Sunday, September 19, 2010

Capoeira (torpedo, 6.5" x 52)

I picked up some of these from Famous cigars-ran me about $3 apiece. Smoked this one on a beautiful Fall evening-the 2nd evening this season that really felt like Fall.

Here is what Famous had to say:

Pronounced "kapu'era," Capoeira cigars get their name from a centuries-old Afro-Brazilian art form combining martial arts, music and dance. Created by Jesus Fuego, he used mostly organically-fertilized Honduran & Nicaraguan Criollo and Mexican San Andres longfillers, plus a Costa Rican Corojo binder rolled in 4-yr-aged Brazilian Mata Fina Maduro wrappers. Expect a well-balanced, full-flavored smoke with elements of pepper, sweet wood, nuts and espresso.

I like the appearance of this-dark maduro with a nice blunted torpedo head.  I cut it narrowly but had to recut because the draw was a little tight. I didn't detect much of a prelight but once lit, this stick pumped out some cocoa, pepper, and solid maduro flavors (a hint of sweetness). It didn't vary much but the flavor was very good. The stick required some maintenance though-3 or 4 touchups and relights, which was kind of a pain and would have been a little more annoying in a social situation. The body was medium and the flavor was medium to full (all the way through!). On a side note, it reminded me some (though milder in flavor inensity) of other maduros I've had that have Mexican tobacco in them-a good thing, if you like stronger cigars.

RTR review: 3 out of 4. Check this one out if you're in the mood for a budget maduro with some flavor!

 RTR posing doing some Brazilian martial arts while smoking!

Graycliff Double Expresso (4.5" x 54)

First, here's the setup: My buddy Jeff mailed me this sparkplug of a cigar a few weeks ago and asked me to review it. I put it in the humidor and let it stabilize and now it is ready to roll!

It is notable for several reasons: It is made in the Bahamas (not well known for cigar making) and has a Costa Rican wrapper and binder. The filler is a mix.  Additionally, this cigar retails at $13, according to my preliminary research (Thanks Jeff!). As such, it sets expectations high, especially when you take into account its small size. The dual-bands give it a classy look and the pre-light aroma is aromatic-smelled sweet and reminded me of some kind of fancy coffee or pastry. The form-factor is really good-I wish there were more stogies like this (maybe I need to check out the Nub!).

I really enjoyed this cigar. The flavors were a strong bitter coffee (hence the "Double Express" part of the name). I also got some underlying nuttiness that was very enjoyable. As I progressed through about an hour of smoking this guy, I realized that I really wanted a cup of coffee to go with it (though, with this cigar, I'm not sure how that would work!). The cigar has a lot of draw and produces good plumage. The flavor is full initially but drops to mild-medium by the end. The body is mild or mild-medium.

As I burned through this guy I noticed that the flavors lessened a little-very different from how many other cigars progress. I would rate this cigar a "3" on my 4 point scale-a pretty darn good cigar. I think I would enjoy these the most at the end of the night of smoking stogies or perhaps in the later morning. The price tag is probably a big deal-killer for me, however-as there is a lot of potent competition in this price range. Thanks much Jeff!

Here's a special bonus pic of my sweet daughter!

Monday, September 6, 2010

Murcielago "The Bat" robusto (5 1/4" x 5)

I enjoyed the Murcielago at my brother's place in KC. It capped off a fun trip to the Ren Fair at Bonner Springs. Sadly, we had not yet recovered our camera from Lost and Found there so these photos are from my cell!

Here is what one vendor has to say about "The Bat":

While hiking in the mountains of Veracruz, Mexico, Eddie Ortega and Erik Espinosa, co-owners of United Tobacco, Inc., came across a cave of bats. The exciting experience resonated with them and years later the Murcielago, Spanish for "Bat," was created.

These medium to full bodied cigars have a Nicaraguan filler, Mexican binder and a Mexican Maduro wrapper. The Mercielago has a nice sweet taste, notes of spice and superb balance.

Here's my scotch and my Bat...ready to hit  E & K's patio for a smoke!

I'm starting to associate this smoke with KC-I enjoyed one with my brother at the (new) Outlaw there a month or two ago...and I remember the cigar guy there telling us a story of how the wrapper is Mexican and was supposed to be for Padron and DPG somehow got access to it. Regardless of how this wrapper came about, it certainly gives the smoke a much different flavor and character than other Don Pepin Garcia and 601 smokes.

When I first pulled this cigar from the cellophane, the smell of spicy dark cherries filled my nostrils. Perhaps it was partially due to the fact that I hadn't had a smoke in a few days but I really enjoyed the prelight aroma on this cigar and immediately knew I'd be in for a treat.

The cigar's flavor (and the gold/black/red "bat" label) are the most distinguishing characteristics. The flavor is very difficult for me to describe and was very complex-I did detect some black cherry type tartness and some chocolate type flavors. The plummage was thick and potent, drawing comment from my sweet wife ("Get it out of my face!"). The burn was perfect, as was the construction. I would rate it as medium to full in body and full in flavor.

I rate this stogie a 4 on my 4 point scale-will be trying to get some more soon. I do think it might be a little complex for many and would not have enjoyed it a few years ago. I got it in a sampler but figure a robusto like this probably costs $7-$8 in a store.

Wife and I enjoying the KC evening!

Here's a foo creature we saw at the KC art museum. Pretty awesome!

Here's the sunset as we were returning home.