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Quick Smoke: Tatuaje The Jackal (Case de Montecristo Exclusive)

29 May 2016

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.”

Jackal

Not to be confused with The Jekyll, which was Tatuaje’s Halloween smoke in 2014, The Jackal hit the market last summer as an exclusive to Chicago-area retailer Casa de Montecristo. It boats a beautiful Ecuadorian Sancti Spiritus wrapper around Nicaraguan tobaccos. Only about 10,000 Jackals were made in a single vitola (6.75 x 56) with a torpedo-style cap and an unfinished foot. The profile is dry and oaky with cedar spice and hints of cocoa, black pepper, and creamy peanut. The only downside is the price tag of $13.90; you’ll get your money’s worth, though.

Verdict = Buy.

Patrick A

photo credit: Stogie Guys

Quick Smoke: E.P. Carrillo Selección Oscuro No. 6

28 May 2016

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.”

EPC-oscuro

The Selección Oscuro is the first E.P. Carrillo cigar to feature a Mexican San Andrés Oscuro wrapper. Underneath the dark, leathery wrapper is an Ecuadoran binder and Nicaraguan filler tobaccos. The medium-bodied smoke has dark, rich, earthy notes with powdered cocoa, bread, and a tiny bit of spice. The Selección Oscuro was a bit more spongy than I would have expected, although it didn’t negatively impact combustion at all, nor the noticeably cool smoke. As someone who generally isn’t the biggest fan of the San Andrés wrapper, it is noteworthy how much I enjoyed this cigar.

Verdict = Buy.

Patrick S

photo credit: Stogie Guys

Quick Smoke: Curivari Buena Ventura BV 500

22 May 2016

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’ve long touted Curivari Buenaventura as an excellent cigar for the value. The Nicaraguan puro’s understated, classic appearance fits the sub-$5 price tag, but don’t mistake that as an accurate proxy for quality. Excellent construction aids  the delivery of a balanced combination of medium-bodied flavors: cocoa, espresso, cedar, oak, and earth. This reasonably priced gem is a little hard to find but well worth seeking out.

Verdict = Buy.

Patrick S

photo credit: Stogie Guys

Quick Smoke: La Palina Red Label Toro

21 May 2016

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.”

Red Label Toro

As a longtime fan of La Palina, I was looking forward to trying the Red Label, a line introduced in 2015. I knew it was a lighter complement to the fuller-strength Black Label. It wasn’t the lack of strength that made the biggest impression, though. It was the lack of flavor. For the Toro’s full six inches, about the only thing I experienced was an overwhelming hot, dry, grassy rawness. The Ecuadorian Habano wrapper, Ecuadorian binder, and Nicaraguan and Dominican filler blend just didn’t suit my palate. Construction, burn, and draw were fine. Overall, however, I found the Red Label to be more of a red flag.

Verdict = Sell.

George E

photo credit: La Palina

Quick Smoke: Tatuaje Black Cazadores

15 May 2016

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-singulare-2014-sq

Tatuaje-Black

Earlier this year, Tatuaje’s Pete Johnson announced the Black line would be expanded to five sizes, all in similar 20-count flip-top boxes. One of the new sizes is Cazadores (6.4 x 43), which is one of my favorite sizes in the original Brown line, so I was interested how it smoked with the Black blend. I found a pleasant combination of bread and cedar, along with a honey sweetness and just a hint of pepper. The cigar starts off medium-bodied but bumps up to medium-full as it progresses. The new sizes of Tatuaje Black are just hitting stores this month. If you enjoyed the original offerings, the Cazadores is well worth seeking out.

Verdict = Buy.

Patrick S

photo credit: Stogie Guys

Quick Smoke: El Güegüense Corona Gorda

14 May 2016

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.”

Corona Gorda

Made at the TABSA (Tobaccos Valle de Jalapa) factory in Nicaragua using Aganorsa tobacco, El Güegüense—also known as “The Wise Man”—is the first blend from Foundation Cigar Co., which was launched in 2015 by former Drew Estate employee Nicholas Melillo. The Nicaraguan puro has a beautiful Corojo ’99 wrapper from Jalapa that’s described as “rosado rosado café.” My favorite El Güegüense vitola is the Corona Gorda (5.6 x 46). It boasts a medium-bodied profile with well-balanced flavors of cedar, honey, melon, and subtle sweetness. With excellent combustion properties, ample complexity, and a sub-$10 price tag, this cigar has been a fixture of my regular rotation since it was released.

Verdict = Buy.

Patrick A

photo credit: Stogie Guys

Quick Smoke: Illusione Singulare LE 2014 Anunnaki

8 May 2016

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-singulare-2014-sq

illusionesingulare-2014

I was a big fan of the Illusione Singulare 2014 when it first came out—it earned a rare five-stogie rating—so I wanted to see how it has aged. The annual release, which came out in late 2014, is a 5.5-inch, 54-ring gauge Nicaraguan puro with a Corojo ’99 wrapper (the same wrapper as the Illusione Epernay) over dual binders of Jalapa Criollo ’98 and Estelí Corojo ’99. The cigar burns flawlessly producing dense smoke with toast, cedar, and creaminess, although more cedar and less cream than I remembered. I’m not sure it’s any better than when I first smoked it, but the Anunnaki is still very enjoyable.

Verdict = Buy.

Patrick S

photo credit: Stogie Guys