This stick was of a pair gifted to me by good friend, Scott Manby. I smoked the first one and just went “Wow.” So I decided to review this oldie but goodie.
The cigar has been rated 92 by Cigar Aficionado. And came in at #12 in their Top 25 of 2010. I’m impressed.
The double gold band and the almost black Habano wrapper make for a stunning presentation. The wrapper has a mottled look. The construction is about as close to flawless as they come. There just aren’t any flaws. Scott gave me a very well-aged stick and the oils glisten in sunlight of this beautiful Wisconsin day.
I sniff it and detect not much on the wrapper; but at the foot, I can smell cocoa, eye-watering spice, leather, cedar, and cinnamon.
I use my brand new Cuenca back stop cutter and light ‘er up.
My first impression is that I get a huge dose of milk chocolate, like hot chocolate. There is an immediate creaminess and sweetness. Aging has really milked (sorry for the pun) the flavors from this stick. A spiciness shows up and as the stick dangles from my mouth as I type, the smoke wafting up into my eyes makes them water from the red hot chili peppers.
Five different countries in the filler makes for one helluva’ blend. I haven’t had an Exodus for quite a while. No specific reason, but if they age like this, I am going over to the online store for Cuenca Cigars and getting some. I love Ana Cuenca in a Face Book sort of way.
The char line corrects itself without my help and the ash is hanging on for dear life at the 1” mark. Maybe the other reviewers had palsy…I don’t know.
The creaminess is beginning to overwhelm the cocoa and that’s saying a lot. At the end of the first third, the main components are cocoa, creaminess, spice, and sweetness.
As the second third begins, the sweetness becomes fruity; like me. Can’t identify it yet, but I will.
The flavors find a way to the world of complexity here in the second third. It has become well balanced and with an extremely long finish.
I gotta’ have more of these. The price point is perfect so there is no excuse except I don’t have a money tree out back so it will have to wait til next month.
But fortunately, these sticks aren’t the proverbial “small batch” cigars….so they will be there for me when I’m ready.
Dark cherry. That’s the ticket. Dark cherry. Now that I can identify it, I don’t know how I missed it. The cigar is so elegant in the flavor profile that it tastes like a chocolate/fruity smoothie. No kidding. I have to thank Scott Manby for sending me this stick. I now have a new monkey on my back.
There is too much glue on both bands making it near impossible to remove them. I’m forced to use one of my trusty folding blades to remove both and sort of ruin the appearance of them. So through artistic photography, I will try to hide the butchery.
I hold the cigar in my left hand as the morning light streaks into the dining room where I sit at the table and write. The oils glisten causing the wrapper to shimmer like black opal. Just amazing. If I had a decent camera, I could catch this, but I don’t. So take my word.
I’ve smoked quite a bit of flavor bombs recently in my reviews. And it must seem dreadfully repetitive. But I report what my senses tell me to report. And this little baby tops them all.
I forgot to add that the cigar starts off as classic medium but by the halfway point, moves to just shy of full bodied. And I’m guessing that the last third will take me there.
The char line has been pretty good for some time now. The draw has remained perfect and the cap has been stupendous in its ability to hang on to every loose piece of tobacco.
The last third just amplifies the flavors. None have been added. But what we do have are stunning. They have moved from slightly muted during the first and second third to explosive in the last. I feel like a kid with an ice cream cone melting down his hand and all over his face.
The cigar ends too soon and it does traverse to full bodied. The flavors remained prominent and the stick never gets harsh or bitter.
So in summary, this is a superb cigar with all the trappings a fine blending house can muster. Absolutely superb.
Categories: CIGAR REVIEWS