La Flor Dominicana Double Claro | Cigar Review

Wrapper: Ecuadorian Double Claro (Candela)
Binder: Nicaraguan
Filler: Dominican
Size: 5 x 50 “No.50 Robusto”
Body: Medium/Full
Price: $6.96 MSRP


Let’s face it, very few of us are candela lovers. The wrapper is extra fragile and that grassy taste is usually a put off.

I reviewed the Illusione 888 Claro back July of 2013 and thought it was wonderful. I recently reviewed the Alec Bradley Black Market Filthy Hooligan and thought it was terrible. Now, I have the LFD version of its candela. Fingers are crossed.
The cigar was released in February of 2012.

The hope was from all LFD fans that this would not be your typical mild candela from the master, Litto Gomez. Let’s see.

The cigar comes in three sizes:
No. 42: 5.5 x 42
No. 48: 6.875 x 48
No. 50: 5 x 50

The claro wrapper on this stick is thicker than most candelas. Good thinking. And therefore, not as fragile. The construction is solid. Seams are tight. Very few veins. And an impeccable triple cap. There is the slightest bit of oil on the wrapper and it feels very smooth.

I clip the cap and find aromas of grass, citrus, creaminess, earthiness, cocoa, and sweetness.
Time to light up. There is no forgiveness with a sloppy toasting of the foot with a green wrapper.

The draw is a bit tight. I get flavors of spice and creaminess. There is a nice herbal quality to it.

I use my cigar awl to open the cigar up and while doing so, getting quite a bit of resistance. It does open it up but the middle half of the cigar is packed tightly. And I don’t go for a second time fearing I might crack the wrapper.

And then, of course, while I wrote those words, the cigar opens up like a dream.

This stick ain’t mild. It is pretty much right on the money spot of medium bodied. The spice keeps ratcheting up until it is a spice bomb.

There is a burn issue of considerable notice. Half a canoe, and Tyler too. It got away from me while typing. So I torch the hell out of it. It appears to be OK now.

Here are the flavors, in order: Spice, creaminess, mint, earthiness, cocoa, and leather. No grass.

This is much better than the Filthy Hooligan. But then the FH started off pretty good too.

The creaminess ratchets up neck and neck with the spiciness. The cocoa and mint are wonderful. And then, a citrus note appears. It tastes like lime. No, I’m not joking that the citrus flavor comes from a green fruit. Or that mint is green also. I feel like I am in the middle of a Muppet movie.

I begin the second third. And this candela cigar might actually hit flavor bomb status. And for some reason, the Illusione 888, the Filthy Hooligan and the LFD are all in the exact same price range of $7. If Oliver Stone were reviewing this, he would suspect a conspiracy.

To be perfectly honest, this has no grassy taste most associated with a claro cigar. It tastes like a normal LFD. Maybe the mint sets it apart but that is it.

The strength is now a very classic medium body. The red pepper returns much stronger. In fact, all of the flavors are very bold now and I can classify it as a flavor bomb. The cocoa and creaminess are pushing at the seams. And the combo of citrus and mint is outstanding.

The char line has behaved itself since the first onset of being a bad boy. The draw is spot one. This is an excellent cigar. Of the three candelas, this is how they rate in my book: LFD, Illusione 888, and Filthy Hooligan.

Man, this stick is good. What a wonderful blend and worth the $7 retail.

I am just past the halfway point and digging this cigar. What a relief. The Filthy Hooligan was terrible and I was a’ fearin’ that I might be in for another bad experience with this candela. Thank you Senor Gomez.

This flavor profile is so good, it warrants a Diet Coke for the NYC egg cream experience, candela or no.

I cannot remember where I got this cigar. It was a 6 pack of three different blends. The Filthy Hooligan, the LFD Double Claro, and the Illusione 88 Candela. That’s right, only two eights this time. I think I paid $30 for the six sticks.

I just checked and there is a difference. There is an Illusione 888 Claro and an Illusione 88 Candela. What would the difference be? Someone help me so I don’t have to hit Wikipedia.

The last third begins. It is a flavor explosion. Complexity digs its heels in. The balance is perfect. It is chewy with a long finish. A damn fine cigar.

I wouldn’t mind having a box of these….”If I were a rich man.. Yubby dibby dibby dibby dibby dibby dibby dum.. All day long I’d biddy biddy bum. If I were a wealthy man.”
Sing along.

The strength is very close to medium/full at this point and I feel some nicotine kick.

I just read the differences between the Illusione 888 Claro and the Illusione 88 Candela and there is none. Same wrapper, same guts. This gives me license to write another review except I got the blend’s name wrong on the 888. I called it a Candela in my title of the post. It should have been Claro. Too late to change things.

Ahh but it isn’t. I went back. Changed the title and changed the link name. I’m good to go.

The last 1-1/2” is powerful. My ability to move is altered by the nicotine.

But the flavors are still strong and bountiful.
I absolutely recommend this cigar.

And now for something completely different:

We were playing a gig in Dover, England. This is where most boats leave for Europe across the English Channel. If you’ve never taken that two hour boat ride, don’t. Fly.

It is the choppiest waters in the world. And you spend the entire time, in line, waiting to get your passport stamped. So you are surrounded by people throwing up.

Thankfully, we would leave Southampton and take the ferry to the Hook of Holland which was a 6-7 hour ride and done overnight. So you can eat a nice dinner aboard, take your downers, drink a few pints, and crash in your state room and pass out during that treacherous cross. The trick is to roll with the motion. Don’t fight it.

The roadies taught me that. So I always left for the Continent with them a couple days early instead of the band. Besides, the roadies were more fun and NORMAL.

The first gig we played in Dover was a headliner for us in a very old auditorium that seated 5000 people and it was packed.

Little did we know there were some guests in the audience. And during our first encore, they all came on stage to jam.

They were Jean Luc Ponty (violin), Jerry Goodman (violin of Mahavishnu Orchestra), and JEFF BECK!!!!

Beck was a hero. This guy had some serious musical history. And he stood next to me while we played. For the life of me, I can’t remember what we played but I do remember it was three songs. And it wasn’t any Curved Air rubbish. It was all bluesy.
After the show, we all retreated to the dressing room and partied like it was 1999.

But I forgot something. It was my duty to make sure the chick singer got her shot of methadone right after the concert back at the hotel. She was being weaned off of her morphine addiction.

An hour passed and then, “Shit!”
I ran to find her. Nowhere to be seen.

I tried the bathroom. The door was locked. I whispered her name through the door over and over.
Oh fuck!

So I got the rest of the band and told them what was going on. This had been an ongoing affair with her and the band said they wouldn’t reform unless she was clean. So she secretly went to a doctor and began the process. The only two people who knew about this were me and Stewart Copeland, her boyfriend and drummer for the band.

I told everyone in the room that the chick was locked in the bathroom.

We broke the door open and there she was…sitting on the toilet, passed out, and bleeding from her arm. She made a half-assed attempt of killing herself with a bottle opener.

Oh fuck!

We got her to her feet and that was the end of the party. Back to the hotel and I got her shit and injected her.

Moments later she was cogent and lucid and had no idea what had happened.
“So boys…do you want to go play some poker with the roadies?”
Oh fuck.


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