Size: 5 x 50 Robusto
Factory: Tabacalera AJ Fernandez
Today we take a look at the Trinidad Espiritu.
I’m back after over 4 weeks of a virus compounded by the usual suspects of infections. It truly is good to be old as dirt. With each passing year, the perks just keep getting better.
I thought I’d start the ball rolling with a stick I can’t fuck up. A ménage à trois gift from my good friend, Aaron Hamamoto. I’ve had these sticks for months. Don’t know how many for sure; but at least 3-4. I looked at the ratings it got from other reviewers and they have seemed to settle on “Meh, it’s OK.” Please don’t tell me that $10 is the new $5 stick.
Do you really give a shit?
SIZES AND PRICING:
Robusto: 5 x 50 $9.90
Toro: 6 x 52 $10/15
Belicoso: 6.125 x 52 $10.40
Magnum: 6 x 60 $10.65
A nice-looking stick that doesn’t offend or give you whiplash upon first sight. Seams are tight. A few veins interrupt the flow but nothing to tighten your ass over. The hue is your basic brown paper bag with some sheen and oil on the surface. I never looked below the surface because I never lift a lady’s skirt unless asked to.
The triple cap is aptly pursued. And the stick feels weighty in the hand and evenly distributed.
SMELL THE GLOVE:
As my sinuses have been a battleground for over a month, this should be interesting.
I smell tobacco.
I use some industrial strength Afrin nasal spray and now I can smell more…sweet floral notes, strong ginger, a boat load of black pepper (If I start marathon sneezing, I’m fucked), creamy caramel, milk chocolate, fennel, a scoche of citrus, and a touch of graham cracker.
The cold draw presents flavors of milk chocolate, a tangy sourness, black pepper, some assorted baking spices, and barnyard.
Nice. I tried one a week in and it was terrible. Now months later, it starts with a bang. Big complex notes of spiciness, chocolate, espresso, creaminess, and sweetness.
I betcha a dollar that other reviews did not wait 4+ months like I have. Or not. No idea. Because I like this cigar immediately. It doesn’t hurt that I gave my palate a month’s rest.
Strength starts off at a potent medium.
Right off the bat, I can say let it rest boys. Don’t go to your local lounge and light one up. Stick it in your humidor and forget about it.
Transitions kick in and we are on our way. I dig a pony and I dig a cigar that wastes no time in impressing me. I will say that this blend is anything but subtle. It bangs you over the fucking head with a ball peen hammer from the get-go. But will it maintain its integrity over the duration? I hope so.
The burn is behaving.
Licorice enters my domain. I prefer that to fennel anyway. And just to prove what an ass I am, the blend calms down and subtle notes begin to form. An exceptional balance of savory and sweet begins.
So far, the Trinidad Espiritu is pulling its weight for its sawbuck price point. And yes…price does fucking matter. For the elitists out there that say it doesn’t, go fuck yourselves. If I’m going to spend the cost of four Happy Meals on a cigar, it better fucking impress me. Although, after seeing what came out of the 2019 IPCPR festival of lights, every goddam cigar seems to be running at $14-$18 a pop. This is fucking nuts. The corruption in the cigar industry just takes my breath away.
Check the cost of living index lately? I’m getting a 1.6% cost of living increase in my Social Security for 2020; yet newly released cigar prices go up 40% each year. Fucking greedy bastards!
(Take a deep breath, Kohn).
Another corruption is the way the big manufacturers shove cigars down the throat of your favorite cigar lounge. If the B&M wants to get the newest and latest blends, the manufacturers send them cigars they don’t want, need and can’t sell. It is out and out blackmail. And there is nothing the owner of the B&M can do if he wants to carry a big name cigar brand. Don’t believe me? Ask at your local lounge…but I warn you; the guy will probably unload on you how pissed off he is about this common practice.
This summer, I attended a men’s night out with around 30 guys I know. Maybe 10 smoked cigars. Age group was 30-85 years old. When the guys that didn’t smoke cigars asked how much sticks cost and I told them the average price for a decent cigar is about $10, they nearly fainted. They laughed and told me I was nuts. And these guys all had ample dough! I was the only slouch there.
We smokers get so inundated by the cost of premium cigars that we forget how crazy it is. We have become numb to the ever increasing cost of premium and boutique blends. A new blend comes out from a brand we like and we must have it. To make it worse, it is a limited release which amps up our desire to a must have scenario. Add to that the bullshit PR cigar manufacturers are so good at, we become like children who see a new toy on TV.
We live inside a bubble…we are like the frog being boiled slowly so it doesn’t know it’s being poached. This is us.
I shat myself a couple times while sick and I was sure I could smell pumpkin spice.
There are little nuances of flavors: lime citrus, cumin, gingerbread, and I swear I can taste sweetened grapefruit.
Disclaimer: I did some blotter before this review.
The start was a big flourish. Now, just before the second third, the blend smooths out quite a bit. It is settling down. I like that.
The burn is beautiful.
And before I forget, the draw is spot on. Perfect resistance for this ex-bronchial patient. I had my PerfecDraw draw adjustment tool at the ready. Don’t need it for this baby.
You should check out Dr. Rod’s newest addition to his line: the PerfecPak. I have one and its pretty cool. Nice video of a slimmer, trimmer Rod displaying its functions. I’m one of those guys who refuses to spend a bunch of dough on some fancy carrier device for all my paraphernalia. Rod’s PerfecPak is what I’ve been missing in my life; that and getting laid regularly. But I will turn 70 in a couple months and Charlotte has promised to get me a couple of hookers. I will have my heart checked out the week before.
I am very impressed with the construction. It burns nice and slow; like my temper.
I am definitely going to be rating this higher than what seems to have been the general consensus of giving this blend an 88.
Aaron, I mean Calvin Kush, you did me a solid with this kind gift. I probably would have never tried this cigar if not for you. BTW- Your cannabis reviews are going through the roof. I have no idea why but the cannabis sites are referring their people to my site to read your reviews. I think you should get off your lazy ass and write some more.
Flavors: Creamy, spicy, mocha java, licorice, lemon custard, cumin, gingerbread, graham cracker, smoked pig, and something fruity…like Aaron. Thank God the Afrin is still working.
I shoplifted two doughnuts from Walmart the other day when no one would help me pay for them.
Have you seen that Casdagli/Bespoke Cigars have a new blend out only available at Small Batch Cigar? They are a limited production called Daughters of the Wind Pony Express. Use my promo code of Katman to get 10% off. (I’m sure they are pretty damn good but Jeremy and Vlada did not send me any so I’m just guessing)…there goes my sponsorship.
The Trinidad Espiritu makes a huge leap in the complexity. Damn. This is damn fine blend. All the aforementioned flavors morph into one. Now it’s a bunker buster. All my memories of those fever dreams have disappeared as I’m whisked away on this magic carpet ride of deliciousness.
The acid just kicked in. I think I shall clean all my guns when I finish this review. Seems like a solid idea.
Fuck those scores of 88. I’m having a great time and this cigar is a real treat; and a surprise.
Every once in a while, you cigar junkies need to take a couple weeks off to give your palate some rest. More than a month off and I think I can taste my own anus. WTF?
Smoky, savory, sweet, elusive, super complex, a finish that can see for miles and miles, and the transitions are traveling at Indy car speed.
Halfway through and I’m a pig in clover.
Some of my most surprising reviews are due to Aaron. He will send me a couple sticks I will have grave doubts about and they turn out to be super-duper. Did I mention that Aaron’s grandfather was a kamikaze pilot in WWII? He kept missing his targets and would swim back to the Japanese mainland. No medals for Mr. Hamamoto.
AC/DC is playing. I’m in Egyptian reclining mode. And then the nicotine hits as the blend goes above and beyond medium/full. Oh God. The Eagles. (Sorry Dr. Rod).
A good cigar will take you on Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride. The flavors and complexity surge as the cigar burns from stem to stern.
This baby has one of the best savory v. sweet combos of any cigar I’ve tasted.
This is what happens when reviewers jump the gun on reviewing a cigar. They miss out on a fine blend in order to get the word out in a timely manner. As these are regular production cigars, what difference does it make if you give the cigar a little respect?
PSA: I’ve been smoking cigars for five decades. I got shit in the hospital when I told them this. But after the chest x-rays, I was told my lungs are beautiful. So, there…Smoke ‘em if you got ‘em.
The blend gets smoother and more intense at the same time. This is a perfect cigar for those whose palates don’t discriminate a host of flavors available to the general public. You know what you like and what you don’t like. You will love this fucker.
I love that there are no harsh notes…if anything, the blend continues on its assigned special op to only become smoother as it approaches the finish line.
I just hocked up something from my lungs all over the laptop screen. Thankfully, the cat is nearby and I use him to wipe the screen.
Construction and burn have been A-1 perfect. Well worth the $10.
You’re not going to see me review the new $16-$18 sticks out there. Unless it is a Casdagli, I won’t spend the dough. Most of those overpriced cigars are just $10 cigars hiding behind cigar industry corruption. I won’t mention the brands because then they won’t like me…so sad.
I have some Southern Draw sticks I’ve been sitting on since July. I was thinking of reviewing one today but I feared my recent bout of oral and anal distress might not allow me to see their full potential. I’m now good to go.
“Freeze Frame” by J. Geils. I’m bopping my dears.
It appears that the Trinidad Espiritu is not going all the way to full strength. And the nicotine ain’t that bad. I can still see the screen…even though the cat didn’t get everything off it.
And now “Panic In Detroit” by Bowie. It always seems an odd coincidence that if the classic rock music channel plays great tunes while I’m smoking, it is a portent of the future telling me the blend will be outstanding. No shit. I’m not making this up. And I know you trust someone who is peaking on acid…speaking of which, every time I see my family doc, I always gift him a mixed fiver of sticks. I stuck some peyote in one of them last time. Haven’t heard from him since. Hope he is OK.
Let this be a lesson my children, be patient with your cigars. I know it’s a temptation to smoke one ROTT. Or even waiting a week. Don’t. Although, this is me being a hypocrite because I do the same thing. But…I don’t recklessly review one too soon…most of the time.
The Trinidad finishes bulging with flavor and complexity.
Give peace a chance and also give this cigar a roll of the dice. Start with a fiver and go from there. I’d buy a box if I had Dr. Rod’s money.
Good to be home again.
The posters on my wall are melting now so it’s time to say adieu.
Categories: CIGAR REVIEWS
Great to see you reviewing again!! Very glad you’re better! I’m one of the ones guilty of smoking this one as soon as it first released. I enjoyed it, but based on my experience, I haven’t felt the urge to try it again. I will definitely give a well rested one a try and see if there are any improvements. There was a tartness in the flavors when I smoked it that let me know it really wasn’t at it’s potential yet. Thanks for the confirmation and for sharing your thoughts on this one. Definitely an interesting cigar! I’ll let you know how Round 2 goes for me!
GREAT review and glad you’re feeling better.
Thank you kind sir,
As I sit here smoking a Wise Man Maduro I can relate most wholeheartedly
This one is over 2 years old and is f in fantastic
When I first got them I wasn’t impressed even after 3 months but this appears to be an old school blend and at 2 years it is rocking the kasbah
Hey Katman! First off, it’s great having you back. Not only do I trust your reviews, but man, you’re a good writer. Don’t believe me? Go trudge through the world of cigar bullshit for a month while your favorite guy is on hiatus and see whatcha find. Scary stuff, but I know you know. Second thing, and I realize it sounds crazy. Afrin smells like sweet flowers, ginger, pepper, caramel, chocolate, fennel, citrus, and gram crackers….to me anyway. Hmm. So yeah, I completely hear what you are saying on the cigar prices. The only way I get by is because I’m a internet bargain sniper. I’m always crouched with a itchy trigger finger in Cbid, Cigar Page, and Cigar Monster. I can’t always get what I want, but I get what I need. Alright, glad you are feeling better.
Thank you Darryl for your kind words.
I believe most of us are doing the same as you…looking for the best bargains available.
Any time I go to a cigar lounge, I rarely see anyone smoking an $18 stick. Cigars are expensive. We buy what we can afford. So it takes a lot of hubris to think that the cigar manufacturers are filling some void by spewing out over priced cigars for their customer base. It brings out more resentment than loyalty because we can’t join in and enjoy what our favorite blenders are putting out to market.
Thankfully, there are a lot of brands that recognize this and remember that most consumers see double digit priced cigars as a treat. We work hard for our money and paying $100 for a fiver is crazy; let alone explaining that to the wife.
Perspective is everything.
You are so *back* (possibly best/most entertaining review ever). And so welcome back.
I can’t/won’t afford a $10 cigar…. Maybe if it shows up on a JR freefall auction… I’ll keep hitting the minus button.
Thanks for the entertainment and for speaking common decency to greedy power. Stay healthy.
Thank you Robert…I’m blushing.
Sometimes I think the cigar industry reviewers forget about the rest of us…reviewing cigar after cigar that none of us can afford.
It is only the lucky few that can spend thousands of bucks per month on cigars. Based on the communications from my readers, most of us are not those people. I feel lucky that I have a voice in this debate.
Thank you again and all the best,
Glad you are back and well,if you think cigars are expensive in the us,an average cigar online here in australia is about 38 dollars australian i can only afford to smoke once or twice a week.
Ps l really enjoy your reviews.
Oh, man. That’s over $25.00USD.
What brands are you getting for that dough?
Thanks about the nice review comment.
I just re-read your comment this evening as I’m closing out the day and just got stoned. Feelin’ Allright. Dave Mason…take a bow.
Anyway…You are funny, man. I just got it. Fuck me. I’m getting old and I’m discovering I’m becoming a wise old man…I’m also getting stupider. Doesn’t seem fair.
Abe…you must be a goofball like me.
I’ve not commented before but just wanted to drop in to say that, at risk of sounding like a complete sycophant, I always tremendously enjoy your reviews.
On a separate but related note it seems that price point seems to be increasing in prevalence during your commentary. It’s interesting because I’m in the UK and the idea of paying even $15 or ~£11 a stick would be an absolute dream. Now I caveat that the UK is still a Cuban dominated market where there is a higher price associated, regardless, but our tobacco duty is so high that even for non-Cuban you would still be struggling to find something below £20 or ~$25 in a store.
I guess all I’m saying is it could be worse for you! I also consequently tremendously value my trips to the US because I can’t help but feel I’ve got a great deal on whatever I purchase. Relativity is a powerful thing, I guess.
Thanks for the kind words.
Of course it could be worse. I could live in Britannia. Or Canada where prices are sky high. Or any other Commonwealth country where taxes are off the grid. And totally unreasonable.
I remember living in London mid-70’s and could not believe how much I had to pay in taxes for merely playing bass. It was only then I got The Beatles’ song, “Taxman.” No wonder so many folks leave the country for more equitable locales. But your government must find the money among your 56 million people…or 38 million in Canada…or only 25 million in Australia. You guys need to start reproducing more kids or annex America…where we have 330 million people and taxes can be shared more fairly.
I’d have to give up cigars if I lived under Commonwealth rule.
I know how expensive cigars are in your country…as well as other Euro nation countries.
I am unable to stop complaining. It is in the genes.
Currently the exchange from pound to dollar is $1.29 so your 20 quid cigars would be $25.80. I’d rather sear my eyes with a hot poker than pay those prices. I could never afford another cigar again. It would have to be a special occasion like Boxing Day or Xmas.
I feel for ya’ pal. It ain’t fair. And I’m sorry it seems like I’m rubbing it in your face when a $13 cigar would be a godsend.
Plus, it seems your politics are as fucked up as ours.
God save the Queen!
All the best,