Camacho Liberty Series 2014 | Cigar Review

Wrapper: Ecuadorian Habano (2005)
Binder: Corojo (2006)
Filler: Dominican, Nicaraguan
Size: 6 x 48/54/48 “11/18 Perfecto” (Designation named for Christian Eiroa’s mother’s birthday)
Body: Full
Price: $17.00

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Camacho-Liberty-Series-2014-2

Today we take a look at the vintage Camacho Liberty Series 2014.
Thanks to Darryl Martin for the cigar. (See note at bottom of review about Darryl).
I only have a handful of cigars left to review so I’m trying to go on a run. Rather than spread them out, I should be done in a week or so. And then it is either over for good or dependent on readers to lend a hand.

BACKGROUND:
Factory: Agroindustria LAEPE S.A., Honduras
Limited production.
Debuted at the 2014 IPCPR trade show
Date Released: July 5, 2014. Only 40,000 cigars released. (2,000 boxes of 20)
This year marks the 13th year of the Camacho Liberty Series
The cigar is available at Corona Cigar Co., Smoke Inn, and Hiland’s Cigars.

DESCRIPTION:
Funky looking cigar. The shape may make it very difficult to roll. Seams are not tight. A lot of veins and wrinkles. Tightly packed.
The wrapper is a very oily coffee bean color with a small amount of tooth.
It appears to have a quadruple cap. Close up photos will tell.
I love the cigar band. And the footer band.
Length is actually 5-7/8” long. May have shrunk over time.

AROMAS AND COLD DRAW NOTES:
From the shaft, I smell strong bittersweet cocoa, spice, a chocolate candy sweetness, black raisins, black walnuts and oak.
From the clipped cap and the foot, I smell strong clove and other baking spices, chocolate, sweetness, dried fruit, whopping spiciness, nuts, and oak.
The cold draw presents flavors of peppermint, chocolate, spice, baking spices, sweetness, dried fruit, nuts, and oak.

FIRST THIRD:
As I toast the foot, I notice a long vein starting at the foot and going up over an inch. As the heat toasts the foot, it is also heating the vein causing it to crack. This may give me trouble later. Fingers crossed.

Nice flavor blend: Creaminess, hot cocoa with marshmallows, graham cracker, mixed nuts, very little spice (Probably due to its age), aged oak, black licorice, malts, toasty, vanilla bean, and cinnamon…and a little fruity…like me.

I read several reviews as everyone and his brother rushed to review it when it was released. And everyone reports a green cigar…not ready for review. And they all report the same thing over and over: grass, cedar, bitterness, natural tobacco, and salt.

C’mon. Even the newbiest of newbies can determine that the cigar needs “..love me long time” in the humidor. All Camacho blends need a lot of time, both the original and the Davidoff knock offs.
Darryl Martin did me a real solid by giving up this cigar to me. He knew it would be a great tasting cigar after owning for nearly 2 years.
Strength is medium but about to quantum leap to medium/full in the first ¾”.

8

Cigar Aficionado has not been impressed with this blend giving the cigar a 91 in 2012. This was the last time it reviewed the cigar. Prior to that, in the early 2000’s, it rated it 4 times and never got a rating over 89.

Ever wonder how above board the CA reviews are? Some are dead on accurate and others leave you scratching your head. Davidoff, one of the most highly respected cigars in the world and the cigar to be seen with in upscale men’s clubs, never gets anything over an 88; generally speaking.

A smoky almond element appears. Age has done wonders for this cigar. Too bad Camacho doesn’t get with the times by not requiring a year of humidor time before it’s ready to torch.
The char line is wavy but no touch ups required.

The black licorice just leaps out at me now with a little over 1” burned.

Charlotte is readying herself for our move with what she has at hand. But we came to an agreement that only plastic tubs would be used. No more cardboard boxes. We have to throw away half of what we own. Actually, we are going to have a huge garage sale. We have to dump everything. We get our social security on this Friday and it means buying a shit load of those plastic tubs. And Saturday, we get down to it. Can’t wait to see what we find.

We wanted to bring our fridge with us but it’s too big. When I saw the apartment sized fridge in the unit, I could have plotzed. I guess we have to shop more often than we do now. It is like a Barbie-sized refrigerator.
It could be worse. It could be an old person’s home with Haitian nurses calling my Poppy and forgetting to change my diaper for 3 days.

The Camacho Liberty Series 2014 is an extremely slow smoke. It is also finding its complexity now.
Pumpkin pie spices now dominate the flavor profile. In addition, the black licorice, fruity elements, floral notes, and smoky almonds dominate at the other end of the scale.

After reviewing both Bespoke cigars: Cotton Tail and Grand Café, I am spoiled rotten. While the Camacho Liberty Series 2014 and the Bespoke run in the $17 range, the Camacho isn’t nearly as good a cigar as the Bespoke twins. I have one each left for my enjoyment which I will save for my first cigar of the day once I run out of review cigars. And I still have the Basilica C#1 to review. That’s the most expensive Bespoke so far at $19.00. This should be a doozy.

The Camacho Liberty Series 2014 makes that quantum leap once again but with big juicy goblins of flavor. The complexity button was slammed down like it was the Shuttle taking off.
Camacho really screwed up with this series if the best they could do, for the most part, was just touch the hem of the upper 80’s in Cigar Aficionado’s rating book.

Why you ask? Because of the aging. Simple answer. No way did this cigar taste this good after only 6 months of aging. That is the upside of not having the need to compete with other reviewers. There is a group of them that just can’t wait to review the cigar first…even if it isn’t ready.

I was lucky enough to be given the only pre-release cigar of the Ortega Serie D Black from Eddie. And even then, I waited over a month before I put pen to paper. Maybe longer.

SECOND THIRD:
Smoke time is 40 minutes.
Strength is medium/full.
The black licorice is super strong now. So are herbal and baking spices.

9third

But lo and behold, a new flavor: Root beer. Can’t mistake that taste. Black pepper makes its surge for a place in line.

Back in the mid/late 60’s, I’d drive out to Fullerton, CA where my best friend, Skipper Howlett, lived. His family left Long Beach because the housing market was huge in Orange County and they got this huge beautiful house for damn near nothing.

I had a car. Skip didn’t. So I made the drive on the newly opened 405 freeway. I would stomp the gas pedal of that 1960 Pontiac Bonneville and hit 120mph and not another soul on the freeway.
I’d pick him up at his house and our first stop was at the A&W Root Beer drive in in downtown Fullerton. I paid because Skip never had any money. He had a tough father. We would get a huge frosty mug of root beer and a pair of taquitos in guacamole sauce.

Then we would cruise the downtown area going into music stores and guitar shops and drool over the cool guitars.

I can still taste that root beer thanks to the Camacho Liberty Series 2014.
A couple years of aging has done well by this blend. I am positive I taste the blender’s intent.
OK. The list: Root beer, baking spices, black pepper, herbal spices, toasty, smoky almonds, creaminess, black licorice, slowly forming peanuts, graham cracker, malts, vanilla, cinnamon, and charred oak.
Very nice. The cocoa is gone. Too bad.
I reach the halfway point.
Smoke time is 55 minutes.
Strength is medium/full.

10half

The price point is ridiculous. Clearly, this cigar did not go over well. With only 2,000 boxes for sale, you can still buy this cigar at these stores: Corona Cigar Co., Smoke Inn, and Hiland’s Cigars.
I’d say go for it but at $17 a pop, I say no…don’t go for it.

Sure, it is a very nice cigar. But the price point is nuts. If you have that kind of dough to spend on a single cigar, get some Bespoke Cigars. At least you are getting phenomenal cigars.
Based on the Camacho Liberty Series 2014, with a couple years on it, at best it is a good $11.00 cigar.

None of the other reviews get it right. Not their fault unless you agree that they were impatient and needed to keep their name up in lights by competing for the first on the block to review it before anyone else.

The Camacho Liberty Series 2014 is chockful of wonderful nuanced flavors that they all missed due to their impatience. This is a disservice to the blend. I’m sure Camacho was not happy about this. And I’m sure it was the reason that, two years after release, you can still buy the cigar. And at the same price as in 2014.

Strength hits full body. And the dreaded Vitamin N shows up.

The primaries are coming to Wisconsin on April 5. Watching the 24/7 news channels reports of primary day and the 4 hour lines to vote, I don’t know if I am going to be able to vote. One reason is my back injuries. The other is I just might forget why I’m there and leave.

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But I will try. Everyone should try. I’m a lifelong Democrat. (Do I hear Boos in the peanut gallery?) I watch a lot of TV being in lock down in my own home. I watch a lot of the news. All the channels. And yes, even Fox News. I’m so sick of what is going on with the Republicans that I can no longer watch. The news channels repeat the same shit over and over. Trump is a neo-fascist. Cruz scares the hell out of me. But I could live with Kasich. I can’t live with Bernie. He will kill the country with his higher taxes to aid all the free programs he promises.

The kids hear the word “Free!” and they get excited. But then this generation gets its news from Twitter and Face Book. They don’t read. They don’t watch the news channels. I’m ashamed of them.
So, yes, I’m a Hillary fan. (Now I’ve let the flood gates loose for your opinions on her).

The Camacho Liberty Series 2014 is becoming a brilliant blend. It is by no reach of the imagination a flavor bomb blend. The complexity and extended age allows the flavors to mingle around your palate and provide some real decent variety.
Nothing has changed since I last listed the flavor profile. They have become more intense though.

LAST THIRD:
Smoke time is one hour 20 minutes.
Strength is very full bodied.

At Corona Cigars, if you buy a box, the single price drops to $15.00. Atlantic only carries the 2015 version which goes for $18 per stick but on sale for $11 in a 20 count box. I’ve reviewed the 2015 and the 2007. I gave the 2015 a measly rating of 80. But here is the perfect example of not waiting long enough before reviewing the cigar.

That’s the tricky thing about reviewing cigar brands that are Old School. I think that is the main reason boutique brands are so popular. For the most part, a month of humidor time is plenty. That’s New Breed blending. You’d think with Davidoff taking over they would try to attain the New Breed style…but they didn’t. So dumb.

The nicotine is making me drool. My eyes are blurry. Other than that, I’m fine.

The Camacho Liberty Series 2014 is a great blend. I don’t believe it is worth $17.00 but then apparently thousands of smokers didn’t think so either. Or else there still wouldn’t be sticks for sale.

I’m not a fan of the new Camacho with its Joe Camel advertising and stupid scorpion mascot. It’s overkill for a brand that doesn’t come up to snuff on its blends. Instead of focusing on the dumb PR campaign, they should have put their energy to a better purpose…like producing fine cigars that match the original brand.

Still, the Camacho Liberty Series 2014 has been a totally enjoyable experience.
I have maybe half a dozen cigars left to review. If you would like to help me out, now is the time. Thanks.

We move April 16. If you plan to ship anything to my current address, don’t do it after April 10. And if you ship to my new address, wait til at least April 15.

RATING: 90

NOTE: For those flummoxed by how to score some Bespoke Cigars, you can only do it by phone with Biggs Mansion.

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IMPORTANT MESSAGE:
Dear friend, and ardent cigar smoker, Darryl Martin lost his wife Penny a little over a week ago. Penny was 51 and had end stage cancer.
Darryl spent every dime they had going above and beyond normal health care. They tried experimental trials and other last hope measures to stop the cancer that was eating Penny alive. Darryl lives in Houston and he sent Penny to Seattle where there is a special clinic for cancer patients who are last stage. Their insurance did not cover this.
And now Darryl is left with a mountain of health care bills that is overwhelming. He even has to save his money to get Penny home. On the right side of this page is a Go Fund Me Campaign to help Darryl pay his heath care bills.
C’mon readers. Darryl is BOTL and is the type of guy who would take the shirt off his back if you needed it. If things were reversed, he would be first in line to donate money if you needed it. He is going through enormous pain now and on top of it he is at wit’s end trying to figure out how he can get Penny home and pay his medical bills. Do Darryl a solid and donate what you can.
Please do whatever you can. And size donation is a godsend.
Thank you and God bless.

The Katman

dar2

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Categories: CIGAR REVIEWS

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5 replies

  1. For those of you finding difficulty in finding bespoke cigars in the USA . You can directly contact Biggs mansion or go to our website , look at how to buy . Scroll down to the USA and you will see Biggs and 2 other outlets listed . We should be in around 10-15 outlets across the USA by the end if the summer . You are of course welcome to contact me direct . Bear in mind I am in the Eastern European timezone in Estonia

  2. It gets worse. They have a large array of blends and they are sending me more!

  3. Hey Phil, what do you have against our altercocker Bernie? He’s the first politician I’ve ever volunteered for … he’s honest, genuine, steadfast in his beliefs for more than 40 years. He wants to end the corrupt political finance campaign system, eliminate special interest’s influence, and return government to the people. Plus unike Hillary he doesn’t believe we should spend trillions of dollars on regime changes that make the world an even more dangerous place.

    If you’re a true Democrat, surely you recognize that Hillary is a D in name only:

    $15 million in “speaking” fees in 1 year … holds $353,000 fundraisers where you can watch George Clooney eat a piece of chicken … enthusiastic support for distastrous trade bills like NAFTA and TPP … referred to young black males as “superpredators” who “need to be brought to heel” … a “feminist” who demonized the women her horndog husband preyed upon … a daughter who lives in a $10 million apartment with her bankster hubby whose dad was convicted of running a Ponzil scheme and spent years in prison … etc.

    And to paraphrase Madelyn Albright: “There’s a special place in hell for Jews who don’t support other Jews.”

    : – )

    I’m sure this will make me very popular among my fellow cigar smokers here, whose politics tend to be to the right of Rush Limbaugh, but f**k it, I’m feeling the Bern!

    Love you, bubaleh!

    Pesach ben Peretz Ha’Levi