Origin : Nicaragua
Format : Petit Corona
Size : 5 1/8 x 42
Ring : 42
Wrapper : Nicaragua Café Colorado
Filler : Nicaragua
Binder : Nicaragua
Price : ~$6 each
I recently bought a box (AUG07) of these cigars solely upon the recommendation of several Brothers of the Leaf, and certainly do not regret the purchase. Originally the MK was only available at trade shows where Dion Giolito used them to show off his cigar blending and rolling genius. More recently they have become available in limited regular production. This is the first Nicaraguan Puro I have ever had the pleasure to taste. In my 15 years of cigar smoking I have almost exclusively smoked Cuban cigars until now. All I can say is that I got taught! I am reviewing the 5th cigar I have smoked in the box, but they have been all consistently the same.
Appearance : Rating:
The dark coffee wrapper, with slightly darker splotches here and there, is quite beautiful and slightly rustic in appearance. There are no protruding veins and the triple cap is perfectly applied on all the cigars in my box. The gold and white band is very elegant, and the boite nature box these cigars come in is originally and tastefully designed.
Construction : Rating:
Perfectly straight, razor sharp burn. Long ash, perfect cap, perfect draw. When the ash does drop off a perfectly shaped cone is revealed underneath. It is impossible to find a fault with the construction of these cigars. The rollers at Illusione must be among the best in the world.
Flavor : Rating:
This cigar starts out medium bodied and ends full with a powerful kick. The first two thirds are quite consistent yet complex with a medley of oriental spices I identified as ginger, cloves and white pepper intertwined with a smooth cappuccino taste. The white pepper remains subtle and in the background until the final third where it comes out in full force along with wood and leather flavours. It loses half a star for perhaps being just a tad too overpowering by the end, but nothing I couldn’t personally handle or appreciate.
Value : Rating:
At 6$ or less a pop, I challenge you to find better value.
Overall Rating : Rating:
I do not give near perfect scores easily, the Illusione MK deserves it in spades. These have become a permanent part of my collection and certainly one of my preferred cigars. I will have to give the Illusione CG:4 White Horse a try next.