Saturday, June 24, 2017

H Upmann 1844 Nicaragua Toro by AJ Fernandez 6/24/17

 
Appearance 
The milk chocolate colored wrapper has a couple prominent veins. The seams are wrapped tightly an very difficult to find. The cigar is well packed with filler with no soft spots. There is a light oil sheen and minimal tooth. 
The bands are very attractive.

Aroma 
Cedar, earth on the wrapper. Cedar, graham cracker at the foot.

Prelight Draw 
Cedar, light raisin, plum, black licorice, earth and spice.

1st
The initial draws are full of earth and wood(cedar). The spice is beginning to develop and has a black pepper presence. The draw is spot on. The ash is a medium to dark gray and mostly stacked. At 3/4" in the plum like notes are very evident especially on the finish. The burn is off slightly but physics is correcting it. The black pepper is balanced by some brown sugar sweetness. 

2nd
Smoke production is at the low end of high. The burn gets a bit wonky, caused by some tiny tunnels under the binder(close to the outer edge of the bunch). There is a creamy note joining the profile. The finish is long with notes of cedar, earth, plum, brown sugar, cream and mild black pepper spice. The ash is more tight now. 

Final/3rd
The black pepper fades a bit while a white pepper note emerges. A warm cinnamon joins the profile. Strength was medium throughout.

Overall 
The H Upmann 1844 Nicaragua Toro by AJ Fernandez provides an enjoyable smoking experience. A well balanced, complex and flavorful profile with a perfect draw. 
 
 

Archetype Axis Mundi Corona 6/18/17

 
 
Appearance 
A milk chocolate colored wrapper with one prominent vein and a bunch of capillaries. The seams are tight and difficult to find. It has some tooth and a nice oil sheen. 

Aroma 
Earthy, light cedar on the wrapper. Earthy, graham cracker at the foot.

Prelight Draw 
Red licorice, cedar and a hint of spice, especially on the lips.

1st
Initial draws reveal notes of earth and red licorice alongside a very thick espresso note. There is also some mild cinnamon in the mix. The draw is a bit snug but it's early. The burn is near perfect at a half inch in. The ash is a very light gray and tight. Strength starts out medium. When combined with the espresso notes the licorice tastes black. The strength moves to medium+ before the end of the 1st.

2nd
A pinch of white pepper joins the cinnamon which is getting warmer. The draw has opened up and the smoke production goes from low to a low medium. The espresso backs off a touch and allows a creamy texture and nutty flavor to emerge. The finish is long with notes of earth, espresso, cashews, black licorice, cedar and warm cinnamon  spice with a dash of white pepper. 

Final/3rd
The ash holds firm till removal at each 3rd. The flavor profile remains consistent thru to the nub.

Overall
The Archetype Axis Mundi Corona provides a very enjoyable smoking experience. A complex and flavorful profile with a perfect draw and burn once the draw opened up. Another great blend by Ventura Cigar Co. @VenturaCigarCo 
Thanks to Ventura Cigar Company for the samples for review. A special thank you to Rachel for facilitating the delivery of the samples. Definitely a cigar you want to try.
 
 
 

LFD Reserva Especial Petite Perfecto 6/17/17

 
Appearance 
A nice Ecuadoran Connecticut wrapper with a couple prominent veins. The seams are tight. It has a very light oil sheen. 

Aroma
Barnyard and cedar on the wrapper. About the same at the foot. 

Prelight Draw 
Woody, sweet & sour and fruit. 

1st
The initial draws bring notes of wood (cedar) and a bit of sweetness with a hint of spice. 
Smoke production is in the medium range. Ash is salt&pepper gray and stacked. Draw & burn are spot on. 

2nd
Strength is mild so far. Woody, sweet and mild cinnamon spice flavor continues thru the 2nd/3rd. 

Final/3rd
Flavor continues thru the final/3rd to the nub.

Overall 
The LFD Reserva Especial provides a nice Smoking Experience. A consistent flavor profile with a perfect draw & burn.
 
 

1502 Blue Sapphire 6/11/17

 
Appearance 
A milk chocolate brown colored wrapper with a couple prominent veins. The seams are difficult to find. The cigar has a nice oil sheen and a bit of tooth. 
The cigar is round which is not usual for 1502 but Enrique told me that the round version tasted better than the box pressed version so they went with the round.

Aroma 
Earth, cedar, cocoa and a hint of spice on the wrapper. Earth, cedar, dark fruit and a hint of spice at the foot.

Prelight Draw 
Blueberries, cedar, earth, cocoa powder and a faint hint of spice.

1st
The initial draws bring notes of earth, cocoa powder and a bit of white pepper spice. Draw is perfect. The burn got a little wonky but with the help of simple physics it has almost fully self corrected. Strength and body are in the medium range.

2nd
The cocoa powder seemed to fade but has come back into balance. Smoke production is at the low end of high. The finish is long with notes of earth, cocoa powder, cedar, blueberry, white pepper spice with a pinch of black pepper spice. The ash is salt&pepper gray and stacked. 

Final/3rd
The final/3rd starts off with a dash of black pepper. Strength has been med/full since the 2nd/3rd. Flavor profile remains well balanced to the nub.

Overall
The Blue Sapphire provides a very enjoyable smoking experience. A very complex, well balanced and flavorful profile with a perfect draw and mildly erratic burn.
Another fine smoke by Enrique Sanchez @1502Cigars . Well done brother!
 
 

Paula Cigars barberpole Torpedo 6/10/17

 
Appearance 
The dark and light wrapper colors provide a nice contrast. There is quite a bit of mottling. The seams are tight. It has a light oil sheen. It appears to be well packed with filler with no apparent soft spots. 

Aroma 
Heavy Barnyard on the wrapper. Cedar and hay at the foot. 

Prelight Draw 
Tobacco, hay, spice

1st
Initial draws are very woody with a spice kicker. The wood notes remind me of white cedar. The draw is a bit snug. The burn has a slight wave. The strength is at medium+. The ash is light gray and tight. 

2nd
The nutmeg/warm cinnamon spice becomes the dominant flavor with cedar in the background. Smoke production is at the low end of medium. There is a sour note just past the halfway point. Late in the 2nd/3rd the draw opens up and smoke production increases to medium. 

Final/3rd
Flavor remains consistent from start to the nub. 

Overall
The Barberpole Torpedo by Paula Cigars provides a nice Smoking Experience albeit a consistent profile throughout with a descent burn and a snug draw most of the way.
Thank you to Paula @PaulaCigars for the samples for review. They are available at paulacigars.com
 
 

Sunday, June 4, 2017

The Gent by Paula Cigars Corona Gorda 6/4/17

 
Appearance 
A medium brown wrapper with a little mottling and a few prominent veins. The seams are tight. There is a bit of tooth and a light oil sheen. 

Aroma 
Barnyard and cedar on the wrapper. Honey sweetness at the foot. 

Prelight Draw 
Spicy, cedar, honey, black licorice. 

1st
Initial draws bring notes of cedar with a hint of cinnamon spice. The draw is a bit snug to start. A pinch of black pepper joins the profile. The ash is mostly tight and holding strong. Strength is a low medium. 

2nd
The burn is spot on. The draw has loosened and is now perfect. Smoke production has moved with the draw from low to medium. The black pepper is more of a dash now. Some light roast coffee notes join the profile. 

Final/3rd
The burn is a bit wavy but self corrects quickly. The finish is long with notes of cedar, coffee, honey and mild black pepper spice. Burn is back to spot on. The black pepper becomes a little more prominent late in the final/3rd. 

Overall
The Gent Corona Gordo by Paula Cigars provides an enjoyable smoking experience. A nice well balanced profile with a great draw and good burn. 
Thank you to Paula @PaulaCigars for the samples for review. 
The cigars are available at Paula's website as well as some B&M's on the East Coast.
 
 

Archetype Strange Passage Toro 6/3/17

 
Appearance 
A silky wrapper with a couple prominent veins. Their is some slight mottling as well making the tightly wrapped seams more visible. It has a beautiful 3 seam cap and an oily sheen. The cigar also has a soft box press. The filler is well packed with no soft spots. 

Aroma 
Earth, fruity, cedar with a hint of spice on the wrapper. Fruity and light roast coffee at the foot. 

Prelight Draw 
Earthy, fruity, spicy

1st
Initial draws bring notes of earth, cedar, light roast coffee and a mild spice. The fruity notes come through in the finish. The draw and burn are spot on right now. The ash is light gray and mostly tight with a little flake. Some creamy cashew notes join the profile late in the 1st/3rd. 

2nd
Burn and draw still spot on, not unusual for a cigar made at Davidoff. The smoke production is at the high end of medium. The burn goes off a bit. Upon investigation of the working end I notice the cone is off center which will cause a slower burn on one side. With the application of simple physics self correction brings the burn under control. The finish is long with notes of earth, fruit, cedar, light roast coffee, cashews and a mild nutmeg spice. A little wave develops. Removing the ash I find a small tunnel. 

Final/3rd
The well balanced flavor profile continues into the final/3rd. The strength which started at medium has moved to med/full. 
Great flavor and balance right to the nub.

Overall
The Archetype Stange Passage provides a very enjoyable smoking experience. A very well balanced and flavorful profile with an excellent draw and mildly erratic burn. 
A big thank you to @VenturaCigarCo for the samples for review.
A special thank you to Rachel at Ventura for facilitating the delivery of the samples. 
Definitely a cigar to hunt down and enjoy.