Jose L. Piedra Nacionales

Jose L. Piedra Nacionales

Jose L. PiedraOrigin : Cuba
Format : Nacionales
Size : 134 x 16 mm (5 1/4 x 42)
Box code : STA NOV 09
Hand-Made
Price : ~$1 each in Cuba / ~$5 each in Canada
More info about purchasing Jose L. Piedra cigars...

The favourite cheap cigar – most cigar smokers have one. If you are one of the elite few who have the luxury of always smoking premium cigars then this review might not be for you. For me my favourite cheap smoke brings memories of summer days and nights spent on the beach drinking and enjoying cigars. For others it's poker night, the fishing trip, cottage, etc. I’m particularly excited about this review because as it happens Jose L. Piedra is my favourite brand of cheap smoke. So during my trip to Cuba I made sure to pick up a bundle to bring home.

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EP Carrillo New Wave Connecticut Brillantes

EP Carrillo New Wave Connecticut Brillantes

Origin : Dominican RepublicEP Carrillo cigars
Format : Brillantes (Robusto)
Size : 5 x 50
Wrapper : Connecticut Shade (Ecuador)
Filler : Nicaraguan & Dominican
Binder : Nicaraguan
Hand-Made
Price : $5 each
More info about purchasing EP Carrillo New Wave Connecticut...

I love cigars. Be it mild Connecticut Shade or spicy Corojo, my taste runs the gamut of cigar flavor profiles. But I am also a very picky cigar smoker. This can lead to exuberant exclamations of praise, or acts of vocal vilification. I’m passionate about cigars and I’m never at a loss of words when asked for my opinion. So, when we talked about reviewing cigars with Denis, I warned him upfront that anything could happen. He was cool with that. Now that the disclaimer of out of the way, I can proceed with my review of the E.P. Carrillo New Wave Connecticut, Brillantes.

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La Reloba Sumatra Robusto

La Reloba Sumatra Robusto

Origin : Nicaragua
Manufacturer : My Father Cigars, NicaraguaMy Father Cigars
Format : Robusto
Size : 5 x 50
Wrapper : Sumatra seed (Grown in Nicaragua)
Filler : Nicaraguan
Binder : Nicaraguan
Hand-Made
Price : $5 each
More info about purchasing La Reloba Sumatra cigars...

What do great racehorses and great cigars have in common? It’s true that many great cigars have a “barnyard” aroma, but that’s not what I’m thinking of. I’m talking about pedigree. And in the case of the La Reloba Sumatra Robusto, the pedigree is very fine indeed.

Made in Nicaragua at the My Father cigar factory, the LRSR is the brainchild of Don Jose “Pepin” Garcia and his son Jaime. Over the last decade, Sr. Garcia has built a reputation as one of the world’s greatest cigar makers. With success after success, the Garcia name has become synonymous with well-crafted, great tasting cigars. And with the creation of the LRSR, the lineage continues.

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Fonseca Delicias

Fonseca Delicias

FonsecaOrigin : Cuba
Format : Petit Corona
Size : 4.8 (123 mm) x 40
Smoking time : 35 min
Hand-Made
Price : ~$3 each
More info about purchasing Fonseca cigars...

After my surprising experience with a Regional Edition Fonseca, I thought that I really should check what else the brand has to offer. Not much can stop me when I’m about to visit my local cigar shop, so quickly enough I purchased a fiver of Fonseca Delicias, which are 4.8 x 40 petit coronas. Given the price (~3 bucks each) and the fact that they are short-filler, I wasn’t expecting a lot from these. Let’s see how they fared.

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J. Fuego Sangre de Toro Original

J. Fuego Sangre de Toro Original

Origin : HondurasJ. Fuego Cigars
Format : Original/Cheroot
Size : 5 x 44
Wrapper : Nicaraguan Colorado
Filler : Nicaraguan Corojo and Criollo
Binder : Nicaraguan Criollo
Hand-Made
Price : ~$2 each
More info about purchasing J. Fuego cigars...

J. Fuego is one of a number of relatively new, "boutique" cigar brands that are taking the cigar world by storm. Founded just a few years ago in 2006 by Jesus Fuego (whose familial involvement in the cigar industry extends all the way back to 1876 in Cuba), the J. Fuego brand has quickly expanded to include five different lines, as well as the spin-off 777 brand. Sangre de Toro (which translates to "Bull's Blood") is the newest line, released in Spring 2011, and the Original is the newest vitola, released at ICPCR 2011. Jesus Fuego has described the tobacco used in the Sangre de Toro line as "heavy and well-aged stuff," and the Original vitola showcases all the richness that this tobacco can deliver. The Originals come five to a soft pack, and the very attractive design on the pack mimics the design on the Sangre de Toro bands; however, the Originals themselves are unbanded.

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San Cristobal de la Habana El Principe

San Cristobal de la Habana El Principe

Origin : CubaSan Cristobal de la Habana
Format : Minuto
Size : 110 x 16.67 mm (4.3 x 42)
Box code : URG MAY 10
Hand-Made
Price : ~$4.25 each
More info about purchasing San Cristobal de la Habana cigars...

Added in 1999, San Cristobal de la Habana is one of the newest Cuban marcas. The regular production line consists of only four vitolas, each named after one of the forts that guarded Havana in the Spanish colonial days. As a 110 x 42 minuto, El Principe is the smallest of the line; however, its small size disguises a large flavor bomb that makes for an excellent short smoke. El Principes have a reputation of a good "fresh" Cuban, and the one I reviewed had only about 16 months of age. This review was done outside: the temperature was about 74F, the sky was clear, there was a slight breeze, and the ambient humidity was 71%. I paired this cigar with tap water.

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Cheap Smoke: CAO La Traviata Favorito

CAO La Traviata Favorito

Origin : Nicaragua
CAO CigarsFormat : Torpedo
Size : 5.5 x 52
Wrapper : Colorado Brown Ecuadorian
Filler : Nicaraguan / Dominican
Binder : Cameroon
Hand-Made
Price : $105+ for a box of 24
More info about purchasing CAO La Traviata cigars...

The CAO La Traviata Favorito is a torpedo which was crafted to hearken back to the flavors of 19th century cigars. It features a Cameroon binder, Nicaraguan and Dominican filler, and a medium brown Ecuador Habano wrapper. Measuring 5 ½” with a 52 ring gauge, it is an oily cigar with a solid construction which offers an excellent draw, smooth burn, and tight ash. This cigar produces a lot of thick, aromatic smoke.

The flavors in the CAO La Traviata Favorito are mostly woodsy with some spicy overtones, and don’t morph a whole lot over the course of the smoke. There are some creamy moments in the middle, and a hint of floral sweetness near the end which add complexity. This is definitely an intense cigar which packs an almost full bodied experience, and at the modest price of under $5 USD each if bought by box, these are quite a good deal right now!

Thumbs Up!

Cheap Smoke: Partagas Mille Fleurs

Partagas Mille Fleurs

Origin : CubaPartagas
Factory Name : Petit Corona
Size : 5 1/8 x 42
Hand-Made
Price : ~$4 each
More info about purchasing Partagas cigars...

This review is submitted by boBh069 and is participating in our "Share your cheap smoke!" contest. To get a chance to win a box of cigars, you can submit yours here.

I personally love most of the Partagas line. The earthy funky character these cigars are known by is a love of mine and when I saw this contest, this was the first cigar that came to mind. I have been able to acquire these for about $4.00 a piece and I smoke a little slow so these usually last me about an hour, which in my eyes makes this a perfect candidate to review. I like to age these a little as they mellow out in the last third but these usually don't last too long and i smoke my boxes quite fast. However I held onto this one for about 7 months and was nicely rewarded. I tend to purchase these quite a bit as most I have had have few, if any draw issues. I only had one of these with a tight draw out of my last box and it was workable, nothing to complain too much about. As a matter of fact my only real complaints with these are I wish the smoking time was longer and I have had a few that just would not let the bands come off. I personally take every band off my cigar before I cut and light it but this one was different. I even waited until the burn almost hit the band hoping the glue would loosen with the heat and I still struggled with getting it off. With that said, enough of my rambling and on with the review.

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