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Quick Smoke: Villiger La Meridiana Toro

13 Oct 2019

A couple times each week we’ll post a Quick Smoke: not quite a full review, just our brief verdict on a single cigar of “buy,” “hold,” or “sell.”

Made at the La Joya de Nicaragua factory, this box-pressed toro features an oily, chestnut brown wrapper. The Nicaraguan puro features notes of cedar, pepper, orange peel and roasted nuts. With an even burn and sturdy ash, it’s well-constructed, medium-bodied smoke.

Verdict = Buy.

Patrick S

photo credit: Stogie Guys

Quick Smoke: Emilio AF2 Robusto

11 Oct 2019

A couple times each week we’ll post a Quick Smoke: not quite a full review, just our brief verdict on a single cigar of “buy,” “hold,” or “sell.”

Back in the day, the AF2 line was made for Emilio Cigars owner Gary Griffith by A.J. Fernandez. Since this spring, though, the AF1 and AF2 have been crafted by Black Label Trading Co. (BLTC) at its Fabrica Oveja Negra factory in Estelí, each receiving a “makeover in appearance and flavor,” according to BLTC chief James Brown. In the case of the AF2, the Ecuadorian Habano wrapper envelops a Nicaraguan Habano binder and Nicaraguan filler tobaccos. The result is a wonderfully balanced cigar with notes of cinnamon, cedar, cocoa, and bready cereals. The finish concentrates spice on the tip of the tongue. At $9.50 for a single, the Robusto (5 x 50) is a satisfying treat.

Verdict = Buy.

Patrick A

photo credit: Stogie Guys

Quick Smoke: L’Atelier Imports MAD 44 Maduro

6 Oct 2019

A couple times each week we’ll post a Quick Smoke: not quite a full review, just our brief verdict on a single cigar of “buy,” “hold,” or “sell.”

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This Broadleaf wrapper blend from L’Atelier Imports features classic maduro flavors. Beneath the Connecticut Broadleaf wrapper is a Sancti Spiritus leaf around Nicaraguan binder and filler. The result is an earthy, toasty blend with rich earth, cedar spice, and lots of sweetness. When it comes to Broadleaf maduro cigars, lately this one has become a go-to, especially when the price can be under $5 per cigar when purchased by the box.

Verdict = Buy.

Patrick S

photo credit: Stogie Guys

Quick Smoke: CAO Flathead V554 Camshaft

4 Oct 2019

A couple times each week we’ll post a Quick Smoke: not quite a full review, just our brief verdict on a single cigar of “buy,” “hold,” or “sell.”

There’s nothing new or especially sexy about CAO Flathead. But that doesn’t mean the V554 Camshaft (5.5 x 54) isn’t a solid, enjoyable value. This blend—which consist of a Connecticut Broadleaf wrapper around a Habano Connecticut binder and Nicaraguan filler tobaccos—brings some nice, full flavors to the table. It sports a low-spice, leathery profile of milk chocolate, espresso, black pepper, and cream with a perfect draw. These days, you can find it for less than $6 when bought by the box of 24.

Verdict = Buy.

Patrick A

photo credit: Stogie Guys

Quick Smoke: Paul Garmirian 15th Anniversary Corona Gorda

29 Sep 2019

A couple times each week 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’ve always been a big a fan of the PG 15th Anniversary blend. Yet, best I can remember, I’ve never smoked the Corona Gorda size (5.5 x 46), which is odd considering the corona gorda is generally one of my preferred sizes. Featuring a Nicaraguan wrapper along with Dominican binder and filler tobaccos, it’s a full-bodied blend with leather, pepper, wine tannins, rich cedar, and some Davidoff-esque mushroom and earth notes. It isn’t as eloquently balanced as the Belicoso, but it’s still quite enjoyable.

Verdict = Buy.

Patrick S

photo credit: Stogie Guys

Quick Smoke: Macanudo Heritage Nuevo Robusto

27 Sep 2019

Each Saturday and Sunday we’ll post a Quick Smoke: not quite a full review, just our brief take on a single cigar.

Introduced earlier this summer, the new Heritage Nuevo line from Macanudo sports a golden Ecuadorian Connecticut wrapper, a Mexican San Andrés binder, and filler tobaccos from Nicaragua, Mexico, and the Dominican Republic. The Robusto (5 x 50) starts dry and salty, but quickly settles in to a much more enjoyable profile of creamy almond, peanut, and white pepper. It is mild, balanced, and smooth. The combustion properties are impeccable. While I cannot give my full recommendation given the $13 price point, this Macanudo is unlikely to disappoint if you’re looking for a higher-end morning or mid-afternoon smoke.

Verdict = Hold.

Patrick A

photo credit: Stogie Guys

Quick Smoke: Drew Estate x Caldwell All Out Kings Smash

22 Sep 2019

A couple times each week we’ll post a Quick Smoke: not quite a full review, just our brief verdict on a single cigar of “buy,” “hold,” or “sell.”

When I reviewed this robusto collaboration almost a year and a half ago, I wasn’t a fan. Overall, I found it sharp on the throat with a fairly unpleasant taste. This stick, the last of a five-pack I purchased for the original review, has been sitting in my humidor ever since. I thought I’d see if resting had led to any improvements. I’d have to say it did. While the sharpness was still noticeable, it had lessened to a relatively small factor. The dirt and campfire tastes I didn’t like originally had also backed off. What was left was an earthy, nutty smoke with some sweetness. And while All Out Kings is not one I’d quickly reach for (especially at nearly $14), it does offer something different. But the fact that you need substantial patience results in my rating.

Verdict = Hold.

George E

photo credit: Stogie Guys