Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Free Cigars Contest Winner

We would like to thank everyone who signed up to follow the B&B Cigar Club blog.  Without all of you, we're just another blog.  And now, the winner of the Indian Tabac Super Fuerte Maduro Torpedo 5-pack is . . .

Keith Hollar

Keith please make sure you submit your address info in the form of a comment at the bottom of this post (it will be kept private) so we can get your sticks out to you ASAP.

Thanks again to everyone who entered.  Stay tuned for more contests in the coming weeks.

-Da Byrdman-

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Tatuaje Havana VI Hermosos

Let me start by saying that Tatuaje cigars are virtually impossible to get in my immediate area.  I am not sure what it is about them, but retailers in my locality (read that to mean 40 mile radius) are not carrying them.  I had only tried one Tatuaje Havana VI previously (the Angeles) and it was pretty good, but I wanted something different during a very rare trip to Leesburg on a lunch break at work.  I decided to pick up the Hermosos although it still sat in my humidor for the better part of two and a half months until now.

Size:  46 x 5 5/8 (Corona Gorda)
Wrapper:  Nicaragua
Binder:  Nicaragua
Filler:  Nicaragua

Pre-light Inspection:  This Nicaraguan gem is the brainchild of the dynamic duo of Pete Johnson and Jose "Pepin" Garcia.  It has a deliciously chocolate brown wrapper with slight mottling and one predominant vein that runs throughout.  The triple seam cap is flawless and the cigar is firm but not stiff to the touch.  The pre-light aroma of the cigar is a delightful mixture of sweet tobacco and barnyard hay.  The pre-light draw is a good flavor balance of semi-sweet tobacco notes and dried fruit.

First third:  Upon lighting the cigar, I am noticing that the draw is a little firm for my liking; however, the resting smoke is steady.  The cigar is producing a fair amount of smoke with each puff but not an abundance of smoke which may partly be due to the draw and more likely due to the smaller ring gauge.  The burn is a little off but the ash is firm and gray.  The flavor is in the medium body range while the strength is hovering somewhere between mild and medium with no spice or pepper on the retrohale.  So far the dominant flavor is like espresso/coffee and toast with the hint of dried fruit on the finish (very tasty).  Toward the end of the first third, the espresso note begins to fade while the toasted woodiness builds.  The dried fruit note is still lingering on the finish.  Incidentally, the burn issue I experienced in the beginning has now corrected itself.

Second third:  The cigar has now moved into the medium to full flavor range while the strength is more into the medium range.  The dominant flavors are leather, toast, and dried fruit in that order.  The burn is even at this point and the draw is freer than at the outset.  The cigar is really beginning to open up and is producing more smoke which is adding to the intensity of the flavors.  With each draw, I am getting a thick, syrupy flavor that has the body and feel of molasses but not nearly as sweet.  It is surprisingly pleasant.

Final third:  Progressing toward the end of the cigar, this is where the surprises begin.  The texture on my palate with each puff is creamy almost buttery while the leather, toasted wood, & dried fruit flavors continue to trade jabs with each other and my palate.  Each puff calls one of the three to the forefront.  The body has picked up just slightly although I would not call it full, but a hint of pepper is now present on the finish and in the retrohale (NICE!).  Throughout this cigar, the flavors have been building like an orchestra coming to a crescendo, and now the cigar is hitting on all cylinders with something for all of my senses.  The aroma of the resting smoke has the sweet smokiness of burning wood.  The dried fruit on the finish is being exchanged for a much stronger note of pepper that has really gotten my attention.

Upon finishing this cigar, the flavors made we really want to sip some cognac just to keep that dried fruit note going.  Overall, the cigar was perfectly balance and well-rounded yet very complex with the changes in flavor and strength intensity building from the beginning to the end.  The cigar seemed to remain in the lower medium range for strength until the final third, but it was definitely flavorful.  I would definitely add this cigar to my list of enjoyable smokes and I am left dumbfounded as to why my local tobacconists will not carry these in their shops.  Guys, if you're reading, GET WITH THE PROGRAM!!!

Verdict:  4 out of 5 smokes

Fly straight and fly high . . .
-Da Byrdman-