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Cigar Review: Paul Garmirian Artisan’s Passion Toro

6 Oct 2011

A quick look through our reviews archive and you’ll see that Paul Garmirian cigars have been a favorite of ours. And personally, living only 15 minutes from their home shop, I appreciate my ready access to all their blends (including cigars with nearly 20 years of age), which in many areas are tough to find.

So I was excited to learn earlier this year that PG was coming out with a new blend called Artisan’s Passion. The blend is a “sister cigar” to PG’s Artisan’s Selection cigar, and like the Artisan’s Selection it aims to provide the PG experience in a more value-conscious offering.

Unlike the mild Artisan’s Selection, Artisan’s Passion is a more full-bodied line, which fits in with PG’s two previous releases: the Symphony 20th and the 15th Anniversary blends. Unlike those cigars (which command as much as $20 each), this sells in the $7-9 range.

The cigar comes in three sizes: a Short Robusto (4.5 x 52), a Super Robusto (5 x 54),  and a Toro (6 x 52). I smoked three Toros for this review. Each features a rough but oily wrapper of Dominican origin. Interestingly, a version with an Ecuadorian wrapper was also tested, but ultimately this Dominican wrapper won out.

The cigar is dominated by leather and wood and accompanied by a mustiness that many who smoke cigars made by Davidoff master Henke Kelner will recognize. Artisan’s Passion is not as complex as the PG Symphony 20, but the flavors are similar with peppery spice and oak.

It’s full-bodied as advertised, though the strength fades slightly at the end. Construction is good, with an easy draw, solid ash, and even burn.

For those looking for an introduction to PG cigars, but have been scared off by the often double digit prices, the PG Artisan’s Passion is well worth a try. Just don’t think this is as good as it gets for PG cigars. Both the Symphony 20 and the 15th Anniversary offer similar flavor profiles to but with more complexity, nuance, and balance.

Despite not quite measuring up to those extraordinary though higher-priced blends, there is a lot to like about this new addition to the Paul Garmirian portfolio. That’s why the Artisan’s Passion Toro earns a rating of four stogies out of five.

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

Patrick S

photo credit: Stogie Guys

3 Responses to “Cigar Review: Paul Garmirian Artisan’s Passion Toro”

  1. dmjones1009 Thursday, October 6, 2011 at 9:10 am #

    I had my first of these a couple weeks ago and…good call on the Henke Kelner signature mustiness! It definitely has that "Davidoff-iness" going for it, but with a twist. Very nice smoke and very nice price (compared to other PG stuff, anyway).

  2. shagsoprano Saturday, October 8, 2011 at 10:13 am #

    I'm on my 3rd box of Toros since July and find the value outstanding, an exemplary tribute to Dr. Garmirian's continued ability to give us great cigars.

  3. chas Sunday, October 9, 2011 at 6:44 am #

    A local shop just started carrying the PG stuff and I love the Artisan. However, for a few bucks more they have the rare family reserve packed in dated cedar boxes. Absolutely sublime for $10! I am going back this week and light two at a time to see if I can nail down some differences. Thanks to this site for continuing to review the great PG brand.