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Stogie Reviews: Ortsac 1962 Toro

9 Jul 2009

Ortsac 1962 Toro“Operation Ortsac” (Castro spelled backwards) was how the Kennedy Administration referred to the plan for a potential military strike against Cuba in 1962. While such action never came to fruition, Ortsac will forever be associated with the frightening days of the Cuban Missile Crisis and Washington’s strained relationship with Havana.

That tension helps explain why it has been illegal for Americans to buy Cuban cigars (or any other good or service for that matter) for almost 50 years. Perhaps it’s fitting, then, that a company has adopted the name “Ortsac 1962” for its flagship line, marketing it with camouflage print and military gear. Or maybe it’s just silly. You decide. Either way, I’m more concerned with how this relatively new blend smokes than how it’s marketed.

Launched this spring by The Cigar Agency the Ortsac 1962 blend includes a five-year-old Nicaraguan corojo wrapper, a Dominican binder, and a combination of long-filler tobaccos from those two nations. It is available in three standard vitolas and packaged in “authentic 50-caliber ammo cans” of 72 sticks. No kidding. They’re also available in a more standard 20 count box.

The Toro (6.5 x 54) is an attractive, oily parejo with a well-applied cap. My samples included several prominent veins, subtle seams, and pre-light notes of milk chocolate and sweet caramel. This cigar has the look and feel of quality—especially after the foot band is removed.

With flavors of earth, leather, and cedar, the Ortsac 1962 Toro gets off to a solid start. A tad spicy but mostly on the lighter side of the cigar spectrum. And the physical properties are likewise promising, as a thick, black mascara leads the charge for an even burn and a powdery, white ash.

Then, about two inches into the 90-minute smoke, the burn line starts to require touch-ups and the taste takes a bit of a salty turn. But even though some creamy or sweet notes would help with balance, the profile is still satisfying and enjoyable with plenty of character.

While this $5-6 stick won’t utterly captivate seasoned cigar veterans, it won’t disappoint either. Its admirable construction and consistent medium-bodied profile makes it well-suited for the golf course, a road trip, or an evening  summer barbeque. For that, the Ortsac 1962 Toro earns three and a half stogies out of five.

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

Patrick A

photo credit: Stogie Guys

2 Responses to “Stogie Reviews: Ortsac 1962 Toro”

  1. Luke - AspiringGentl Thursday, July 9, 2009 at 9:03 am #

    Great review, thanks! After seeing a review of these on TheCigarSpy a while back a picked a few up. Definitely a great little smoke for the price.

  2. Victor Vitale Wednesday, July 15, 2009 at 6:23 pm #

    Thank you for an excellent and honest review of my cigar. Please correct the error regarding Cigar Agency being a retailer. Cigar Agency is not a retailer to consumers. We are B to B only.