J. Fuego Sangre de Toro | Cigar Review

Wrapper: Nicaraguan Sun Grown Corojo
Binder: Nicaraguan Criollo
Filler: Nicaraguan Corojo, Nicaraguan Criollo
Size: 5.5 x 52 “Belicoso”
Body: Medium/Full
Price: $5.70 Single Price
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From Atlantic Cigars:
“Jesus Fuego has done it again! With his extensive cigar knowledge and Cuban heritage, Fuego has been releasing some of the hottest new smokes around, and the J. Fuego Sangre de Toro joins the list of top quality boutique Fuego cigars. Sangre de Toro translates to “Bull’s Blood,” a good name for this full-bodied Nicaraguan puro. Jesus was looking to deliver a spicy, powerful smoke and definitely hit the mark with this gem. Dark and oily Nicaraguan Colorado wrappers are used to finish this cigar, blended with aged Nicaraguan Criollo and Corojo fillers, which are held together with a Nicaraguan Criollo binder. If you like full-bodied boutique smokes at a great price, then you have to give these stogies a try.”

From the J Fuego web site:
“The Fuego family has been in the business of growing, blending, and rolling cigars for five generations (since 1876 when J.Fuego was founded as a leaf growing company) in “El Corojo” farm, Cuba.
“It was in 1995 when the family migrated to Central America. In 2006, after years growing, blending and making cigars for other companies, Jesus Fuego launched “Tabacos S.A.” with the release of the “J. Fuego” brand with his Natural and Gran Reserva lines. This, as a celebration of 130 years of his family in the cigar industry.
“Since then Tabacos S.A. has introduced the J. Fuego Delirium, the 777 brand with Maduro, Corojo and Zero lines. The Origen brand was also introduced in 2010 with great acceptation from the consumers.”

This cigar was released in 2011. The cigar comes in four sizes: 5 x 44, 4.875 x 49, 6 x 50, and 6 x 60. Prices range from $4.00-$5.00 at box price.

The name of the cigar translates as the “Blood of the Bull.”

The cigar has a very oily, toothy, reddish butterscotch colored wrapper. There are some huge veins and some baby veins. Seams are nearly invisible. The triple cap is nicely done. It is jam packed with tobacco. The cigar band is simple with a classic look.

I clip the cap and find aromas of sweetness, pickling spices, cedar, spice, cocoa, and mint leaves.
Time to light up.

The first puffs are delicious. Lots of sweetness, cocoa, wood, and spiciness. And a touch of leather.
The draw is great despite how hard the cigar is from being jam packed.
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The cocoa moves to the front along with the sweetness; and now a dash of creaminess makes it a French dessert. The black pepper is building very slowly. The strength is classic medium bodied.

The char line is a bit wavy and needs a minor touch up to start its journey correctly.

The black pepper becomes red pepper and ratchets up quickly and has its pedal to the metal. Wow. Cleared sinuses.
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More flavors begin to show themselves as I near the end of the first third. Here are the flavors, in order: Sweetness, spice, cocoa, creaminess, espresso, nuttiness, vanilla bean, wood, and leather.

The second third begins and the cigar is an official flavor bomb. Flavors are pounding the pavement like a lightning bolt strike.
The tip of my tongue feels like I bit into a jalapeno pepper.

The flavor profile has a very nice balance. I find this cigar a bit different than other Fuego blends. To be honest, some of them are very two dimensional. Not this baby. It is the perfect example of flavor and character. Little nuances zinging past my palate. The complex nature of the cigar is impressive.
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I am at the halfway point. The cigar flavor profile is on cruise control which is where I want it to be. All the same flavors as described earlier. And in the same order. Except for one thing: The spice has moved to the front of the line supplanting the sweetness.
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The last third begins and the cigar is proving to be a most excellent cigar. If bought in box size, the price goes down to less than $5 a stick. If you join the Atlantic Cigars VIP Club, the box price drops substantially. Joining the club was the best $60 per year I’ve ever spent. Savings on boxes, 5 packs and singles are ridiculous. I earned that $60 back in the first three purchases. After that, it was all Peaches and Herb.

The strength hits medium/full in the last third. The power is noticeably potent.

The best part is the flavor profile exploding on my palate like a pie in my face from Soupy Sales. Man oh man. Manny Mota and Jesus Alou!!
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I can’t understate what a great flavor bomb the Sangre de Toro is. And I love that it is a regular production stick.

This cigar definitely belongs in the “The Katman’s List of 71 Excellent Cigars in the $5.00-$6.00 Range.” Changing the title to “72.”

The cigar finishes out perfectly. No heat or harshness. Flavorful to the end. And only the slightest bit of nicotine.
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And now for something completely different:
1978

My beloved L.A. Dodgers were in the World Series. I had a great group of friends and we watched every game together.

“This Series had two memorable confrontations between Dodger rookie pitcher Bob Welch and the Yankees’ Reggie Jackson. In Game 2, Welch struck Jackson out in the top of the ninth with two outs and the tying and go-ahead runs on base to end the game. Jackson would get his revenge in Game 6 by smashing a two-run homer off Welch in the seventh to increase the Yankees’ lead from 5–2 to 7–2 and put a final “exclamation point” on the Yankees’ victory.”

That evening was the night that Welch had struck out Jackson. And So Cal was jubilant. We were at Richie, and his wife, Delores’ apartment down in Belmont Shore in Long Beach. It was me and my skank of a girlfriend, April. And another couple I can’t remember. And Doug Page. A good buddy we met from playing volleyball at the beach. And my wacko friend, John Turner, who I knew in high school and became best buds.

The game had ended and we were celebrating, drinking tequila and smoking doobs. John announced he was making a booze run and off he went.

He returned with Dodger’s pitcher, Bob Welch, in tow. We literally fell off of our chairs.
bobwelch

John had found a drunken Welch in a bar next to the liquor store on 2nd St where the action was in Belmont Shore. Sort of a mini Sunset Strip.

He then convinced Welch that a hip and happening party was going on and he dragged him over to us. Hip and Happening?
There were three couples, (And John and Doug) listening to music and getting sloshed.

Welch plopped himself down in a chair opposite the couch, leaned back in the chair putting it on two legs and propped his feet up on the coffee table. Delores did not like this one bit.

Welch was completely shit faced and began telling us gossip about the Dodgers. Then he started complaining how they didn’t treat him right. He bitched about Dodgers’ manager Tommy Lasorda….and how someone else got a snazzier sports car than he got, etc, etc, etc.

Then he started bitching about the hip and happening party. And got really rude. He called our wives and girlfriends skanky bitches. Richie, who was from Philly, was a tough dude and got up and knocked Welch’s chair out from under him.

Welch was a big guy. And he shook the apartment with the thud his body made.

He got up and was ready to fight. But he was in shape and 21. We were all nearing our 30th birthdays and not in shape like this athlete.

We later learned that Welch was a full blown alcoholic which got him traded to the Oakland Athletics in 1988.

John held back Welch and I held back Richie. Welch kicked over the coffee table spewing drinks and bowls of chips and dip everywhere.

And then he sat down again.

We all looked at each other in wonderment. This can’t be happening. Here was the star of the L.A. Dodgers on the night they beat the NY Yankees and all we wanted was for him to leave.

My very timid, and meek, girlfriend spoke up first and asked him to leave.

Welch went into a tirade and cursed at us with a nonstop blue streak. It took John, Richie, Doug and I to move his body to the door where we could still hear him swearing at us as he stumbled down the street.

I have some more gossipy baseball stories to be discussed.

My wife was in her mid 20’s and a flight attendant for Lufthansa Airlines. But still a German citizen. She hooked up with San Francisco Giants’ ace pitcher John Montefusco. They were engaged for two years and she has the dirt on everyone in baseball.

To be continued….

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