Origin : Nicaragua
Format : Robusto
Size : 4.5 x 48
Wrapper : Connecticut Broadleaf Maduro
Filler : Dominican Republic, Nicaragua, Honduras
Binder : Brazil
Price : ~$6 each
More info about purchasing Red Lion cigars...
As the days start to turn towards a cooler nature I find myself taking advantage of what few nice days are left before the northern cold sets in. Lucky for me, I recently had the luxury of a gorgeous sunny day with an atypical high of seventy degrees Fahrenheit and commit myself to taking full advantage of it. Opening my humidor, a sampler nestled safely at the front that I had received from Heavenly Cigar Company catches my eye. Noting that the cigars have been resting for a few weeks by this time, it seems like the perfect opportunity to test this as of yet unfamiliar cigar out. Toting my newly acquired prize to the front porch I sit down to enjoy the Red Lion.
After settling down, I take in the overall look of this robusto sized smoke. Dark brown tobacco creates a flawless wrapper with a very sturdy double cap. Despite being a new cigar, there is a slight oily feel, which I do not recall on other fresh release smokes in the past. Reflecting on this, I recall that the cellophane removed was actually slightly tinted as well thus making me contemplate whether or not the samples were actually a slightly aged. Pinching the barrel reveals a strong fill with a slight spring. A barnyard scent exudes from the foot and the prelight draw is of toast with a lingering sweetness left of the lips. When sampling the draw, it comes across as very loose despite the dense filling filler.
Initial impressions when lighting is that this smoke has a strong bite that cannot quite be placed. It continues to have sweet undertones as well. Copious amounts of thick white smoke accompany the still loose draw yet sharp burn. After a few more puffs, the sweet develops into a more definitive raw sugar taste. Moving into the first half inch to an inch, the only way to really describe this cigar is that it has a light flavor with a powerful undertone. There is not a whole lot of flavor beyond the bite of cinnamon but the sugar serves to balance it out almost like red hot candies.
With the too easy draw and loose ash, it becomes incredibly difficult to keep this cigar from burning too hot. Becoming more bitter than spicy at about the one inch mark, it progresses into the realm of acrid by the second third. Despite my best attempts the warmth of the barrel indicates that the flame has reached more than half way down the length and far outpacing the burn of the wrapper. If I let the cigar sit it does allow the bite to subside and sweetness come out. Unfortunately the result is that the cigar burns itself out.
Overall this smoke was pretty flat. The bite was not really a positive for me. When picking this smoke I selected the firmest of the sample received and it still drew loose and burned hot. The flavor was just not there and because of the burn I am contributing it to the construction as well.
Overall Rating :