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Stogie Reviews: San Lotano Maduro Robusto

16 Mar 2011

A.J. Fernandez made his mark on the industry by producing top-selling cigars for the likes of Rocky Patel, Padilla, Graycliff, Gurkha, and others. Last year he broke the mold and released his first nationally-distributed solo cigar.

The blend, San Lotano, was once a pre-Castro Cuban line. “Retired for decades, the line is being reintroduced by A.J. Fernandez, whose grandfather first started the brand in San Luis, Cuba,” reads a press release. Fernandez says that “San Lotano has been a project many years in the making for me, and it is made to honor the tradition of cigar making that I learned from my father and my father’s father.”

San Lotano is handmade at the Tabacalera Fernandez factory in Estelí, Nicaragua, which turns out nine million cigars annually. The series is available in three wrapper variations: Habano, Connecticut, and Maduro. The latter features a Mexican outer leaf, a dual binder from the Dominican Republic and Honduras, and a two-country filler blend from Honduras and Nicaragua.

With a soft box press, the Robusto (5 x 52) retails for about $6 apiece. It has the look, feel, and smell of other Mexican cigars—notably Murcielago—with a rich, sun-softened exterior and mouth-watering aromas of cocoa and earth. The cold draw is smooth and easy.

After toasting the foot and establishing an even light, a chalky profile of cayenne spice, espresso, black pepper, and sweet coffee creamer takes center stage. A bitter taste is also present, a pleasant one that reminds me of dark chocolate. The interesting sweet-versus-bitter interplay continues into the midway point, and the finale is characterized by more espresso and intensified spice.

The construction is set-it-and-forget-it kind solid. Although slightly flaky, the ash holds firm for well over an inch, and the burn line requires zero maintenance.

True, there’s much to like about the Maduro Robusto, and the price is more than fair. While it may not be as exceptional as the San Lotano Habano, which boasts impressively complex flavors and loads of body, or the Connecticut, which sports a taste of almond and subtle spice, this savory specimen is worthy of three and a half stogies out of five.

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

Patrick A

photo credit: Stogie Guys

Drew Estate

5 Responses to “Stogie Reviews: San Lotano Maduro Robusto”

  1. mighty Wednesday, March 16, 2011 at 7:21 am #

    I have tried a couple of the San Lotanos. They just haven't clicked with me yet. Nothing that made me turn away in disgust mind you, but just nothing that really jumped out at me either.

    I'd also be right around 3 stogies.

  2. cj Wednesday, March 16, 2011 at 5:57 pm #

    Oh, the habano is quite nice for the money. I need to try the conn as well.

  3. Maestro Thursday, March 17, 2011 at 8:26 am #

    I'm dissapointed in this review. The San Lotano Maduro is easily one of the best maduro wrappers out there, especially if you like something sweet which the Mexican wrapper usually imparts.

    I think the fact it's a medium body in a cigar world gone mad for full-bodied powerhouses is probably unfairly tilting this stick from a four stogie score.

  4. Don Sunday, January 29, 2012 at 3:00 am #

    I would have to disagree this is a four star cigar. It's smooth all the way through and was a great cigar. I didn't get the spicyness he speaks of. I compare this to a less strong Dark Corrojo Antano.

  5. Milan Sunday, March 3, 2013 at 2:43 pm #

    I have to disagree with the review. I think the taste of this cigar is similar to a padron 64 without the hole in your pocket.