Wrapper: Connecticut River Valley Stalk Cut & Cured Sun Grown Habano
Binder: Plantation Grown Brazilian Mata Fina
Filler: Honduran, Nicaraguan
Size: 4.125 x 60
Today we take a look at the Liga Privada T52 Flying Pig by Drew Estate (2010).
From the DE web site:
“Meticulously blended over a period of two years to be a worthy humidor companion to our much heralded Liga Privada No. 9 recipe. With notes of black pepper and spice, it is our choice when desiring a stronger, more robust smoke. Like its predecessor, it is a complex marriage of seven distinct aged tobaccos handcrafted by only our absolute best torcedores. Each cigar is guaranteed to be flawless in construction, flavor and character…without exception.”
From Jonathan Drew on the DE web site:
“On a regular trip up to Connecticut for the purposes of purchasing a barn of Connecticut Broadleaf, we stumbled upon a farm that was growing a very unique looking “Stalk Cut Tobacco” in addition to the Broadleaf. The farmer called the wrapper leaf “American Habano.” After a few hours of inspection, we were impressed, but we tried to keep our composure, as this beautiful leaf had the exact color and thickness qualities that we had been flying all over the damn world looking for. Lucky for us, (and for you too!) the farmer was complaining that this experimental tobacco would be the last year of crop unless he found a buyer who was willing to look past this one crop and make a real commitment. He said that others had loved the tobacco, but they didn’t want to pay the high price which is required to grow it the right way. Needless to say, we spent a pretty penny, but damn it is worth it. All this, just for the wrapper leaf! Wait ‘til you get the story on what’s inside….
“This was a blend that was in a holding pattern for a very long time, as we were working with a new stalk-cut capa since September of 2006. To be blunt, this leaf is a pain in the ass and I thought we might have pissed away $400k on it. Luckily, we didn’t and the result is phenomenal in my opinion.
“The Stalk-cut Habano wrapper is hand-fermented, not sweated.”
3,250 boxes of 12 were produced in 2010.
Factory: La Gran Fabrica Drew Estate.
The Flying Pig size was originally released in the No. 9 blend and limited to only 2,000 boxes of 12.
It sports a beautiful chocolate brown T52 Connecticut Habano wrapper that is quite toothy and rough to the touch. The cigar is very firm and well packed, there are not soft spots to speak of and it has a nice tight wrap.
AROMAS AND COLD DRAW NOTES:
The shaft is full of dark cocoa, sweetness, coffee, and leather.
The clipped and foot smell of even darker baking cocoa, coffee, sweetness, spice, hay, fresh summer fruit, dried fruit, and crusty French bread.
The cold draw is full earthy tobacco, chocolate, coffee, spice, and sweetness.
The draw starts off tight. I am concerned about burn issues lurking. This crazy little shape is ripe for burn problems.
The little pig is so packed that I use my cigar awl and find that it is one giant plug from stem to stern. Luckily, I don’t crack wrapper.
But after all that, not much improvement in the tight draw.
And then it opens a bit and smoke comes strutting forward like a hooker on a pole.
The first flavors are very subtle: Earthiness, chocolate, spice, coffee, and leather with a touch of sweetness.
I was hoping for a real kick in the arse with some potent spice but alas, it ain’t there matey. Just a trickle of red pepper.
After a couple minutes, the flavor profile does its thing. We have a very powerful spiciness now. Like a light switch.
There is mucho creaminess, cinnamon, coffee, nutmeg, fruit, sweetness, and leather.
Nice. Now it’s cooking. It just needed some coddling, that’s all.
I noticed on other reviews that the length is all over the place. I got my length directly from the DE web site. It is 4” long but with the pigtail, it is 4-1/8” long.
I now see what the big deal is about this blend. Both of my Liga Privada T52 Flying Pigs have nearly 5 years of humidor time and it hasn’t seemed to phase their intensity.
I was pissing and moaning about the Diesel Shorty and that nub size being equivalent to a Churchill; which it wasn’t.
Now this oinky little baby may just make the size quotient come true.
Smoke time has been 15 minutes with only ¾” burned.
Oh lord. The cable TV channel is playing something I’ve never heard. The Carpenters singing the Beatles’ “Ticket to Ride” at half speed. Oy vay.
Did you know that my old buddy, Hal Blaine (Whom I’ve written a gazillion stories about) actually played drums on all The Carpenters recordings? Karen just played them during gigs..but never in the studio. I am not sure if he got album credit.
Hal is a mystical time keeper. That’s what everyone says about him.
Anyway, back to the Liga Privada T52 Flying Pig.
The fresh fruit is a combo of nectarine and plum. A plumarine.
The cigar is extremely complex now. The dried fruit borrows from the fresh fruit and it tastes like a prune Danish. Those are very big in Jewish bakeries and I loved them as a kid. I was a very open minded kid when it came to food. I liked everything. And no matter how much I ate, I was a scrawny kid. My clavicle stood out like antlers.
Strength moves to a solid medium/full.
My bad. The Liga Privada T52 Flying Pig is smoking faster than I had hoped. I’m only half an inch from the halfway point and it’s only been 25 minutes of smoke time. Drat.
Lawdy, lawdy, lawdy. The sweet spot has been unearthed.
The Liga Privada T52 Flying Pig isn’t a kitchen sink list of flavors cigar blend. But it does wonders with what it has.
The sun has come out and you can see the beautiful oiliness of the wrapper and the bit of toothiness. Gorgeous.
It is deeply complex. A perfect balance. And a long, chewy finish. Just wonderful.
What a pleasure after a couple shitty reviews that I get to smoke a real winner.
I slow down my puff intervals in order to savor the last two inches.
We saw something on this week’s “60 Minutes” about the VA and how they are hurting for people.
Charlotte made contact with them. The woman has a master’s in psychology and while she wasn’t looking for a therapist job, she knew she could help. They wouldn’t touch her without being accredited in the state of Wisconsin. They have a program to do that that takes 49 weeks. LOL.
The woman wants to help our vets and has a brilliant mind when it comes to understanding the human psyche and they won’t touch her because she doesn’t have the right paperwork for this state. No wonder the VA is short of people.
They wouldn’t even take her as a volunteer unless she wanted to wash dishes.
Back to the Liga Privada T52 Flying Pig.
Lovely, lovely cigar blend. I reviewed the Liga Privada Unico Serie Feral Flying Pig back in April, 2013. It was an excellent cigar but the Liga Privada T52 Flying Pig is better.
What was so nice about the Feral Pig was that it was an inch longer. But almost $5 more for that inch.
I don’t want this to end but Huzzah! I have another one just lying there with a come hither look to it.
Man, this is a smooth cigar blend.
OK. Here are the flavors one last time: Spice, creaminess, coffee, leather, chocolate, summer fruit, dried fruit, sweetness, and rich, rich earthiness.
I’m going to try to use my Xistix roach clip to nub this baby.
Some nicotine shows up.
I’m a member of the Cigar Federation COM club and this month is a real winner with the following cigars:
Black Label Trading Company Morphine
Ezra Zion All My Exs!
Guayacan Sabor de Esteli Habano
Leaf by Oscar Corojo
The list price is $40 but if you are a member (Joining is free), you get a 10% discount making it $35.95. And free shipping. Lots of new cigars to review.
Back again to the Liga Privada T52 Flying Pig. I can’t say enough good things about this blend. I’m going to save this last one for a special occasion with smokers around me. I want to watch them drool.
Flavors are so intense that my palate is in overdrive.
This is a perfect cigar in my eyes. Big flavors from the start. Tons of transitions. Deep complexity and balance. I wonder what Cigar Aficionado rated it? Or if they even did rate it? Such small quantities they may have not addressed it.
1-1/2” to go and smoke time has been 55 minutes. And I’ve savored every second.
I’m having trouble with the close up photos. Whatever is wrong with my brain gives me sort of a palsy effect with my hands. I’m seeing a neurologist on the 17th. If I get the same shit as I have from the other doctors because I only have Medicare without a supplemental insurance, I’m doomed. There is a long list of tests I need but they are very expensive.
I’ve instructed my daughter, Katie, to update you should something happen to me.
I really would like to see a grandchild before I bite the bodine.
I can’t think of another cigar this good that I’ve reviewed in a long time except for the Alec Bradley Fine & Rare.
I’ve attached my roach clip to the cap. The thing I don’t like about the Xistix clip is that it flattens the cap.
The Liga Privada T52 Flying Pig finishes beautifully. Not too much nicotine. Medium/full body. Strong flavor profile. Deep complexity. No heat or harshness.
If you can find a Liga Privada T52 Flying Pig for $12, well God bless you. These are a sought after cigar of the highest priority to serious cigar smokers.
My good friend, Mr. J, is ill and I wish him a very swift recovery. He was very generous by gifting me these two blunderbusses.
Buying this cigar is just being in the right place at the right time and it is a seller’s market so buyer beware.
I often rail against DE because I think they are overrated blends. But he wouldn’t be where he is unless he had a huge and loyal following.
The Liga Privada T52 Flying Pig is a brilliant blend. Of course, 5 years of aging didn’t hurt either.
Maybe my so so reviews of his blends are due to their need for extensive time in my humidor.
Either way, this was one helluva cigar experience.
Categories: CIGAR REVIEWS