Alec Bradley, Black Market Vandal “The Con”
Honduras 6.0” x 50 Mellow-Medium 93-Rated
The Honduran Connecticut wrapper hugging this Toro is both silky and toothy, and is used to conceal an aged combination of Honduran and Nicaraguan long-fillers. The pre-light aroma is sweet with a touch of barnyard…a really good sign. Upon lighting, I am greeted with a rush of sweet cedar and sweet tobacco. The aroma is sweet and somewhat zesty. As the cigar burns, notes of cashew and cream enter, adding layers of balanced complexity to a well-made, elegant cigar.
Dominican Republic 6.5” x 52 Medium 95-Rated
Everything about this cigar screams luxurious. The name. The silky, seamless Connecticut wrapper from Ecuador. The shimmering, glossy band. I’ve had a dozen Cohiba Connecticuts since its release and can testify: the flavor and performance lives true to my first impression. The smoke is exceedingly creamy, sitting heavy on my palate and dusting every last taste bud with notes of cedar, toast and peanut, with a subtle touch of white pepper on the finish. The burn is slow and true, as each 6.5” Toro provides a soothing experience that pairs perfect with sweet rum or creamed coffee.
AJ Fernandez, La Gran Llave
Nicaragua 7.5” x 54 Medium-Full 93-Rated
This cigar looks like a chocolate bar. The dark, San Andres Maduro wrapper is dark, toothy and loaded with oil, and the aroma at the foot is rich and toasty. Fortunately, the cigar delivers. Each puff releases a heavy plume of smoke that fills the palate, offering a rich array of cocoa notes followed by hints of cream and coffee. After the initial inch, I pick up oak and rich tobacco, complemented by a long finish that includes pepper and a unique touch of almond. There’s a lot going on here, and I like it all. A lot.
Man O’ War Ruination, 10th Anniversary | Box-Pressed Gordo
Nicaragua 6.0” x 60 Full 94-Rated
Big, heavy in the hand, dark and oily, solid from head to toe and softly box-pressed. That’s the look and feel of this 60-ring Man O’ War. From the get-go, the flavor is bold and pronounced. An earthy spice blasts the front of the palate, while each puff pumps out thick, pillowy clouds of gray, aromatic smoke above. The spice mellows after an inch, giving way to notes of leather and oak that linger long on the aftertaste. Midway through, the cigar grows more powerful down to the nub, with satisfying spices returning just before the end. A complex and eventful cigar.
My Father | Corona Limited Edition
Nicaragua 5.0” x 42 Medium-Full 95-Rated
Cuban-esque. If you took just one thing from this short review, make it that: Cubanesque. From the 5”x42 vitola to the Cuban-born maker and hearty flavor profile, this cigar could be straight out of Havana. A dark Ecuador Habano wrapper sits atop a Nicaraguan binder and bold Nicaraguan long-fillers, promoting a flavor-packed bouquet loaded with notes of peanut, espresso bean, earth and pepper. I get no twists or turns, just a blast of flavor from start to finish, delivered in smooth fashion down to the nub. This cigar may change your mind about Coronas.