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Quick Smoke: Avo 22 30 Years

24 Aug 2018

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.”

Visually, this limited edition cigar is stunning: Two predominantly white bands set off the figurado’s honey-brown wrapper, and each canister of 19 is individually tagged. Said to be a revival of the 2002 cigar that was Avo Uvezian’s personal blend, the release is part of the 30th anniversary celebration of the brand’s founding. This cigar features a sun-grown Ecuadorian wrapper, Dominican binder, and four Dominican fillers. The result is a complex, medium-strength experience that builds in intensity along its 5.875 inches. Though it took a few puffs for the draw to fully open as it burned from the small foot to the 50-ring gauge, performance was excellent in all respects. A terrific cigar for $15.

Verdict = Buy.

George E

photo credit: Stogie Guys

Quick Smoke: Partagas Series No.1 Edición Limitada 2017

19 Aug 2018

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.”

Cuban cigar conglomerate Habanos introduced the Edición Limitada in 2000, employing extra-aged tobaccos in exclusive sizes. The 2017 releases consisted of the Cohiba Talisman, Punch Regios de Punch, and this Partagas Series No.1. It’s a 5.4-inch, 52-ring gauge smoke that cost me 17 euro. The cigar features dark chocolate, earth, and oak flavors with a hint of mint. It has a solid ash, open draw, and a slightly uneven burn. Rich, balanced, classic, medium- to full-bodied flavors make this a cigar well worth trying.

Verdict = Buy.

Patrick S

photo credit: Stogie Guys

Quick Smoke: Davidoff 702 Series Aniversario Special R Robusto

17 Aug 2018

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.”

This Davidoff line was introduced last year to employ a special hybrid Ecuadorian wrapper (the 702 in the name) to create a more intense cigar. It’s obviously much darker than the regular Aniversario Special R line and, from the first puff, it’s stronger. The Special R Robusto (4.9 x 50) starts a bit harsh, but that levels out quickly. As it moves along, you’ll find some of the typical Davidoff mushroom flavor, but others such as wood and nuts move to the fore. Performance is nearly perfect. At $21.40, this is obviously is an expensive cigar. If you’re not a Davidoff fan, you might not enjoy it. But for those of us who are, this is a cigar certainly worth trying.

Verdict = Buy.

George E

photo credit: Davidoff

Quick Smoke: L’Atelier Imports Extension de la Racine ER13

12 Aug 2018

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.”

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Released in 2013, this cigar from Pete Johnson’s L’Atelier Imports was built to have the same dimensions as the Cohiba Siglo VI (5.9 x 52). That said, its makeup—a Nicaraguan sun-grown Criollo wrapper around Nicaraguan binder and filler tobaccos—doesn’t yield a flavor profile that resembles the famed Cuban smoke. Still, it’s good in its own right, with excellent combustion qualities and a balanced taste of rich caramel, cream, and dry oak with a bready texture. It originally sold for $9.25. If you can track one down, pick it up.

Verdict = Buy.

Patrick A

photo credit: Stogie Guys

Quick Smoke: Avo Heritage Toro Tubo

10 Aug 2018

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.”

Introduced last year, this Avo Heritage vitola can be tough to find. It doesn’t seem to appear on the brand’s website, and a lot of shops don’t have it in their inventory. That’s a shame. It is a terrific cigar, and a near-prefect example of what Avo set out to accomplish with the Heritage line: a stronger smoke that retained the best of Avo. With a sun-grown Ecuadorian wrapper and Dominican binder and filler tobaccos, it begins with familiar notes of grass, mushrooms, and a hint of spice. Along the 6-inch, 50-ring gauge frame those flavors wax and wane as they interact with sweetness, a little chocolate, and some pepper. I found it stronger and bolder than other Heritage sizes I’ve smoked, but Davidoff assured me the blend is the same. At $10, the Heritage Toro Tubo is a bargain.

Verdict = Buy.

George E

photo credit: Stogie Guys

Quick Smoke: Flor de las Antillas Toro

5 Aug 2018

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.”

My Father’s Flor de las Antillas blend is a Nicaraguan puro from the Pepin family featuring a sun-grown Nicaraguan wrapper around Nicaraguan binder and filler tobaccos. The cigar has garnered high ratings from both Cigar Aficionado (which named it the top cigar of 2012) and Stogie Guys. The 6-inch, 52-ring gauge, box-pressed Toro features notes of coffee, earth, nutmeg, bread, and a hint of damp cardboard. Combustion is excellent, but I can’t help but feeling that this cigar doesn’t fully deliver compared to past editions.

Verdict = Hold.

Patrick S

photo credit: Stogie Guys

Quick Smoke: E.P. Carrillo Capa de Sol Sultan

3 Aug 2018

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.”

Until a few nights ago, this specimen had been resting in one of my humidors for about two years. Part of E.P. Carrillo’s “Elite Series,” the Capa de Sol blend sports a dark Ecuadorian leaf around Nicaraguan binder and filler tobaccos. In its three other sizes, which range in ring gauge from 52 to 54, I suspect the line is significantly stronger and denser. The Sultan (6 x 60) format, however, renders the blend cool, airy, and slightly subdued. Flavors include sharp red pepper, chalky earth, sweet cocoa, and a bit of black pepper spice. Expect the price to be in the $9 to $10 range. I’d like to try some of the other Capa de Sol sizes because my main reason for not fully recommending this cigar has to do with construction (flaky ash, somewhat burdensome burn) and the fact that it tends to overstay its welcome. If you’re a fan of the gordo size, however, take my criticism with a grain of salt; this just might be up your alley, and there’s a lot to like here flavor-wise.

Verdict = Hold.

Patrick A

photo credit: Stogie Guys