Origin : Nicaragua
Format : Toro
Size : 6.0 x 52
Wrapper : Connecticut Broadleaf Oscuro
Filler : Honduran and Nicaraguan
Binder : Brazilian Mata Fina
Price : $13 each
I want to start off on this review by thanking a very generous BOTL over at SocialCigar.com for giving me this cigar. JohnLongIsland is a first class brother of the leaf and a 1st class individual as well. John is a big supporter of my fundraising efforts for the Ride for Kids and his generosity is always very much appreciated. He sent me a little gift a short while back that included this fine cigar. Thanks John.
It seems to be a trend that has developed over the last year or so. A cigar comes out and it is proclaimed as a private blend created just for the owner of the brand, or as a “personal blend” made for someone high ranking officer in the company, and now for the first time it is going to be made available to the public. The Tatuaje Black Label is probably the highest profile example of one of these “private cigars made public”.
This one was supposedly made for Steve Saka of Drew Estate and was intended to be a strictly private stock cigar. The “No. 9″ supposedly denotes that this cigar was the 9th blend in a series of prototypes made when creating this cigar. I have no idea how or why it became available for public sale. Truth or hype, I leave it to you to decide if you care to do so. Truth is, it is kind of irrelevant in the end. What matters is… Is it any good?
If nothing else, this cigar is beautiful to behold much like its newer brother, the soon to be released Liga Privada T52. The wrapper has a naturally dark brown appearance with a silky, oily sheen. It is toothy, a little bumpy, and veiny, but the wrapper is so perfectly applied and the cigar is so handsome you cannot call it rustic. Say what you will about Drew Estate and their reputation among cigar purists, but they make some of the most visually beautiful cigars you can buy. Speaking of their reputation, although known primarily for flavored and infused cigars, the Liga Privada is a traditional offering from Drew Estate. It is not flavored or infused, and it doesn’t use any non traditional tobacco like pipe tobaccos in its blend. This is a straight-up stogie and an excellently constructed one at that.
The Liga Privada No. 9 starts off smooth and rich with a nice meaty flavor. It mellows a little once you get past the first inch or so. At first I thought this cigar was going to be a full bodied smoke, but as it turns out it isn’t quite that robust. It is a solid medium bodied cigar that delivers nice flavors of chocolate and espresso with a little black pepper on the finish. The construction could not be better with a perfect draw and a razor sharp burn. The salt and pepper ash is very well formed and holds firm for more than an inch before needing to be tapped.
Overall this is a really enjoyable smoke with some great, easily discernable flavors. However, there isn’t much complexity here. Once it settles in after that first inch, the cigar never really changes again so it ends up being a bit of a one dimensional smoke. Still, what it does deliver is quite good. I think this cigar makes for an excellent social smoke when you are looking for a tasty smoke that you may not be giving your full attention, but when you want that smoke to be better than some yard ‘gar.