It’s once time again for another issue of Brian’s The Week In Smoke. In case this is your first Week in Smoke, be advised that it covers many (though not necessarily all) of the cigars I’ve smoked in the past week (or the past month, or however long it has been since the last issue), along with a couple of quick thoughts that came to me at the time. These are not full reviews, but quick blurbs based on a single smoking experience. As such, they may be influenced by the natural variations that occur from one cigar to another. Your mileage may vary. (If I know the cigar well enough to comment, I may mention if an experience strays from what understand to be the norm.)
An appearance in The Week in Smoke does not preclude nor guarantee a future in-depth review. Whenever possible, I’ve linked to more a thoughtful and thorough review of the cigar in question. (Or maybe I’ve linked to a photo of Jerry The ‘Stache. You won’t know until you click.) Enjoy!
Davidoff Nicaragua Toro
This entry in the Week in Smoke should come as no surprise, considering its placement on my recent top 10 list. What I said then still holds true, the creamy profile of coffee, nuts, chocolate, mild spices and honey keeps me coming back for more.
Drew Estate Liga Privada T52 Toro
This week I lit up another old favorite, and it still delivers. Tons of smoke and plenty that of rich, smoky-sweet earthiness. The only thing keeping me from burning T52’s all the time is my perpetual shortness of stock.
Drew Estate Liga Privada UF-13
Speaking of Drew Estate, I also lit up a UF-13 I’ve had in my humidor for quite some time. The rest it has had has noticeably improved the flavor, not that it was bad to begin with. The profile was the expected rich earth, smoke and sweet pepper, but there was a subtle cedar note woven into it that was wonderful. I also picked up a cherry quality to the sweetness that I don’t recall in previous smokes. I’m very glad I have a few left from this box.
Ortega Serie D No. 7 Maduro
By now I’m sure you’re familiar the Serie D Maduro. Smoking one is always a safe bet, you know it’s going to deliver great flavor at a very reasonable price. And this experience had no surprises in store, it had the thick, lingering chocolate, wood, earth, coffee, smoke and caramel notes I have come to expect from the Serie D Maduro. This is another one of those cigars that doesn’t last long in my humidor.
Porto Real Brazilian
I’m not familiar with this cigar brand, and I haven’t found a lot of detailed information about it online, but a local retailer had nothing but praise for it and its Brazilian wrapper, so I decided to give it a shot. What I found was a cigar with a lot of dense, full-bodied flavor, but also some complexity. Earth, wood, caramel, a little mustiness and a lingering sweet nuttiness are what I noted. It also burned well, producing a strong, dark gray ashes. I like it, and would be happy to smoke it again.
Zino Platinum Ron White Signature Edition *
As Atlanta faces around round of death by frozen sky water, I’m very much in a smoke ‘em if you got ‘em mood. And I can think of no better cigar to smoke right now than the Zino Platinum special edition made for walking incarnation of “smoke ‘em if you got ‘em”, Ron White. Long story short, I saw the Atlanta-based comic flying under the radar at a small comedy show held at a local brewery. Aware of his proclivity for Davidoff cigars, I gave him one of my Davidoff Nicaraguas (which he said he hadn’t heard of), and he in turn gave me one of these special editions.
The measured dimensions of the cigar placed it around 5 3/4 x 45, which is pretty unusual when it comes to vitola sizes, but the Scepter series has several 43 ring gauge vitolas (and one with a 5 ¼” length), so that could be dead on. Flavor-wise, the Ron White Edition didn’t seem vastly different from other Zino Platinums I’ve had, through probably more peppery and oaky and less creamy than the Scepter series, if memory serves me. The profile was creamy, oaky, at times buttery, with a good deal of spice and pepper up front. As it burned, there wasn’t a great deal of change to that, other than the pepper moving more into the long finish. Kind of a shame you won’t ever find these in stores, but it was great to have the opportunity to try one.
* Big Brother would have you know these cigars were gifts or free samples, and that my opinions on them is suspect. My opinions (and this bottle of rye) are my own, your response to them is your own. Every other Ron White Signature Edition in the world probably belongs to Ron White.
** I have too many smokes, and this denotes that the smoke in question has been sitting in one of my humidors for at least a year, and thus qualifies as “aged”. If my collection continues to grow, the chances are good I’ll be on that Discovery Channel show about people who hoard stuff and face eviction.
Some of the pictures in Brian’s The Week In Smoke first appeared on twitter. If you’d like to see these lists constructed in real time, follow Brian on twitter. If you don’t, you’ll make the Fail Whale cry. And he’s ugly when he cries.