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Stogie Reviews: Arturo Fuente Curly Head Deluxe Maduro

16 Oct 2006

I have a friend who often goes to bars and orders their “most economical single-malt scotch.” For some reason that keeps coming to mind as I review the Curly Head Deluxe Maduro – perhaps because I envisioned asking a friendly cigar shop employee for their “most economical Fuente.”

In the budget spirit, I paired this cigar with a Chilean Merlot I purchased from Trader Joes for an affordable $5.99. [Impromptu Stogie Tip: Trader Joes is a great place for decent, reasonably-priced wine.] This particular wine was not as dry as many Merlots and featured strong black currant flavors.

Combined with the $1.85 I paid for the cigar, this is certainly an economical wine and cigar pairing. And with the Fuente name that we’ve rated so highly in the past, I had high hopes for the cigar. Unfortunately, sometimes you really do get what you pay for.

This was not an attractive cigar. The Maduro wrapper was dry and veiny. It featured the largest vein I’ve ever seen in a cigar wrapper that ran two thirds of the way down from the head of this 6 and 1/2 inches by 44 ring gauge stick. The vein caused the head to be quite asymmetrical and a bit awkward in the mouth. Also, rather than have a clean cut foot, the wrapper extended beyond the filler tobacco and was bent inward so it covered much of the foot – sort of like a poor man’s perfecto.

Pre-light this cigar gave off licorice flavors. Lighting it with a single wooden match was easy, facilitated by the unfinished foot. Once lit the burn was mostly even as long as I kept the slow burning edge facing down. Because this cigar uses medium filler – as opposed to long filler which runs the length of a cigar – I had the unfortunate experience of finding bits of the tobacco in my mouth after each draw.

At first this cigar had black pepper notes and overwhelming “dirt” flavors. Near the middle of the cigar, the pepper faded out and the earthy dirt weakened, leaving bitter notes. Additionally, the draw became tight and difficult. Had I not been reviewing this cigar, I would have put it down, as the experience was not at all enjoyable. (The things we do for our readers!)

Finally, near the end the cigar began to improve a little, as the bitterness dulled allowing some licorice to come through the strong earthy flavors. Also, the draw improved near the end. Throughout the smoke, the cigar produced cracked gray and black ash.

Overall, this was a disappointing cigar. Visual imperfections are to be expected from a budget cigar – even one with a Fuente band – but coupled with a taste that was harsh and unpleasant at worst and barely tolerable at best, this cigar proved unsmokable.

Maybe in a few years I’ll bravely pick up another Curley Head Deluxe, but until then stick with Fuente’s mid and premium smokes that offer the quality we’ve come to expect from Fuente stogies. The Arturo Fuente Curley Head Deluxe Maduro receives a poor rating of one and ½ out of five stogies.

[To read more cigar reviews, please click here.]

Patrick S


13 Responses to “Stogie Reviews: Arturo Fuente Curly Head Deluxe Maduro”

  1. Anonymous Monday, October 16, 2006 at 10:15 am #

    Thanks for the review. Granted this is a much cheaper cigar than other Fuentes, but it's interesting how much difference in quality can be experienced within the same brand.

  2. Patrick S Monday, October 16, 2006 at 3:02 pm #

    Walt over at Stogie Review had a similar experience with the Curly Head Deluxe Maduro. Read his review here.

  3. Anonymous Monday, October 16, 2006 at 3:35 pm #

    Thanks for reviewing this. I have had a couple of curly heads and I have yet to enjoy one. Just didn’t taste good. Props to you for seeing the review through. Hope you had a better chaser cigar.

  4. FireJimBowden Tuesday, October 17, 2006 at 11:18 am #

    On the wine note:
    Don't bother looking for wine at TJ's here in the People's Republic of Maryland. It's a pain, but at least thanks to MD's archaic/monopolistic laws we are protected from all of the outlaw behavior that is typical of communities where grocery stores sell beer and wine.

  5. Jerry @ Stogie Review Tuesday, October 17, 2006 at 11:46 am #

    Yeah I’m not sure why the Deluxe version is so god aweful…give the regular Curly Heads a try…crappy construction but the flavor profile makes for a good beginner smoke and for bachelor partys with folks who don’t normally smoke.

  6. Paul Arneson Tuesday, October 24, 2006 at 4:47 pm #

    StogieGuy readers wanting a free sample of the ALONSO MENENDEZ cigar:
    Send name, age, and mailing address to:
    (Our only request is… if you like it, ask your retailer to stock it)

  7. trmadol Thursday, January 25, 2007 at 6:19 pm #

    I always have terrible trouble with comment-related plugins that require me to put some line in the comment loop; I can never seem to find the right spot. Can anyone tell me where I should put the php line in my comments loop? I haven not modified anything much, and I would be very grateful. Thanks!

  8. Jeff's Garage a Thursday, May 31, 2007 at 8:05 am #

    Yikes! I am ashamed to admit it after reading these reviews, but I have to tell you guys – I really like this cigar. Trust me, I'm not a cheap bastard by any stretch of the imagination, but these have the nice fuente madura taste that I've always enjoyed at a fraction of the price. On Friday's evening's I'll buy 6 of them for the weekend and pay less than 20 bucks. Another pleasant surprise to me is how low maintenance the cigar is compared to some others. I'll set this one down for a few minutes and come back to it and still have an even burn. Contrast that with the Punch Rothschilds cigars, another of my favorite – I have to relight those things three times sometimes.

    If you guys want to ban me from the site, I'll understand. But I like these. –Jeff

    • Malabar Jeff Thursday, March 20, 2014 at 8:17 pm #

      I hope they hate them forever it will leave more for us.
      Another Jeff

  9. jgarlow Monday, June 29, 2009 at 8:19 am #

    I'll go with comment 9, thought this cigar wasn't as bad as the reviewer said. Perhaps a bad batch? I've tried a few at different times and always came away with a good feeling from it. Ugly cigar, yes.. but I liked the flavours.

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