Reviewed by Roger Farnsworth
Filler - Cuba, Binder - Cuba, Wrapper - Cuba, 6.5 x 42 This slim, mature cigar bore a dusty teak-coloured wrapper airbrushed with tiny diamonds of plume and wore a delicate, lacy web of minute veins that were feint enough to give the illusion of being painted on. The band slipped effortlessly over the head of this cigar, the girth of which had obviously diminished with the passage of time. Masterful construction was evident in the firm, even roll and the perfectly executed cap; the signature pigtail cocked at a jaunty angle after being freed from its elegant pressboard capsule. The pre-light scents of mild cedar and aged tobacco wafted up as I turned the cylinder in my fingers, silken wrapper smooth to the touch. Once the cap fell to the sharp blade of the cutter, the draw was revealed to be perfectly resistant and, before the flicker of flame was brought near, the elegant flavours of exotic spice and a mild tickle on the lips presaged the melodious blend.
The waver of the match, cupped against the morning breeze, sought the end of the cigar and with gentle ease a full, even light was summoned. Comfortable, relaxing and inviting, the flavour trickled forth, a subdued mÃƒÂ©lange of dried citrus peel, oriental tea leaves - dark and tannic - and a hint of honeyed wild oat. The subtle finish left pleasant remembrance of the cedar aging and a clean cool feel of tobacco tingling in the mouth, tapering slowly with the passage of time. A meticulously even burn marched steadily up the length of the stick, each draw leaving a dark circle around the ash like the rings within a tree, collectively chronicling the story of an epic smoking episode. Halfway into the luxurious experience the flavour deepened and strengthened, enhanced with harmonious nuances of dark bakers chocolate and sage. The high teasing notes of wildflowers and pleasant vitality of cardamom flitted in to expand the sophisticated flavour.
Enjoyed on a warm sunny day, the gentle bay breeze and calming melodies of smooth jazz flowed along with the low splashing of a fountain and offered a delightful background for the experience. Sweet, alluring and pervasive, the aroma of the burning cigar reached out, its tendrils spreading around the deck area and seemingly chasing away any negative energy. In the final few inches, the rich, medium strength of the blend quickened my pulse as the warm embrace of heady spices began to fill in the core. As the cigar dwindled in size each new draw was an electrifying bolt of kaleidoscopic savouriness. The zest of the cigar was a perfect complement to my mid-morning meal, spicy fresh tomato bisque and a plate of balsamic sautéed onions and mozzarella cheese with toast points. I smoked this cigar to the very nub and the final puffs left a warm, gratifying finish that cemented the utter brilliance of the blend.
A magnificent smoking experience that is not often duplicated, the narrow gauge and masterful execution created a cigar that aged perfectly and came dangerously close to perfection. Highly recommended.
Sunday afternoon in a frozen back garden in NI I decided to have a post Christmas treat complimented with a mulled wine, I have to say that it was the first time I had one of these Especiales and have to say it was absolutely delightful. It had a superb drag with little effort and burned evenly. Taste of dark chocolate with that smooth and slightly mild, pleasantness that only Cohibas bring. My last cigar was a partagas no4 and it was a bit more work so this was satisfying. I was surprised that for its length it didn't last as long as I thought but perhaps that was just me enjoying its goodness. I will definitely be having one of these again very soon. Thanks Cgars ltd
Castro's favourite and I can see why. Although the draw feels tight the burn is even and its light yet creamy smoke plentiful enough for you to get over this. As far as flavour goes, this cigar exibits the typical Cohiba spice but with a much sweeter chocolate note than in any other Cohiba I've tried. Earthy coffee flavours become prominent after the first 1/3 (following the chocolate 'topping' its like the cappucinno of cigars!). I'd love to be able to say that this is a perfect every day smoke, however at £16 a stick, I'm not that flush... still, this will go down as a firm favourite (hopefully the one I've left in the humidor will be even better).