Camacho “New” Criollo 2013 | Cigar Review

Wrapper: Honduran Criollo ’98 (4th priming)
Binder: Authentic Corojo
Filler: Honduran Criollo and Piloto Cubano (Dominican)
Size: 5 x 50 “Robusto”
Body: Medium/Full
Price: $5.75


The new “Bold” look of the reconfigured Camacho blends by Davidoff have made quite the splash. Stores are trying to dump the old stuff like crazy. Loads of sales.

So far, I’ve reviewed the Triple Maduro, Diploma, and Corojo Maduro. And the new Ditka 89 Limited Edition.

The stick is very nice looking. Tight seams. Minimal amount of veins. Nicely done triple cap. The wrapper is a medium brown with some oil and sandy to the touch.

I clip the cap and find aromas of cocoa, floral notes, spice, leather, and honey.
Time to light up.

The first puffs are earthy. Way in the back is some spiciness and cocoa. Between the two components is a nice honey flavor.
I haven’t smoked this new Criollo blend yet and looked forward to writing this review.
Smoke is plentiful.

The second third begins and the earthiness and spiciness are driving the bus. There is that honey element but the cocoa seems to have disappeared. Methinks that this might be an old school blend requiring months and months of humidor time. I don’t remember the other blends I reviewed having that problem.

So, at the moment, the cigar is sort of blah.

Honey moves to the front of the line. And a nice sweetness is added. The strength is medium bodied.
The char line has been terrific the whole time.

The second third begins with a little more flavor. Cocoa returns. But so far, I don’t find this a very interesting cigar. It was gifted to me about 6 weeks ago. I bought a 6 pack of all the blends from last week and I will let that Criollo rest for a couple of months or more.

The construction is excellent. The char line has not required a fix. The cap does not fall apart. But I expected more from this cigar.

The spice has made a resurgence which gives the cigar a sorely needed kick in the pants. The only stick I have really enjoyed of all the new blends is the Triple Maduro. I was gifted the most expensive of the line: Blackout Limited. I shall give this one its due and allow it to rest. It normally runs around $12.

Finally, at the halfway point, flavors come out to play. Here they are: Sweetness, spice, creaminess, honey, cocoa, and leather.

Apparently, it needed half the cigar to get to the sweet spot. I am spoiled from reviewing some extraordinary cigars like the Curivari line, the Kristoff Galerones line, and the new Illusione Rex that I have just reviewed this week.

The flavor profile is just bursting with great flavors. The honey and sweetness are wonderful. The spice has all but gone away. I don’t think this should happen on a Criollo blend. But what do I know.

The only thing missing is some complexity. At the moment, it is all about separate flavors doing their own thing. But then look at the price point. One of the least expensive sticks of the entire line. And it shows.

I love full flavored cigars and when I purchase my own stash that is what I look for. So anything less than that bores me.
Strength moves to medium/full.

The last third begins without significant changes. It is on cruise control. The flavors are starting to hide like a turtle’s head. I don’t get it. Is the flavor boom over?

This is a pleasant cigar which is the most I can say for it. Flavors are subdued. Not much balance. No long finish. The nicest thing I can say is that the rollers did a nice job.

I put the cigar down with a couple inches to go.

And now for something completely different:

The Todd Hart Band Chronicles…Continued…(See Curivari El Gran Rey review)

I always wanted to play upright bass. But a good has a price range of thousands of dollars. Back in 1987, I saw an ad in the “Pennysaver” in Fullerton, CA. It advertised an electric upright for $80. I left work and zoomed over there. The bass was made by Dobro. But all the electronics were missing. And the action of the strings was horrible. I talked him down to $60 and went laughing into the night.

I took the bass to McCabes Music Store in Long Beach. A store with quite a history of working with the big rock stars in making special instruments. Even the Stones bought instruments there.

I talked to this guy who told me all about the bass. Apparently, he actually worked for Dobro in the mid to late 1970’s and was one of the designers of the bass. Small world.

His version was rejected because it was too expensive so he quit.

He told me less than a dozen were made. I wanted neck work done on it so I could play it easily. He promised me that he would turn the bass into his version. I could not believe my luck. For $400, he transformed the bass. The height of the strings above the neck was almost invisible making playing it a dream.

He recommended a place in Hollywood that would update the electronics for me. The guy turned my bass into a high tech instrument for $600.

So for $1060, I got a world class, rare bass. I saw a photo of legendary jazz bassist Ray Brown playing one.

I practiced all the time. I got so good on it; I put my bass guitar down and used the upright for playing out. But because the bass was so light (22lbs); it was doing a lot of damage to me structurally. I had to pull the bass into my side to get a good grip on it. Not knowing that it was putting pressure on my sciatic nerves.

I tried using the bass stand when I played but here I was in a hard charging blues band and it just didn’t look right.

So a wild idea occurred to me. I took it back to McCabes and they put guitar strap knobs on it so I could wear it like a bass guitar. But what I didn’t take into account was that I was now holding a 22lb bass over my shoulder. So the pain switched from sciatic nerve to back problems. But baby, I looked cool. And you should have seen the looks from people when they saw me playing it that way.

Word spread throughout the Phoenix area about me and my bass. This sort of ticked Todd off because he was used to being the center of attention.

I got a lot attention and amazement from audiences. The Todd Hart Band played out a LOT! Todd was the vocalist in Savoy Brown for a while. Savoy is an English blues band whose beginnings were in the 1960’s. They were legendary. And Todd’s voice was remarkable. His guitar playing was just above mediocre but passable. We were a power blues trio.

We worked at least 4 nights per week and this was just killing my back with that bass hanging off my neck that much. So I would drop the bass back into its stand the last set or two when no one cared because they were drunk.

During my recovery from my skydiving accident, we were broke from me being out of work and in 2004, I sold my baby. It broke my heart. But a lawyer in Denver bought it for his kid who was in college as a music major. The kid was first chair in the orchestra. Plus he loved jazz and had a small combo.

So while it was killing me to sell it, I’m glad it went to someone who really appreciated what he got.



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