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Quick Smoke: Illusione Singulare Rose Croix LE 2013

23 Nov 2014

Each Saturday and Sunday we’ll post a Quick Smoke: not quite a full review, just our brief verdict on a single cigar of “buy,” “hold,” or “sell.”illusione-sq

Illusione-Singulare-2013-qs

With the new 2014 Illusione Singulare now shipping to retailers, I thought it would be a good time to revisit the previous Singulare: the Rose Croix LE 2013 (7 x 46), a Nicaraguan puro made at the Jalapa TABSA factory. Considering how well past Singulares have aged, I wanted to see if 6 months of humidor time made any difference. The answer? Not really. This is still a good, medium-bodied smoke with wood, lots of leather, and hints of crisp vegetable, aluminum, and earth. It’s not that this is definitely not a cigar worth aging, it’s just that six months don’t seem to have made an appreciable difference to this well-made limited offering.

Verdict = Buy.

-Patrick S

photo credit: Stogie Guys

Quick Smoke: Viaje Full Moon 2014

22 Nov 2014

Each Saturday and Sunday we’ll post a Quick Smoke: not quite a full review, just our brief verdict on a single cigar of “buy,” “hold,” or “sell.”IMG_3778 - Version 2San-Lotano-Oval-Conn-sq

This cigar has one of the primary characteristics that I look for in a limited edition: a distinctive taste. After all, what’s the point of a special cigar if it’s basically the same as those that aren’t so special? This year’s Full Moon, a five-inch stick with the same Nicaraguan blend as 2013, boasts a hearty, thick blend of wood, leather, and a bit of coffee bean before a touch of sweetness mingles in during the last third. Much better than eating candy.

Verdict = Buy.

-George E

photo credit: N/A

 

Quick Smoke: Curivari Buenaventura BV 560

16 Nov 2014

Each Saturday and Sunday we’ll post a Quick Smoke: not quite a full review, just our brief verdict on a single cigar of “buy,” “hold,” or “sell.”

Want a recommendation for a good cigar for under $5? The Curivari Buenaventura BV 560 (if you shop around you can get a box of 10 for under $50) fits the bill. With a simple band and a matte wrapper, the Nicaraguan puro doesn’t look fancy. But don’t let that fool you. The medium-bodied, box-pressed smoke features the two things I most want in a cigar: balance and complexity. The multi-level flavors include milk chocolate, coffee, bread, and cedar. Combine that with solid construction and you get a very solid buy.

Verdict = Buy.

-Patrick S

photo credit: Stogie Guys

Quick Smoke: Emilio AF1 Corona

15 Nov 2014

Each Saturday and Sunday we’ll post a Quick Smoke: not quite a full review, just our brief verdict on a single cigar of “buy,” “hold,” or “sell.”

Emilio AF1 Corona

Ever been disappointed by an AF1 from Emilio? Me either. This Corona (5.5 x 44) would be no exception. Made in Estelí by A.J. Fernandez—for whom the cigar is also named—the blend sports a dark, toothy San Andrés wrapper around Nicaraguan tobaccos. The balanced, full-bodied flavors include black pepper, espresso, and creamy nut. The texture is thick and leathery. This is my favorite size in the AF1 portfolio, and well worth the reasonable asking price of about $6.

Verdict = Buy.

-Patrick A

photo credit: Stogie Guys

Quick Smoke: CAO Concert Amp

9 Nov 2014

Each Saturday and Sunday we’ll post a Quick Smoke: not quite a full review, just our brief verdict on a single cigar of “buy,” “hold,” or “sell.”

I’ll admit it: I don’t get why the CAO Concert didn’t catch on. Launched two years ago, we hardly hear about the line anymore, and CAO seems to have largely stopped promoting it. Maybe it’s the non-traditional packaging (guitar pick band, speaker amp box) that caused people to miss the well-made, traditional cigar that Concert is.  The corona-sized Amp (5.5 x 46) demonstrates classic Ecuadorian Habano flavors. Think medium- to full-bodied cedar, coffee, bread, and a hint of pepper spice. If you like Ecuadorian Habano-wrapped cigars like the Emilio AF2 or My Father, check out the Concert Amp. It offers similar flavors at a price that might be below $4 if you pick it up by the box.

Verdict = Buy.

-Patrick S

photo credit: Stogie Guys

Quick Smoke: Room 101 Master Collection Two Papi Chulo

8 Nov 2014

Each Saturday and Sunday we’ll post a Quick Smoke: not quite a full review, just our brief verdict on a single cigar of “buy,” “hold,” or “sell.”IMG_3778 - Version 2San-Lotano-Oval-Conn-sq

This little smoke, weighing in at 4 inches long with a ring gauge of 42, has a Criollo wrapper, Honduran binder, and Nicaraguan and Honduran filler. It opens with spice and then features the hints of vanilla and the leather often associated with Honduran tobacco. The spice drops off in the second half and the cigar becomes deeper and warmer. At $8, Papi Chulo is expensive for a small smoke, but this limited edition is interesting and well worth a try.

Verdict = Buy.

-George E

photo credit: N/A

 

Quick Smoke: Romeo y Julieta Wide Churchill (Cuban)

2 Nov 2014

Each Saturday and Sunday we’ll post a Quick Smoke: not quite a full review, just our brief verdict on a single cigar of “buy,” “hold,” or “sell.ryj-wide-churchill-sq

I recently revisited this Cuban Romeo y Julieta dubbed the Wide Churchill. The name is a bit strange. Short Wide Churchill would be more accurate (since it’s not just wider than a Churchill), though also more awkward. Name aside, the cigar is attractive and well-constructed, which is certainly welcome considering that Cubans have a deserved reputation for inconsistent construction. The Flavors are classic Habano: medium-bodied and balanced with roasted notes, lots of cedar, and coffee. It remains one of the better Cuban cigars I’ve had recently.

Verdict = Buy.

-Patrick S

photo credit: Stogie Guys