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Cigar Review: Cabaiguan Guapos

19 Dec 2011

Before La Riqueza, El Triunfador, Ambos Mundos, La Verite, La Casita Criolla, and Fausto, Cabaiguan was the first cigar made by Pete Johnson that didn’t bear the Tatuaje name.

These days, Cabaiguan (pronounced kah-bei-gwahn) is often thought of as a milder version of the standard Tatuaje fare. But as my colleague pointed out in his 2009 review of the Robusto Extra, this blend is excellent in its own right and worthy of comparisons to some fine Cuban cigars, including the Partagas Serie D No. 4 and the Romeo y Julieta Short Churchill.

Cabaiguan is made at Don Pepin Garcia’s My Father Cigars factory in Nicaragua with a Connecticut-seed, shade-grown, Ecuadorian wrapper around Nicaraguan binder and filler leaves. The name on the yellowish band honors the town of Garcia’s birth in Cuba in the northern province of Sancti Spírites.

I smoked a handful of Guapos (5.6 x 54) for this review. This vitola costs about $11 apiece and is topped with a pigtailed triple cap. It is moderately soft to the touch with pre-light notes of earth, hay, and honey. The head cuts easily to reveal a smooth draw.

I try to work a fair amount of Connecticut-seed Ecuadorian smokes into my cigar rotation, so I have a pretty good feel for the sorts of flavors I like—and the flavors I don’t like—when it comes to this breed. And I’ve appreciated the Cabaiguan for years because I know it brings many of my favorite elements to the table while avoiding the major flavor pitfalls of milder cigars, such as metallic notes or a paper-like taste.

What’s especially appealing about the Guapos is the interplay between the tangy spice that hits the tip of the tongue and the mellow undertones of nuts and cream. Attentive smokers will also notice some floral tastes in addition to oak and pecan. This profile doesn’t tend to change much throughout the smoke, but I find the subtlety of the flavor is more than enough to hold my attention.

What’s more, the physical properties enable you to sit back and enjoy the cigar without having to worry about the burn, draw, or ash. This is, of course, to be expected from a cigar of the Garcia/Johnson pedigree. And I would argue it’s a requirement of any smoke that costs over $7, as this one certainly does.

While the Guapos may not be my favorite size of the Cabaiguan line (that honor probably belongs to the Coronas Extra), it’s a wonderful cigar and definitely worthy of four and a half stogies out of five.

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

Patrick A

photo credit: Stogie Guys

2 Responses to “Cigar Review: Cabaiguan Guapos”

  1. Jeremiah Monday, December 19, 2011 at 11:23 am #

    Love this line! Never had this vitola, but I'm guessing I would like it a lot.

  2. Cigar Inspector Monday, December 19, 2011 at 5:31 pm #

    This one was a little tart for me in the second half, but still quite good all around.