From the humidor a 70%, 3 weeks old
Blend – Northern Nicaraguan Puro, bale aged 5 years
Size: 4x49 - Perfecto
Construction: Perfecto. This stick is dark brown in colour, very well made and oozes quality. It’s hard as a rock from start to finish with a smooth oily wrapper. There are minimal veins with barely visible seams. It’s a pleasure to look at; hold and simply have, to call my own. Love at first sight? On first sight I felt like I would be biased during this review.
Smell: On the wrapper - Light Hay, leather and slight hints of manure. Overall the smell was very strong. Its scent fanned around me whilst I sat at the table writing… It was definitely calling to me; begging me to take to it with fire! Soon my lovely…… soon. There was no discernible difference between the wrapper scent due to the size of the foot.
Cold draw: Perfect resistance, tasting of rich hay and leather. I was surprised the draw was so good considering how dense and tight the stick felt, as well as the fact that it’s a perfecto. I was expecting a plugged stick.
First light: The stick lit easily because of the tiny foot. My initial impression was black pepper and tobacco with gentle hints of leather. Reasonable smoke production.
First 3rd- 5 min
Body is medium to full, with lots of abrupt black pepper, leather and more tobacco than experienced in the initial light. Retrohale was primarily leather with a touch of sourdough bread. Good smoke production after the stick moved into the thicker component.
Cigar exhibited a long finish which was comprised of whole of mouth black pepper and leather.
Acceptable burn, but a bit wonky which I attribute to my lighting technique which didn’t work well for this stick.
Aroma – Sourdough, not a bad sour smell; just nice freshly baked sourdough bread. Interesting….
Second 3rd- 16 min
The burn corrected itself during the transition from 1st to 2nd with the body moving into full. The black pepper finish steadily crept down my throat.
Moving into the sticks mass, the black pepper smoothed out and gave way to toasty leather with the addition of a subtle bitter dark chocolate.
Full bouquet of previous flavours and sourdough on the retrohale.
As the second third progressed the flavours mellowed out and were less abrupt. As it progressed it felt more refined.
Third 3rd -27 min
Entered the band point and experienced no change in flavours.
37 min, on the band.
The first Inklings of heat appeared and an increase in black pepper flavour, with the introduction of very bitter espresso alongside leather and tobacco.
Into the taper, slower smoking into the 3/3 kept the heat at bay and increased the “value” I could milk out of the stick.
As the taper progressed the black pepper ramped up and both the body and strength shifted to a solid full.
51 min. Finish
This stick illustrated perfectly how varying ratios of wrapper to filler can change the flavour profiles of the same blend.
I found the mass of the Perfecto most pleasurable compared to a tapered head and foot as the flavours seemed to complement each other rather than compete for individual notoriety.
From start to finish this stick exhibited excellent burn, no touch-ups or relights.
In my opinion the ash could have probably held on from start to finish on this stick if you were gentle with it.
This was a very enjoyable stick – even at 10 in the morning.
I personally am not a fan of pepper and spice in cigars, though I found this stick was an absolute pleasure to smoke. I enjoyed it so much I was happy to be a “nubber” and smoked this little rocket till it burnt my fingers.
I believe this stick would respond well to some age as something about it tasted a bit young and electric; nothing to complain about by any means. Some maturity would see this stick in the upper echelon of premium sticks.
Suggested pairings for this stick would be strong coffee; a double shot cappuccino, a rich full flavoured whisky like Aberlour A’Bundah, Dalmore 12, Dalmore Cigar Malt or Hanwood 10 Tawny Port. Anything with rich robust flavours that won’t be overwhelmed by this full bodied stick.
Thanks for Reading