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Stogie Reviews: Nestor Miranda 1989 Oscuro Belicoso

16 Aug 2010

As the economy struggles to hit its post-recession stride, some sympathetic cigar makers are cutting us a break by introducing modestly priced blends. Case in point: the new “1989” from Nestor Miranda.

Nestor Miranda 1989 Oscuro BelicosoIt celebrates the year Miranda founded Miami Cigar & Co., distributor of such brands as La Aurora, Tatiana, Don Lino, and Miranda’s eponymous Special Collection. It also celebrates frugality. “While we do not have any cigars in the Nestor Miranda Collection that are expensive, we wanted to offer an excellent smoke at a very reasonable price point,” said Rene Castañeda, vice president of Miami Cigar. “It has become obvious that smokers, like everyone else, these days, are seeking to restrain their spending.”

When I think of restrained cigar spending I don’t think of the combined talents of Nestor Miranda and Don Pepin Garcia. But, for $5 per cigar, that’s exactly what you get in the 1989 blend. To make it, Miranda commissioned Garcia to develop a cigar based on his desired flavor profile and Garcia concocted a recipe of Nicaraguan and Honduran tobaccos.

Available since May, 1989 is handmade at Garcia’s My Father Cigars in Estelí with one third medium-filler and two thirds long-filler. Three vitolas are in production: Belicoso (6.1 x 52), Robusto (5 x 50), and Toro (6 x 50). Each comes in either a Habano Rosado or Oscuro wrapper.

I sampled three Oscuro Belicosos for this review. This is a dark, mottled cigar that’s bumpy, dry, and a bit veiny. Spongy in the hand with a clear pre-light draw, it sports an ornate band (with Miranda’s name in super-small script on either side) and a wonderfully pungent aroma of cocoa.

The first puff reveals a taste of damp earth, black pepper spice, and coffee beans. While the Oscuro is billed as medium- to full-bodied, the airy texture of the smoke seems to diffuse the concentration of flavors, resulting in a lighter profile than anticipated. Things get more interesting after the first inch. Here, a creamy nuttiness develops to offset what was once a predominantly salty taste. The ensuing balance is a welcome addition until it seems to fade down the home stretch.

On construction, the 1989 delivers over and above what you’d expect from a $5 sandwich-filler cigar. The gray ash holds together well and the burn requires hardly any touch-ups to stay even.

Notwithstanding these notable physical properties, I doubt this new Nestor Miranda creation will blow any seasoned cigar veterans away. But it probably isn’t supposed to. While its taste may be a bit monotonous at times—even a tad papery now and then—the Belicoso offers consistency and a straightforward profile in an affordable package. A respectable everyday selection, it earns three stogies out of five.

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

Patrick A

photo credit: Stogie Guys

5 Responses to “Stogie Reviews: Nestor Miranda 1989 Oscuro Belicoso”

  1. Uncle Rico Monday, August 16, 2010 at 9:05 am #

    Agreed. I was a little disappointed in the 1989 because I expect so much more from Nestor and DPG. But this isn’t a bad smoke…more like a decent value choice that works on the golf course.

  2. tommyboy Monday, August 16, 2010 at 10:40 am #

    If you want an inexpensive mixed filler cigar by Pepin you're far better off smoking the Benchmade IMO. Better and less expensive.

  3. dmjones1009 Monday, August 16, 2010 at 1:49 pm #

    I have to disagree with you on two points in this review, Patrick:

    First, I don’t believe we are “post-recession” as growth of government and more government jobs do not a recovery make.

    Second, I’ve smoked probably 5 or 6 1989s in a variety of both Rosado and Oscuro wrappers and have found them to be so inconsistent as to be not worth the bother. Some are very good and others are no better than Yard-gar status…begging to be snuffed quickly. I would smoke these again if they were given to me, but I can’t see spending my own money on these as there are now better sticks for the same price.

  4. Dave in Ashburn Monday, August 16, 2010 at 10:14 pm #

    I scored a box of these off cbid for $50 and can’t say I was disappointed. They definitely smoke fast and a bit hot, but I’ve paid a lot more for less.

  5. Anthony Thursday, December 22, 2011 at 12:25 pm #

    I have read and have been told that this is now a long filler cigar.

    I won 10 rosado-wrapped robustos for $20. I can't say I'm disappointed, either. This cigar strikes me as a milder version of some of the other DPG-made cigars I've tried. Draw was not too loose, and the burn rate seemed normal.

    I enjoy the Nestor Miranda Special Selection and Art Deco lines better, but the 1989 cigar is still quite nice. The Nestor Miranda brand reminds me of Oliva in that both brands offer a lot of cigar bang for the buck and produce several blends that I find highly enjoyable. In fact, I think the Special Selection with the rosado wrapper and the Oliva O with habano wrapper are two cigars I could smoke daily and never tire of.