Size: 6.5 x 48 “Clementes”
Today we take a look at the Illusione Fume D’Amour Clementes from Dion Giolito.
The cigar made its debut at this year’s IPCPR trade show and was released about a month ago. It will be a regular production blend.
Mr. Giolito is producing these cigars at his Tabacos Valle de Jalapa S.A. factory in Nicaragua.
From the Illusione web site:
“Illusione introduces Fume D’Amour. Nearly 3 years since our last full brand was brought to the industry, Fume D’Amour is added to the Illusione ‘core lines.’ These cigars deliver the signature olfactory sweetness from Viso Jalapa tobaccos, with the complex mix of spices both in the nose and on the palate from Seco leaves from Esteli. Fume D’Amour is a full-bodied production for the matured cigar enthusiast. Four sizes… more to come. “
Giolito is a proud papa of the this cigar, particularly in its construction. He said that his goal was to make the stick burn “…like a stack of dimes.”
The Illusione Fume D’Amour comes in four sizes:
Lagunas: 4.5 x 42
Clemente: 6.5 x 48
Viejos: 5 x 50
Capristanos: 6 x 56
The price point ranges between $6.50-$9.50 per stick.
The name of the blend is French for “To love to smoke.”
An interesting point. The cigar uses no ligero leaves from the plants. Only Seco and Viso leaves were used. It is a Nic puro that is a bit lighter than previous blends. Giolito uses priming tobacco from Aganorsa stock.
This is a fine looking stick. Solid. A semi oily milk chocolate/caramel colored wrapper. Tight seams. A modicum of small veins with a couple large ones. A perfect triple cap. And the wrapper is silky smooth.
I have to admit that these old eyes are having trouble taking photos of that damn cigar band. It is miniscule to say the least. At its highest point, it is only 9/16” tall. The lettering is so small that a camera stand wouldn’t help. The slightest movement from me closing the shutter puts the cigar band out of focus. (Come on birthday)
I clip the cap and find aromas of cedar, nuts, floral notes, cocoa, spice, sweetness, honey, and some hay.
Time to light up.
Ooh. It starts out very nutty. Raw nuts. Like hazelnut, almonds, and cashew. All sweet nuts when raw.
The strength starts out at a strong medium body. Sweetness swells the ranks. The draw is perfect. It gets a little salty. Hope that goes away soon. A nice lemon citrus enters.
With almost each puff, a new flavor is revealed.
Sweet cedar becomes very prominent. And then I get a cinnamon bun element.
Having burned 1”, the Illusione Fume D’Amour hits flavor bomb status. The elements are bold and precise.
As a rule, I try to avoid reviewing Lanceros. They need constant attention and I have to juggle writing with taking photos. The Lancero may take the same time as a robusto or a corona to smoke but it’s a bitch trying to get all those stages in the life of the cigar on film.
The Illusione Fume D’Amour is friggin delicious. The lighter aspect of the cigar was a smart idea. It takes the blend out of the easily identifiable Illusione comfort zone.
I am getting angry now. My camera is a real piece of shit. It is just not capable of focusing on lettering this small. Not only is the lettering small, but it is very thin. No matter what I do, I can’t get the camera to do its job. Normally, a photographer does not bring your attention to my flaws. But might as well say it because you are already thinking it. Hopefully, as the Illusione Fume D’Amour burns down, I will get better cigar band photos.
Caramel and creaminess and cocoa make a helluva trifecta of perfectly balanced flavors. The floral notes and the lemon citrus make for perfect counterpoints. The saltiness went away a few minutes ago but truth be told, it enhanced the nuttiness.
The second third begins.
Godamm the Pusherman. The Illusione Fume D’Amour is blasting away with flavor.
I’ve only had this cigar for one 24 cycle of dry boxing. It is like smoking a fresh cigar.
The sweetness is really moving up the list of flavors. It brings along with it a stronger red pepper as it nears the halfway point. A bit of smokiness emerges. And there is some oiliness on the lips. Or so it feels.
The strength mellows out at just short of medium/full.
Complexity digs its heels in. Rather than a ball of confusion, it is a perfectly balanced ring of flavors taking each one’s turn in impressing me.
The price point. There must be a certain amount of price control from Illusione.
Now I can get behind this being a $7 stick. $9.50 is just too much. Although, the way things have been going since all of the new releases, it seems cheap. Thank God Dion Giolito isn’t a pirate like most of his competition.
Flavors are bold and exciting.
Oh drat. In attempting to snip a bit of the drool covered cap off, I crack the wrapper.
I am now very proud of myself for picking this cigar for the Katman Special II sight unseen and unsmoked. I trust Dion Giolito so it was a no brainer.
The strength is now classic medium/full bodied.
I’ve invested about 45 minutes in the Illusione Fume D’Amour.
The flavor profile has been on a slow roll. It started off with a bang. And then took its time until it became very complex, balanced and having a long chewy finish. When a blend starts off like this one does, you wonder where can it go from here. I answered that question in the previous sentence.
Here are the flavors as I near the last third: Creaminess, spice, sweetness, cocoa, citrus, espresso, floral notes, nuttiness, and cedar. There is a faint smokiness.
A mint julep component shows up totally unexpectedly. The only time I have had one was when we used to go to Disneyland in Anaheim while living in Long Beach. They make a pretty good one. The only other option for having one is in bars with alcohol. And since I don’t drink, well…
I made a mistake. Not my fault mind you. But the Illusione Fume D’Amour arrived already nice and dry. So 24 hours of dry boxing made it even drier.
Cracks are beginning to form. If you purchase this cigar, don’t dry box it. It is good to go just the way it is.
I don’t care. This cigar tastes too good to stop now. Fortunately, the cracks are big enough that it allows me to use my Kingpin cigar glue. This shit is worth its weight in cocaine. It has saved hundreds of cigars from the junk pile. And it is so cheap, that I have 4-5 bottles around the house. And the bottle lasts forever. I get a year’s use out of each one.
A bottle can be had for $3.25. And cheap shipping.
The flavor profile is on cruise control. Just yummy. Clearly, Giolito decided to go in a completely different direction with this blend from his usual stylings.
The glue worked perfectly although it is quite ugly. But no matter, you don’t smoke a cigar because it is pretty. Especially a good one.
Just remember not to dry box these cigars should you choose to buy some.
In spite of the wrapper issues, the Illusione Fume D’Amour is a damn fine cigar. I highly recommend it.
Having only one and not giving it a chance to acclimate itself is on me.
Categories: CIGAR REVIEWS