Origin : Cuba
Format : Short Torpedo
Size : 127 x 20 mm (5 x 50)
Ring : 50
Release : 2008
Price : ~$385 for a box of 25
More info about purchasing Juan Lopez cigars...
Many thanks to Damien from DutyFreeCubanCigars.com for sending me these rare cigars. Check out his shop for a nice selection of Cuban and non-Cuban cigars.
Another addition to our collection of Cuban cigars that you can't really find reviewed online (unless you're a better Googler than me, of course), Juan Lopez Short Torpedo was released in 2008 for the Caribbean market and, so far, this is the only regional edition for that zone. A 5 x 50 short torpedo, this is definitely not the first cigar of this size that was recently released; it's a whole trend (ErdM Petit Compania, Bolivar Petit Belicoso among others) and, to be honest, I am not against it since I rather like this size. We will let the purists smoke churchills and lanceros and see what this baby has to offer.
The Juan Lopez Short Torpedo is wrapped in a quality, brown leaf with no visible imperfections. The cigar is not tightly rolled (there are tiny gaps) and I was worried about eventual construction issues. After a couple of months in my humidor, there wasn't any particular pre-light smell and it showed a moderate amount of oil.
After an easy cut, I found the pre-draw to be on the tighter side, with more resistance than I prefer. The cigar featured a very slow burn and little smoke (probably due to the tight draw) that quickly dissipated.
The pre-draw brought bursts of spice and I was getting ready for a spice kick which never came. In fact, the first pulls were surprisingly complex and I was getting toasted, round notes of almonds, bread and perhaps cocoa. There was almost no spice at all. As I approached the end of the first third, powerful leathery flavors appeared, which worried me a little... and I was right to expect a change. The second third featured stringent, rough flavors, mostly leathery, which made me want to grab a bottle of water as fast as I could. It lacked depth and was frankly boring. However, I kept on puffing and was rewarded by a full-bodied, old-school Cuban final third with a complex bouquet of pepper, wood and leather.
As for the value, as usual, this regional edition is clearly overpriced and I'd prefer to see it in the $8-10 range.
Overall Rating :
In this case, a disappointing second third and a high price tag do not make me want to hunt it down. However, it clearly has some ageing potential and 2 years seem to be not enough to smooth out the flavors.