Escobar Maduro | Cigar Reviews by the Katman

Wrapper: Mexican San Andrés
Binder: Indonesian
Filler: Nicaraguan
Size: 5 x 50 Robusto
Strength: Medium
Price: $13.00

These cigars have been naked and dormant in my humidor for 3 months.

From Escobar Cigars:
“Escobar Maduro Premium Cigars are a hand-crafted medium-bodied cigar with a perfectly smooth draw and a long lingering finish. They are a blend of three vintage sun-grown and aged Habano tobaccos grown specifically in the rich volcanic soil of Nicaragua. These blended and balanced flavors of the Escobar Cigar are dominated by chocolate and black pepper flavor, dried coffee and firewood that sticks strongly to the palate with delicious density, and possesses a persistent flavor of roasted nuts and wood smoke. These Flavors are blended to provide the complexity of the Escobar Cigar, thanks to the fermentation and aging process that only Puros Privados offers from generations of skilled Cuban cigar makers.”

From Halfwheel (7-25-2021):
“A lot of celebrities have cigars with their names on them, but Grammy award-winning and multi-platinum recording artist Nasir “Nas” Jones is getting into the cigar industry as a co-owner and equity partner in Escobar Cigars.

“The brand and its parent company, Puros Privados, launched approximately three years ago and currently offers two lines, the Escobar Natural and Escobar Maduro, both of which are made at the Escobar Factory in Estelí, Nicaragua according to brand co-founder David Gomes. The brand name is also a tie-in to another name that Nas has frequently referred to himself as, including in a 1997 track called Escobar ’97.”

I am like a wounded grizzly when it comes to reviewing celebrity blends. Most aren’t so great. I discovered that the Dominique Wilkins and the Big Papi Ortiz cigars were very good. But generally speaking, the big-name sticks are just vanity projects and an opportunity to charge more than is equitable. $6 cigars magically turn into $13 sticks. Do I care that Nas put his stamp of approval on this cigar? No, I do not.

The cigar has a tiny plug. I could live with it but I choose to get the draw I prefer. I grab my PerfecDraw draw adjustment tool and with one swipe, remove the plug. I’m good to go.

The cigar starts out with a nice balance of sweet v. savory.
A bit of complexity hovers waiting to attack.

Notes of charred meat, steak sauce, black grapes, creaminess, shortbread cookies, malt, and black pepper are in the starting lineup.

The stick feels good in the hand and the char line is a champ.
The cigar burns at a slow roll…and hence, flavors have the chance to develop, and its depth is given an opportunity to show off.

Strength is dead center at medium. Nice morning cigar.

Cinnamon enters. The spiciness of the black pepper is kept at bay by Norse gods. I wasn’t sure if the pepper was going to overwhelm subtle flavors…but clearly, it knows its place.

A circular firing squad is formed as small notes from the Flavor Wheel take turns as the transitions begin counting off.
The finish tastes like a big backyard BBQ.

Normally, with these leaf stats, I expect chocolate to be in the profile somewhere. The cocoa is AWOL.

With 1-1/2” burned, the Escobar Maduro begins to take hold of the reins and forges ahead to showcase the complexity of the blend. This is nice.

Take a look at my photo of this cigar. The Mexican San Andrés wrapper seems odd to me; especially since it is a Maduro. It appears to be in sync with what the Mars Rover sees.

Nothing linear about this cigar. It keeps on a trajectory of improving with every puff. I like this cigar. It is a well-designed blend and doesn’t rely on the typical flavors that these leaf stats might suggest. Very unique.

The cinnamon does an exotic dance with newly added red pepper, replacing the black pepper.
The cigar will be even better with 3 months of humidor time over and above the 3 months I gave it.

I always hesitate to tell you to put a cigar away for a year or more. Some blends just don’t sustain themselves with extended hibernation. And the only way to find out is the hard way. Not every cigar is a Padron or OpusX.

But this is a solid and tasty cigar. Is it worth $13? Who knows. More and more, especially since the PCA convention this summer, that new cigars are finding a more expensive platform to stand on. $13-$15 seems to be the new Edsel. Only 5 years ago, expensive sticks were in the $10-$12 range. Imagine what price points will be 5 years from now. You will need to make $175 an hour as a rogue assassin.

Construction is good. The burn line is still dead nuts perfect.

Complexity rises to the occasion and becomes very impressive. Would I have preferred that the cigar started with what I taste now? Of course. Maybe the additional humidor time will fix that. How patient are you?

Regardless of the meanderings of this old man, the Escobar Maduro is excellent.

Good news for August. None of my like-aged friends have kicked the bucket. It seems that hitting your 70’s, and staying alive, is a roll of the dice. I want to go out with some young chick in her early 60’s holding my noodle while I stuff my face with fried foods.

I was at the market yesterday. Unbelievable how many women, men too…are so friggin obese. I think dead person walking. But then I figure it’s Darwin selecting folks he missed before they were born.

The Escobar has now crossed the line from excellent to exhibiting greatness.
This is a very unique blend. The blenders took their responsibility seriously and it shows.

I could list the punch I’m getting from small increments of passing flavor points but it’s my palate and all you really care about is if the cigar is good. Right? The common thread I read when smokers comment on reviewers’ descriptions of flavors is that they don’t taste them. But they agree that the cigar is mighty tasty. At some point, when I’m feeble…I will just post a review and it will either have the words: “Yes” or “No.”

The Escobar Maduro gets a big YES.

The medium strength remains as the cigar sees its imminent death approaching. No nicotine. Just smooth and balanced.

If I had Dr. Rod’s money, I’d buy a couple boxes.

Part of this release contains a matching Habano for sale. I must investigate.

The last couple inches are pure delight. Nothing heavy about this blend. Light and flavorful with complex notes and a beautiful savory v. sweet balance.

Three Dog Night is playing on Pandora. Yes, I admit I saw them in concert in the 60’s. And actually, they were a pretty tight band. They were a great first date band. As opposed to seeing Black Sabbath or King Crimson. I went with fellow musicians to see those bands. I didn’t feel like fighting off guys after my date flashed her boobs.

I plan on nubbing the Escobar.

I must reiterate that if you smoke one early, you will be missing out and will have wasted your hard earned $13.

Delicious and unique cigar.
These cigars can be purchased from Luxury Cigar Club. Use promo code katman for 15% off your entire purchase.


And now for something completely different:

Now this is a really bizarre event in my life…yes, it’s about drugs; but nonexistent drugs.

Let me take you back…1979. I was 29 and the tenant improvement superintendent of a large mall renovation in Orange, CA. But I was also in a great band playing out on the weekends.

The job was soon coming to a close and the 7 or 8 people still on the job were pretty close as a group.

One Monday, Sheila the dumpy bookkeeper, told me she had gone sky diving. Based on what I knew about her, I was shocked. It did lead me to start skydiving. I did over 30 jumps over the next two years.

Her husband was the CFO for Tishman Construction California. I knew him very well.

As a result of Sheila’s jump, I went a few weeks later and started my long drawn out stretch to the land of being disabled.

I would sit in Sheila’s office and listen to her. At first the conversation was normal, but then it sunk into something unsavory. She whined…she pissed and moaned, and it never ended. She complained about her marriage. Her husband was a good-looking man and Sheila…well, she didn’t give me a boner.

I visited her husband in the hospital after some minor surgery to his arm. He started doing the same thing. Oh lord.

I really had had it. I made a big effort to stay away from them. But one morning, Sheila called me into her office, crying.
I plopped myself on to the chair opposing her desk. I could feel my eyes roll up.
And then all I heard was blah, blah, blah. Complaining about her marriage ad nauseum. She kept asking me if she should seek out therapy, or meds.

I finally blurted out, “Well maybe you should just go out and buy some heroin for all the good that therapy and anti-depressants will help.”
And with that, I got up and left.

Never underestimate the fury of a pissed off woman.
She called her husband, who was still in the hospital under the influence of pain killers; and told him that I tried to sell her heroin.

A couple days later, I noticed my boss looking at me strangely. Watching me. A day or so after that, the BIG boss came out from Westwood in L.A. to talk to me.

The boss was an old family friend and he questioned me without ever telling me what the questioning was really about.
I was confused over that hour of interrogation. I didn’t know what he wanted from me.

He finally ended it and said he was satisfied but, “Phil. I don’t want to ever catch you doing this again!!”
“Do WHAT again?” He never turned around and headed for his car.

I sauntered into my boss’s office in the work trailer. My chin hit my chest and told my boss I thought my career was over, but I didn’t know why.
So he told me why.
I exploded.

I ran over to the construction office and began yelling at Sheila. I got on the phone and began yelling at her husband.

Everyone apologized to me. And I told them all to go take a hike. After that episode, they constantly tried to make it up to me, but I would have none of it.

I guess it was karma on my part. Everyone was embarrassed in my presence because of the horrible accusation started by an unstable woman and passed on to a man full of pain killers and then to the Big Cheese of the company.

I learned then that your co-workers are not your friends no matter how it may seem. At any time, they will turn on you and use your own words against you. Never fails.


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