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!
Cigar Federation Blessed Leaf Kairos *
I didn’t read up on the Blessed Leaf Kairos blend before I lit it up, and I was expecting another bold Ezra Zion offering, like The Collective I featured in last week’s Week in Smoke. I was in for a surprise, it’s considerably different, but not in a bad way. I noted earth, a creaminess that reminded me of nougat, cedar and nuts with the occasional hint of sweet vanilla. The Blessed Leaf Kairos is a thoroughly enjoyable smoke.
Crux Passport Corona Gorda *
It’s been a good week for smaller ring gauge cigars. The Crux Passport is one of three in this Week In Smoke that measures 45 or less. Of course it’s fine to buck the large ring gauge trend, so long as the cigars you choose deliver in the flavor department. This cigar had that covered without difficulty. Cedar, roasted nuts, cream, butterscotch, a touch of leather and some hints of vanilla. The Crux Passport is a great cigar, one I’d recommend trying.
Illusione Epernay La Elegance
Let me just start off by saying I love this size. It measures up as 5 3/4 x 40, a little fatter and shorter than the much loved Lancero, but more elegant (and more wrapper leaf impact) than a robusto. The line was named for a Champagne region of France, and I could swear I pick up something akin to champagne or a white wine in the profile. But that could just be the power of suggestion. Aside from that, I noted creamy flavors, toffee, cedar, a light fruit sweetness, white pepper and subtle hints of vanilla and graham. Every time I smoke one of these, I wonder why I don’t do it more often. They’re fantastic.
Viaje Satori Zen **
I don’t recall exactly how old this midnight-black, box-pressed figurado is, but I think I bought it in a shop in Scranton when I was in Pennsylvania nearly four years ago. Time flies, but it can also do wonderful things to tobacco. The smoke this aged Satori produced was rich and chocolatey, with nuts, wood and subtle pepper. Unfortunately the draw was a little tight, so some of the finer points of the cigar may not have come through, but I’d happily smoke it again if I had the opportunity.
Viva Republica Guerrilla Warfare *
Jason Holly handed me this cigar one evening at my local B&M during a quick tour of Atlanta’s numerous cigar shops. I had heard of the brand, but up until now I’d never actually had one. I usually start with a robusto-sized smoke when getting acquainted with a new cigar line, but this petit corona was a great starting point. The cigar provided a pleasing profile of earth, cream, oak and roasty notes with a touch of spice. My interest is piqued, I’ll have to investigate further.
* 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. All your base are belong to us.
** 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.