Torano Vault C-033 | Cigar Reviews by the Katman

Wrapper: Mexican San Andrés Oscuro
Binder: Cameroon
Filler: Nicaraguan, Broadleaf
Size: 5 x 50 Robusto
Body: Full
Price: $5.00
Humidor Time: 6 weeks
Cigars smoked prior to review: 1

1a

2a

3a

Today we take a look at the Torano Vault C-033.
Many thanks to Eric Chen for the sticks.

I received some very nice emails yesterday after my review of the Jamon Perfecto by Plasencia. An inexpensive $4 stick, in a 12 count canister, that is worth the dough. My buddies were glad to see an affordable cigar blend reviewed that didn’t break the bank and could be enjoyed every bit as much as an $8- $10 boutique blend.
I got the message.
So I pushed aside the more expensive boutique blend I had planned to review today and went with an inexpensive mystery.

Not a big fan of Torano. There have been some excellent blends but basically they are just King of the $5 Catalog Brands.
The Vault series is supposed to be better than those sticks. I did smoke one or two…can’t fucking remember…and wasn’t impressed. But that was weeks and weeks ago. I have allowed the last cigar to rest sufficiently so as to either impress or disappoint.

BACKGROUND:
In 2014, General Cigar bought the Torano name and blends.
According to Halfwheel.com:
“If the packaging looks a bit familiar, you are probably thinking of the revamped Camacho.
“There’s little question that from the vertical type to the bands to the bright high-gloss boxes, there are a lot of similarities. General’s position is this is what the company thought was needed to help separate Toraño from the rest of its portfolio, seemingly a tip of the hat to the success Camacho has had following its revamp.

“That being said, McKenna indicated the Toraño rebrand would likely not function in the same manner as how Oettinger Davidoff AG has relaunched Camacho. Where as Camacho repackaged its entire line-up after some discontinuations, McKenna said General is still evaluating its options regarding whether it will discontinue any of the Toraño lines, though no decisions have been made to date.”

Not much info but I found this on CI:
The numbers of the blends are designated from the secret vault Torano blend books.
The following three blends debuted at the 2016 IPCPR show:
Toraño Vault A-008, Toraño Vault D-042, Toraño Vault VLE100.
Four other blends are destined for either online catalog stores or strictly B & M’s and made no appearance at the trade show:
Online: Vault C-033 and Vault L-075
B & M’s: TM-027 and P-044

SIZES AND PRICING:
5 x 50 $5.00
Gordo 6 x 60 $6.00

DESCRIPTION:
Nice oily cocoa bean brown with some tooth. Seams are OK. Lots of veins. Lot of bumps and dips. Don’t think No.9 rollers worked on this blend.
I believe it has a double cap. It’s solid. No soft spots.
Another cigar that reminds me of the Joe Camel promotion. Giant yellow billboard sized cigar band. Gaudy. Looks like you are sucking on a light stick.,

AROMAS AND COLD DRAW NOTES:
From the shaft, I can smell sweet green melon, chocolate, spice, cedar, Triscuits, nuts, and marshmallows.
From the clipped cap and the foot, I smell dark cocoa, potent red pepper, malts, melon, cedar, biscuits, roasted nuts, and Worcestershire sauce.
The cold draw presents flavors of hot cocoa with marshmallows, spice, malts, vegetal notes, sweet fruit, nuts, cedar, and Worcestershire sauce

FIRST THIRD:
Draw is a bit tight. Cigar awl time. A couple of serious plugs but the awl has fixed all.
Immediately, my palate is awash in chocolate, red pepper, malts, coffee ice cream, cedar, sweet candy, and a touch of molasses and garlic.
Nice.

The char line needs a minor tune up but nothing serious. Hope it stays that way.
Torano Vault C-033 starts off on the mild side. The spiciness gives it a hint of a stronger cigar.
Flavors are transitioning perfectly but no complexity in sight.

The blend turns very creamy. Brings out the malts, coffee, and cocoa. Garlic is an unusual flavor for me. I can’t remember the last time I tasted that. But it’s mild and appealing.
The char line is spot on.

4a

I’m getting an inkling that the Torano Vault C-033 is not going to be a complex cigar. It might find its sweet spot later on; but my guess it will be what one expects from Torano.
I check Cbid and there are 5 packs on auction ending this Saturday going for $3 per 5 pack. If you are interested, now is the time to strike. A 5 pack on CI goes for $26.50.

SECOND THIRD:
Smoke time is 20 minutes.
That went by quick. Must be under filled.

The Torano Vault C-033 has had plenty of humidor time; enough for it to show its stuff.
And all I taste is every other Torano cigar on the market. A shame because the flavor profile, while not outstanding, is very nice. The draw has opened up and smoke pours from the foot.

A couple years ago, I got into a war with Jack Torano. Don’t even remember why any more. Something about how I described a less than perfect blend in a rude arrogant manner or just generally insulting his family. He went after me big time saying some crazy shit in emails.

I took the same stand that I am taking today. Torano is basically just an ordinary smoke. I have reviewed 11 Torano blends. The Vault series seems to be a tad better than the rest of the pack. It also seems I stopped reviewing the brand after 2013.
Strength is medium body.

5a

Flavors are bit on the numb side. No excitement. Transitions have faded away.
Betcha’ a dollar, the cigar becomes a swingin’ dick in the last third. In those cases, most typical of catalog brands; it will be too little, too late.

I’m listening to The Allman Brothers live from a concert in 1972 that buddy Bryan Kinnaman sent me. I keep forgetting I have ears on and then get up to take a photo and land on my ass on the floor. A man my age could break his hip and then die in the hospital two days later. Better ditch the head phones.

Here I thought that the experience I had with the earlier takes on this cigar were just showing it was too green to smoke. Several weeks later, it appears that this is all the Torano Vault C-033 has to give.
I check out my review of the Vault A-008 and it seems I was duly impressed. But I also claimed it burned too fast as well.

I also liked the Virtuoso, Casa Torano, Exodus 1959 Gold, and the Vault Blend D-042. That’s a likeability factor of 36%.

The flavors of the Torano Vault C-033 have gone as flat as a flounder. WTF? I was impressed with the other two Vaults. Had everything going for them. Now this new Vault blend is a letdown.

The other three new Vault blends are getting much more review time than the Torano Vault C-033…and seem to be liked by the reviewers.

All that’s left is red pepper, creaminess, malts, and coffee.
I reach the halfway point in 30 minutes. I doubt the Robusto will see an hour of smoke time.

6a

According to my reviews of the other Vault series blends, I saw big complexity and a bushel of flavors. Wha’ happened here?

What’s that? Am I mistaken? Flavors begin to blossom. Woo Hoo.
Standing out are elements of creaminess, chocolate, malts, coffee, black raisins, generic sweetness, and earthleatherwood.

I occasionally check YouTube to see if anyone has stolen my “Whatever Happened to Eddie?” video and last week I found two channels showing my video without my permission.
I filed a complaint and since this happened many times before, YouTube has my copyright papers so the videos came down within a day or so.

One guy showed a 1983 Mike Douglas show with Butch as a guest and the video was shown. I remember that gig as I was there. It occurred in L.A. at the TBS building.

Yesterday, I get this long letter from the director and producer of the Mike Douglas show and he said he didn’t appreciate having his video taken down by YouTube.

He says he is still currently a big time producer in Hollywood. And he has a big channel on YouTube for all the TV shows he has produced and directed. And now he has a chit of copyright infringement against him.
Since he was nice about his complaint, I took the complaint down so it wouldn’t show up with a black mark against him.
I sent him a link to my blog of “Blue Star Adjustments” recommending it would be a great TV series or mini-series. He got back to me this morning and really likes the stories. Maybe he can help us both by using his juice to get the right people to read it.

The char line is a mess but there are nice flavors bouncing around. Nowhere near a flavor bomb but at least a lot better than the first half.
I’d like to try the Vault L-075, TM-027 and the P-044. Mind you, none are getting rave reviews but I’d like to see the comparison.

LAST THIRD:
Smoke time is 45 minutes.
This is one flaccid cigar and believe me, I know what flaccid is.

The strongest flavor is the creaminess. The spiciness is completely gone. The chocolate and coffee are mere memories.

I’m really bummed out. After remembering how much I liked the two other Vault blends, I had high hopes. Plus, some of my readers wanted to read about a good inexpensive cigar they could purchase. I’ve let you down, my friends. This Torano Vault C-033 is a dud. No additional humidor time is going to change things. I should by this time at least taste some great potential. No way, Monet.

Look how the loose seam creates a run in the wrapper. The char line is a disaster:
7a

I believe Miami Cigar & Co. distributes the Torano cigars.
Instead of discovering a sweet spot at this juncture, the cigar blend is actually getting worse. Fuck me.
A seam breaks loose. Natch.

The pepper returns in a new incarnation…black pepper.
Strength remains at medium body. The description of the cigar is called out as full body. Huh? I can’t even get to medium/full.

I found exactly two reviews of this blend. Both are videos which bore me to death. How long can you stare at some ugly dude taking puffs while staring at the ceiling, blowing out the smoke, staring at the cigar, and then describing the flavors of earthleatherwood?
Not to mention, none are aimed at really entertaining you. Snooze fests.

With 1-1/2” to go, I believe something is going on. Flavors emerge from the Black Lagoon.
This is how the blend should have started and then built from there.

There is a shit load of the other new Vault reviews. I guess this one was left in the dust so reviewers didn’t have to disrespect the blend causing a riff with their patrons. You don’t want to fuck with Miami Cigar & Co.

The wrapper has now completely disengaged from the cigar. From foot to cap.
Time to put it down.
Final smoke time is 55 minutes.

RATING: 75

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3 replies

  1. I wonder which Torano is NOT a waste of time

  2. Hi Kattman, I love your reviews, always my go to before trying new cigars. I’m interested in this one and have ordered a fiver recently from CI. I’ll keep your notes in mind. However, I have liked some of the Toranos I’ve tried like the Vault (silver and black band) and the Torano 1959.

    Thanks for your reviews and keep them up!
    Paula 🙂

    • Hi Paula…thanks for your comment…and your kind words. Thank you.
      Reviewing is a disease. Years go by and reviewing every single day of my life turns my palate into the biggest snob machine you can imagine.
      I don’t like the $5 catalog brands/blends. Generally, they have a short finish, not much character, little complexity, no transitions…pretty much a one trick pony. I feel like I’m smoking liquor store brands.
      So now I’m cursed. I can’t smoke an average, or worse, blend just so I can smoke a cigar. And being retired, this brings out a whole lot of opportunities.
      I love being impressed by a blend. I love being surprised by a blend. I can appreciate the brilliant blender’s intent and it’s what I want each time I smoke a cigar.

      Consider yourself lucky if a good Torano is all you need. God help you if you really discover the potential of your palate and the craving begins for sating that need for genius quality control.
      Cool that you’re a chick and you like cigars.
      Comment more often.
      Phil