Fuente Fuente Opus X Belicoso xXx

Fuente Fuente Opus X Belicoso xXx

Arturo FuenteOrigin : Dominican Republic
Format : Belicoso
Size : 4 5/8 x 49
Ring : 49
Wrapper : Shade-grown Dominican Rosado
Binder : Dominican Republic
Filler : Dominican Republic
Hand-Made
Price : ~$20+ each
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For this review I chose to smoke a cigar from my “hard to find” group in my humidor. The Fuente Fuente Opus X brand has many cigars in their line-up with different blends. The only thing they share besides the band is the fact that they are all made of Dominican filler, binder and wrapper. Opus X cigars are normally nicknamed by their fans and this particular cigar therefore also goes by the names “Power Ranger” “Triple X” or “X3”. Whatever you chose to call it, two things will remain common. The difficulty in obtaining them and their price. Although they carry with them an MSRP of $10.50, most vendors jack up the price when they have them in stock because the demand for them far outstrips supply. On most occasions you will be paying well over $20.00 for them (more in the “value” section of the review).

The Fuente Fuente Opus XXX cigar is perhaps the most popular high end non-Cuban cigar in the world. One would expect that a cigar that carries with it a hefty price tag would smoke like a dream. One would expect magnificent complexity and flawless construction. You would also expect that a cigar with as much “hype” built around the name will leave you wanting more. These cigars have become one of the most sought after cigars, akin to the Cuban Cohiba line. With all that said, I want to share with you my experience of how this cigar measures up in terms of the 4 points we cigar smokers like to take note of when smoking a cigar. Remember that in life beauty is only skin deep. The same holds true in the cigar world. Does this cigar measure up to the looks and the hype? For the purpose of this review I smoked two cigars a week apart to ensure objectivity.

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Vegas Robaina Petit Robaina (Canada Regional Edition)

Vegas Robaina Petit Robaina

Origin : CubaVegas Robaina
Format : Petit Edmundo
Size : 110 x 21 mm (4.3 x 52)
Release : 2009
Hand-Made
Price : ~$15 each
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I have always been a fan of the Vegas Robaina line of cigars. I remember years ago falling in love with the Famosos and buying enough to consider it my daily cigar. Of course, times have changed and although I still smoke the Famosos, they aren’t my daily go to cigar anymore but I always keep a few in my well-stocked humidor when I want a reliable, medium-bodied cigar with a pleasing, consistent flavour.

When it was announced in 2009 that Habanos SA was releasing a special Canadian Regional Edition, the Petit Robaina, I had to have a box. I managed to purchase a box in early 2010 for the cost of $230.00 here at a duty free supplier in Canada. That worked out to be $9.20 per cigar. Today, the cigars, if still found, are selling for $366 for a box of 25 from the same duty free supplier ($14.00 for singles). I have searched for these and have found them to be selling for as high as $27.00 per cigar. Remember, these are limited edition cigars with a small production run exclusively for Canadian Habanos S.A. vendors.

I remember smoking one as soon as I got it and it was admittedly young and still had some ammonia present so I did the difficult thing to do and that was put the box away in my humidor and wait. Recently, with these cigars having aged over 3 years, it was time to break them open and start smoking them. I’ve had 7 of them now over the past 2 months so I have been able to gain a pretty good feel for their profile and have made many notes about their construction and consistency.

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El Rey del Mundo NL No. 1

El Rey del Mundo NL No. 1

Origin : CubaEl Rey del Mundo
Factory Name : Petit Robusto
Size : 115 x 20.64 mm (4.5 x 52)
Hand-Made
Release : 2011
Cigars smoked for the review : 3
Price : 12 EUR each
More info about purchasing El Rey del Mundo cigars...

El Rey del Mundo NL No. 1 is one of the cigars that I acquired during my trip to Amsterdam. Released in 2011, it's a quite special regional edition - instead of releases limited to Benelux like the ones we're used to (Juan Lopez, Fonseca No.4 ...), this one is exclusivo Paises Bajes, which means that you can only purchase it in the Netherlands. I bought a three-pack of these short robustos at 12 EUR / piece and have been smoking them during my trip.

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Romeo y Julieta Churchill

Romeo y Julieta Churchill

Origin : CubaRomeo y Julieta
Format : Churchill
Size : 178 x 18.65 mm
Ring : 47
Hand-Made
Price : ~$19 each in Canada
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The Romeo y Julietta Churchill is as classic as classic gets. It is quite popular amongst occasional and seasoned smokers. A pre-1960 release, it has been in vogue since then. As some of you know, I do not hold the Romeo y Julieta marca in my heart but I was advised by a real hardcore aficionado that the new batches were up to par with the Churchill heyday.

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Fuente Fuente Opus X Magnum O

Fuente Fuente Opus X Magnum O

Arturo FuenteOrigin : Dominican Republic
Format : Corona Gorda
Size : 4 3/4 x 56
Wrapper : Vintage Dominican Republic from 100% Cuban Seed
Binder : Dominican Republic
Filler : Dominican Republic
Hand-Made
Price : ~$18
More info about purchasing Arturo Fuente Opus X cigars...

Sometimes it is easy or perhaps lazy for people to draw their own conclusions about a cigar having been lured by the sexy marketing and buzz created when a company releases very limited cigars. Sometimes people make a false assumption that a cigar is good simply because of its price tag. For instance, there are many novice smokers that accept as a fact that because a cigar is tough to get and costs a lot of money it means that there is some prejudice to the cigar, with a skewed opinion on it before one even touches flame to foot. There is an adage among novice smokers, and I’ve even seen it with more experienced smokers that a cheap cigar must taste bad and an expensive one must be pure heaven.

If you’ve been smoking cigars long enough you know that you have to get past the marketing hype, presentation, fancy bands and “buzz” to actually get around to tasting the cigar to formulate your own opinion. Taste is subjective. What may be good for one might taste awful to others. Some prefer sweeter cigars while some prefer more grassy/woodsy cigars. Everyone’s palate is different but you’ll know a bad cigar when you taste it and usually, you can taste a gem within the first few puffs.

With that said, I recently took shipment of some Opus X cigars. In my humidor I now have the Belicoso XXX and the one being reviewed here, the Magnum O. These cigars are extremely hard to get. You usually have to be at the cigar shop when they are released and hope that the regular clientele did not pre-order them. Luckily I have a good friend in the Tampa Bay area who was able to obtain these stogies for me. They weren’t cheap, with the Magnum O’s costing $18.00 each. However, I have seen them at some online retailers for as low as 12.75 which is more probably never going to happen because they are never in stock, and as high as $25.00. I have also seen them listed for $40.00 or more at some Canadian retailers.

I generally have a love/hate relationship with Fuente cigars. I feel they simply offer too much product in their catalogue... for example just look at the sheer number of Opus X's. I wish many non-Cuban cigar companies would follow the Cuban lead and limit the size selections and make fewer, better smokes than experimenting with another ¼ inch here or 1/8th inch there. This is my personal opinion but I find that this often leads to consumer confusion. Fuente’s along with Padrons are akin to the Cohiba of non-Cuban cigars. As such, you will pay a premium for them.

For the purpose of this review I smoked two of them in the span of 4 days to ensure that I was getting a proper understanding of the cigar. A word of caution from the outset; this smoke is powerful. I recommend less seasoned smokers have this one late in the day after a big meal. More advanced smokers know what they can tolerate but I still suggest having a little something in your stomach before embarking on one of these. Also, have your drink of choice handy. I happened to pair my second smoke with some Port and really found that irrespective of my review, the pairing worked. So, without further ado, how did the Fuente Fuente Opus X Magnum O fare?

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Cohiba Robusto

Cohiba Robusto

Origin : Cuba
Format : RobustoCohiba
Size : 124 x 19.84 mm
Box code : April 2009
Weight : 11.66 g
Hand-Made
Price : ~$265 for a box of 25 (if bought in Cuba)
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Perhaps one of the more reviewed cigars has to be the Cohiba Robusto. I find that smokers of this cigar either love it or hate it with no real in-between. I for one don’t like all my cigars to taste the same and look to different brands and varieties to keep my interest. What good would only drinking your favorite bottle of wine be? At some point the anticipation of enjoying that glass of wine or, in this case, that cigar would be lost. This is why I ensure my humidor always has cigars with different flavor profiles and vitolas. This particular sample came from a batch that was brought back to me from Cuba by a vacationing friend back in 2009. With a box date of April 2009, this cigar is ready for smoking. Being one of my favorite robustos, I’ve smoked many of these over the years. For the purpose of this review though, I was sure to pay special attention to why this robusto has become a must have in my humidor. Having been a fairly regular smoker of this cigar for the last 10 years or so, it has been my experience that this cigar does benefit from a little age and, at 3 years, becomes very smokeable. Younger samples tend to be a tad bitter as you approach the center of the cigar and that bitterness lingers. I find that a little age does it well in that regard.

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Padrón Serie 1926 40th Anniversary Maduro

Padrón Serie 1926 40th Anniversary Maduro

PadronOrigin : Nicaragua
Format : Torpedo
Size : 6.5 x 54
Wrapper : Nicaragua
Binder : Nicaragua
Filler : Nicaragua
Hand-Made
Price : $25
More info about purchasing Padron 1926 cigars...

Padrón has a habit of celebrating important anniversaries with style, and the company’s 40th Anniversary is no exception. In 2004, Padrón released a stunning box-pressed torpedo named the Serie 1926 40th Anniversary. It garnered almost universal critical acclaim when it came out, but can this cigar hold up to its own mystique eight years later?

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Avo La Trompeta 86th Anniversary Limited Edition

Avo La Trompeta 86th Anniversary Limited Edition

Avo CigarsOrigin : Dominican Republic
Format : Diadema
Size : 6.5 x 54
Wrapper : Ecuadorian Sun Grown
Filler : Dominican & Peruvian
Binder : Dominican Piloto
Hand-Made
Price : ~$15 each
More info about purchasing Avo La Trompeta...

The AVO 86th Anniversary cigar, “La Trompeta”, is a Limited Edition release to celebrate the 86th anniversary of Avo Uvezian. The name “La Trompeta” means the work of his lifetime — both music and cigars.

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