9 Nov 2009
Like the Tatuaje Black and the Avo Classic No. 2 that my colleague recently reviewed, the CAO Lx2 Rosado Especial is exclusively available in a ten-stogie sampler for Cigar Rights of America (CRA) members. So, since the samplers are limited to one per member, this review is likewise based off a single sample.
The original Lx2 (“ligero times two”) line was released by CAO at last year’s IPCPR Trade Show in Las Vegas. Following CAO’s Mx2 (Maduro) and Cx2 (Cameroon) blends, it features a hearty helping of spicy, full-bodied ligero leaves surrounded by a Honduran binder and a sungrown Nicaraguan wrapper.
The six-inch Rosado Especial instead has a Nicaraguan-grown rosado leaf. Made exclusively for CRA at the CAO Fabrica de Tabacos facrory in Danlí, Honduras, it is said to have “a bold, muscular structure layered with flavors of bittersweet chocolate, paprika, and woody tobacco notes,” according to Tim Ozgener, president of CAO. “The exquisite rosado wrapper imparts a pleasant floral note upon the flavor profile, which balances superbly with the three different ligero fillers.”
Before firing up the Rosado Especial for myself, I surveyed its handsome appearance. This cigar is easily distinguished from other Lx2s by its pink band extension and CRA logo across the foot. Underneath is an oily, somewhat veiny wrapper with plenty of tooth and a sweet smell.
The firm toro cuts neatly to expose an easy draw. Then, almost immediately after the first puff, I began to compare the taste to my limited experience with the regular Lx2 line. Based on the handful of Lanceros that I’ve smoked recently, I’d have to give the edge to the Rosado Especial.
The base flavors remain largely unchanged. These include black pepper, smoky wood, roasted nuts, and coffee beans. But here, as Mr. Ozgener correctly pointed out, they are complemented by floral characteristics—definitely lavender and maybe a bit of coconut. Personally, I find this combination more interesting than the sweetness offered by the traditional sungrown leaf.
I also wasn’t disappointed by this cigar’s construction or how it develops with spicy, creamy, and savory textures.
Becoming a CRA member is already a good idea if you value freedom and want to join the fight against excessive tobacco taxes, regulations, and smoking bans. Having the chance to try this cigar is just another reason to sign up. CAO definitely made a nice addition to the sampler, which is why the Lx2 Rosado Especial earns four stogies out of five.
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photo credit: Stogie Guys