Saturday, January 19, 2013

Today, I bring forth a series of mini-reviews of cigars from the Big Smoke, including the Padilla Reserva Maduro which I'm smoking as I write:

Padilla Reserva Maduro Toro
Size: 5.7 x 50
Tobacco: Nicaragua
Price: $8.75

A long thin cigar beautifully wrapped in a dark, oily, toothy wrapper.  There are two veins in the leaf, one near the foot and one off the head.  Otherwise, the leaf is almost unnaturally smooth.  This is a vintage high quality maduro cigar, with none of the harshness or faintly chemical taste that you get with low-end maduros.  Burns slow with a smooth but not sweet taste.  Thick floral aroma, with very little aftertaste.

La Aroma de Cuba Robusto
Size: 5.5 x 54 (the "Marquis Tube")
Tobacco: Nicaraguan
Price: $5.25

I had two of these cigars:  The first I smoked to celebrate Alabama's 44-13 victory over Tennessee.  The second I smoked in Las Vegas; it was supposed to be a victory cigar, but instead it was my consolation cigar in the Planet Hollywood Casino sportsbook after we lost to Texas A&M 24-29.

This cigar has a great pedigree, blended by Jose 'Don Pepin' Garcia and distributed by Ashton, the same partnership that resulted in San Cristobol cigars.  It sports a dark, glossy wrapper with a colorful ornate band and a solid red foot band.

The cigar is spicy, but not as much as many of Don Pepin's other brands like his Black, Blue, and Series JJ lines. It has a husky, oaky flavor with a long finish.  It reminded me a lot of Glenmorangie single malt scotch.
Shaun raved about this cigar, saying it was one of his all-time Top 5.

Tatuaje Seleccion de Cazador
Size:  5 5/8" x 46 (Size is known as "7th")
Tobacco: Nicaraguan with an Ecuadorian wrapper
Price: $8.12

This is the cigar I smoked at the Big Smoke event in Las Vegas.  It was spicy, with medium-full body.  It had an absolutely intoxicating aroma, remarking one person beside me to exclaim "That is the best smelling cigar in the whole room!"  (and keep in mind, there were probably around 300 puffing furiously in that room at the time.)

It was a great complement to the prime rib dinner and my Balvenie after-dinner drink.  A slow cool burn that lasted about 50 minutes.

Diamond Crown Maximus
Tobacco: Nicaraguan

The Diamond Crown Maximus line is the results of a partnership between the Oliva family (which grows the tobacco), the Fuente family (which blends the cigars), and the JC Newman company (which distributes the cigars in the United States).

This was my New Year's Eve cigar.  Shaun and I smoked them in the afternoon before we left to a great party at Glen and Jenna Lowery's house.  For some reason I don't remember the specifics of the cigar like the size, the wrapper, or what we talked about while we smoked.  Shaun thinks it was a maduro.  I do  remember liking it very much.

My tasting notes at the time were:  "Tastes like dense dark burnt pecans with hints of pepper and java.  Long finish."

Zino Platinum
Size: 7 x 48
Tobacco: Dominican
Price: Unknown

I could not find any information online about the Zino Platinum I smoked.  Mine was about 7 inches long, with a 48 ring gauge, and the band looks slightly different than the one pictured above. The cigar had an impeccable draw and flawless construction.  It was too mild for my taste.  I would smoke one again, if given to me, but it's not a cigar I would seek out.


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