Wrapper: Mexican San Andres
Filler: Nicaraguan (Esteli and Jalapa)
Size: 6 x 54 “Torpedo”
The Oliva family has joined forces with the Padilla family to build product in the Oliva factory in Nicaragua. The first cigar to come from this partnership is the Reserva Maduro.
The dark San Andres wrapper is oily and toothy. Seams are visible but tight. There is a fair amount of veins; but each stick varies. The torpedo cap appears to be a single cap but there is no information available to disprove that. It is certainly a well-made cap.
The maduro wrapper is extremely dark. And as we’ve come to learn in the last few years, is that a San Andres wrapper is something to be cherished.
I sniff around and detect very strong notes of coffee, cocoa, spice, earthiness, and sweetness. The cigar is speaking to me.
I clip the stick and light it up.
The first puffs taste of cocoa. I’ve allowed the stick to sit for a month in my humidor so there should be no excuses. If a cigar needs longer than a month to exert the flavors the blender intended then it is not a commercial premium cigar and is something else entirely.
The red pepper arrives. Smoke is just pouring from the foot. It’s times like this I wish I could do video reviews. But since I sound like Daffy Duck when I speak, it would not be worth the trouble.
There is a nice wood component. There is also some coffee or dark espresso. No creaminess yet. It is too early. The cigar draws perfectly and the char line is very close to perfection.
I’m not a fan of torpedoes because I’m a chomper and they keep sliding out of my mouth. It happened once while I sat on the couch next to my wife and the cigar fell into her lap. I almost slept with the fishes that night.
The sweetness shows up making this little half inch very enjoyable so far. I’m ‘a diggin’ it baby. I used to be cool and that’s how I talked. Now I’m old and say things like, “How’s your Depends holding up?” Or “Yeah, I have that same pain.”
The spice is gearing up. The char line hits the dead nuts mark. And the ash seems to want to stay where it is….until I wait too long and it ends up on my keyboard or lap.
The sweetness and the cocoa and the coffee make a nice trifecta at the 1” mark. I’ve already grabbed the Diet Coke from the fridge because I sensed this would be a cocoa-heavy stick. Just reading the stats told me that.
The first third is all about taking its time. This cigar is jammed with tobacco. So it took me 15 minutes to smoke 1”. But the first third is also about setting the stage for what is to come. And being a wise and sagely reviewer, I know I am going to get all the ingredients to it being a flavor bomb around the halfway point, or so.
I’ve got the Classic R & B channel on the cable box. And I’ve really cranked the sound bar up. This was my music in the 60’s. And of course, rock was just as important. After all, I am an ex-rock god. LOL.
Just as the first third ends, the creaminess appears swarming all over the stick like a warm bath. Can a warm bath swarm? Hmmmm. I think I got carried away there.
The body is at a tad bit stronger than classic medium. The earthiness is causing this. I can feel it in the back of my throat.
I am happily reporting that this is a very good cigar. And equal to many of the New Breed cigars out there. Padilla has an Old School patina to it. And this stick breaks the mold. Granted, it ain’t cheap. But this is a quality smoke. And a nice treat once in a while. I got a 5 pack on Cbid for $5 a stick…making this more than affordable. I always have to think twice when I buy retail and see a 5 pack costs $40. That’s 5 cigars!
I’m at the halfway point and the cigar is struggling its way out of its cocoon to become the flavor bomb I predicted. The strength is just shy of full bodied. The really nice thing for a reviewer when doing a torpedo is that the bands, after heating up, allow the bands to just slide off the top towards the cap. No fight or battle to get the thing off.
So far, the cigar isn’t that complex but it sure is flavorful. All of the aforementioned flavors are there in force…making for a very nice experience. I might add that the cap is acting like a champ. Not a single piece of detritus, or loose tobacco, coming off or dangling. Who’s a good torcedor? Yes, that’s a good torcedor…want some treats?
I pass the halfway point and enter the last third and flavors explode all over me. I have to wash them off with Kleenex and Lubriderm….ahh..oops…something else I was thinking of. But just as I hoped, the cigar is proving to be something special. I don’t know whose idea it was to bring the Olivas and the Padillas together on this stick, but kudos, sir or madam.
The hotsy-totsy spiciness is making my nose run.
The cigar has a double band and the lower one just slid off like a dream intact. I love that.
The creaminess, cocoa, coffee, wood, spice, and sweetness have their pedal to the metal.
The power of the cigar is making my head spin like Linda Blair. Wow. Full bodied to the max. But the flavors were there in force.
This is a cigar I would recommend. I think it will get even better if I leave the other four alone for a couple of months. But after one month, it was a true pleasure.
And now for something completely different:
I was on an errand to bring some PR material to Entertainment Tonight. Hollywood. They were doing a segment on my Eddie Munster project. We had a single called, “Whatever Happened to Eddie?” We used the theme from the show and I wrote some lyrics about Eddie. Naturally, Butch Patrick was the star.
As I made my way through the maze of buildings, the local station was doing an outside segment on the grass. They were going to interview Howard Cosell. And there was the man, leaning against a steel rail…watching and waiting. I couldn’t pass because they were live. So I sauntered up to Cosell and started a conversation. I showed him my PR stuff and he got a big chuckle out of it.
So we talked for about 5 minutes about life. No sports. No entertainment. Just life. It surprised me what a down to earth man he really was. No pretentions or uppity behavior because I was a nobody. I can’t remember what we spoke of but it was very pleasant.
Then it was his time in the chair. He told me to stay and watch. Hell, I was in no hurry, so hell yeah.
They talked to him about Monday Night Football where he was a star. And he was funny. I couldn’t help it and laughed out loud causing the two on air people to laugh on the air as well.
Then Cosell told them about me standing just a few feet away and that I should join them because of this really cool project I had. It flummoxed the on air idiots.
He got out of his director-type chair and dragged me over. I just stood there like a schmuck. Cosell made me tell them about my project and show the record and PR photos of the band which I called Eddie and the Monsters. All of them in ghoulish makeup. And all very good looking young men.
They really got into it because no one had heard from Butch in some time at that point. Now he is everywhere doing those washed up actor conventions signing autographs for $10.
Because of me, I ended up bumping the next personality to come on: David Copperfield. He stood there and I slyly looked off camera and he was as red as a beet. He was pissed off big time. The on air people made their apologies to Copperfield and said they would have him on another time.
Copperfield stormed off.
When we were done, Cosell invited me to breakfast at Canter’s in the Jewish section of West L.A. Named for the famous comedian, Eddie Canter. Long dead.
We got there and all heads turned. We spent almost two hours talking and laughing while he told me inside stuff about Monday Night Football. Holy cow. The stuff he told me.
He finally told me he had to go. I offered to pay but he would have none of it. He asked if I had a place to go for Yom Kippur. I told him I would with my family in Long Beach. He told me that if it fell through, I was welcome to his house.
I came this close to calling my father and telling him I was sick.
Categories: CIGAR REVIEWS