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Cigar Reviews

REVIEW: Muestra de Saka Unstolen Valor

1This cigar has a somewhat veiny medium dark wrapper. The aromas from the foot are very light. The cold draw is perfect. Tonight’s beverage is a (512) Brewing Pecan Porter.

2The initial flavor is rich earthy tobacco. The retohale is very smooth with a light touch of white pepper. The ash is firm and the burn is perfect.

In the first third the flavor profile remains earthy tobacco with a somewhat dry finish. The retohale remains unchanged. The ash is light grey and solid. The burn remains perfect. Not being a fan of ash in my lap, I tapped off a very solid chunk at about one inch.
3During the second third a touch of sweetness joins the flavor profile, although it may be from the pecan in the ale. The earthy quality of the flavor profile remains strongest. The retohale remains smooth and very lightly peppery. The ash remains solid and the burn remains perfect.

Approaching the final inch the flavor profile remains basically the same. Not one-dimensional though. Very rich and flavorful. Definitely medium bodied. The ash and burn remain excellent. This is a very well constructed cigar with nice complexity.

9.8/10, Joe Bob says check it out.

REVIEW: Asylum 13 Oblongata by CLE

asylum15I never thought that I would be a cigar a day smoker.  I was a once-or-twice-a-week guy, not wanting to be absent from my family whilst sitting outside for two hours or so per night. Family situations change, elders need caregivers, caregivers need to get out of the house from the elders and voilá, smoking more than one cigar per day sometimes is suddenly a reality.

My good friend of nearly twenty years at Cigar Weekly sent me a bag of cigars some months back with a request that I let him know about one of them. So, Stan, this is for you, me brother. This is the Asylum 13 Oblongata made by the CLE Cigar Company, founded by Christian L. Eiroa. According to their website, this cigar, called the 60 x 6 due to its dimensions, is made of all corojo tobacco. This should be an experience no matter how it turns out. The Eiroa/CLE corojo farm is in Honduras, according to Cigar Aficionado’s Gregory Mottola, the plantation in the Jamastran Valley once known as Argelia is now called El Corojo after its namesake tobacco. (Gregory Mottola. Crop Report: El Corojo Farm, Honduras. February 5, 2020, accessed May 27, 2020.)

The wrapper leaf is beautiful, simply no other way to describe it, whilst the entire cigar is box-pressed. I almost ruined it clipping it with a tough guillotine cutter. However, I was able to ameliorate the damage. It lights quite nicely with one match and I was met with a strong woody character that coated the back of my tongue. A little ways in and that almost “over-flavor” due to the heat of the lighting has abated a great deal. This is now a pleasant woody cigar, with a nice tight, straight burn.

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GTO Bueno

GTO Bueno 1April 12th, 2018

After three years as producer of The Smooth Draws Radio Show, and with a lot of encouragement from Cigar Weekly’s Big John, I am writing my first cigar review. If you are expecting to read about notes of white pepper, orange peel and saffron, you are in the wrong place. I am an everyday guy who enjoys cigars. So here is my review...

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JNV Maduro Torpedo

JNV Maduro Torpedo 1June 4th, 2018

Vitola: Torpedo
MSRP: Around $5
Wrapper: San Andrés
Binder: Dominican and Nicaraguan
Filler: Dominican and Nicaraguan

I am truly grateful to be able to review this cigar, which I had heard about from a close friend of mine. I was even able to meet the owner, blender and roller of JNV cigars, Jorge Nicolls (Don Jorge). Not only is he a great cigar brand owner, but also a great man in general. We instantly became friends. Now, onto the review!

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Balmoral Anejo XO Rothschild Masivo

Balmoral Anejo XO Rothschild Masivo 1April 9th, 2018

Vitola: Robusto Gordo
MSRP: $9.90
Wrapper: Brazilian Sun Grown Araprica
Binder: Dominican Republic Olor
Filler: Brazilian, Dominican & Nicaraguan

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Case Study CS/05 ‘Robusto Extra’

Case Study CS 05 Robusto Extra 1May 24th, 2018

This, my final review of the Case Study series from Ventura Cigar Company, is a write-up on the CS/05, one of 26 different blends in the line that pay homage to 26 famous homes built in Los Angeles. The LA homes are renowned for their simplistic, modernist designs and their famous master architects. The Case Study cigars mirror the homes with their simple, minimalist labeling and the fact that all were blended by famous, albeit secret, blend masters.

Sixteen of the blends are ‘Master Editions’, while ten are ‘Limited Editions’. The CS/05 is a limited edition. My knowledge of the cigar is restricted to what informs me. No information is given regarding the blender’s identity or where the cigar was blended.

The Case Study CS/05 blend comes in three vitolas, respectively measuring 5.75 x 60, 5.75 x 54 and 6.75 x 52. This review profiles what I’ll call the ‘Robusto Extra’, given that its 5.75 x 54 format doesn’t fit conveniently into any established size category. Maybe it’s a short Toro or a fat Double Corona. Who knows? Full disclosure... I love the size of this cigar. At any rate, here’s what I thought of it.

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La Palina Nicaragua Toro

La Palina Nicaraguan Toro 1March 26th, 2018

In this 'back-to-back' review, Cigar Weekly's Special Correspondent, Jeff Slatton, profiles the Oscuro and Connecticut wrapper versions of the La Palina Nicaragua Toro.

The La Palina Nicaragua lineup is rolled at the A.J. Fernandez factory (Tabacalera Fernandez), giving me fairly high expectations of quality construction. Both the Oscuro and Connecticut reviewed here are Toros.

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Blanco Liga Exclusiva de Familia Maduro Churchill

Blanco LEFM Churchill 1April 30th, 2018

It’s an absolutely perfect morning for a cigar and a coffee. This cigar has a dark and somewhat rustic wrapper. The aromas from the foot are earthy and cocoa-like, while the cold draw is perfect. My accompanying morning beverage is a Chameleon Cold Brew.

The initial flavors are peppery and meaty, and there’s lots of smooth smoke to add to the pleasure. The solid ash is a medium grey in tone, and the burn is even except for one place where I’ve scorched the wrapper when lighting the cigar.

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Steve Saka Muestra de Saka Nacatamale

Muestra de Saka Nacatamale 1March 5th, 2018

My sample sports a perfectly smooth dark wrapper. There’s a light tobacco sweetness coming from the wrapper and foot, with traces of Ligero also present. An ideal draw leads me to believe that this will be a great cigar. Today’s beverage is an Avery Brewing Tweak, a 16% beer that provides a kick all of its own.

The perfect draw affords a purely tasty mouth-feel. The retro-hale has just the right amount of pepper to balance out the flavor. There is also a nice touch of pepper on the palate.

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Hiram & Solomon Triple Review

Hiram Solomon Triple Review 1April 16th, 2018

In this triple review, Cigar Weekly’s Jeff Slatton (jefslat) ‘test-rides’ the Entered Apprentice Toro, Fellow Craft Toro and Master Mason Robusto, all from the Hiram & Solomon line.


Hiram & Solomon cigars are produced by David Blanco. The lineup features three cigars named for the three Blue Lodge Ranks.

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The Wise Man Maduro Corona Gorda

The Wise Man Maduro CG 1February 5th, 2018

Size of cigar: 5 5/8 inches by 46-ring gauge
Wrapper: San Andrés Mexican Maduro
Binder: Nicaraguan Corojo ‘99
Fillers: Nicaraguan

The Wise Man Maduro represents a follow up to Foundation Cigar Company’s wildly popular El Güegüense. The cigar features the same artwork on the label as the El Güegüense. However, the blue label of the latter has been replaced with a red backdrop. The Wise Man debuted during the 2017 IPCPR, and hit stores several months later in September.

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