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!
Coronado By La Flor Maduro **
I don’t recall where I got this, and I’m not sure how long I’ve had it, but this Coronado By La Flor Maduro tasted pretty well aged. It was chocolaty with some subtle vanilla notes, but still had grass, pepper, coffee and cedar notes I expect from La Flor Dominicana products. I really enjoyed it.
D’Crossier Imperium Class Vintage Taino *
I’ve smoked through a number of samples and my experience with the D’Crossier Imperium Class Vintage Taino has been mixed. It has some good medium bodied flavor such as wood, earth, roasted nuts, coffee and some milder sweet spices. But I also noted some sourness and an unpleasant mineral quality at points which kind of turned me off. And there were some burn problems. Overall, it’s a pretty good smoke, but it has its quirks.
Padilla Reserva Maduro Toro * **
Like the Coronado above, I believe I picked this Padilla sample up some time ago as well. (They were laying next to each other, which is a good sign.) I’ve had some Padilla cigars in the past where the power seemed to fight for position with flavor, but I’m happy to say this smoke was all about flavor, as it should be. I enjoyed the rich profile of chocolate, caramel, mocha and pepper with light touches of vanilla. Great smoke, I could smoke a box of these.
Sindicato The Sindicato Corona Gorda *
Samples of the this new release from Sindicato arrived a few day or two ago, and I immediately lit one up. Ordinarily I like to give cigars a little time to get over their mail lag (the cigar equivalent of jet lag), but I had a hunch I should smoke one right away. It was a good hunch, the cigars were in perfect condition, and the one I lit up smoked beautifully. There was a lot of sweetness to it, and it was a fairly unique, something like a mix of butterscotch, vanilla and syrup with a hint of bubble gum. Aside from that I noted wood, pepper, cinnamon, coffee and black tobacco. It also had plenty of power to it, which made me regret going light on breakfast a bit. A really well done cigar, I’d recommend it.
Tatuaje Black Corona Gorda
Spoiler: The Tatuaje Black Corona Gorda is delicious. I knew I should have just bought the jar when I bought it. It’s a little late to pick up one at my local shop now, but one of our sponsors, Smoke Inn, still has jars in stock. If you haven’t tried one yet, you should. The one I lit up had a great profile of roasted nuts, honey sweetness, caramel, earth, wood, hints of vanilla and of course spices. Definitely jar-worthy.
Viva Republica Rapture *
Jason Holly came through town recently and handed me some of cigars he made with Guillermo Leon of La Aurora. I was familiar with the name from social media, but until I never had one. I can see the influence of La Aurora in the profile, but it strikes me as more aggressive blend than you would ordinarily expect from La Aurora. I tasted bread, leather, wood, cream, sweet grassy acidity, white pepper and an orange-like sweetness. It’s a pretty solid smoke.
Zino Platinum Scepter Series Grand Master
As I was smoking this Grand Master, I was reminded of a tasting seminar some years ago in which Henke Kelner said that he intentionally designs his blend to have a certain amount of acidity to stimulate the salivary glands of the smoker. His plan was working. In addition to the acidity, I also noted the customary Davidoff funkiness, cream, pronounced cedar, bread and occasional syrupy sweetness.
* 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. If there’s such a thing as a tactical Krispy Kreme, Ben probably owns it.
** 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.