Sunday, March 29, 2009

Esteban Carreras 10 Anos Maduro Cigar Review

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This review is sponsored by Silo Cigars, home to rare cigars, aged cigars, and hard to find boutique cigars.

The last time I reviewed an Esteban Carreras cigar I was not impressed to say the least. This time around I found a cigar that I thoroughly enjoyed. This cigar is the Esteban Carreras 10 Anos Maduro robusto. 10 (Dias) Anos refers to the 10 year old Nicaraguan wrapper which adorns this box pressed beauty. After removing the cello, this toothy maduro showed nice oils and a neat presentation.

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I chose to punch cut the cigar which resulted in a beautiful draw. Lighting the cigar was easy as the tobacco seemed to have good combustion. The resulting smoke was voluminous and laden with medium to full bodied flavor.

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The initial flavors started off earthy. Dark coffee and wet mud coat the mouth, with a sprinkling of black pepper on the finish. The taste was nicely balanced with a slight hint of caramel. The flavor profile stayed pretty consistent in the first third. The second third introduced some citrus-like acidity and a more pronounced black pepper flavor, minus the heat. Rich leather and an increase in spice dominated the last half of the cigar. I would rate the nicotine level to be in the medium range. It was not overwhelming at all, as I did not feel like my head was spinning, lol. The cigar smoked smooth and not bitter the entire way through.

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This cigar is available from Silo Cigars (Call to order, 1-865-675-7456). The 5 inch by 50 ring gauge robusto retails for about $7.75 a stick. The cigar comes both in a maduro and natural wrapper and is packaged in boxes of 24. There are a total of four sizes available. The other sizes include: a 54 by 5 1/2 toro, a 50 by 6 3/4 churchill, and a 54 by 6 1/4 torpedo.

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The burn characteristics of this cigar was satisfactory. The burn line was razor sharp and stayed mostly even up until the last third. The ash was mostly light gray in color but flaky. You may want to ash it sooner than you normally would to avoid it from falling into your lap.

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Overall, I was very pleased with this cigar. The flavors were nice and rich without being a nicotine bomb. The cigar smokes smoothly and effortlessly with lots of smoke. If you are looking for a cigar to relax with after a hard day, I highly recommend you try the Esteban Carreras 10 anos. I think you will find it satisfying.

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Sunday, March 15, 2009

Ambos Mundos Robusto Cigar Review

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Ambos Mundos by Tatuaje and Jose Pepin Garcia is the latest brand to aim for the cost-conscious consumer. Made in only two sizes, a 5x50 robusto and a 6x50 toro, these cigars use a lower grade tobacco than what they put in their premium labels. Currently, there are two wrapper types to choose from, a Nicaraguan Habano or an Ecuadorian Sumatra. Both cigars come packaged 25 to a box for $112.50 at Silo Cigars.

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Thanks to Silo Cigars, I was able to smoke both versions of the Ambos Mundos. Both cigars were well constructed and had a neat appearance. Both cigars were also somewhat veiny but I wouldn't call it "rustic". The Habano wrapped cigar was "toothy" and had a fine sandpaper coarse feel to it, while the Sumatra wrapped cigar was more smooth in texture. The Habano was also lighter in color and had a sweeter compost aroma versus the much more earthier aroma of the darker Sumatra. Both cigars were evenly packed and drew perfectly producing heavy plumes of smoke.

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Taste-wise, I felt the Habano showed more complexity in flavor. It started off with nice chocolatey notes with a touch of lemon tartness which was balanced off with some creaminess. The cigar then progressed to a nutty and cedary body while maintaining it's mouth-watering tartness and slight sweetness. The final third of the cigar showed some bitterness but the overall experience was smooth and not harsh. The strength of this cigar was medium in my opinion.

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The Sumatra cigar, on the otherhand, was richer in flavor. Mocha with a touch of spicy heat which could be felt on the lips and tongue. Eventually a strong cedary flavor takes over most of the smoke, leaving little in the way of complexity. This cigar was also smooth with no bitter notes or harshness. I would categorize this cigar as medium to full.

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As far as burn characteristics go, the Habano burned more evenly than the Sumatra. Both cigars were easy to light and each produced a nice light colored ash. None required re-lights or corrections.

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Overall, these were both very smokable cigars for $4.50 a stick. While neither one is a "wow!" cigar, they both smoked smooth and were enjoyable enough for an everyday smoke. I would say the Habano Ambos Mundos is more of a mid-day smoke, while the Sumatra Ambos Mundos could be smoked as an after dinner cigar. With the price increases soon to be implemented, I would recommend getting a box of one of these cigars to maximize your savings. For outstanding service and the best prices, try Silo Cigars on-line.

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Smoke down of the Ambos Mundos Habano:


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and the Ambos Mundos Sumatra:



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