12 Dec 2012
Last November, when I reviewed the Classic Intrepidus, I was heartily impressed by the blend Willy Herrera created for Walter “Lilo” Santiago’s Crémo Cigars, which was prior to Herrera’s departure to Drew Estate.
So ever since Crémo rolled out its Classic Maduro blend at last summer’s industry trade show, I’ve been keen to take it for a test drive. It, like the original line, is crafted at El Titan de Bronze Cigar Factory on Miami’s Calle Ocho, an outfit Crémo’s website hails for its “old-school Cuban entubado techniques” and “level-nine rollers from Cuba, who have worked for Cohiba, Romeo y Julieta, Corona, and Partagas.”
Whereas the Crémo Classic sports a Habano wrapper, Nicaraguan binder, and filler from Nicaragua and the Dominican, the Classic Maduro features a dark San Andreas wrapper around Nicaraguan tobaccos. It is offered in two sizes: Excelsior (5 x 50) and Intrepidus (6 x 52).
The latter retails for $12 and boasts a beautifully executed triple-cap, a toothy exterior leaf with minimal veins, and moderate pre-light notes of nougat and dark chocolate. The black and silver band has “handcrafted in Little Havana” scribed on its side. The cross-section at the foot shows a dense bunching of leaves and the draw is unexpectedly stiff.
This is one of those cigars that imparts an earthy, somewhat spicy aftertaste on the lips and palate. The resting smoke has a decidedly sweeter aroma of candied nuts with a little leather. The smoke itself is dense and velvety, reminding me of espresso, dry wood, marshmallow, and dark chocolate. It becomes creamier at the midway point, then a bit spicier in the final third of the 110-minute smoke.
In line with my expectations as a fan of the Classic Intrepidus, the Classic Maduro Intrepidus likewise has top-notch physical properties. Included are a straight burn line and solid white ash. And the draw, while tighter than what I’m used to, is by no means burdensome, allowing bountiful volumes of smoke with each puff.
While I have to give the edge to its predecessor, the Classic Maduro Intrepidus is a fine smoke in its own right, and one you should keep and eye out for as it starts to become more widely available. In my book, it’s worthy of a very solid rating of four stogies out of five.
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photo credit: Stogie Guys