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Cigar Reviews

Muestra de Saka Exclusivo

Muestra de Saka Exclusivo 1July 6th, 2017

Size of cigar: 6 inches long by 52 ring gauge

(The blend of tobaccos used in the Muestra de Saka Exclusivo varies from batch to batch.)

The smooth, oily capa of my Exclusivo emits a mocha-like fragrance, with mostly cappuccino-latte notes coming from the foot. This vitola feels somewhat heavy, and has an excellent bunch and a perfect cold draw. I’ve heard lots about this cigar from smokers as well as from Steve Saka, so let's see what ol' Joe Bob thinks.

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Cigar Factory Social Club Robusto

Cigar Factory Social Club Robusto 1June 26th, 2017

The Cigar Factory Social Club Robusto is a 54 ring gauge by 4¾ inches long cigar, rolled with Brazilian and Nicaraguan filler. My sample sported a chocolate brown, Brazilian Maduro wrapper. (A version with a Connecticut Natural/Ecuadorian outer leaf is also offered.) The wrapper had a nice glimmer to it, with a few harmless veins present and a perfectly placed cap.

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La Aurora Preferido Corona Broadleaf

La Aurora Preferidos Corona Broadleaf 1May 1st, 2017

I’ve never been a fan of La Aurora Cigars, with the exception of the 1492 series, which is no longer being made. Even though the 1492 series was taken out of production years ago, cigars in the line are still available, and I can usually get a box of them for around $50 on sale. My favorite sizes in the 1492 series are the Churchill and the Corona. The other La Aurora cigars that I’ve sampled, while usually very well constructed, have never quite satisfied me.

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Black Works Studio Sindustry Lancero

BWS Sindustry Lancero 1June 5th, 2017

There was a smooth dark wrapper and a nice pigtail cap on this Lancero-size cigar. Sweetish Maduro aromas emanated from both the wrapper and foot. An easy clip led to a rather firm draw. The unfinished foot lit easily. I paired the Sindustry with a Lagunitas Cappuccino Stout.

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Toraño Exodus Robusto

Toraño Exodus Robusto 1April 27th, 2017

A few months ago, I received a number of cigars from Jason Clabaugh (BigO) for the purpose of reviewing them. Unfortunately, life events made it difficult for me to set aside adequate time to smoke the cigars with a critical eye and write reviews. Therefore, these cigars remained in my humidor waiting for an opportune moment. Well, that moment finally arrived.

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Ventura Archetype Triple-Cigar Profile

Ventura Archetype x 3 Profile 1June 1st, 2017

From the Ventura website:

Every Legend Has A Beginning.

Archetype is an exploration of nuance that rewards the discriminating palate with a new line of highly-complex, yet perfectly balanced cigars. Each vitola is artfully crafted with a unique blend of rich, flavorful tobaccos and bound in a pristine wrapper – working in harmony to create an intense, memorable smoke that has no equal.

Archetype is inspired by the work of psychologist Dr. Carl Jung and mythographer Joseph Campbell who defined ‘archetypes’ as the constantly repeating characters who occur in the dreams of all people and the myths of all cultures. Campbell discovered through his study of world myths that the ‘Hero’s Journey’ is a common storytelling arc that has been retold in infinite variations since time began.

We invite you to share our journey and leave compromise behind.

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Southern Draw Firethorn Toro

Southern Draw Firethorn Toro 1April 24th, 2017

Vitola: Toro (6 inches long by 52 ring gauge)
Origin: Nicaragua
Wrapper: Habano Rosado
Binder: Mexican San Andrés
Filler: Nicaraguan

I am conducting my first review of a cigar. It will be based on the Southern Draw Firethorn. This cigar was developed at the Tabacalera A.J. Fernandez, and blended by Robert Holt. The price point on this cigar is around $10. In my opinion, however, it should be around $8.

When I first took the cigar out of the cellophane, I noticed the subtle scent of a good Habano cigar. The Toro displayed a mocha chocolate-like color with nice light veins. It had a covered foot, and the construction was fantastic.

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A 7-20-4 Double Review Feature

7 20 4 Double Review feature 1May 22nd, 2017

A bit of history from the 7-20-4 website:

“Quality still impels its growth.” R.G. Sullivan understood this when he created the famed 7-20-4 cigar and built it into one of the largest cigar manufacturers in the world. From its beginning in 1874, until the Cuban Embargo in 1963, Roger G. Sullivan manufactured the 7-20-4 in Manchester, NH with the principle of making a cigar of the finest quality.

Kurt A. Kendall always had a fascination for old cigar memorabilia, and collected anything he could get his hands on. After years in the industry, he had the idea to bring back the 7-20-4 line.

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Blanco Liga Exclusiva de Familia Robusto

Blanco Liga Exclusiva de Familia Robusto 1April 20th, 2017

Size of cigar: 5 inches long by 54 ring gauge

Wrapper: Pennsylvanian Broadleaf Maduro
Binder: Nicaraguan
Fillers: Nicaraguan
100% Whole-Leaf Long Filler

My sample sported a very smooth Maduro wrapper, and gave off cedar notes from both the wrapper and the foot. I executed a clean clip on the firmly bunched cigar, which then displayed a perfect cold draw with bittersweet notes.

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Partagás 8-9-8 Varnished (2003)

Partagás 8 9 8 Varnished 2003 1May 4th, 2017

Factory code: Unknown
Issue date: March 2003
Format: Lonsdale (Dalias)
Size of vitola: 6.75 inches long by 43 ring gauge

On a gorgeous and breezy Florida day, with the temperature hovering around 75ºF, I found myself spending time with my soul mate and beautiful wife. She was the one to suggest smoking a cigar outside. So without further delay, I decided to prepare a little snack, crack open some wine and queue up some music.

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A Cigar’s Tale ‘Short Story’ Review XXXII

A Cigars Tale Short Story Review XXXII 1April 17th, 2017

In this installment of my column, I’m reviewing a sample from the 2016 IPCPR called Art of War. It’s produced by Viva Republic. The cigar comes to us as a Corona Gorda vitola. It measures 6 inches long by a 47 ring gauge, and costs around $9.50. The wrapper is a Connecticut Broadleaf, while the binder comes from Ecuador and the filler leaves are sourced from Columbia, Nicaragua and the Dominican Republic.

The wrapper has a dark chocolate color and small veins. It’s capped with a pigtail. The cigar is firm, and I find no major flaws in it. The aroma from the wrapper includes scents of barnyard, tobacco and woodiness. There is a closed foot on this cigar. The cold draw has some peanut, brown sugar, tobacco and salt to it.

The first-third of this cigar has a profile of tobacco, coffee, cocoa powder, dough, cumin and black pepper. The next-third transitions into cocoa, bread, cedar, dried fruit and mixed nuts. The Art of War finishes out in the final-third with notes of black pepper, bread, crushed red pepper, cocoa, coffee, cedar, leather and butter.

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