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Quick Smoke: Alec Bradley Connecticut Robusto

29 Mar 2015

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.”alec-bradley-connecticut-sq

alec-bradley-connecticut-rob

Ever dig through the bottom of your humidor and find something you didn’t know was there? That’s how I came across this Alec Bradley Connecticut Robusto, featuring an Ecuadorian Connecticut wrapper around Nicaraguan and Honduran fillers. The cigar  boasts notes of hay, cream, paper, and cedar. It’s medium-bodied with a straightforward flavor profile and excellent construction. There’s a very slight bitterness that isn’t unusual for a Connecticut smoke. It’s the very definition of a solid, but not exceptional, cigar.

Verdict = Hold.

-Patrick S

photo credit: Stogie Guys

Quick Smoke: Tatuaje Black Label Corona Gorda 2013

28 Mar 2015

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.”

Tatuaje Black 2

Known as Pete Johnson’s personal blend, the Tatuaje Black Corona Gorda (5.6 x 46) was first sold in 19-count jars in 2007 and met with acclaim and enthusiasm. Then, in September 2013, Johnson re-released the Nicaraguan puro, which boasts a sun-grown Criollo wrapper and is handmade at My Father Cigars. I don’t believe I ever tried the 2007 edition, but I can attest the 2013 Tatuaje Black Corona Gorda is outstanding and well worth the $10 asking price (if you can find it). Flavors include citrus, red pepper, cocoa, and leather. It isn’t hard to understand why my colleague awarded this cigar a rare rating of five stogies out of five.

Verdict = Buy.

-Patrick A

photo credit: Stogie Guys

Quick Smoke: Drew Estate Liga Privada Único Serie Dirty Rat

22 Mar 2015

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.”

Liga-Unico-Dirty-Rat

With a high price and limited availability, I don’t smoke Drew Estate’s Dirty Rat frequently, but when I do I never regret it. The cigar came about when Drew Estate wanted to add a corona size to its Liga Privada No. 9 line, but the small ring gauge meant the blend had to be tweaked. The result is a balanced cigar that is simultaneously sweet, spicy, and savory. Milk chocolate, rich earth, and black pepper flavors are all apparent.

Verdict = Buy.

-Patrick S

photo credit: Stogie Guys

Quick Smoke: Pinar del Rio Small Batch Reserve Maduro Robusto

21 Mar 2015

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.”

PDR

For a little over three years I held on to this specimen in my humidor. That’s about as much patience as I can muster, so it was high time I lit up the Small Batch Reserve Maduro Robusto (5 x 52). This Pinar del Rio creation sports a dark Ligero Habano wrapper from Brazil, a Dominican Criollo ’98 binder, and Corojo filler tobaccos from Nicaragua and the Dominican Republic. The result is a well-constructed, pleasurable smoke with notes dark chocolate, peanut, coffee, syrup, and cream—perhaps a little more balanced and subdued than what I remember, and a little more chalky in texture. Whether you plan to smoke it or age it, the Small Batch Reserve Maduro Robusto will be a wise investment at only $7.

Verdict = Buy.

-Patrick A

photo credit: Stogie Guys

Quick Smoke: Illusione Singulare Rose Croix LE 2013

15 Mar 2015

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

My recent five-stogie rating of the 2014 Illusione Singulare prompted me to see how the 2013 Illusione Singulare was smoking. Much as I like the Anunnaki, the Rose Croix is a size (7 x 46) that, in general, I prefer. Age hasn’t hurt the Rose Croix, although I’m not sure it has improved much either, which is sort of a surprise given how much the 2010 Illusione Singulare improved with time. Still, it’s a tasty medium- to full-bodied cigar with woodiness, coffee, leather, and a slight metallic note. It’s still a fine cigar, but age hasn’t, at least yet, improved this elegant smoke.

Verdict = Buy.

-Patrick S

photo credit: Stogie Guys

Quick Smoke: Guayacan Maduro Toro

14 Mar 2015

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.”

Guayacan Maduro 1

After recently reviewing—and sincerely enjoying—the Sabor de Estelí Habano Robusto from Guayacan, I decided to take another Noel Rojas creation for a test drive: the Guayacan Maduro Toro (6 x 52). Made at Rojas’ Tabacalera Aromas de Jalapa factory in Nicaragua, the Maduro line features a Criollo-seed San Andrés wrapper around Corojo tobaccos. It starts with notes of pepper and campfire, then adds hints of cream, peanut, and just a little cocoa along the way. Construction is excellent. This Toro runs about $9.50. I enjoyed it, but I think it’s a little overpriced and not nearly as enjoyable as the Sabor de Estelí Habano blend.

Verdict = Hold.

-Patrick A

photo credit: Stogie Guys

Quick Smoke: Drew Estate Liga Undercrown Flying Pig

8 Mar 2015

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.”undercrown-flying-pig-sq

undercrown-flying-pig

When it was first released a few years ago, the Undercrown Flying Pig was only sold in Europe. Now Liga Privada retailers in the U.S. are able to carry the zeppelin-shaped perfecto. The $12 cigar features the Undercrown’s characteristicly oily Mexican wrapper around a slightly tweaked blend. The result is a very rich combination of coffee, dry chocolate, and woody spice. It starts out medium-full bodied but ramps up as the cigar progresses. While I slightly prefer the Corona Viva size of the Undercrown line (especially taking price into account), this is still an excellent, flavorful cigar.

Verdict = Buy.

-Patrick S

photo credit: Stogie Guys