Wrapper: Ecuadorian Habano 2000
Binder: Mexican San Andrés
Size: 6 x 50 ~ Toro
Price: $4.50 from Famous Smoke only
Today we take a look at the Indomina by AJ Fernandez.
I bought a 5 pack on special around 4 months ago.
Not one single review…except by Famous Smoke.
It’s an AJ blend. It’s cheap. But is it good? The reviewers at Famous loved it.
SIZES AND PRICING:
Churchill 7 x 50 $4.50
Toro 6 x 50 $4.50
Robusto 5 x 50 $4.50
The wrapper is an oily caramel/gingerbread/walnut color with a small touch of toothiness. The cigar feels filled to the brim with hard spots here and there. The cap is so flawless, it is impossible to count the number. Seams are tight and there are a few major veins but all in all, a nice looking stick.
AROMAS AND COLD DRAW POINTS:
From the shaft, I can smell chocolate, cantaloupe, malt, black pepper, sweet floral notes, caramel, espresso, cedar, barnyard, raisins, and cinnamon.
From the clipped cap and the foot, I can smell barnyard, whole lotta’ black and red peppers, chocolate, malt, creaminess, espresso, floral, raisins, cedar, gingerbread, marshmallow, and caramel.
The cold draw presents flavors of cinnamon, red and black peppers, espresso, cedar, barnyard, salty pretzel, floral, and malt.
Hard spots require the use of my PerfecDraw cigar poker tool. Reaming it is a chore as it is packed like Jack Lalanne’s in the 1980’s. And not in a good way.
Light ‘er up.
The draw presents a little too much resistance. But smoke pours from the foot providing tactical cover in case of a home invasion.
Flavors emerge…chocolate, poppin’ red pepper, cinnamon, cedar, espresso, raisins, creaminess, and lots of malt. Way to go, AJ. Most expensive cigars don’t jump the gun with a grand display of flavors this soon.
Crusty sourdough toast slathered in butter.
There are a lot of micro holes in the wrapper. Every puff sees these little smoke geysers emit from the body of the cigar. Could it be The Beatles? Or maybe Herman’s Hermits?
The blend is just warming up. And it’s a great start. I smoked a couple of these sticks a month in and they weren’t ready. It seems that 4 months is magic hour. The Indomina impresses me beyond my expectations. The blend starts out with character and interesting notes of flavor bits that will lead this cigar to complexity and balance.
It certainly does not taste like a cheap AJ blend. It has more cache than that. It has a bit of La Herencia Core, a tadpole’s worth of Hoyo La Amistad, and a touch of MOW.
Complexity digs its heels in at the 1-1/2” burned mark. Transitions kick in. The finish is an elongation of string theory.
There are tropical fruit elements that pop up from nowhere. This is a real treat…mango, peach, and pineapple. They are faint but nonetheless making an impact.
Strength is medium…but about to burst into stronger territory very soon.
The balance is spot on. Mixing delicious elements of savory, sweetness, and earth that find camps assuming each other’s identities. Chocolate, malt, coffee, toast, cedar, and pretzel v. Caramel, raisins, marzipan, sweet cream, spiced rum, and sweet cinnamon.
The spiciness is tamed using a whip and a chair. It mellows out and thus does not overtake the other elemental flavors. But I love its pizazz.
Construction is top notch as not a single issue arises in this first third.
Smoke time is 25 minutes.
This is truly an excellent blend. Hand it to AJ for contemplating a manner in which he could blend something special at a low price format.
I know this stick is just going to get better and better. Can’t wait for the second half. I might have to put this blend on my wish list for next month. I like to spend my Social Security wisely and for this price, it’s like getting a great deal on a cigar auction paying pennies on the dollar.
I had basically written off this blend out of snobbery and prejudice. At this low price, I found that smoking the blend too early confirmed my position that this was just another junk bundle cigar. I was wrong. AJ did his very best to make sure that if his name is attached to a cigar blend, he has excellent reasons for doing so.
The complexity portrays itself like a prostate exam. It has its finger up my ass but I’m smiling anyway.
The strength is reduced back to a straight ahead medium. A perfect morning cigar with a cup of coffee.
And once again, I’m faced with my own limitations and impatience as I’ve wasted most of my 5 pack because I needed an AJ fix; but should have waited. Patience my dear readers should you choose to try this very good cigar.
The first sweet spot rears its head at the 2-1/2” burned demarcation. It is a whirling dervish of intertwined flavors that merge impeccably with each other. Very distinct elements move towards ‘the whole is greater than its parts.’ The kind of cigar that those smokers with still developing palates can say, “I can’t taste all those crazy flavors but I know what I like and I like this cigar.”
The Indomina by AJ Fernandez is a great, inexpensive chance to indulge in bits and pieces of your fave AJ blends. A little bit of everything is thrown in the pot.
The creamy coffee is most dominant followed by a milk chocolate component and then a huge array of ancillary flavors such as caramel, spiciness, malt, gingerbread, cinnamon, raisins, cedar, toast, marzipan, coconut, tropical fruit elements, black walnuts, and honey.
This is a perfectly well-rounded blend. Just because it is only $4.50 per stick does not make this a yard ‘gar. It can compete with $8-$10 sticks. Better than a lot of those cigars in various ways. I’m extremely impressed with the immediate foray into a quick and stunning start. No waiting around for the cigar to burn an inch before any flavors appear. It chomps at the bit to let loose and soar with Rodan.
The halfway point arrives at a leisurely 40 minutes.
It’s a shame that so many reviewers, like me, are such snobs when it comes to reviewing inexpensive house blends. I’ve reviewed my share and, and for the most part, was pleasantly surprised at how good some of these bargain basement priced blends were.
Smokers are hesitant to believe an online store that reviews its own blends and gives them a big thumbs up. Only natural of course. But the boys at Famous didn’t need to show any bias when it comes to this blend. Straight ahead, excellent dissection of a tubular tobacco burrito.
I’m definitely going to make a box purchase when I get some money in my bank account. And this time, I will show great patience which is an anathema to me.
Strength remains at medium. Time has slowed to a crawl as each moment is a delight.
Creaminess and caramel are akin to Crème brûlée. The heavy coffee influence with a touch of chocolate turns this blend into a dessert cigar. Fruit, cinnamon, floral notes, and dried fruit accentuate the near perfect balance. Transitions are flying by like a goat in heat.
My 50th high school reunion is upon me but I’m 2000 miles away. I get updates from their web site daily. I never went to a single reunion as it always seems to be the same kids attending; showing off how well they’ve done for themselves. My friends all ignore it so there is no point in attending and then standing there like a ficus plant during the mixer.
What shocked me as I perused the reunion web site is how many of my class mates are worm fodder. At least 50 have croaked; some going back to the 70’s and others just recently.
Did you know that medical studies have proclaimed that if you can make it to 65, there is an excellent chance you have at least 12 more years ahead of you. Way too many of my classmates never got there.
Back to the Indomina by AJ Fernandez.
The nutty almonds are replaced by honey roasted peanuts. Creaminess coats my palate. Balance is perfect.
I have to be honest. Without a single review of this cigar online and only the Famous folks reviewing it, I was absolutely sure this would be a failure. Man, I was wrong.
Next time you think of purchasing something with AJ’s name attached, think of the Indomina by AJ Fernandez. This is a must try. Make sure you tell Famous the Katman sent you.
My very first gig as a reviewer was for Famous around 10 years ago. They gave me my own page and doctored one of my Curved Air photos making me look like the Unabomber.
The photo below is the only proof of this period. I owe the boys at Famous gratitude for taking a chance with me.
Strength is kicked up a notch as it hits medium/full territory. Nicotine pours from the cigar to my brain causing involuntary spasms. My eye sight should be gone soon.
Smoke time is one hour 10 minutes.
Damn. Let me repeat that: Damn. The second half is screaming laughter as it enters the zone of high premium. A sea of swarming simbas.
No new flavors. Just a basketful of consistency and complexity.
I believe the cigars are available in 5 packs. Good place to start. Just don’t jump the gun and smoke them too soon.
The nicotine recedes to a fallback position as my vision is still intact.
And there it goes…blind as a bat. Hold the guano.
Here is more proof that great cigars need not cost an arm and a leg. I can’t wait to see the price points of all the new blends coming out of this month’s IPCPR trade show. I’ll need to sell my cat into the slave trade to afford them. And then poor Sammy will be a letdown to its new owners as he moves around the female cats needing love only to discover Sammy has no balls. I guess that’s one form of kitty birth control. But he’s a smart cat so maybe they can assign him pimp duty.
I have zero criticisms for the Indomina by AJ Fernandez.
The trip from sniffing to garnering the last vestiges of the stick is one joyful experience.
Final smoke time is one hour 25 minutes.
And now for something completely different:
In the early 80’s, I had a partner at my recording studio. One of his best friends had a sister-in-law that was engaged to this Cro-Magnon sort. He was a house painter by trade. But I swear his forehead overhung his nose. And he was BIG!
Well, this sister-in-law, whom we shall call Pebbles, had a crush on me. I was oblivious to it all.
Back then, I was a tall, good looking fella. I’ve shrunk since then from my sky diving accident and age. But then, I was close to 6 foot tall. I had a head of luxurious hair. I used fancy and expensive hair products. The fro disappeared a few years earlier.
I was thin, but lean and muscular. And I was a good guy. I was funny, compassionate, and authoritative. I had to be to run the production company, the studio, and produce hundreds and hundreds of bands. So as I ran around the studio barking orders, women loved that. I was the Big Dog. And everyone listened to me. Astutely.
Pebbles had a bridal party thrown for her about a week before the wedding. Turns out, the goal was to get me to sleep with her. I got a heads up about this from my partner’s girlfriend. I thought it was hilarious. At some point in the evening, the bridal party showed up at the studio. I was working.
The girls were all giggly and embarrassed but incited Pebbles to have one last fling before being tied down for life.
But then Pebbles chickened out. No big deal. I didn’t particularly like the idea of boinking a woman about to be married.
A couple days before the wedding, Pebbles showed up at my house. She came in and bursts into tears. Oh lord.
“I love you Phil.”
My reply was: “*&#$^+$@#&((^” ????
She sat nestled next to me crying and had her hand on my crotch. Now this was certainly an ego boost. What a conflict of interest.
But all I could think of was her fiancée, Yogi Bear. He’d kill me if he found out.
Back in those days, if it moved, I shtupped it. Not Wilt Chamberlain numbers, but close.
I let her cry and talked her out of this ridiculous proposition. She was gorgeous. And I wanted to do it. But then I wanted to live to be 35 too.
So I sent her on her way with a big sloppy kiss.
I was invited to the wedding.
After the wedding, I was in the reception line like everyone else. I put my hand out to shake Pebbles’ hand and she pulled me in and kissed me on the lips.
Yogi looked down at me from his 6’-6 height with hatred in his eyes and the look you give someone just before you de-bone them.
I smiled. Shook his hand and moved on.
I didn’t stay long at the reception. I was afraid. I was afraid he was going to get some of his goon friends and take me out back.
Now and again, she would show up at the studio because my partner’s wife was a good friend. She really stopped in to see me.
“I love you Phil.”
“Go fuck yourself Pebbles. I have a strong survival instinct. And you are getting in the way of it.”
She never came by again.
And her husband never tried to assassinate me.
Categories: CIGAR REVIEWS