Montecristo Petit No. 2

Montecristo Petit No. 2

MontecristoOrigin : Cuba
Format : Short Torpedo
Size : 52 x 120 mm (4.7 in)
Box code : EMU SEP 2014
Hand-Made
Price : $275 for a box of 25
More info about purchasing Montecristo cigars...

A short time back, the editorial staff of this site posted a review of the recently released Montecristo Petit #2. Since this manufacturer pretty much has a permanent spot in my humidor, I thought I would expound upon Denis’s previous review by trying the same cigar, but from a newer year. Usually, I would shy away from such young cigars, as their performance sometimes can be inconsistent, if not very poor. Suffice it to say, this offering from Montecristo not only lived up to its name and popular pedigree, it also provided some surprises and even scored high marks that many aged sticks strain to accomplish.

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Ramon Allones 225 Hunters & Frankau Aniversario (RE UK)

Ramon Allones 225 Hunters & Frankau Anniversary

Ramon AllonesOrigin : Cuba
Format : Gorditos / Robusto Extra
Size : 141 x 19.84 mm (5.6 x 50)
Released in : 2015
Box code : MUR FEB 13 (box number 1576/2000)
Hand-Made
Price : $900 for a box of 25
More info about purchasing Ramon Allones cigars...

I can sum up this review in four words, but since this is a family friendly site, I shall use only their acronym --- O M F G. I had my trusty tobacconist search for an out of the ordinary stick that was not widely distributed, and that did not cost a small fortune to purchase. He hit the mark on both counts with this one. It is without doubt in my mind, a STELLAR robusto, despite its young age and recent release this past spring. This smoke does not greet you with a warm “Hello”, but greets you at the door after a long day’s hard work wearing nothing but a smile with a spatula in its hand and asks you, “Hey stranger, want to flip my pancakes??“ There is a reason why this company (Hunters & Frankau - importer of Cuban cigars into the UK) has been around for 225 years, and this release is a prime example.

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Hoyo de Monterrey Epicure #2 (2005 Vintage)

Hoyo de Monterrey Epicure #2 (open box)

Origin : CubaHoyo de Monterrey
Format : Robusto
Size : 124 x 19.84 mm (4 7/8 x 50)
Box code : SXF SEP 2005
Hand-Made
Price : ~$550 for a box of 50
More info about purchasing Hoyo de Monterrey cigars...

Lately I have reviewed some of the newer releases from Cuba’s finer cigar producers (like the Juan Lopez Don Juan), and I found myself wandering down memory lane and I gravitated towards the one cigar that I have consistently enjoyed over multiple vintage years. Hoyo de Monterrey has released the Epicure #2 line some time ago and it has brought them success over the years. I recently pulled out one of their older, more aged releases to see if time had been good to this cigar, and had it found a new place amongst my old favorites. I have consumed the 2004, 2005, 2008, 2009 versions of this smoke in a variety of 25 and 50 cabinet boxes.

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Juan Lopez Don Juan (Regional Edition Benelux)

Juan Lopez Don Juan (Regional Edition Benelux)

Juan LopezOrigin : Cuba
Format : Edmundo
Size : 135 x 20 mm (5.3 x 52)
Ring : 52
Release : 2014
Box code : ARB NOV14
Hand-Made
Price : $392 for a box of 25
More info about purchasing Juan Lopez cigars...

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.

Read the full review of Juan Lopez Don Juan (Regional Edition Benelux)...

Quai d’Orsay Superiores (Regional Edition Pacific Asia)

Quai d'Orsay Superiores

Origin : CubaQuai d'Orsay
Format : Robusto
Size : 4.9 (124 mm) x 50
Released in : 2011
Hand-Made
Price : N/A
More info about purchasing Quai d'Orsay cigars...

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…

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Partagas Lusitanias Gran Reserva Cosecha 2007

Partagas Lusitanias Gran Reserva Cosecha 2007

Origin : CubaPartagas
Format : Prominentes / Double Corona
Size : 193 x 20 mm (7.6 x 49)
Box code : ULA NOV13
Hand-Made
Price : ~$1,599 for a box of 15 cigars
More info about purchasing Partagas cigars...

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.

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Paul Stulac Black Midnight Fire

Paul Stulac Black Midnight Fire

Origin : Miami, FloridaPaul Stulac
Format : Torpedo
Size : 6 x 54
Wrapper : Ecuadorian
Filler : Nicaragua
Binder : Sumatran
Hand-Made
Price : ~$12 each
More info about purchasing Paul Stulac Black...

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).

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La Flor de Cano Gran Cano (Regional Edition UK)

La Flor de Cano Gran Cano (Regional Edition UK)

La Flor de CanoOrigin : 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.

Read the full review of La Flor de Cano Gran Cano (Regional Edition UK)...