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!
Blancos Liga Exclusiva de Familia *
A friend gave me this Blancos Liga Exclusiva de Familia over the weekend. The last Blancos cigar I smoked dated back to before the company changed their name from “Los Blancos” to Blanco Cigar Company. With the exception of the Nine line all of their cigars were pretty mild back in the day, so I expected this one might be pretty mild as well. It did start off on the lighter end, but the body ramped up as it progressed. Flavor-wise it was creamy and sometimes chalky with notes of earth, hay and toast. Toward the end, the cigar took on a metallic flavor that detracted from the experience somewhat. It was an alright cigar, but not one I’m in a hurry to smoke again.
Casa Fernandez Miami Arsenio Serie Oro Robusto
My tour de Casa Fernandez continued with this Miami Arsenio Serie Oro. Immediately the cigar hit me with a good amount of pepper, spice and a little light anise. Shortly thereafter it backed off to a lighter profile of creamy bread and wood, developing caramel and coffee notes as it progressed. No surprise, it was a fine smoke.
El Primer Mundo Liga Miami Robusto **
It isn’t a proper Week In Smoke without at least one entry from deep in the humidor. This Liga Miami was several years old, and by “several” I mean probably closer to four years than to two. And it tasted like it, but not completely in a good way. The flavors were good- nuts, syrup, earth, dark chocolate, wood and some paprika-like spice. The problem is the body had faded a little more than I’d prefer. Still a good cigar. If I spot any more from this time in my humidor, I’m going to smoke them up quick before they fade any more.
Epicurean Carnivale Toro
With a name like Carnivale, I was a expecting a pretty wild cigar. The other offerings I’ve had from Epicurean have been pretty unique, so I figured anything was possible. It turned out to be a tasty cigar, but perhaps “indulgent” or “celebratory” would have better ways interpret the cigar’s name. But I can’t complain, there was no shortage flavor. You might call it a party of flavor. (See what I did there?) Coffee bean, leather, vanilla, chocolate, caramel and a touch of smoke. This is another Epicurean cigar I’m adding to the list of cigars to buy whenever I find them.
Kristoff Galerones Ceniza de Plata Robusto
It’s been a few years since Kristoff cigars seemed to take my area by storm. One day, no shop had them, the next, they were on every shelf. And they were also popular enough to support the flood of product, at least for a while. These days, I don’t seem them around nearly as often. So when I happened upon this Kristoff, I just had to try it. And my experience with this Kristoff is much like my experiences with them in the past- it was a good, but not overly-complex cigar. I was a little concerned when the wrapper gave off a potent scent of dark tobacco and ammonia as I slid it out of the cellophane, but that never translated into significant off flavor. The cigar started off with bold chocolate and pepper, but then settled into a richer, less intense medley of chocolate, nougat, leather and a lighter, meaty pepper.
* Big Brother would have you know these cigars were gifts or free samples, and that my opinions on them is suspect. My opinions (and all these cigars produced in the last 8 years) 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.