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Stogie Reviews: Cuban Crafters Cubano Claro Toro

27 May 2009

Desflorado tobacco, from what I understand, is difficult and laborious to grow, which is why sticks that use this finicky leaf are relatively expensive and hard to come by. Our friends at Cuban Crafters, however, have come out with an affordable lineup of cigars that make use of this rich tobacco.

Cuban Crafters Cubano Claro ToroThe process of cultivating desflorado tobacco requires a watchful eye and arduous attention to detail. By definition, the buds on these plants are cut off before they flower to give the tobacco “an extra rich and smooth taste.” Then the best leaves are hand selected from the tops of each plant to create the Connecticut desflorado wrapper for this line, a project that was four years in the making.

You can tell this cigar is different right out of the box. With a dark complexion and a reddish-yellow hue, it certainly doesn’t look like it comes from the Connecticut lineage. But, thanks to its neat cap and a clean appearance, it does look like it was rolled with care.

I sampled four or five Toros for this review, and I think this is a smart vitola for the blend. Its slender, six inch by 48 ring gauge physique allows more of the wrapper—the highlight of the blend—and a little less of the Cuban-seed long-filler from the Cupido tobacco fields to shine through in each puff.

Not surprisingly, the Cuban Crafters Cubano Claro doesn’t taste like your average Connecticut, either. It starts with a peppery flavor of olive, clove, onion, and bread, and the wrapper adds a bit of spicy tingle on the lips. Well-balanced, if not slightly dry.

A creamier backdrop of nuts and milk chocolate shifts to the forefront after the first few inches, making the overall taste slightly milder. Seasoned cigar veterans who normally steer clear of Connecticut stogies should take note that there’s still a lot of flavor going on, even when this cigar is at its mildest.

Like many other Cuban Crafters cigars, this blend features excellent construction, including a very even burn, a solid white ash that holds well, and an effortless draw that produces thick smoke.

The Toro sells for $6.30 apiece when bought by the box of 20. I think that’s more than a fair price, especially considering the quality of this cigar and the fact that it’s packaged in vintage cedar humidor boxes.

So, if you’re looking for something a little different, the new Cuban Crafters Cubano Claro Toro should be high on your wish list. It earns four stogies out of five.

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

-Patrick A

photo credit: Stogie Guys

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