Origin : Nicaragua Format : Toro Gordo Size : 6 x 60 Wrapper : Connecticut Broadleaf Filler : Nicaragua, Dominican Republic Binder : Ecuador Connecticut Hand-Made Price : ~$8-9 each More info about purchasing CAO Flathead...
Usually when you think about cigars, you think about Central and South America, where premium cigars usually are made. If cigars are going to have a regional theme, usually it is going to reflect some aspect of South or Central American culture.
CAO Flathead V660 cigars are made in Nicaragua, but they are an exception to the rule. Thematically, they are designed with a box-press shape which is intended to hearken to the engine blocks in classic American hot rods. You will notice the same theme reflected in the stylish retro design of the red and white bands as well as in the packaging (which even includes a cool vintage-style pinup). It is the kind of clever branding you might mistake as a gimmick, but these are definitely not just “novelty” cigars.
Origin : Nicaragua Format : Toro Size : 6.25 x 54 Wrapper : Nicaraguan Filler : Nicaraguan Binder : Nicaraguan Hand-Made Price : $250 each
Nikki Glenn is a violinist and vocalist specializing in private event entertainment for yacht companies, owners, luxury brands, and upscale occasions. You can find out more information at www.nikkiglenn.com.
Today I'm reviewing a very unique cigar, the Daniel Marshall 24KT Golden Torpedo. I found out about the cigar quite by chance, when I received an email via CigarReserve.com that they had some of these cigars in stock. I'd never heard of Daniel Marshall prior to this but I was very intrigued at the idea of a gold cigar. From his website, I learned that Mr. Marshall is a well-known maker of luxurious humidors and that the Golden Torpedo was originally created by Mr. Marshall as a counterpart to the humidor he designed for Universal Studios to commemorate the movie “Scarface”:
When I was designing for Universal Studios the SCARFACE Humidor I was asked by Universal to design a ultra bling luxury version of the humidor...I thought that a “over the top” humidor deserves a “over the top” DM Cigar and the 24kt Gold DM cigar was conceived.
Well, I love luxurious things that may be considered over the top, so this seemed like a perfect fit for me! Everything about this cigar is designed to impress and reinforce that this is a very exclusive cigar. According to the Golden Cigar's site, it takes sorting through 50 cigars to get 5 that might be viable to transform into gold cigars. The cigar is sanded to smooth the surface of the wrapper, and 50+ sheets of 24KT edible gold leaf (from one of the oldest suppliers in Florence, Italy, natch) are applied with a sugar glaze to the wrapper. The cigar itself consists of a Nicaraguan puro blend with a Nicaraguan Cuban seed 5 year old wrapper, Esteli binder, and Jalapa filler. The cigar retails for around $250 per stick.
The Casa Torano Maduro is by far the darkest Maduro I have ever seen. This cigar has a jet black wrapper with virtually no veins and has a solid feel to it. The roll is seamless but has a sloppy double cap.
It has a nice draw with a bit of resistance. The burn is fairly even and the ash is a whitish grey color that is solid and has no flowering or flaking. The body of the cigar is medium as well as the strength of the cigar.
The Carlos Torano Casa Torano Maduro has a base flavor of wood and natural tobacco but features nice notes of roasted nuts, coffee beans, and a fruity sweetness that reminds me of maraschino cherries; you know the ones they put on your ice cream sunday, or in your Old Fashioned’s. However, as the cigar progresses, the cherry sweetness turns more to an apple flavor which is quite interesting. Overall the flavors are about medium in intensity on this cigar.
Overall I thought this was a nice cigar. It has some nice complexity to it and for $6.50 I think it’s a superb deal. This is usually not the style of cigar I smoke but I really enjoyed the Casa Torano. I am one of the Don Pepin, heavy hitting, fuller the better cigar smokers and I think that crowd may not like this cigar because it doesn’t have that pop or flare that those types of cigar typically have. However, I think if they are in the right mindset that this is going to be a delicate smoke I think they could really enjoy it.
Origin : Nicaragua Format : Robusto Size : 5 x 52 Wrapper : Nicaraguan Corojo 99 Filler : Nicaraguan Binder : Nicaraguan Hand-Made Price : ~$8 each
The Viaje Platino is a very nice looking cigar. The chocolate colored wrapper has a slight tint of red to it and has some very small veins running throughout. The seams are even and the roll looks great. The cigar sports a nice looking green, silver and white primary band and a silver cloth foot band which is a nice added touch.
The draw on this cigar was a bit snug compared to the others I smoked before this review but it gave me enough smoke to satisfy me. The burn was even for the most part and the ash, although a dark gray, was compact and had zero flowering. The body of the Viaje is medium to full while the strength is average.
The Viaje Platino starts off with some nice earthy coffee like flavors along with some red pepper spice. The flavors are very rich and pronounced and I really like that about this cigar. The flavors didn’t change much in the second third but the final third offered an even more intense flavor profile.
Overall I really enjoyed the Viaje Platino. The flavors are nice and pronounced and are definitely not shy. It is a good smoke for cigar enthusiasts who like Don Pepin / Tatuaje flavor profile with a different approach.
The San Cristobal is blended by the illustrious Don Pepin Garcia and is rolled in his factory in Estelí’ Nicaragua for Ashton Cigars. This was Pepin’s first cigar with the Levin’s (owners of Ashton) and was debuted at the RTDA (now known as IPCPR) back in 2007.
The first thing you notice about the San Cristobal is the gorgeous band that this cigar sports. A very intricate band with a lot of color and a lot of gold accents, this cigar band is one of the best in the business in my opinion. The wrapper on the cigar is darker brown in color and has minimal veins. The roll is good and sports a Cuban style triple cap; a very nice looking cigar.
The San Cristobal has a nice free draw that produces a ton of smoke. The burn is quite uneven and required some touch up’s but nothing out of the ordinary. The ash is a medium gray color and has minimal flowering that does flake off in some areas.
Right off the bat you can tell this is a Pepin cigar. The San Cristobal starts off with some red pepper spice which mellows down after the first inch. After the initial blast the cigar settles into a nice combination of sweet cedar, coffee, and roasted almonds. Overall the cigar is nicely balanced and though the flavors do not change much between thirds, they have nice complexity on the palate. The body is medium to full as is the strength of the cigar.
I’ve smoked through quite a few of these San Cristobal’s and this cigar never disappoints. The flavor of the cigar is great and it balanced nicely. The only gripe I have is that for the price it could offer some a little more complexity between the thirds of the cigar, however this had never stopped me from picking up more of these cigars.
Origin : Nicaragua Format : Robusto Size : 5.5 x 50 Wrapper : Ecuadorian Sumatra Filler : Nicaragua, Honduras, Dominican Republic Binder : Connecticut Broadleaf Hand-Made Price : ~$6 each
Thanks to Ryan from Giacomo's Cigars for sending me a sampler!
Giacomo’s Cigars has only been around since 2010, but since that time they have garnered a lot of attention and praise for their innovative cigars. The brand was started by Dr. Jack Guggino, a close friend to the Oliva family.
The Giacomo series is made from tobacco leaves from five different countries: the United States (the Connecticut broadleaf maduro binder), Ecuador (the wrapper), and Nicaragua, Honduras, and the Dominican Republic (the filler leaves). All these tobaccos were grown from Cuban seed. Seven sizes are available: Corona, Robusto, Torpedo, Churchill, Perfecto 102, Perfect 102M, and Lancero. For this review, I smoked the 5.5 x 50 Robusto Maduro.
The Lord of Albany, a 6 x 44 lonsdale, is a new addition to the Paul Stulac Classic line, and comes in two different wrappers: Natural and Maduro. These are both Ecuadorian Habano wrappers, but the Maduro wrapper is aged longer than the Natural wrapper. In appearance they are quite similar, and I would be hard-pressed to tell them apart on sight. For this review, I tried the Natural.
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.