CAO Stingy Scrooge | Cigar Review

Wrapper: Connecticut Habano
Binder: Brazilian Arapiraca
Filler: Dominican, Honduran, Nicaraguan
Size: 6.5 x 52 “Toro”
Body: Medium
Price: $8.00 MSRP ($1.00 less online)






Photo courtesy of the “Cigars & Whisky Channel.

Today we take a look at the new CAO Stingy Scrooge.
Thank you Charles Lim for the sticks.

For me, CAO is an Old School manufacturer. They primarily make cigars for smokers with inexperienced palates…much like Rocky Patel.
To get them in the game, they use dumb PR campaigns that remind me of the Joe Camel campaign for Camel cigarettes to lure in young dumb teens by making it look cool to smoke.

I mean; what the fuck is Stingy Scrooge? Or the other Christmas release, Wicked Winter? In my experience, this shit is to disguise a mediocre blend.
But what the hell. Let’s have at it. It might surprise me.

Very oily stick. The seams are tight. Lots of small veins. Lots of big veins. The triple cap is flawless.
The wrapper is a gorgeous dark coffee bean color that feels very sandy; or toothy. But it is so small; I doubt it will show up in photos. I like the solidity of the cigar. Strong but with the perfect amount of give.
The billboard sized cigar band comes off and CAO decided to save a couple of shekels by not putting a normal cigar band underneath…so the cigar is now naked. Like me in front of the laptop. (You will need to have that surgically removed from your brain…a lobotomy, I guess.

From the shaft, I smell sweet coconut, spice, coffee, wood, ginger, cream, and tangerine citrus.
From the clipped cap and the foot, I smell dark, bittersweet chocolate, spice, big juicy raisins, malts, coffee, ginger, wet wood, and herbal notes.
The cold draw presents flavors of orange citrus, chocolate, spice, coffee, malt, dried fruit, cedar, and herbal notes.

My new normal routine. Torch the foot and then let it rest for a few minutes. Seems to have cut down runs in the wrapper by 75%,
The draw is a tad bit more airy than I prefer but still OK.

First flavors: Chocolate, creaminess, malts, orange citrus, nutty, earthy, graham cracker, caramel, cedar, and spice. Yes, no spice bomb this one. But still; a nice start.
Strength starts out at mild/medium body.

A smidge of complexity starts the blend off. That’s promising.
The CAO Stingy Scrooge is festooned with very subtle, unidentifiable, flavor elements.

A very slow smoke. But so far, I’m enjoying it. Hopefully, it breaks through the stereotypical CAO one-trick-pony flavor profile list and I see lots of transitions.

For a limited production blend, it is showing up on a lot of online stores. All pricing it at the $7.00 range. CAO hasn’t kept up with its own releases and doesn’t even show this cigar on their web site. So no help there. And the usual cigar news sites don’t say what the release numbers are.
Because of the slow burn, no transitions occurring at this point. The flavors flatten out a bit.


The malts are the most interesting flavor components: Chocolate Wheat Malt, Coffee Malt, and Flaked Oats Malt. (See Malt Chart).

Methinks, I’m heading towards Dud-Ville. I’m 1-1/4” into the cigar and the flavor profile is just lying there like me during sex.

I knew it. Either this is your typical CAO blend that takes 6 months of humidor time or it is just a ruse using that cigar band to lure cigar smokers in that only buy cigars with “Purty cigar bands.”
I’ve given what I give most cigars for review: 2-3 weeks of humidor time. New Breed blenders fill that time with advanced aging once the cello is off. The Old School blenders think of 2-3 weeks of humidor time as foreplay.
Even so, in the 2-3 week range, one at least gets a window into the flavor profile on its way.
Strength hits classic medium body.

I’m a good predictor. I just am. The CAO Stingy Scrooge started off flavorful with great promise and now has been reduced into those cigars that are blah til the last third.

I should note that the construction is excellent with a perfect char line. I’m betting the last third will tell me what the cigar will taste like in 6 months. I can’t remember finding any reviews of this cigar. The Big Guys don’t bother, normally, because it is so limited and they have a full plate.

It’s us little schmucks that try to figure out how to review a Christmas cigar in time for Hanukkah. Which began Dec. 6 and ends Dec. 14. Katie used to get both Hanukkah presents and Christmas presents as a kid.

Katie converted to Judaism at age 9. Since her mother is Catholic, she was Catholic. Very common thing in most religions. The mother rules the roost.
But as she grew up, she seemed to not want people to know. I was very sad over this. Charlotte is a cafeteria style Catholic. And doesn’t really care. The funny thing was I was working such long hours back in 1995, that Charlotte was the one who spent hours helping Katie with her Hebrew homework. I got the biggest kick out of this.

But now. Out of nowhere, the kid proudly proclaims she is a Jew. Makes her old man very proud. For we are a people. Not a race. There are Jews in Africa, Mexico, China, and hundreds of other countries where the race is not white. So I hate it when idiots say the “Jewish Race.” Dumb asses.

Back to the CAO Stingy Scrooge.
I keep waiting. The orange citrus is strong enough I can smell oranges and taste orange juice. Nice.
Flavors perk up just before the second third begins. Spiciness shoves its way to the front of the line. Red hot pepper. Chocolate, creaminess, and coffee splurge. The malts expand. There is finally some life in the CAO Stingy Scrooge. Now if it can stay there or get better, I will be a happy Hanukkah celebrator.

Charlotte is gone. I grab a great 1999 CD of Stevie Wonder…4 disc set called “At the Close of a Century.” Seventy of his best songs. I’m boppin’ now.

Smoke time is 30 minutes.
And Halle-fucking-leujah! The CAO Stingy Scrooge has come to life. “It’s alive I tell you! It’s ALIVE!”
Lots of great flavors. Even some Grape Nehi soda.


Here they are: Spice, creaminess, orange citrus, grape, chocolate, malts, raisins, caramel, nutty, graham cracker, cedar, and herbal tea.
Well folks, it looks like we have a boutique blend after all.


But then it needs a major touch up to the char line. Nicht gut. It was doing so well…sigh.
“Sir Duke” is playing and I’m swaying in my chair like Ray Charles.

The grape element is surprisingly strong. The last cigar that had this component was the CAO Amazon Basin. It had Brazilian filler. The CAO Stingy Scrooge has a Brazilian binder. So, now I wonder how much that has in common with a grape flavor. Or is it just coincidence that two CAO blends have that singular flavor?

Rough day. I’m typing everything twice and three times to get it right. Having a terrible time remembering words.

The CAO Stingy Scrooge is a pretty good blend. With several months of humidor time, I bet it’s going to be an excellent smoke. And at $7 retail, I think it’s a deal. I’m sure it will show up on Cbid.


The halfway point is upon me. Smoke time is 45 minutes.
Strength is medium body.
I’d like a little more oomph to the body. I think the flavors are better suited to a medium/full strength.


Going to junior high was a trek for me. Big change from elementary school. And of course, in junior high it wasn’t cool to ride a bike to school even if it was a cool 10 speed. So it took me a good half hour to get home.

Every day, I would stop at the Burger Meister for a 15¢ bag of fries and then go across the street to Ryan’s Pharmacy where they had those old fashioned soda pop machines. And I always spent a dime to get a bottle of grape Nehi. It made the rest of the walk home heaven.

I laugh at the food options schools now have. Back in my day, we either ate in the horrible cafeteria or bought a hot dog or burger from the outside window. The hamburgers were awful. They had that fatty substance from cooking stuck to the top of the bun and they were always squished. So the hot dog with mustard was the best choice. After that, it was peanuts or an orange juice bar. And only milk was sold. No pop or water. Kids today have damn restaurants at their disposal. Ooh…ooh..they also had a machine that vended apples and pears.

And everyone was skinny. LOL. No fat kids. In those days, our parents were the Depression era kids and so food was doled out carefully. When I was 10, I was allowed one glass of Pepsi. And no refills allowed. You are watching Alzheimer’s at its best.

Where the fuck was I? Yeah. The CAO Stingy Scrooge.
Truly. This ain’t a bad cigar. I believe I must eat my disparaging words.
Construction remains intact. And the char line is perfect. And I like the flavors. My bad.

But this still ain’t no groundbreaking cigar blend. It doesn’t hold a candle to some of my latest reviews. It’s a solid, everyday cigar.

In the rush to be the first kid reviewer on the block with a review of any cigar, it’s a shame that we idiots review a cigar before it’s time. I should be reviewing it several months from now. But they won’t be available then. And you need to know now if it is worth your time and money.

Transitions are minimal. The complexity is at a low level. Balance is nice. And a decent finish.
The CAO Stingy Scrooge is beginning to need minor char line touch ups.

And as I wrote the last sentence, something happens. (I have to pee). No. I mean the flavors. There is this warmth to the flavor profile.

The malts take over. The coffee and chocolate become a Starbuck’s drink. The fruitiness diversifies. It includes grape, raisin, prune, orange citrus, and very subtle fig preserves.
A smoky hickory element shows itself for the first time.

Our food budget forces us to eat too many carb based meals. Kohl’s sells these French made preserves that are to die for. Normally, around $6-$7 a bottle but at Kohl’s, around $4.
I love all the flavors: Fig Royale, Golden Peach, Strawberry, Black Cherry Conserves, Wild Blueberry Conserves, Black Currant, Gourmet Pear, Orange Marmalade, Cranberry and Blueberry Jam, Red Raspberry, Apricot, and Pineapple & Mango.
Are you drooling? I am.



These preserves are so thick with fruit that there is hardly any pectin. You can get them on Amazon if you don’t have a Kohl’s.
OK Kohn. Stop fucking around. Review the damn cigar.

Smoke time is one hour 10 minutes.
I kind of dig the CAO Stingy Scrooge. It does as expected in the last third and soars with big, bold flavors.

The spiciness is on top again. The complexity has finally arrived. And the finish is long and chewy.
Now we’re talking. This is what 6 months of humidor time will do to the entire cigar from the start.


Unfortunately, due to limited production, you won’t get a chance to pay less than $7 or $8 per stick.
I also have the Wicked Winter which I will review tomorrow…maybe. If I can remember.

The spectrum of flavors is very all-encompassing. Now it reminds me of a good boutique blend.

I apologize for all the side tracking. But my Alzheimer’s makes me get off point. Especially, since I review in real time. And the CAO Stingy Scrooge is a very slow smoke. And what you read everyday is a first draft. I don’t go back and change things. I do use Spell Check.
I definitely recommend this cigar. But let it rest.

Strength hits medium/full. This is what the cigar needed all along.
I believe this is the first CAO gimmicky blend that has real potential. Now I’m really curious about the Wicked Winter.

Note: Have any of you that bought the Fallen Angel Devil’s Ink had burn issues? Every single cigar I light up gets a V run on one side in the first couple of minutes. If I don’t pay attention, it gets away from me. Disappoints me in AJ. A couple readers told me they have the same problem.

The CAO Stingy Scrooge is really swingin’ now. If it had started this way, I would have rated it much higher.
I don’t believe any of the big online stores carry the CAO Stingy Scrooge. Just the smaller ones. And probably lots of B & M’s carry it.
I think the CAO Stingy Scrooge is worth your time….if you’re patient.


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4 replies

  1. I have had the burn issue with the Devils ink but all of mine self correct rather quickly if I just sit it down and let it rest. Then from there the char line behaves

  2. I grabbed some Fallen Angel DI after your review. Smells like a chocolate bar!! Let them sit 2 weeks, I’ve only had one but the burn was perfect and lots of smoke. Great job!

  3. Picked up only 1 box, but had an offer after the initial run to buy more which I didn’t since I’ve run out of room and money. Smoked one after a few dry boxed days and had no issues. The stick smells like a chocolate bar just like ink man and others have stated. It smokes like a dream & It’s so sweet but not too overpowering. I finally received my 10 pack of Sublimes that you gave a rave 94 rating; they look and smell great. Lucky I finally received them since they were back ordered 1-2 weeks! After review they are sold out everywhere. Keep on with your getting on and happy Hanukkah to you and yours.

  4. “What the fuck is Stingy Scrooge? Or Wicked Winter?”

    Alliteration. Marketers are suckers for it. You might even say they’re slaves to it. If Dickens’ Christmas Carol villain had been named Ebenezer Nagel, you’d be reviewing the Nasty Nagel right now.

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