Thanksgiving is nigh, and it’s time to take into account the things we are thankful for. My list includes the usual suspects: friends, family, health, gainful employment, fine cigars, good beer and barrel-aged spirits. (Not always in that order, but close enough.) But I’d also like to thank the people who visit Stogie Review and our sponsors for supporting us all these years. I know I speak for the rest of the guys when I say that we really appreciate you.
And now, before I eat a bunch of turkey and slip into a coma… 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 cigar 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!
EP Carrillo Cabinet Toro
A new EP Carrillo cigar appeared at my local B&M this week, one of two that debuted a few months ago at InterTabac in Europe. (The other, the New Wave Connecticut Reserva, I covered in the last Week In Smoke.) And of course, I basically lit it up right off the truck. Sometimes being in a hurry to try the latest cigar can bite you though, and it may have in this case. The flavors were mostly good, I noted coffee, caramel, toast, espresso, chocolate, pepper, allspice and molasses. But there were also some sour notes midway through and a touch of something I’d have to describe as medicinal. The majority of the cigar was pretty enjoyable, but I’m going to give the Cabinet a little time to acclimate to its new environment before I revisit it. I think a little rest will do them good.
La Flor Dominicana Limitado V
I’m not sure where I picked up this Limitado V, but it surprised me. But not in terms of burn, construction or flavor. It burned well, and the flavor was the rich and savory combination of grass, pepper, leather and spices I expected. It was the power, or perhaps more accurately, how much it affected me. It gave me the sweats. That hasn’t happened in quite some time, even after smoking The Digger. I was probably a little dehydrated or hungry at the time (or both), but regardless, it was a fine cigar I’d happily smoke again, but maybe not on an empty stomach.
Leccia Black Robusto * **
I found an old Leccia Black sample from last year, and I thought it’d be fun to see what time has done to it. It still had plenty of that fire-cured smokiness and charred wood, but it also had more syrupy sweetness and creaminess than I remembered. Time was definitely kind to this cigar, and I think it’d be worth setting some aside to age if you have extras.
Nat Sherman 1930 Inmenso
Ordinarily I tend to shy away from hefty cigars like this 7 x 56 1930 Inmenso from Nat Sherman, but a friend told me he thought it smoked better than the smaller sizes. That’s the kind of thing I want to verify with personal experience, so I lit one up for science. He might be onto something. The problem is, this stick had a tighter draw than his (as well as other 1930’s I’ve had), so it’s difficult to be certain based on this experience. However, it was a good smoke flavor-wise. The profile was very creamy and bready to start, becoming more toasty as the cigar burned. Along the way it also offered cinnamon, sweet spices and an interesting but short-lived berry note. I liked it, I think I’ll smoke another sometime soon and hope for a better draw.
Sindicato Maduro Toro *
I really enjoyed the original Sindicato, and smoke them whenever I find them, which isn’t as often as I’d like. So this sample arriving in the mail was a very welcome surprise. I lit it up with my fingers crossed, hoping it’d be as good as the original. And it nearly was. The profile is one of cocoa, coffee of varying intensity, pepper, earth and cedar with subtle sweet notes like butterscotch and vanilla. While very good, I think the original edges it out slightly. It’s a tough call, I’ll probably need to smoke another one of those to be sure. Either way, definitely recommended especially if you’re a fan of San Andres Maduro wrappers.
* 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 rare, overpriced bourbon) 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 or instagram. If you’d like to see these lists constructed in real time, follow Brian on twitter or instagram. If you don’t, you’ll make the Fail Whale cry. And he’s ugly when he cries.