Resolución by Jameson Cigar Co. – I can’t leave my boy Brad Mayo hanging like that. A new release from Brad that is anything but ordinary is his new La Resolución. Beautiful caramel colored wrapper. Slight sweetness and very well defined creaminess to it with a little bit of peppery sensation on the palate. Burned beautifully. Very different from anything Brad has done to date.
Asylum 13 – 7×70…not the size for me. Lackluster and boring in my opinion. 6×60…not the size for me. Lackluster and boring in my opinion. 5×50…better and starts off with some stellar smooth coffee notes but by the halfway point…nothing. I think the 5×50 size has the most promise. When you do a big cigar in a 6×60 or 7×70 it takes a pretty amazing blend for it to work. I know I’m in the minority as everyone is doing these big sizes because they sell. For me, I’ll stick with the nuances you find in the classic sizes.
Davidoff White Edition (2012) – Two weeks in a row…still as impeccable as the first week. Yeah I know…I have a problem.