7 Jul 2015
A few weeks ago, I found myself in Manchester, New Hampshire, with a few hours to kill before a flight home to Chicago. Fortunately, the new and improved Twins Smoke Shop is just a stone’s throw from the Manchester airport. It boasts a fantastic new lounge and an incredible selection of smokes. Plus, the Granite State has no tobacco tax.
As I was getting some work done, enjoying a Nica Rustica, and sipping a little rum, proprietor Kurt Kendall (who also owns the 7-20-4 brand) let me know Pete Johnson of Tatuaje would be coming by for an evening event. I made sure to say hello to Pete, but I couldn’t talk much; it was time to head to the airport. However, I did ask Pete if there were any event specials I could cash in on before leaving.
His answer? “Yeah, but Kurt has a box of La Vérité Churchills from 2008 that still have the 2008 price tag on them,” said Pete. “That cigar is smoking incredibly right now.” Partly based on Pete’s recommendation—and partly knowing that La Vérité Churchills from 2008 are very hard to come by (only 30,000 were made)—I bought a box of 10 for $200.
As you may recall, Pete Johnson holds La Vérité (French for “the truth”) in high regard. “La Vérité Vintage,” as he calls it, brings a vintner’s approach to cigar making, employing a wrapper, binder, and filler all grown on the same farm. “Much like a single vineyard wine, La Vérité showcases the soil where the tobacco was grown,” read his website years ago. “The seed varietal varies from year to year based on the crop planted and the tobacco yielded.”
In the case of the 2008 La Vérité, all of the tobacco is from Don José “Pepin” Garcia’s La Estrella farm in Estelí. The Churchill (7 x 47) has an understated band of white, maroon, and gold with a matte, nearly vein-free, milk chocolate-colored wrapper and a perfect cap. The pre-light notes remind me of graham cracker, cocoa, and sweet hay.
Once lit, a mild- to medium-bodied flavor emerges with cream, subtle cedar, peanut, and honey. The balance is wonderful and the texture is bready. The taste is bright and vibrant. The energy is mellow, but there’s energy nonetheless. And the harmonious balance and subtlety render the Churchill highly enjoyable.
The flavor ramps up gradually as the cigar progresses, as does the smoke production (which is a little lacking at first). Graham cracker notes are the highlight of the midway point, with the finale witnessing a slight increase in spice. Throughout, the white ash holds firm, the draw is smooth with just a little resistance, and the burn line remains even.
Due in no small part to the age it has accumulated, the Tatuaje La Vérité Churchill 2008 is an exceptional cigar. It’s worthy of four and a half stogies out of five.
[To read more StogieGuys.com cigar reviews, please click here.]
photo credit: Stogie Guys