This year at the IPCPR show, Jason Holley’s Viva Republica released the Art Of War, a larger format in the Warfare series. Jason works for Miami Cigar and Co. who distributes his brand, and has (as far as I know) a store in the north-eastern part of Pennsylvania. The sample provided came in a cardboard box and no band, I imagine the bands weren’t ready, or maybe this is how it’s being presented. I’ll be on the hunt for more of these and will update you on what I find. Did I just give away my final thoughts on this cigar? I smoked the corona gorda, a 6″ x 47, which is a great size, it smokes a little longer than a robusto, but has a comfortable ring gauge. The cigar also has a “bun” style pigtail cap, which didn’t twist off as well as I would have liked, so it got a little help from the Xikar. The wrapper is a stalk cut Connecticut Broadleaf, not sure why they specify “stalk cut” as I was under the impression that all Connecticut Broadleaf was stalk cut. Whatever it’s called, it’s a fairly rustic wrapper, beautiful in it’s ugliness. On the other end is a unique feature, one which sets this cigar apart. The foot is covered, neatly, almost like a cap, not folded like most closed foot cigars. The other difference is that the leaf used on this looks like a Connecticut shade, but is listed as Dominican Candela. It’s beige, not green, so I imagine “claro” would be a better description. The rest of the blend is Ecuadorian Sumatra binder and fillers of various priming’s from Colombia, Dominican Republic and Nicaragua.
Ironically, I was deciding between this cigar and the Merlion maduro, both made at the La Aurora factory. I took flame to the foot without toasting, which I generally do with a closed foot, no reason to waste that added boost of wrapper flavor. I got a blast of that sweet, creamy shade (in this case, “candela”) flavor that was really nice, then the broadleaf kicked in, and it was a great, dark, rich espresso flavor that I love so. I don’t usually notice a “room note”, but two things happened tonight that made me think of it. First, I was walking on the local multi-use trail with Macha, and an approaching cyclist informed me that “we’re trying to breath here”, which I thought was odd since my cigar had been in my hand for a good minute as he was approaching me, not like he was behind me running into my smoke trail, so I have to imagine his spandex suit was inhibiting his breathing as there’s no way he even smelled my cigar, let alone been effected by its smoke. I just laughed as I wasn’t quick enough to come back with something along the lines of “I’m trying to have a relaxing walk without the interference of a-holes…” or something. Anyway, I finish my cigar after my walk on the back porch and since the weather was nice, the door to the house was open, which usually isn’t a problem, but when I walked in it smelled like smoke drifted in and it smelled pretty bad, stale cigarette bad. So perhaps the “room note” on this one wasn’t great, but the flavor was and I’ll be in the market for more. The uniqueness of the flavor on the light up, through the strong, dark flavor intrigued me, and I was satisfied with the experience. One to look out for.
That’s it for today. Feel free to spread Sunday’s post around if you want. There was some good feedback. Until the next time,