Happy Father’s Day! I have a special cigar lined up for later, it’s been a tradition since 2000 that I smoke an Esperanza para los Niños every year. I’ve written about this cigar before, long story short, it was made by Christian Eiroa in 1998 to benefit the children orphaned by Hurricane Mitch, and was pretty much blended by and for members of the Usenet group alt.smokers.cigars. I still have a few left, one from a box I bought and some from the generosity of my friend Mike. Of course, this week I started a new job, which has occupied my thoughts, but I was able to enjoy some great cigars.
Tuesday I posted the great contest sponsored by Holt’s, and I went looking for a La Aroma de Cuba and the only one found was a Noblesse which was a birthday gift from Will Cooper a few years ago. He shouldn’t have, but he did and I quite enjoyed this cigar. The Noblesse is the top of the line La Aroma de Cuba, it’s got a Habano rosado wrapper, a double binder consisting of Habano and Criollo, and an aged selection of filler tobaccos from the Garcia family’s farms in the growing regions of Estelí, Jalapa and Namanji (which is about a 45 minute drive east of Esteli). It comes in a 6½” x toro and they only made 3000 x 24 count boxes in total. I found this to be an exceptional smoke, perfect construction and subtle and refined flavors from the well aged tobaccos, it had some sweetness and some spice, a really nice cigar.
Wednesday I dug into a sampler from Serino Cigars. The Serino Royale line is available in four blends, three of which I will talk about today (I didn’t get to the Medio blend, which is a Ecuador Habano Claro wrapped cigar). The cigars are made by Omar Gonzalez Alemán, who was the master blender at Cuba’s Partagas and La Corona Factories before starting the La Corona factory in Esteli (which may sound familiar as the factory that works which Hirochi Robaina, from what I recall). I started with the cigar that probably would have been the second cigar I chose, but the interesting size swayed me and fit the circumstance better. The Serino Royale Maduro in the Belicoso size is a 5½” x 60 figurado with a dark and oily Ecuador Habano Oscuro wrapper. This was a great smoke with some of the dark chocolate and coffee flavors I like. I’d smoke this again.
Thursday I went with the Connecticut Torpedo in the Serino Royale line. This is a classic 6 1/8″ x 52 torpedo with a Ecuador shade grown Connecticut wrapper. This medium bodied smoke was, once again, perfectly constructed and had fairly typical nutty, mellow flavors, but there was a lot of flavor so it was a very satisfying and enjoyable smoke. The entire range in the Serino Royale line has Jalapa binders and five years aged fillers from Omar Gonzalez Alemán’s own farms, and have been aging in La Corona’s aging rooms since 2014, and the age is apparent in the combustion and flavor of the cigars. These all seem to run in the $12-$13 area, so they are no cheap date, but worthy cigars none the less.
Friday I took a break from the Serino line to enjoy a Cornelius & Anthony Daddy Mac Gordo. I’ve smoked a couple of these in the toro and gordo sizes and these appear to be another great cigar out of the La Zona factory. Actually, last Sunday I enjoyed a Cornelius & Anthony Cornelius toro again, but you can refer back to my past post about that great cigar. the Daddy Mac line has a Brazilian wrapper, Ecuador binder and Nicaraguan fillers. As with all cigars from La Zona, the construction was right, the burn was right and it was a great smoke. I thought it was fairly chocolaty with some sweetness like a dried fruit and a little twinge of pepper. I have a couple of the smaller sizes in this line yet to smoke, but the 6″ x 60 Gordo was a very nice smoke. I look forward to catching up with the Cornelius & Anthony folks at the IPCPR show. I gotta say, I love the colors in the bands on these cigars.
Wrapping up the smokes for the week was the Serino Royale I would have led off with under normal circumstances, the Maduro XX Sublime (6¼”x54). Once again, this is wrapped in a Habano 2000 Oscuro from Ecuador and is a fuller bodied blend of the Maduro from earlier in the week. After spending the day painting ceilings (vaulted, no less), this was a great way to end the day. The Serino Royale Maduro XX is a strong cigar with great flavors of espresso and cocoa. While it was strong, it was fairy well-balanced, which is a good thing. This is a cigar I’ll be looking for more of. Carson Serino, the VP of Serino Cigars sent me a nice letter and pricelist along with the sampler, which was presented very nicely in a classy cardboard box, which was very helpful, considering they don’t seem to have a website to refer to. I can make the same complaint about Cornelius & Anthony, but at least they have a “coming soon” page. I also will have to find Serino Cigars at the show and ask them to explain the “20th Anniversary” on the packaging, there’s nothing I could find explaining that. These are very good smokes, although a bit pricy, but we better get used to that.
Thanks again to the folks at Holt’s for providing the great La Aroma/San Cristobal ’92-95′ Rated Assortment for this week’s contest! If you get to Philly stop in to their shop and hang out for a bit. They have a nice lounge in the back (and Ashton Cigar Bar is upstairs). Whenever I get in there I am overwhelmed with the selection, and generally walk out with way more cigars than I need. I think they always run a “buy 5, get one free” thing, so that gets me in trouble. Thanks to Lexi there for putting this together. I’ve selected a winner at random and will need Allinton /wattley to send me an address to pass on to Holt’s. Thanks to all who entered and stay tuned for the next contest (probably won’t be quite as close together as the last two).
That’s all for today. Yesterday was the ceiling, today is the floor, followed by the Esparanza and we’ll see what else! Also, check out the special Bobalu Cigars is offering our readers for a limited time! Until the next time,