Laranja Azulejo by Espinosa | Cigar Reviews by the Katman

Wrapper: Ecuadorian Sumatra
Binder: Brazilian Arapiraca
Filler: Nicaraguan
Size: 5.5 x 54 Robusto Grande Box Pressed
Strength: Medium/Full
Price: $11.60 (Less online)


I’ve had these cigars marinating for only a month. I tried one and felt it was ready to go…as it is a limited production cigar, I see online cigars selling out…I thought I better get to it before they are all gone.
There is no mention of this cigar on the Espinosa website.

BACKGROUND:
From Atlantic Cigar:
“Laranja Azulejo cigars by Espinosa Cigar Company is the third release of the Espinosa Laranja Reserva cigar lineup. To deliver a full-bodied selection Erik went with a dark Ecuadorian Sumatra wrapper and bound the all-Nicaraguan fillers in a Brazilian Arapiraca leaf binder. According to Erik, the Reserva Azulejo is “a special cigar and the perfect blend to join the Laranja family.” Going once again with a name that gives a nod to a color, Azulejo is Portuguese for a shade of blue found on glazed tile. Want to see an example? Check out the blue in the Azulejo’s band. Handmade at AJ Fernandez’s San Lotano Factory in Ocotál, Nicaragua, the Espinosa Laranja Reserva Azulejo is offered in boxes of 20 cigars. This is another Laranja Reserva blend that’s sure to be a huge hit among the many loyal fans of Espinosa cigars. The blend delivers a good amount of sweetness and spice at full throttle. So, if you like unique blends with rich Nicaraguan-forward flavors, the Espinosa Laranja Reserva Azulejo should be on the top of your list.”

SIZES AND PRICING:
Corona Gorda 6 x 46 $11.00
Robusto Grande 5.5 x 54 $11.60
Toro 6 x 52 $12.05
Gordo 6 x 60 $12.70

APPEARANCE:
I like a box press. Unfortunately, they do not like me. 80% of the time, I get burn issues.
Still, this is a stout cigar that feels evenly filled without hard or soft spots. The triple cap is nicely done. It is lumpy and bumpy with a lot of small veins. Seams are invisible. The brown log wrapper has a nice oily sheen, and it feels baby bottom smooth. The blue and gold cigar band along with the blue-ribbon footer gives the stick an air of class.

SMELL THE GLOVE:
Lots to pick from…big fat notes of floral, strong barnyard, dark chocolate, malt, a bowler full of golden honey, black pepper, dried fruit, espresso, cedar, and pretzel.
The cold draw presents flavors of black pepper, barnyard, dark chocolate, malt, dried fruit, cedar, and espresso.
The draw is absolutely spot on…therefore, I give my PerfecDraw draw adjustment tool to the cat for him to play with. It’s OK…I have feline Band Aids.

FIRST THIRD:
First thing, the cigar has several months of humidor time on it…should be ready to be critically analyzed.

Nice start. The cigar is heavier than I thought as dangling it from my mouth while I type causes me to drool. Time to let the cigar rest in an ashtray.

Right away, a nice dip into the pool with some interesting complexity and balance. A strong cigar right away. I should be dead by its end from nicotine poisoning.

The cigar pumps out smoke like a chimney on a cold Wisconsin night.

The initial impression is one of a very savory blend. Charred meat and oak. The black pepper is kicking ass which interferes with any sign of nuances.

A slow burning cigar. But the char line behaves beautifully…maybe the curse has been lifted because I donated $5 to PETA.

The cigar is a very hearty blend. Thick. Intense. Earth bound.
Sweet factors join up…dried fruit, honey, and chocolate sauce.

A mild creaminess is at hand. But for this blend to even out, more creaminess please.
With ¾” burned, some decent complexity takes the stage. It spreads out like a herd of ferrets on their way to slaughter.

Strength wastes no time getting to medium/full. Based upon this early deduction, methinks the cigar should have been described as a full-strength King Kong.

It’s early. But if you like hard hitting, no prisoners taken alive approach to cigar blending, this is your baby.

It is too early to detect subtleties. It is full ahead take the beaches at any cost.

But I like it. My kind of cigar blend. I like it rough. In bed, Charlotte uses a defrosted flounder to smack me around. We have to keep the door closed so the cat doesn’t stick its nose up my ass while I am at work.

The balance begins to coalesce. The spiciness relents just enough to allow the nuances to stick their tiny heads out. The balance of savory v. sweet begins to take place.

The aged tobacco makes itself known by the heartiness and earthiness. Transitions are minor at this point, but the finish is redolent with charred steak and creamy chocolate ice cream.

For the first time in a long while, I get that wonderful egg cream experience… a cold beverage consisting of milk, carbonated water, and chocolate syrup. An east coast thing.
I grew up on them. My dad kept a case of big bottles of spritzer water in the garage and was always a great summer treat. And yes, no eggs used in the recipe. No idea why it is called egg cream. Now, I can’t think of anything else.

I smoked one stick a month in and it had nothing of the aforementioned flavors. So, it does need a few months of naked humi time for the cigar to breathe and come into its own.

Rich blend. It envelops my palate like a warm blankey. Smooth. An excellent cigar….and I haven’t finished the first third.

Strength nears full tilt. Nicotine pops up.

A sip of water and a flood of flavors: creaminess, chocolate, café au lait, barnyard, malt is through the roof, dried fruit, hazelnuts, thick gooey honey, cedar, and a tamed black pepper.

SECOND THIRD:
The first third took its time as the cigar is jam packed…but time went by so quickly. A good 30 minutes to get here.

I’m a fanboy of Chris Stapleton and listening to his tunes brings a smile to this puss.
The perfect follow up would be some Gov’t Mule.

The strength, while having soul killing ability, fades into the background as the complexity and intensity shade the strength.

OK. No Gov’t Mule. But listening to SRV is just fine thank you,

As complexity grows, flavors morph and become a Le Mans pit crew working together.

Construction is exemplary and not a single burn line issue. The curse has been lifted.
Despite the nuclear strength, I’m at peace. The cigar has me melting in my chair.

I assume this is a limited edition because I could not find info saying it is a regular production stick. It would be nice as I’d love to have more when I want them without a ticking clock over my head.

Chocolate covered raisins, egg cream, malt, strong coffee, and various nut meats at play.

Nothing linear going on…the cigar grows with every puff. My brain is at its mercy. My palate screams out for more.

This is going to be a 2-hour smoke.

It’s been 6 months now without more than an hour of sleep nightly. I don my Bozo the Clown duds and it seems perfectly natural.

I am hit with the full tilt strength and a big dose of nicotine. I stare at the cigar in the ashtray and wonder if I can nub it…without emptying my stomach into the horse feedbag I just now adorned.

This baby ain’t for newbies. A line of corpses will lay in its wake.
If you like a barn burner, this stick is for you.

Thankfully, the flavor profile is exacting and powerful.

I’m at the halfway point wondering if I’m man enough to finish it.
The Laranja series hasn’t seen this kind of power. This is a man eater.

If I were to herf with friends smoking this cigar, I’d be locked into my chair and left speechless. No way I could carry on a conversation. Brain lock.

I am forced to slow down. And take occasional walks to snap out of it.

At the end of this review, I will be forced to lay down and let the hallucinations do their thing.
The flavor profile has not changed. Each puff reinforces the tastiness.

My lack of sleep may be the culprit for my wussiness.
The blend is so strong that a hint of harshness enters.

The spiciness is front and center. Delirium is the baseline of my being.
The strength is full tilt times Pi.

I am becoming uncomfortable with the strength.

I have another stick and I will allow it to marinate for months before I try it. I’m hoping that some hibernation will lessen the strength.
You better have balls of steel when you light up this stick.
The brilliant flavor profile is subservient to its power. My palate cannot pick up much.

LAST THIRD:
The blend reminds me of coming on to a good dose of acid.
If you do not tolerate extremely strong cigars, you should pass on this stick.
I’m so glad I don’t do video reviews. At this point in the cigar, I’d be a blithering idiot.

I begin to think that I won’t be able to finish the cigar. Maybe a year of humidor time should be the plan.
I’m swirling.
Some bitterness enters. Great.
This is just too much of a good thing for me.
I have to call it quits.

RATING: 88



Categories: CIGAR REVIEWS

2 replies

  1. I’ve been really enjoying this cigar!! I have no one to smack me around with a defrosted flounder so I’ll be pulling the Azulejo out tonight instead.

  2. I forgot to mention in the review that the 10,000th reader gets a fresh flounder and a can of tuna fish.
    Since you reminded me of this, Abe…I need your address to send you the fish.
    Make sure you open the package ala “The Godfather.”
    Phil

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