20 Dec 2010
I have a lot of admiration for Tabacalera Perdomo. When politicians raised federal taxes on “large” cigars by 700% for the State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP), the folks at Perdomo responded by dropping their prices and absorbing the SCHIP hike on most of their portfolio.
“We’re all in this together in these tough economic times,” says Nick Perdomo, the company’s president. “You should be able to afford great cigars at great price points.” So, in 2009 and 2010, Tabacalera Perdomo made their best-selling blends more affordable, including dropping prices on their popular Lot 23 line by $15 per box.
Lot 23 was born ten years ago when Nicolas Perdomo, Sr. and his son, the aforementioned Nick Jr., cleared a lot of virgin soil near their factory in Estelí, Nicaragua. Six years later they were cultivating tobacco from this fertile land to make the original Lot 23. Connecticut and Maduro versions were added later in a variety of sizes.
Among the newest vitolas is the Punta Gorda (5 x 60), a stubby torpedo that verges on Nub dimensions. The Maduro incarnation comes complete with a toothy broadleaf wrapper that’s dark and oily. Its sharply pointed cap clips to reveal an effortless draw. Despite having little pre-light aroma, the Punta Gorda Maduro starts with a zesty, medium-bodied profile of cedar, espresso, and a bit of barbecue tang. Each easy puff yields an abundance of thick, white smoke.
After the first inch, as the textured, finely layered ash works its way down from the foot, the flavor begins to border on full-bodied. Spice, leather, and rich molasses come to the forefront. Still, the taste is more smooth and nuanced than overbearing or powerful. It stays that way until the last puff.
With outstanding construction—including a near-perfect burn—the Lot 23 Punta Gorda Maduro is a great value at under $5 apiece. Perdomo deserves much credit for the way they’ve kept their prices down in tough times, and this particular cigar deserves a rating of four stogies out of five.
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photo credit: Stogie Guys