Saturday, July 25, 2009

cubao no.6

Ok, now that im back from my trip, its time to get back to reviewing cigars! Between what I bought and what I got from friends out east, I have a ton of new stuff to review. Todays review is of the Cubao no.6, which measures in at 5.5 inches by 52 ring gauge. This is yet again another cigar blended and rolled by Don Pepin Garcia, but this one is released by United Tobacco, who are known for their 601 line (another Pepin cigar). This cigar has an Ecuadorian Sumatra Oscuro wrapper (wow, thats a mouthful) and had a Nicaraguan binder and filler. The wrapper is very oily and thick, with a rustic and slightly veiny appearance. This is a chunky cigar and is very heavy in the hand, but not overfilled. The cap on this particular cigar looks a bit sloppy, especially for something coming out of Pepin's factory in Nicaragua. I really like the presentation for this cigar, with its simple brown band. The box these come in looks great as well, with a very rustic, worn look to it. I didnt get a box of these though, just a single at a shop in New Jersey.

The predraw is very nice, with flavors of earthy, clean Nicaraguan tobacco. Upon lighting, you are assaulted with tons of earth, leather, a bit of spice, and a slightly oakey finish. I started smoking this one outside,but it suddenly got really windy and the burn started going all over the place, so i ran inside quick to finish up this review. I can't take any points (not that i rate cigars by points) off for the ragged burn since they were caused by the wind, but it seems to be evening out now that im inside. After about an inch, this cigar settled down to a nice oakey, leathery medium to full bodied smoke. At the tail end of this cigar, a cocoa flavor make an appearance, but it was subtle.

Overall, i think anyone who is a fan of the cigars Pepin makes for United Tobacco, or just a fan of Pepin's cigars in general will like this cigar. I paid $9.25 for this cigar, but i think that the shop i picked it up at had them marked up quite a bit. Ive seen these go for around $7 a piece online, and at that price, you really can't go wrong. This is one of those cigars that you definitely want a beverage handy for, as the smoke really coats your mouth. This cigar is strong enough that you could really pair it up with just about anything as far as drinks go, i had a Pepsi and that seemed to work fine. Next time i smoke one of these im going to go with a Brown Ale, Porter, or even a glass of rum. For those of you who are scotch drinkers, I think you would find that a nice single malt would really bring out the oakey flavor in this cigar even more.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009


This was the 2nd part of my trip and i figured i would do a little write up on it as well, even though its not cigar related, haha.

Friday after leaving Carlos's house, i headed north to my Aunt and Uncles house in Massachusetts for the weekend. Saturday we were invited to a friend of my Uncles beach House. This house was in Road Island, and was insane. This was probably a 5 million dollar house, no joke. Theater room, Elevator, you name it, this house had it.

We arrived and were told that lunch was ready, and to go get our lobster and start eating! I couldnt believe it. They had probably 30 2lb lobsters for all the guests, i was in heaven. We spent the day boogie boarding in the ocean and just lounging on the beach. I could live like that!
My cousin Reed, me and my Uncle Rick
The rest of the time with my family was spent hanging around the house with my 3 cousins, playing ping pong and just relaxing. Monday i drove to Ohio and am here until wednesday, and then its time to get back to reality. Overall this was a great trip!
my cousin Emily and I

Trip part 2

We started off with a Cuban Fonseca Cosacos tuesday morning before our friend Rich showed up for a short visit. Once he arrived we headed to a cigar shop where we all smoked the new Alec Bradley SCR Robusto, which turned out to be a pretty decent cigar. For lunch we went to this little Cuban restaurant for Cuban sandwiches, which was a first for me (and hopefully not the last!) Rich left a little bit after lunch and Carlos and i decided to head down to his office for a cigar since it was a bit hot out. I had the 601 Habano Robusto (another great cigar by Pepin). For dinner we went to Rio 22, a Brazlilian style steak house, where i think i ate more than any person should ever eat. To finish off the day we lit up 6 year old Fuente Opus X Super Belicosos. The age really rounded this cigar out and was great after a heavy meal.

Rich and I at Holts
We left around 9am and headed down towards Philly to meeet up with Rich again(had an El Rey De Los Habanos for the drive). We looked through his amazing humidor (aristocrat) and he sent me off with a fantastic array of cigars. After hanging out at his house for a while, we headed to Holts to do some cigar shopping and of course, have another cigar!(Tatuaje Verocu no.9) Our friend Steve was able to meet up with us at Holts (didnt get a chance to get a pic with him) and then since we were in Philly, we had to get Cheesesteaks! Steve brought me a few fantastic cigars as well. We parted ways and headed back to Jersey, Oliva V being the cigar for the drive this time. We ended a cigar filled day with 2 year old Tatuaje Unicos. Carlos had been holding onto this box for a while now and was waiting for the right time to crack it open, which apparently was me visiting!
Tatuaje verocu no.9 (holts Exclusive)
We started thursday afternoon with a nicely aged Hoyo De Monterrey Du Prince while grlling HUGE steaks for a late lunch. We then headed back to the cigar shop for a few cigars we had been waiting for them to get in all week. This was the Illusione mj12, the newest addition to the line. Of course then i had to try one and wasnt let down. For dinner we went back for more sushi, and then ended our week of insane cigar smoking with a La Flor Coronado. I took off friday morning for Massachusetts, but not before Carlos handed me a bag of cigars (because apparently he hadnt provided enough that week...) and a really nice bottle of port!
Illusione mj12

I cant thank Carlos and Eva enough for letting me stay with them for the week. I had a great time hanging out with them and their kids. Also, thanks again to Rich and Steve for the cigars!

Carlos and I enjoying a Coronado.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Trip to New Jersey! pt.1

Sunday i drove the 14 hours to my friend Carlos's house, a good friend from the cigar community. The drive was pretty uneventful, other than the bear that ran out in front of my car, and getting pulled over literally 1 minute from Carlos's house (apparently you cant talk on your cell phone while driving in NJ? at least he didnt give me a ticket) He welcomed me late last night by handing me a Cohiba Siglo I that smoked wonderfully. Today we visited 2 cigar shops, where i smoked a La Aroma De Cuba Especial, followed by a very tasty Illusione 88 Robusto.

Carlos hadnt ever had Sushi before, which just isnt right, so we went to this little sushi place and had some pretty damn good food, which was followed up with some Brooklyn Lager and a Tatuaje Cojonu 09 that he gave me. The Tatuaje was really good, not quite as good as the 03, but damn close. To finish off the night, we had this cigar made by La Flor Dominica called the Cheroot (aka Crack stick). This cigar was ugly, and man do i mean ugly! From what ive heard (this may or may not be truth) this cigar was made on a dare to Lito Gomez, the owner of La Flor Dominica. It is 100% ligero leaf, which is the strongest grade of leaf out there and is the leaf blended into cigars to give it body and full flavor, but is usually accompanied by a few other grades of tobacco to make a balanced cigar. This is not the case with the crack stick. These things are like a kick to the face. Strong, flavorful, and did i mention strong? I expected it to be on the ulpleasant side, and was actually surprised at how tasty it was. There is no balance or finesse to this smoke, just strait up power. Definitely worth trying, that is if you can get them. They are made exclusively for a shop in Raleigh, NC.
Standing in front of the humidor Carlos built.
More later this week!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

El Rey Del Mundo Choix Supreme

Todays review is the Cuban El Rey Del Mundo Choix Supreme, which measures in at 5 inches by 48 ring gauge. This looks like your basic robusto as far as size goes, but is slightly thinner and considered a hermoso no.4 technically speaking.

This cigar doesnt have the prettiest wrapper for a Cuban, with a few big veins. There is a bit of a box press to this cigar and it has a really nice cinnamon spice and cedar aroma and flavor on the predraw. The draw is in the typical Cuban style, with a bit of resistance. The first few puffs on this cigar reveal that classic Cuban twang that i was hoping for. The flavors i am picking up on right away are cinnamon, cedar, and nutmeg, all wrapped up in silky smooth smoke. There is also a really nice toasty nutty flavor at the center of the flavor profile. This cigar is on the lower end of medium bodied, but is showing just how pleasant a lighter bodied cigar can be. The further i get into this cigar, i am noticing a really nice beany flavor and some floral notes as well. Somehow this unique flavor combo is working together quite nicely.

El Rey Del Mundo is not one of the Cuban brands that gets a lot of attention, but i am one to venture off the beaten path when i get the chance and am more often that not, happy with what i find. Ive had this cigar a handful of times, and i remember it always being a pleasant cigar to smoke. This isnt one of those cigars (at least for me) that really wows you, but it certainly doesnt disappoint. This cigar is one that i think most experienced cigar people would enjoy, as well those new to cigars. It is very approachable and would be an great after lunch cigar.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Ashton Cabinet Selection No. 6

Todays review is of the Ashton Cabinet Selection No.6, which measures in at 5.5 inches by 52 ring gauge. This cigar has a Dominican binder an filler, with a Connecticut shade grown wrapper. The construction looks flawless, like most ashton products, and the wrapper is very smooth and silky. Apparently the filler has been aged at least 4-5 years before rolling.

The predraw is shows a nutty characteristic, and mild tobacco flavors. Right away upon lighting, this is a very creamy, cedary cigar with a definite roasted nut flavor. For an after dinner cigar, this is way too mild for my tastes. Starting out, the body is very light and mild, but pleasantly creamy. If i was going to light another one of these up, it would probably be earlier in the day, maybe after a light lunch or even before that. The burnline on this particluar cigar has been all over the place, which is a bit on the annoying side. When i have to constantly touch up the burn on a cigar to keep it from canoeing, it takes away from the relaxing part of the cigar experience. The flavor continues to be creamy with a touch of raisin, and thats about it. Im bored with this cigar at this point. There is also a slightly unpleasant papery quality to this cigar.

I know people who love this cigar, but it really doesnt do anything for me at this point. I think i have one more left in my humidor, and i will save it for a day i plan on smoking in the morning. I do not smoke a ton of mild cigars, but when i do, i want one with enough flavor to keep me interested. If the next one of these i light up canoes like this one did, i'm going to pitch it. I cant stand a cigar that burns up one side like this througout the entire cigar. Some cigars will correct themselves when they start to burn uneven, but i had to touch this one up every 5 minutes. Here is the real kick in the ass on this one for me, these go for about 10 bucks a piece! If i am going to pay 10 bucks for a cigar, i want it to burn evenly and come through a bit more in the flavor department. If all you want in a cigar is a mild creamy flavor, then this is definitely a cigar for you if you dont mind spending 10 bucks on it. The thing is, i know quite a few other cigars where i can get a very similar flavor profile out of for half the price, without the burn issues. For Ashtons, i think ill stick with VSGs, San Cristobals, and La Aroma De Cuba Edicion Especials.