Wrapper: Nicaraguan Corojo ’99 Aganorsa Tobacco (Jalapa)
Binder: Nicaraguan Aganorsa Tobacco
Filler: Nicaraguan Corojo ’99, Criollo ’98 Aganorsa Tobacco
Size: 5.5 x 50 “Robusto-Gran Valle”
Price: $9.50 ($9.00 at Small Batch Cigar-with 10% coupon code = $8.10)
Today we take a look at the Warped Flor del Valle.
Just released in two sizes: Cristales 6 x 42 and Gran Valle 5.5 x 50.
Instead of the cigar being rolled at the El Titan de Bronze factory in Miami, this cigar will be made at the Casa Fernández factory in Estelí; TABSA.
All of the leaves are made of the precious Aganorsa tobacco. And it is a regular production cigar. Al the major outlets have them.
I got mine at Small Batch Cigar and with my coupon code paid only $8.10 per stick instead of the MSRP ($9.50) that everyone else is selling them for.
I smoked, and reviewed, the El Oso PaPa a little over a month ago. I believe I had the cigars a few weeks prior to the review. I smoked another one a few nights ago and it still has nothing to offer me. I am really whiffed by such a modern day company making old school style cigars. Clearly, one of two things is happening…the cigar needs oodles of humidor time; or it is what it is.
My fingers are crossed for this cigar. Not a lot of reviews out there so methinks it might also be a long term humidor cigar requirement. But potential will always shine through.
It is a pretty stick because of the ornate cigar band. It looks like what an artist the designs American currency concocted.
But the stick itself is lumpy and bumpy. It almost looks like it has blackheads or pimples with tiny ant hills covering the wrapper. The seams are not tight. There are a lot of veins. The cigar is fairly jam packed but has a soft spot near the foot. The triple cap is flawless. The wrapper is oily with a slight reddish tint on its milk chocolate exterior.
I clip the cap and find aromas of honey, made-me-sneeze-spice, ginger, nutmeg, cinnamon, cedar, leather, and herbal notes.
Time to light up.
The draw is very good. There is a caramel and honey sweetness to start things up. And then an 18 wheeler full of habanero peppers hits me in the side of the head. Wow. Spicy. Ha cha cha. Man, this is one of the spiciest cigars I’ve had in ages. I love it.
There is a second layer underneath the spiciness that seems to fall in line with the aromas but they are mostly in disguise as the spiciness assassinates each one with a bullet to the bone.
Out of the mist comes green tea. Nice. Cocoa appears. Along with a dash of creaminess.
I can tell you right now that the Warped Flor del Valle is a much better cigar than the El Oso. Although, that may not be a fair statement as the El Oso may need several months of humidor time and at this point only has two months. But the El Oso didn’t come racing out of the paddock like this blend does.
The pepper calms down allowing the sweet honey, caramel, and creaminess to burst through the fog of spiciness.
Toasty notes appear. As well as nutty ones.
To be honest, I was totally prepared to ditch this review knowing I had given it next to no rest. But either it is a stunning cigar to begin with, or I am getting that elusive fresh rolled experience that occurs right after you remove the cello upon receipt. Especially, since I consider this a biggish cigar.
There is a third blend: La Colmena. A bit more expensive in the $12 range for all three sizes. I’d like to try it since Andrew at SBC carries them..but only in two of the size: 5.5 x 44 and 6 x 36. They are out of the 5 x 48. $12 is the going price but you save a little more than a buck with the 10% discount. You could look around but Warped seems to have price set this line.
The soft spot seems to have no influence on the burning process. I’ve smoke a little over an inch and I’ve invested about 15 minutes.
Good news. I got my new Fuji camera yesterday. After reading the manual and trying to figure out the modes and options, I will have to return to college to get my aeronautical engineering degree. I am totally flummoxed by it and will need a good week to get a handle on it. After an hour playing with it yesterday, I got a headache and gave up. My buddy, Zelig, sent me some professional color cards that hang off my neck for the camera to use to compose the exact right and proper colors. Thanks buddy. He is going to explain to me how to use them because the instructions are over my head. This is the first time I’ve had a real camera in my entire life.
Back to the Warped Flor del Valle.
At the little over 1” burned point, it becomes a very nice flavor bomb.
Just an absolute delight. SBC sells them in 5 packs and 25 count boxes. The box count ($225) brings the price down to $9.00. CI sells the box for $220. Or $8.80. But then the SBC discount…So again, Warped put it out that this cigar is price fixed.
I am getting a nice cinnamon toast element now. I love cinnamon toast. I use Splenda instead of sugar of course. No difference. But it is amazing how the Warped Flor del Valle is so cinnamon-y. And very savory at the same time.
I am approaching the second third. A citrus note appears: candied lemon peel. And with it, a floral note of substantial weight.
The spiciness is all but gone now. Too bad. I love a cigar that remains spicy throughout the cigar experience.
There seem to be fewer and fewer cigars being released these days that this occurs.
The price point. As usual, a new cigar is either in the double digit range or approaching it. The days of releasing an excellent cigar for $7 are gone. Dead. Gone, baby, gone.
So we have to live with it and not think of what it will be like 5 years from now when we wish for the good ol’ days of $13 cigars.
Construction has been marvelous. No touch ups to the char line required. The cap is sturdy as all get out. And not a single wrapper issue.
I took the chance, in this weather, and dry boxed this cigar for 48 hours before reviewing it. That’s a sturdy cigar.
The second third begins.
The citrus note becomes very strong now moving almost to the head of the line. The caramel and honey notes dissipate.
But the sweetness remains.
I am changing subjects. I miss the old comments from my regulars and will allow them starting with this review. I will just have to suck it up over the nasty and stupid comments and catch them so I can spam them. The thing you don’t see is that with nearly a couple thousand reviews, smokers can punch in the name of a cigar I reviewed 5 years ago and then leave a comment. My Site Stats on WordPress show me every new comment no matter how old the review is. That is where the bulk of comments come from: old reviews.
(Note: I changed the settings to allow comments but it’s not working. I will have to figure this out. Sorry.)
2 HOURS LATER: I DID IT! I DID IT! IT WORKS! WHAT A BUNCH OF SHIT. I’M LIKE A FICKLE WOMAN. NO WONDER I HAVE MAN BOOBS.
The sun wants to come out but can’t make up its mind. The very shiny cigar band is making me a lunatic trying to catch a good photo without it being washed out by light. The new camera does away with that problem. I know because I’ve taken lots of photos with it.
Losing the caramel and honey was a shame. But in their places, comes some childhood graham crackers; with cinnamon.
The flavor profile expands its horizons. Flavor Bomb 2.0.
Between the first 1-1/2” and the beginning of the second third, the flavors were easily described; but had settled down some. More even keeled than the explosive beginning.
Now, the flavor profile returns to that explosive beginning minus the spiciness.
This is a very interesting blend.
Thanks to my generous donors from the last few weeks, I was able to buy a lot of cigars. Mostly singles to maximize my dollar. Which is a shame because only a very few were in 5 packs because I had no choice. If all possible, I don’t want to go back to reviewing 10 year old cigars that everyone and his brother have already smoked. It makes me irrelevant. Gotta keep up.
So as they arrive, I will have lots of new brands and blends to present to you.
Unfortunately, when that well dries up, I’m back to hiatus. Charlotte was working part time for a woman cleaning houses. The woman had a broken foot and was in a boot. And needed help to clean the multi-million dollar houses that her clients lived in.
Yesterday, the woman got a clean bill of health from her doc and my wife was let go.
This means, we are left to live on our meager social security. This also means: No more cigars. Charlotte was pretty broken up about this. She is trying to start her own cleaning business but that takes time and is only done through word of mouth because of the trust issue. The professional companies that send out illegal immigrants to clean houses are known to very frequently employ sticky handed women. So trust is everything.
Back to the Warped Flor del Valle. It is on cruise control. This cigar will definitely improve with 1-3 months of humidor time. Based on what I taste, this is a winner of a blend.
Damn this is a good cigar. This was one of the sticks I had to buy in a 5 pack. There is something soothing knowing you have 4 left. Most of the time, I smoke one to see if it is ready. Then I have to use another to review leaving only 3. I roll the dice every time I take the chance of reviewing before trying. It is about a 50/50 proposition. But then you do the same thing most likely. You try one out. Oops. It ain’t ready. Come back a month later.
The caramel and honey return to overpowering applause.
I’ve hit the real sweet spot. Everything just explodes in my face like a pie thrown by Soupy Sales.
The strength has been medium bodied until this point. Now it is medium/full. And I have to pee. Be right back. This is such a curse for us old guys. For the old timers that read me….how many times in the middle of the night do you get up to pee? I average three times. You youngsters laugh. Your time is coming.
I get a sweet/tart pineapple flavor. Like eating pineapple upside down cake. It’s the vanilla that gives it the cake quality.
The toastiness is still there. But the nuttiness has made a retreat to the end of the line.
The Warped Flor del Valle is night and day compared to the El Oso. Again, it might be only a matter of humidor time.
This is a very slow smoking stick. Halfway through and I’ve spent an hour doing so.
That’s another reason I don’t like cigars bigger than this one. If a cigar is really jam packed with tobacco, it smokes like a dream. Two hours is my limit before boredom sets in. Maybe sooner. The Warped Cigars folks were smart at starting out with only the two sizes. Although, I read that additional sizes may be in the works.
I check Halfwheel and sure enough, it quotes the owner: Kyle Gellis, as saying that later this year he will add: 5 x 40, 4.5 x 48 and 6.5 x 52 to the size list. Great sizes except for the latter. Loss of flavor intensity syndrome of bigger cigars.
The last third begins.
The cigar band comes off with ease. If I was smart, I would have removed one last night and really flattened it out nicely. Why? Because this cigar band is truly art. But I’m not smart. So there you go.
The Warped Flor del Valle requires its first minor touch up.
More off the subject shit…For you Firefox users; like me. I was having a slow issue and used all the tools at my disposal. And then I discovered that if you reset Firefox, it speeds it up dramatically. It wasn’t the computer, it was the software. Plus it updates the top tool bar to make it easier to use. Just hit the Help button, which is a ? on the tool bar. After that, click on Trouble Shooting and it will take you from there.
And once again back to the matter at hand.
See, a really good A List reviewer wouldn’t do this to you. He would be prepared and professional in the way he presented the facts about the cigar.
But I’m a loony. And whenever I get a slow smoker, rather than just waiting; I add completely useless information to the review. That’s why so many people hate me. That’s OK. I’m at the point in my life that I write for me. If you get it…well, wonderful! If you don’t, so be it.
Flavors ooze like…“yellow matter custard dripping from a dead dog’s eye.” That’s a good thing. Poor puppy.
I’ve now been smoking the Warped Flor del Valle for 90 minutes.
Strangely, I expected a stronger chocolate element. It is there but way in the background. As I write this, I get a pleasant coffee component. The strong creaminess brings out a lot in a flavor profile. It brought back the caramel and honey.
I have only one criticism. The cigar has gone out on me three times. I find that odd due to the fact that is so packed with tobacco. One of the great upsides to a jam packed cigar is that it will burn and burn even while you take breaks.
I think I’ve broken my record for length of a review.
So as I near the end, let me say this…It is a wonderful blend which will only be enhanced by extended humidor time. It has a deep and rich complexity. Nicely balanced. And a very long finish.
Tell Andrew at SBC that the Katman sent you.
Categories: CIGAR REVIEWS