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Stogie Reviews: Camacho Connecticut Monarca

27 Jul 2009

Since it debuted in May as the company’s first Connecticut-wrapped blend, I’ve heard mixed things about Camacho’s Connecticut line. Some folks love it. Some, including one of my local tobacconists, think Camacho invested too much into marketing and too little into quality control. And some think the smaller sizes are great while the larger vitolas are more average. Love it or hate it, it was high time I tried this blend for myself.

Camacho Connecticut Monarca Camacho Connecticut represents a new direction for this Miami-based company. From Corojo and Camacho Select to Triple Maduro and Coyolar, Camacho is known its full-bodied smokes. This line is their “response to countless consumer and retailer requests for something on the other side of the strength spectrum.”

With six vitolas, this blend is intended to fill the niche for a “spicy yet milder mannered Connecticut-wrapped cigar with superb balance and signature Camacho body.” Aside from the smooth, dry, and delicate Ecuadorian Connecticut-seed wrapper, Camacho Connecticut includes a Honduran binder and filler tobaccos from Honduras and the Dominican Republic. It is manufactured by the Eiroa family at the Tabacos Rancho Jamastran in Honduras.

I paid $5.65 apiece in a local shop for two Monarcas (5 x 50). Both include faint pre-light notes of nuts and sawdust off the golden wrapper leaf. The cold taste reveals a clear draw with some tingle on the lips.

Devoid of much resemblance to Connecticut tobacco, the first half inch sports a lot of that Camacho punch, including flavors of black pepper, dry wood, and plenty of spice. Not overwhelming, but definitely attention-grabbing.

Then, as the cigar comes into its own, some of the tastes you’d expect—including cream, hay, and almond—join in to add complexity and smoothness. The interplay between the lighter wrapper and the heavier binder and filler tobaccos is the defining characteristic of this blend. As the even burn progresses and the tight ash builds off the foot, the spice slowly re-builds without overcoming the softer tones.

So, between the love it or hate it extremes, I’m leaning definitively in the complimentary direction. This departure for Camacho, in my book, proves to be a winning strategy—and cigar enthusiasts who appreciate more subtle cigars should put this on their wish lists. For its interaction of mild and medium tobaccos, abundant smoke, and good combustion qualities, the Camacho Connecticut Monarca earns four stogies out of five.

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

-Patrick A

photo credit: Stogie Guys

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