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Cigar Review: Illusione cg4

16 Nov 2011

“Corona Gorda, the four horsemen of the Apocalypse, the white horse which is the conquer, the false prophet.”

According to the Illusione website, the unique name behind this vitola was inspired by Pete Johnson, who suggested Illusione creator Dion Giolito call it “cheval blanc.” Giolito evidently wanted to associate this cigar with French wine country, and a name that translates to “white horse” not only accomplishes that association, it also fits perfectly with the conspiracy culture that Giolito embraces.

Each of the 12 vitolas in the original Illusione lineup have unique names—including “And Crowned of Thorns” and “Necessary and Sufficient”—and each corresponding vitola digit (i.e., 23, 888, 2) refers to either Giolito’s faith, a significant year in his life, or his favorite number at the craps table. The Illusione name itself is a nod to conspiracy culture.

Like its brethren, the cg4 (5.63 x 48) is made at the Raices Cubanas factory in Honduras from three-year old Nicaraguan tobaccos. It features a reddish oscuro corojo wrapper that has some prominent veins and ample oils. Topped off with a triple cap, the cigar is firm with pre-light notes of earth and milk chocolate.

Once lit, the corojo ’99 and criollo ’98 tobaccos produce a profile of leather, spice, and plenty of sweetness on the finish—more sweetness than I have noticed in any of the other Illusione vitolas. The flavor is bold yet balanced with the sort of smooth strength that can sneak up on you given the depth of the taste.

The depth is further accented by the additions of dark chocolate and nuts towards the midway point. The roasted nut flavor and the sweetness on the finish really makes the cg4 stand out. Even with all its nuance, though, the cigar definitely falls in the full-bodied range. But unlike so many powerful smokes on the market, this one has the complexity—it’s not brute force.

I’d expect a corona gorda that costs $7-8 to have good construction, and the cg4 doesn’t disappoint. The stable ash holds firm. And the burn, while not perfectly straight, doesn’t require any touch-ups to stay mostly even.

I don’t think I’m surprising anyone by throwing my recommendation behind the Illusione cg4. The cat has been out of the bag for years now, and most would agree that the near universal praise for the Illusione recipe is justified. That’s certainly the case with this smoke, which earns four and a half stogies out of five.

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

Patrick A

photo credit: Stogie Guys

5 Responses to “Cigar Review: Illusione cg4”

  1. Dion Wednesday, November 16, 2011 at 7:40 am #

    Thanks for the great review!


  2. Archibald Wednesday, November 16, 2011 at 9:46 am #

    Love this cigar. The best vitola in the Illusione line, IMO. Thanks for the review.

  3. Tesa Fan 1 Wednesday, November 16, 2011 at 3:16 pm #

    The ~2~ vitola is my favorite, but this one is damn good, too. I agree it's the sweetest of the Illusione sizes, particularly at the beginning thru to the midway point.

  4. Eric Wednesday, November 16, 2011 at 9:38 pm #

    I adore this cigar.

  5. @TheCoronaGorda Friday, November 18, 2011 at 12:09 am #

    Almost every Illusione I've had has had burn issues and/or unraveled on me, other than the Singulare Phantom. That is an excellent stick right there. Not too keen on any others, though, unfortunately. Not trying to bash, just giving my honest opinion and experience.