May 23, 2011
Origin : USA
Format : Toro
Size : 6 x 52
Wrapper : Ecuadorian Sumatra
Filler : Nicaragua
Binder : Ecuador
Price : $8.20 each
Bryan White, owner of 13th Floor Cigars provided me with a sampler of his Foundation series (toro vitola) cigars to review for our website. I have to say I have been highly impressed with most of the boutique brands that I have had the privilege of smoking recently. I first smoked one of these cigars awhile back with a friend of mine on my way to the post office and was floored by how much I liked it, and told my friend that I couldn’t wait to actually sit down and write the review for this smoke.
The 13th Floor cigars are produced in Miami off of Calle Ocho by Willy Herrera of the El Titan de Bronze factory fame. I have never had an El Titan cigar, but if the 13th Floor is any indication of the production quality I experienced then I will be definitely on the lookout for anything coming out of that factory. Thanks again Bryan for giving us the opportunity to try your excellent cigars.
Appearance : [rating:4.5/5]
Minus some medium sized veins running down its length, this cigar is about as perfect looking as a cigar can get. The toro is cloaked in light brown wrapper with no loose seams, and packed tightly with a good amount of tobacco filler. The band is silver and maroon that has a lot of “pop” and is very modern looking and attractive. Cuban triple cap is applied to the head and the wrapper smells of black tea and cinnamon, and the foot of more black tea leaves.
Construction : [rating:3.5/5]
The head cuts clean with my guillotine cutter and the dry draw is reminiscent of sweet, savory tobacco and cinnamon spice. The toro lit very easily and produced a very thick smoke with an effortless draw with just the perfect amount of resistance. Produces a white ash and burns fairly straight through the 1st third of the cigar. There were some minor burn problems with the burn wavering off slightly here and there throughout the rest of the burn.
Flavor : [rating:4.5/5]
Hardly any spice detected after lighting the cigar. The smoke is full and creamy in texture coating the tongue with rich sweet honeyed tobacco, earth, and baking spices. Off to a very good start. This cigar starts off very balanced, which is all I can say; very good intro to this particular smoke in my opinion. I am just hoping this cigar keeps up the flavor profile. Halfway through the cigar it has become hard for me to put my thumb on the main flavor that I taste. The only way I can describe it is that it tastes of sweet earth. Even though it has a Sumatran wrapper the flavors remind me of the earthiness that occurs with corojo wrappers minus the obvious leather notes. Past the halfway point is where I can detect the difference that 2 months has done to this cigar. When I smoked the first Foundation 2 months ago the cigar started to become bitter past the halfway point, but now the cigar never gets bitter and continues to push the initial flavors from the 1st third onward throughout the rest of the smoke. This cigar has really come into its own now and is smoking like a dream.
Value : [rating:4/5]
This particular cigar can be found for around the $8.00 to $8.50 mark. There aren’t too many B&M’s that carry this brand yet but I believe the number is growing. I know for sure these can be had through Bonita Smoke Shop online site for $8.20/stick, $38.95/5 pack, or $147.60/box. I would probably more lean towards getting a box of robustos in the future since they are one my favorite vitolas.
Overall Rating : [rating:4/5]
If there was a cigar to speak to my heart, this is it. I don’t know how many you out there may feel the same way, but I am sure there is a cigar that just hits the sweet spot for you. In this case this cigar is it for me. It is difficult to put my thumb on why I like this cigar so much, because this is not the most complex cigar that I have smoked ever or even this year in fact. Could it be the creaminess of the smoke that coats the tongue and the long after taste that the Foundation leaves on the palate? Could it even be the honeyed sweetness, earth, and baking spice flavors?,…………… I just don’t know. I just know that this cigar is good and Bryan White should be proud of this offering and I wish him the best for his bright future. Cheers!
November 24, 2011
Gentalmen I have spent several 100.00 s of dollars on Single barrel whisky. Try STONE VETICALE EPIC cheap and great with your smoke.
May 29, 2011
I’d never heard of this brand before, but it was that striking band which caught my eye. Glad I gave it a chance–and a second chance actually; you’re right about letting it age. It wasn’t actually till my second smoke that I really got into the Foundation. Aging takes off the bitter edge.
May 27, 2011
Sounds like a delicious smoke… thanks for the review!
May 24, 2011
Fantastic review. I’ve had one sitting for a while now, may pull it out after reading this. The first I had was okay, but bitter ROTT.
May 24, 2011
Bryan sent me a few of those as well(6 months ago). While I smoked one then, due to some personal issues, I had been unable to smoke as frequently or get any new reviews posted.
Long story short…I saved the other 2 and had one last week; it was a fine smoke. While I prefer something more on the full realm, this grabbed my attention nonetheless. The toro burned well over 90 minutes for me. I should get a review up on it soon, I got some good notes and pictures. – my notes match yours in similar ways (creamy, earthy, some cedar and hay). I agree with this review completely.
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