Paul 85 – Medium brown, mottled, minimal veining, minor soft spots, little tobacco aroma on the wrapper, dark fruit at the foot, good cold draw, dark fruit, leather, and cedar. First 1/3: Medium amount of smoke, wood and leather, medium gray ash, mild strength, light body, and short finish, some nasal burn on the retrohale. Second 1/3: Leather prominent, scalloped burn line, flavors a little deeper, draw loosening and the cigar is heating up, flaky ash. Last 1/3: Flavors fade and the burn gets hot, mild plus strength, light body, and a short finish.
Rob 91 – A very oily oscuro wrapper is showing very tight and invisible seams. The cigar has a bit of a heavy feel to it. It lights very easy with my torch, and very creamy, thick smoke is emerging. I am getting a chocolaty smoke here; not heavy, but it does coat my mouth. There is no apparent bitterness at this early stage. At the half way point, I’m getting a bready-ness through the retro-hale. It is NOT a sweet cigar, however, the mild chocolate flavor is being maintained, and the finish is reminding me of a chocolate candy bar.
Jim 79 – Medium brown in color but very oily wrapper. There is a lot of white pepper spice at first making it hard to distinguish other flavors. As it heats up the spice is mellowing and flavors are starting to develop. Coffee flavors are now predominate mixed in with bitter chocolate. The bitterness is a bit overpowering and distracting. The spice has more of a cinnamon taste on the finish The draw and burn are excellent. Halfway through and the flavors are starting come together and the bitterness is still there but is starting to blend in better. I really had hoped this stick would continue to develop and come together However, as I continued into the last half I really struggled with finishing this cigar. The flavors started to get muddy on me and developed a strong after taste that I did not enjoy.
Artie 85 – This looks like a well constructed robusto, with a semi-sweet chocolate colored wrapper that is slightly mottled. Its texture is rough. With a hard outer shell, cutting was easy with no “cap-collapse”. The cold draw has a nice herbal quality. Lighting was easy and the draw nice and open. My first impression is that this is an extremely earthy cigar, with Initial flavors are baking chocolate and dark Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf coffee. Slightly dirty feeling in mouth. Mid way this cigar is starting to knock me out. It is super-strong with a big nicotine kick. Construction is excellent with a dead-on burn. Towards the nub, its earthiness becomes overpowering and I’m struggling to get through it. This is a cigar that might appeal to some, but I prefer a more balanced flavor profile and one that I can smoke leisurely without feeling challenged.
Will 79 – Very dark robusto with a mottled rustic looking wrapper leaf. Well filled with a sloppy applied triple cap. The cold nose was caramel and black pepper and the cold draw was molasses and pepper. Once ignited the initial flavors included molasses and faint pepper with a candied apricot finish, what happened to the pepper? I used a V-cut on this stick and the draw is very tight so I apply a second V-cut across the original to open her up. No success, still a very tight draw, I am triple puffing to get any smoke out. At the 10 minute mark the draw has opened a bit and I am getting hints of roasted venison and wild mushroom but none of the pre-light sweetness. There is that umami tang but where is the spice. The air on my patio is still but this stick has serious burn issues, possibly caused by me trying to suck some smoke out of this stick. At the 30 minute mark the stick has become spongy and squishy and all I am getting is Nic kick. Artied it.