Partagas Serie C No. 3 (2012 Limited Edition)

Partagas Serie C No. 3 (2012 Limited Edition)

Origin : CubaPartagas
Format : Grand Corona
Size : 140 x 20 mm (5.5 x 48)
Released in : 2012
Price : ~$20+ each
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Partagas is amongst the oldest and most renowned cigar brands in Cuba, dating clear back to 1845. They are known for producing bold cigars, and the Partagas Serie C No. 3, the limited edition for 2012, is no exception to the rule. The tobacco used in the filler, binder and wrapper was aged for two years. This is a very strong cigar; unfortunately I did not find it very flavorful.

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Hoyo de Monterrey Epicure #2 (2008 Vintage)

Hoyo de Monterrey Epicure No. 2 Vintage 2008 (box)

Origin : CubaHoyo de Monterrey
Format : Robusto
Size : 124 x 19.84 mm (4 7/8 x 50)
Box code : EPP OCT 08
Price : ~$400 for a box of 25
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Hoyo Do Monterrey has long since found a special place in my humidor, and I have especially enjoyed their Epicure #2 release. I think that I have sampled pretty much each year since 2005, and have even reviewed them here. Of all the releases, I think that I have gotten the most consistent enjoyment from the 2008. Where the 2014’s were a bit “green” and the 2005’s tended to have “hardened”, while both maintained the taste profile that HDM is famous for, this year seems to have been the best. Not too hard, not too green and just spongy enough not to worry so much about burn issues, the HDM Epicure #2 2008 seems to enter the Goldilocks zone---just right.

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Davidoff Chateau Margaux (Cuban)

Davidoff Chateau Margaux

DavidoffOrigin : Cuba
Format : Petit Corona
Size : 42 x 129 mm (~5 in)
Box date : 1986
Price : 150 EUR / cigar

Before delving into the meat of this review, I must take the time to give an appreciative nod and a tip of the cap to Frederic of LCDH Knokke for dipping into his private stash to give me the opportunity to cross one of the few things remaining on my bucket list of things to accomplish before I leave this world--- enjoying a technically and aesthetically perfect Cuban cigar. Originally released in 1969, this Davidoff remained un-banded until around 1980 and the line was completely discontinued in 1991, remaining amongst the best of the best during its entire release. One look and one glorious puff and you are hooked. Without qualification, this smoke was absolutely flawless in every respect. They just do not get any better than this.

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Partagas Serie D No. 6

Partagas Serie D No. 6

Origin : CubaPartagas
Format : Petit Robusto
Size : 90 x 20 mm (3 1/5 x 50)
Released in : 2014
Box code : ELG NOV14
Price : ~$8-10 each
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Sometimes big things come in small packages, and Partagas 2014 release of their D series Size #6 is no exception. Don’t let appearances fool you. This midget of a robusto packs plenty of surprises, and all of them good ones. It is a perfect choice if you do not have a ton of time, but want to indulge yourself with a classic habanos cigar. Grab yourself a tasty beverage and sit down for a nice ride to the Caribbean.

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Romeo y Julieta Wide Churchill

Romeo y Julieta Wide Churchill

Origin : CubaRomeo y Julieta
Format : Wide Churchill / Montesco (Robusto)
Size : 5.1 (130 mm) x 55
Release : 2010
Box code : RAE JUN15
Price : $283 for a box of 25
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Recently I had the opportunity to finally sample a branded cigar that is readily available in my market, but typically supplied from different countries in Central America (editor's note: non-Cuban Romeo y Julietas, some of them are reviewed here). Typically these smokes have been dry, grainy and more akin to puffing on a pile of sawdust than a true fine quality cigar. I am happy to say that the Cuban Romeo y Julieta rose to the occasion and has offered a stout cigar with plenty of taste that should satisfy most any avid Cubano lover and beginner alike. It is a nice smoke at an economical price for a Cuban.

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Montecristo No. 2 Gran Reserva Cosecha 2005

Montecristo No. 2 Gran Reserva Cosecha 2005

MontecristoOrigin : Cuba
Format : Torpedo
Size : 6 (152 mm) x 52
Released in : 2011
Box code : SUB OCT 11 (1110/5000)
Price : $1500 for a box of 15 cigars
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After giving Montecristo a hard time in a previous review, I felt it only fair to find another cigar of their issue that was somewhat close in age to the one I dealt with so harshly to see if the box I consumed was an aberration, or if the issues I encountered with the other product continued with this limited edition release. I am happy to say that in this case the latter applies, not the former. What one is left to wonder is how something so wrong could turn into something so right. By its taste profile, it would SEEM that this outcome was what Montecristo was shooting for with their 2008 Sublime release. Here they are using 2005 tobacco, which on its face would indicate that the stock was somewhat similar in age to the Sublime (it used 2006 tobacco). This is a conundrum I do not think I can figure out by the time this review is over. Where such utter failure turns into such utter bliss leaves me dumbstruck, but I will take them as they come.

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Montecristo Sublime (2008 Edicion Limitada)

Montecristo Sublime (2008 Edicion Limitada)

MontecristoOrigin : Cuba
Format : Sublime (Double Robusto)
Size : 6.5 (164 mm) x 54
Released in : 2008
Box code : NOV 08
Price : ~$575 for a box of 10 cigars
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If you are a dyed-in-the-wool Montecristo lover, you might want to stop reading right now. Yes, I am a huge fan of Montecristo, but this review will not be flattering, not in the least. You might want the children to leave the room on this one. In many communities in my country, we have a colloquial saying “You dance with the lady that brought you to the party”, which loosely translates to “You stick with ideas where you excel”. Montecristo would have done well to have heeded this idiom before foisting this product upon the cigar loving public. They tried to copy others by an attempt to make a “kinder and gentler” cigar. Failure. Absolute and total failure.

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H. Upmann Naturals (Vintage Review)

H. Upmann Naturals

Origin : CubaH. Upmann
Format : Panetela
Size : 6.1 x 37 (155 x 15 mm)
Box date : 1970's
Discontinued in the 80's
Price : roughly $20-25/cigar
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There is an excitement that portends the smoking a Cuban cigar that has aged in a tube for roughly 40 years and the natural bias to presume this will be a spectacular smoke, one is shocked by the plain ugliness of this cigar. For comparison purposes, I took a photo of the H. Upmann Naturals next to a current production H. Upmann Royal Robusto.

H. Upmann Naturals and Royal Robusto

H. Upmann Naturals were machine-made cigars always sold in tubes. Discontinued in the early 1980s. Not sure of the box year, but I’d guess late-1970s.

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