Recently I mentioned this smoke in a review I did for a different release from this same manufacturer. Where the other stick failed miserably, the Juan Lopez Don Juan redeemed this cigar manufacturer in my eyes. Care and craftsmanship were self-evident with this limited edition robusto. I want to reinforce my previous recommendation. This smoke would satisfy most palates and is quite a bit more economical than its limited edition competition.
I have been trying to recall whether I have smoked a Quai d'Orsay and I am almost certain I haven’t. I have been trying to get my hands on one for a while, but they are not easy to come by. We have all heard how great the Quai d'Orsay Imperiales are, but they are almost impossible to find in the cigar stores; unless your local cigar store is in France. The brand was created in 1973 by Cubatobaco for the French distributor Keita. The brand’s initial lineup had five vitolas, two of which are still in production; the Coronas and the Imperiales. The 2011 regional edition series though came to bring a breath of life in the brand, with two new vitolas, the only additions in the brands portfolio since its launch. One of these two vitolas is the Quai d’Orsay Superior, a classic robusto that was released for Pacific Cigar and the Asia Pacific region and it is the cigar I will be smoking today.
Although I wouldn’t call it “ugly” the Superior does not look the best, as it has a few flaws in its appearance. The wrapper is rough, with plenty of veins and a few green spots. The bunch is normal, but inconsistent, with some looser spots on both ends of the cigar. The triple car is rounded and sloppy, but there is plenty of floral aromas present on the foot of the cigar. The prelight draw is also loose. Time to light it up…
We're happy to introduce El Humo De Los Dioses, the newest reviewer on the team. You can read his bio here. Please give him a warm welcome!
Usually when an experienced cigar aficionado hears hyped accolades of a recently released smoke, they run for the hills. The more the hype, the faster they run. So many of the recent Cuban releases tout their wares, listing breathtaking attributes that are designed to make one think they are enjoying something special, only to deliver disappointment. Such is NOT the case with the Partagas Lusitanias Gran Reserva. This pearl was a true delight to savor and enjoy.
Black Midnight Fire was one of three cigars debuted by boutique cigar manufacturer Paul Stulac at IPCPR in 2012 (the others were White Blinding Light and Red Screaming Sun). Previously I tried Red Screaming Sun, which retails in a similar price range. I enjoyed the flavors a lot, but was displeased with some construction issues. I also tasted the Classic Lord of Albany, a cheaper smoke that I thoroughly enjoyed. I gave the Black Midnight Fire a whirl to see how it measured up. They are hand-rolled by Guillermo Pena in Miami (something you don’t run into every day in the world of premium cigars).
Origin : Cuba Format : Gordito (Robusto Extra) Size : 141 x 20 mm (5 1/2 x 50) Box date : LAR – October’13 5000 boxes of 10 produced in 2013 exclusively for the Habanos distributor in the UK, Hunters & Frankau. Hand-Made Price : 200GBP/10 initial price suggested by distributor More info about purchasing La Flor de Cano cigars...
La Flor de Cano is a discreet Cuban brand with just a couple of regular production cigars and a minor market share. Since 2010, a few regional editions were released, including this La Flor de Cano Gran Cano for the United Kingdom.
The Red Screaming Sun line from boutique manufacturer Paul Stulac debuted at the 2012 IPCPR, and includes three sizes: Robusto (5”x54), Toro (6”x56), and Torpedo (6”x54). The packaging and labeling includes the motto “Regalo De Dios,” which translates to “Gift of God,” and the brand has promoted itself with the words, “No tales of tobacco fields. No 100-year traditions. No pretenses.” It’s a bold line to take in an industry where roots run deep—and a smart move from a newcomer that wants to promote its cigars by demonstrating their quality, not leaning on a nonexistent history. Let’s see what they have to offer.
Origin : Nicaragua Format : Toro Size : 6.5 x 54 Wrapper : Ecuadorian Habano (Colorado Maduro) Filler : Nicaraguan Binder : Nicaraguan Blenders : Hirochi Robaina, Omar González Alemán Hand-Made Price : ~$75 for a 4-pack sampler More info about purchasing HR Hirochi Robaina cigars...
Avid cigar smokers are never bored. We keep busy by “trolling” for information that could lead to our next great cigar. Searching the Internet, reading cigar reviews, or simply word of mouth can point us in the right direction. Over time, we learn to recognize names and brands we associate with cigars we’ve liked. Recently I became aware of a new cigar made by someone whose name I recognized… Robaina. In this case it was not the legendary Alejandro Robaina, the master Cuban tobacco farmer, but rather his grandson Hirochi.
Cohiba Coronas Especiales are regular production cigars, but difficult to find in aged or vintage condition. I purchased this box about 8 years ago for a little under $400. I have no idea what these would be worth today, but I’d guess significantly more.