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Thread: Craig's mini-reviews

  1. #1
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    Default Craig's mini-reviews

    So ... now that I've recovered and taken stock of what's left after the great cooler disaster of last year - almost all my Punch, Bolivar (sigh), and Montecristo reduced to yard gar status - I've decided to clear out pretty much all my non-Cubans, not buy any new cigars, and slowly smoke through the few boxes that remain by first sampling from each box, and posting my impressions. I'm not going to be "saving" any more cigars. I'll list the ranking/rating from cigars-review.org (CR) as I generally agree with what is posted there.

    The first few:

    BHK 54 DIC 2010 - smoked Oct 6, 2016
    My memory is far from perfect, but this one seemed to be pretty much like the one I smoked in 2011 ROTT - but possibly more intense.
    First third - trademark Cohiba "grassiness" very evident. Very enjoyable. Band glue tore the wrapper, annoying.
    Second third - much less grassiness, predominant taste almost like an aged Opus X crossed with an aged JdN 1970, but smoother. Felt like the cigar needed a complement, went with Courvoisier V.S.O.P.; good pairing.
    Last third - honestly, a bit too buzzed by then. Put the cognac aside. Cuban "twang" - yeah, I know, WTF is that taste - built up slowly and then came on strong like a freight train and then slowly subsided into, well, just plain damn good tobacco, best taken in very slow puffs - but the "show" was over by the last inch and a half. Like before, not a cigar that makes you want to burn your fingers on the nub, but smooth and silky right to the end.

    CR ranked 50th @ 8.75/10, and I think that is a fair assessment at this time, given the cigars that are ranked higher/similar/lower that I've smoked. I think that I'll put the rest of the box back to sleep for another five years.

    Trinidad Coloniales OUS MAR 10 - smoked Oct 11, 2016
    These cigars were flooded in the great cooler disaster last year, but didn't form mold. I guess that the varnished boxes helped protect them. This is the first one that I've had since then, and it seems to smoke pretty decent - but nowhere near as good as before, maybe roughly equivalent to a Por Larranaga Petit Corona.
    CR ranked 107th @ 8.46

    Saint Luis Rey Double Corona JUN 08 - smoked Oct 13, 2016
    The trend these days may be to ligero and strength and big rings, but this 194 x 49 ring cigar is the definition of old school Cuban. Unlike more well-known brands like Cohiba, Monte, Partagas, etc., there is no distinctive brand taste - the cigar is just so balanced. Complex, full flavour, yet on the lighter side of medium-bodied. No spiciness, mild aftertaste. Perhaps uniquely, SLR's use tobacco from the lesser-ranked Semi-Vuelta region as well as the top-rated Vuelta Abajo region. One of best regular-production Cubans that I've smoked, although only sporadically available, and only in half-wheels (bundles of 50) - so you get these to age them.
    CR ranked 12th @ 9.16

    ... to be continued.
    Craig
    Ahhhhhhhhhhh Cigar Jesus just wept - kevin7
    A cigar storage primer | Basic Cuban cigar info

  2. #2
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    Thanks for the reviews!
    "I didn't play at collecting. No cigar anywhere was safe from me."
    ~Edward G. Robinson
    =====
    "Ain't nothin' better than a damn good cigar."
    ~EdgeMan
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    Punch Royal Regional Edition for Benelux in 2009 - BLO JUN 09 - smoked 15 Oct 2016
    The "Regional Edition" Cubans are, for the most part, nothing special like the Limited Editions. Some have been huge successes, but most are the "normal" brand blend in unusual sizes. The Punch Royal is a "Gordito" vitola - 141mm x 50 ring - basically a robusto that is a half-inch longer. Unfortunately, this cabinet suffered greatly in the flood - the bottom inch of all of the cigars is black and withered. Solution: cut off the bottom inch! The result retains the Punch "Punch" but the 'leather' richness is absent. Surprisingly, the slight cherry note/accent that I've only found in Punch is still present (or, perhaps just as likely, I'm imagining things). Overall, and considering the cigars that I smoked from the cab per-flood, just a basic robusto, but now vaguely reminiscent of a box of over-humidifed-at-the-shop Bolivar Royal Coronas that I had a few years ago. I'm glad to be able to salvage something smokeable. No rating at CR.

    Montecristo Especial #2 - LBT SEP 09 - smokred 15 Oct 2016
    Perhaps an elegant lancero is not the best cigar to follow the robusto Punch, but the Especial #2 is oh soo creamy and delicious. No ligero, no harshness, and traditional Montecristo taste. Perfect construction, flawless wrapper. If you like big, bold cigars with lots of smoke, this cigar is not for you - but if you want a cigar that you stare at and think, holy sh*t this is high-quality tobacco, then it doesn't get much better than the 152mm x 38 ring Especial #2.
    CR ranked 25th @ 8.96/10
    Last edited by craig; 10-15-2016 at 09:07 PM.
    Craig
    Ahhhhhhhhhhh Cigar Jesus just wept - kevin7
    A cigar storage primer | Basic Cuban cigar info

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    Ortega Serie D No. 12 Maduro - original 2012 release - smoked 18 Oct 2016
    A break from Cubans to finish off this box of 10 from Eddie Ortega. These were made by Pepin Garcia IIRC right after the Espinoza-Ortega (EO) brand was wound up. The cigar is very much like a Padron 1964 Maddie, but creamier. Like Padron's, they smoked very consistently after the first year or so ... I don't think further aging changed the cigar at all. If you like Padron Maduro's - and who doesn't? - then you'll like this cigar. I don't know if they are made anymore, so you might find them on clearance somewhere sometime.
    Last edited by craig; 10-18-2016 at 10:59 PM.
    Craig
    Ahhhhhhhhhhh Cigar Jesus just wept - kevin7
    A cigar storage primer | Basic Cuban cigar info

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    Thanks for the review Craig.
    "I didn't play at collecting. No cigar anywhere was safe from me."
    ~Edward G. Robinson
    =====
    "Ain't nothin' better than a damn good cigar."
    ~EdgeMan
    =====

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    Partagas Serie D #5 EL 2008 - smoked 15 November 2016
    This cigar has had checkered reviews. It has been criticized for its cost relative to its size (petit robusto), and construction and draw issues. This was the last one that I had, and was no exception. The draw was excellent, but the cigar never burned straight and required numerous touch-ups. The first half of the first third (first sixth?) was excellent - very full-flavoured, but with no harshness. Then the rest of the cigar - meh, almost bland except for some spice notes. The expectation of an EL is that the cigar is something special, but this cigar wasn't. An SD#4 or an SP#2 are better, and better value.
    CR @ 7/10.
    Craig
    Ahhhhhhhhhhh Cigar Jesus just wept - kevin7
    A cigar storage primer | Basic Cuban cigar info

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    Ramon Allones Specially Selected TEB JUN 07 - smoked Nov 29, 2016
    The RASS is one of the classic Habanos. It doesn't appeal to fans of the "new" Cubans like the Montecristo Open series, it isn't sophisticated like Cohiba or Trinidad, it is - at almost 10 years of age - just raw power, heavy, light on the sweetness, a no-finesse old-school powerhouse cigar. What strong Dominicans like La Flor wish they were. The strength has increased markedly over the years; this box has just gotten stronger and stronger and spicier and spicier. First third hints at what is to come, and is super-complex. Second third smacks you in the face with tobacco taste so strong it is like strong coffee, and just keeps on coming strong in the last third. To be honest, a bit too much for me tonight, but so exactly what I expected that I smoked it down to the nub. A cigar that every aficionado should experience sometime.

    CR ranked 102nd @ 8.48/10
    Craig
    Ahhhhhhhhhhh Cigar Jesus just wept - kevin7
    A cigar storage primer | Basic Cuban cigar info

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by craig View Post
    Ramon Allones Specially Selected TEB JUN 07 - smoked Nov 29, 2016
    The RASS is one of the classic Habanos. It doesn't appeal to fans of the "new" Cubans like the Montecristo Open series, it isn't sophisticated like Cohiba or Trinidad, it is - at almost 10 years of age - just raw power, heavy, light on the sweetness, a no-finesse old-school powerhouse cigar. What strong Dominicans like La Flor wish they were. The strength has increased markedly over the years; this box has just gotten stronger and stronger and spicier and spicier. First third hints at what is to come, and is super-complex. Second third smacks you in the face with tobacco taste so strong it is like strong coffee, and just keeps on coming strong in the last third. To be honest, a bit too much for me tonight, but so exactly what I expected that I smoked it down to the nub. A cigar that every aficionado should experience sometime.

    CR ranked 102nd @ 8.48/10
    Great review Craig.........I'd love to try one of those some time as I enjoy a strong cigar with a cup of strong coffee after a very good meal
    It matters not how strait the gate,
    How charged with punishments the scroll.
    I am the master of my fate:
    I am the captain of my soul.

    ***William Ernest Henley***

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