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Cigar Review: Todos Las Dias Robusto

15 May 2019

When Dunbarton Tobacco & Trust’s first line, Sobremesa, was announced in July 2015, many were anticipating a full-bodied follow-up from the man who put Drew Estate’s premium cigar business on the map. But Steve Saka didn’t want to give us another Liga Privada No. 9; instead, he gave us something balanced, complex, creamy, and relatively light on spice.

Flash forward to August 2017. Dunbarton’s third line is shipping to the U.S. The buzz is, Todos Las Dias (yes, it’s supposed to be Todos Los Dias, but we’ll leave that story for another time) is Saka’s strongest cigar to date.

“Todos Las Dias is my personal Spanglish translation meaning ‘All the Days,’” writes Saka on Dunbarton’s website. “The workers at Joya de Nicaragua often cringe at my casual butchering of their mother tongue, but in my opinion cigars are far more than a grammar lesson to abide, they are the physical manifestation of a feeling and of an experience. Todos Las Dias embodies the classic bold flavors that represent the heart of their soil’s peppery tobaccos and the labor of their always working hands. For me, this spicy Nicaraguan puro reflects no pretentious airs or any of that ‘notes of pencil lead with a hint of fennel’ nonsense. It is an honest, hardworking cigar intended to be smoked by men who know what it means to be a cigar smoker and never give a damn about what others think.”

The Todos Las Dias recipe calls for a Cuban-seed, sun-grown wrapper around tobaccos from Jalapa and Estelí. Originally, there were four sizes: Toro (6 x 52), Double Wide Belicoso (4.75 x 60), Half Churchill (4.75 x 48), and Robusto (5 x 52). Later, in 2018, a Thick Lonsdale “Mas Fuerte” (6 x 46) was added.

I smoked three Robustos for this review. This vitola retails for $11.45 and, like its brethren, sports dual bands of silver and black. The moderately firm, oily cigar boasts many marks of quality, including a well-executed cap, a tight cross-section of tobaccos at the foot, and a clean surface. That said, one of my samples (the one pictured above and at right) had a wrapper patch job just under the “L” in the primary band.

Once lit, pre-light notes of green raisin and cocoa give way to a bold, full-bodied profile of charred wood, black pepper, and espresso. While the introductory flavor may be straightforward and somewhat brutish, the resting smoke is a mouth-watering aroma of cream, sweetness, and nuts.

After the first half-inch or so, the body and spice pull back a bit. Here, the Robusto is still squarely in the upper reaches of strength and body, mind you, but there’s a little room for some nuance to shine through. I notice cocoa powder, dried fruit, and dry oak. The texture is leathery and palate-coating. The cigar remains in this state until the final puff. Throughout, the combustion qualities are excellent, including a solid white ash, smooth draw, straight burn, and voluminous, dense smoke production.

If you ever get the opportunity to speak with Steve Saka at one of his many in-store events, I highly suggest you take advantage. He has one of the world’s great tobacco minds. At some point, you may hear him say, “If you try to make a cigar everyone will like, you’ll end up with a cigar no one will love.”

Saka has been at the helm of many cigars I love. Top of that list is perhaps the Sobremesa Cervantes Fino. In the case of the Todos Las Dias Robusto, I like the cigar—but I don’t love it. While I can see myself firing it up on occasion after a heavy meal with a stiff drink, its strength, power, and body are too much for me for an “All the Days” cigar. That’s ultimately why I’m settling on a score of three and a half stogies out of five.

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

Patrick A

photo credit: Stogie Guys

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