Today we take a look at the Felipe Gregorio Refusion F3. This is one of the most illusive cigars online. Even the FG web site doesn’t say much.
It must be primarily a B & M cigar as the FG web site has a ginormous list of retailers and with some; the web site links are included.
From Felipe Gregorio:
“In 1995 I came out with a single batch limited cigar called Fusion. The tobacco for this cigar was all aged over 3 years together in cedar trunks, “fusing” the blend. 15 years later, I am bringing out the same cigar. Over the years I have had a lot of demand for this cigar, but I did not have the right tobaccos until 3 years ago.”
After smoking, and reviewing, the Felipe Gregorio Don Cirilo Reserva Familiar Maduro, I decided I had to have the Refusion and bought them at SBC. Charlotte does not know this and doesn’t need to so mum is the word.
The Felipe Gregorio Refusion is a fairly rustic looking cigar. Seams are only intermittently tight. Lots of big veins. Very few small veins. The triple cap edges on sloppy. The wrapper is an oily, toffee colored light brown. And it is very smooth to the touch. The stick is jam packed without a single soft spot.
I clip the cap and find aromas of spice, rich earthiness, hay, strong cedar, and a touch of leather.
Time to light up.
The draw is good. Smoke fills the room.
The first puffs are reticent to define a specific flavor. There is some sweetness, caramel, dried fruit, chocolate pudding/very creamy, a touch of coffee, and then one minute in: A blast of RED PEPPER!
The cedar is super strong. As it should be if it was stored in cedar trunks for 3 years. I wonder how they get the elephants to hold still that entire time?) Sorry.
If I’m not mistaken, Gregorio has been the king of inexpensive bundled cigars for a long time. So, I was very uncertain about this; especially at this price. But the Don Cirilo is a fantastic cigar so what the hell.
Toffee/caramel becomes stronger.
The strength is a medium+ body.
Now what is that fruity/dried fruit element?
My dear friend and loyal but unclean reader bought a 5 pack about the same time I did during the publishing of the Don Cirilo review. He called me and told me that this was one helluva cigar and goaded me into trying one or reviewing it soon.
To be honest, I did smoke one after that and I shouldn’t have. I’ve been in no shape to smoke cigars after last week’s procedure for a trial spinal stimulator. I just stopped eating for the week. So everything tasted funny and so did this cigar. That was really dumb for me to take the advice of a lawyer and waste a perfectly good $9 cigar.
My trial run is over and I am now being scheduled for the real surgery that should happen in a couple of weeks. I will probably be down for the count for a few days after that. I doubt I will be able to sit and write for 2-3 hours at a time.
I am getting a freshly baked bread flavor. Sort of yeasty.
The char line is very close to dead nuts. No touch ups required.
The cigar is packed to the gills so it burns slowly and I’ve only burned an inch in 15 minutes.
The cocoa element becomes very potent but the blast of red pepper is now moving to the background.
The sweetness fights for first place. The creaminess coats my lips like squirting whipped cream into my mouth. (I don’t swallow)
There are other flavor elements I can’t put my finger on. The cigar became complex so quickly that they are less definable.
Caramel keeps coming in and out. At this very moment, it is the strongest component in the flavor profile.
The strength has settled back into a medium body.
The second third begins. And flavor bomb status kicks in.
I’m sure with more humidor time, that the sweet spot will hit in the first minute.
Apple butter. Voila! I got it. I haven’t had apple butter in such a long time that odd element confused me.
Or even better, apple pie. I can taste the butter in the pie crust. And then a hint of cinnamon shows up for the first time. The Felipe Gregorio Refusion is now blasting away.
Holy crap! The flavors are so potent, that my head feels like it is going to explode.
Sweetness and cedar drive the bus. And the ancillary flavors reinforce them.
Now I know where the $9 went. This is a spectacular cigar. I still have 3 left and will let them rest for 4-6 weeks and try one again. My gut tells me that the flavor profile will hit top gun in the first few moments and only improve from there.
The FG web site shows a host of other blends I’ve never heard of. FG must be putting the good stuff in B & M’s and making the cheap bundled stuff for the big online stores.
He needs to get his head on straight and make both the Don Cirilo and the Felipe Gregorio Refusion widely accessible.
Truly one of the most flavorful cigars I’ve smoked. It is crazy with flavor and character. The balance couldn’t be more perfect. And the finish? Long and lazy.
I check the FG web site and it shows 4 sizes that range in price from $12-$15. This cigar goes for $12.
I’m screaming laughter with the Felipe Gregorio Refusion. I don’t want this to end.
The other sizes are: 6 x 47 $14.00, 6 x 58 $15.00, and 6.25 x 52 $14.00.
I know this is a bold statement, but this is a perfect cigar for my palate.
Not a single criticism. The construction, while rustic, holds up perfectly.
I can taste a hint of raisin now.
I am at the halfway point and invested 45 minutes. Rarely does a robusto last 90 minutes.
The char line is now razor sharp.
If I had any dough, I would buy up the rest of Andrew’s stock of the Felipe Gregorio Refusion. It’s that good. But alas, I am broke…for a change.
This is most definitely a must have cigar.
And the biggest surprise is that I’ve only had the sticks for less than a week. I’ve stopped dry boxing my cigars because of the freezing weather. Can’t afford to keep the house very warm at night. And that intense cold will dry the cigars out too much.
The flavor profile has not change since my last list. The strength moves back to medium/full.
The balance of flavors is impeccable. They each take their turn in the cat bird seat. Constantly rotating. The stick is so buttery that I swear I can taste it on my lips.
The FG web site lists 15 blends. And they all sound delicious.
I could find not a single review of this cigar. A real shame. I get from the description on the FG web site that this might be a limited production cigar. Not positive but the point is made that FG had to wait quite a while before the tobacco was available to him.
The original version was called the Fusion. And that was back in 1995. And apparently, the cigars did not last long on the market. So it has been approximately 17 years since this blend got a kick start once again.
The Felipe Gregorio Refusion is a marvelous cigar. If it tastes this good after a week of humidor time, I can only imagine what 4 weeks will do to the blend.
The price point. $12.00 is a lot of dough. And the others are even more expensive. I’m no hypocrite and I stand by my preaching that no cigar is worth double digits.
There are thousands of $6 cigars out there that are fantastic. But often, when a cigar goes for this amount of dough, there should be something special about it. Luckily, you don’t have to spend $12. This price point is the new $8 price point.
It was only a few years ago when $8 caused sticker shock. Now you are lucky to get a high premium for that price.
There is a difference between this cigar and the $6 sticks. A big one. None of the $6 cigars have this kind of flavor profile. Some come close, but no cigar. Sorry.
You know who I admire? Eddie Ortega. His new Serie D Black is for sale now and he could have easily gone the route of the other greedy bastards and charged double digit pricing. But he didn’t. He kept the pricing in the $8-$9 range. Just like the rest of his cigars. He makes a concerted effort to keep his blends in the $7 range and no more.
Speaking of the Black. Eddie was kind enough to allow me to do a pre-release review months ahead of any other reviewer. That was back in April. And I can tell you this; the Black is a giant leap forward in his blending skills.
Back to the Felipe Gregorio Refusion. I most definitely recommend this cigar. It blows the feet out from under other $8 or $12 cigars by a mile.
Categories: CIGAR REVIEWS