Por Larranaga Petit Corona

Por Larranaga Petit Corona

Origin : CubaPor Larranaga
Format : Petit Corona (Mareva)
Size : 129 x 16.67 mm (5 1/8 x 42)
Price : 10-12 GBP (UK prices)

The Por Larranaga Petit Corona is a hand-rolled Cuban cigar and this particular vitola is one of three readily available in the UK.

Cigars are frequently referred to as “sticks” and in the case of this one, that is quite apt. The construction is rustic, to say the least, giving the Larranaga a very gnarly appearance. However, the construction is also excellent, with no hint of the wrapper coming loose at any stage. The cap is a particularly solid construct, visibly consisting of several layers which hold out well following a hole being punched.

The visible, surface unevenness is mirrored during the burn, resulting in a crooked yet robust ash stack. There is unevenness internally also, with a couple of firm areas – plugs – which need firm but careful pressure, all round, to loosen the draw.

Prelight, the PL Petit Corona gives off a woody/nutty smell, whilst the initial touch to the lips is quite salty.

First third: The initial couple of draws are actually quite harsh with strong chilli notes. However, within a few minutes, as the cigar warms up, a sweetness develops which offsets the initial sharpness.

Second third: The sharp chilli favour almost totally gives way to a fruity sweetness, something like dried dates or raisins at the same time as a woody flavour develops. The ash stack is solid but crooked, veined and strongly contrasting between light and dark. The plugs need to be worked carefully and this becomes easier as the stick warm up. The smoke is not particularly rich and, once the harshness has worn off, needs to be sampled round mouth, nose and sinuses to get the full flavour.

Final third: The cigar does not undergo any dramatic changes of flavour, though predictably it warms up markedly towards the end, enhancing the woodiness of the smoke.

This is an uncomplicated cigar and as such can be had after almost any kind of meal or with a variety of drinks. Its initial harshness can come as a surprise and, as such, a beginner will need to be cautious drawing on the cigar for the first couple of minutes.

Given this is a hand rolled Cuban from one of the oldest manufacturers, it is a remarkably cheap cigar (for UK standards…), coming in somewhere in the 10-12 GBP range.

Construction: Rating: ★★★★☆
Flavour: Rating: ★★★½☆
Value for money: Rating: ★★★★★