Monday, August 25, 2008

Tabacos Baez Monarcas

Photobucket

.

The Tabacos Baez is a wonderful new cigar brand by Don Pepin Garcia. It is named for the town that he was born. It is unique in that it is not a Nicaraguan puro, instead it uses an Ecuadorian Connecticut seed wrapper. The binder is Nicaraguan and the filler contains Nicaraguan long leaf tobaccos. There are only two sizes available currently, so I had to go against my usual small ring gauge preferences and chose the Monarcas, which is a hefty 52 ring gauge by 6 and 1/2 inches.

.

The cigar's construction is what you would normally expect from a Don Pepin cigar- triple cap and rolled with no noticeable flaws. The cigar feels really solid and smooth. It has a "paperbag" brown colored wrapper with a few medium sized veins and a slight oily sheen. The aroma of the cigar is earthy with a lightly floral scent and sweet and spicy aroma at the foot. This large cigar clips easily with a Palio cutter and the resulting draw was clear with slight resistance. Right away I could detect hot spices on my lips during the pre-light draw.

.

The cigar lit easily and evenly. The smoke was medium bodied and the flavors a bit "airy" in the beginning, which I expected from the large ring gauge. The first inch or so was mainly coffee, cinnamon, roasted nuts and just a smidgen of sweetness. The finish was peppery but not the usual scorching that Mr. Pepin is capable of. I was a little concerned that this was a "ho-hum" cigar in the beginning because the flavors were not complex nor rich. But then after the first inch, the cigar began to develop more richness. Smooth leather flavor and roasted nuts with nice warm spices began to dominate the rest of the cigar. I found it best to smoke this cigar slowly to really enjoy these flavors and to not allow the cigar to get bitter. The cigar stayed nice and cool throughout and I would have nubbed the cigar had I not cracked the wrapper while trying to spear it with a draw correction tool. (bummer!)

.

The cigar burned nice and even throughout. The burn zone was medium at first but then became sharper as I smoked the cigar down. The ash was compact and light gray in color. It held on well past the one inch mark until I was ready to tap it off.

.

Overall, I would say that this cigar performed well. It was not complex but the flavors were very enjoyable past the one inch mark. It's one of those cigars you just want to put your feet up and relax with while you ponder the meaning of life. In other words, it's soothing but it won't slap you out of your daydreaming with interesting transitions in taste. Still, if you like big size cigars that burn well with consistently good flavor this cigar is a must try. Prices range from $7.70 for the Monarcas to $8.10 for the Favoritas (belicoso).

No comments: