Countinuing the Guest Review posts, this time the Reviewer in from Malbourne, Australia, Tim who’s great Cigar Aficionado. Thanks to him for writing this review for us:
Size: 5 1/2 x 54 “Robusto Grande” (also 2 other sizes available: 4 1/2 x 50 “Coffee Break” and 6 x 60 “Gran Toro”)
Box: 21 (in a tin)
Wrapper: Nicaraguan Corojo ’06
Binder: “dual binders” – Dominican Corojo ’98 and Nicaraguan Habano ’00
Filler: Nicaraguan/Dominican (60/40)
Maker: Don Pepin Garcia for Nestor Miranda
Debut: mid 2010
Cost: $5.50 USD per stick, pre-tax (Australian taxes and import duties doubled that amount!)
Background & first impressions: I bought this cigar based on good word of mouth, mainly on Twitter. I’d only seen tiny pics – again, on social media – of the cigar, band, and surprisingly few glimpses of the attractive tin box. When opening my purchase, the packaging and appearance (compared to other cigar boxes in my delivery) gave me a seriously big “wow” that I’d heard in passing about this line. Whether you like the art deco style or not, anyone can see the time spent, and sense of style that has gone into, its production.
Smell & pre-light draw: When unlit the primary aroma was simply good tobacco. No barnyard, grass or overly strong flavours perhaps unwanted in a quality cigar. The first unlit draw gave an initial hint of sweet cocoa – and I use the word sweet only to differentiate from unsweetened cocoa – then further draws delivered that same tasty, tobacco taste.
Appearance & burn: Holding it close for a good look, I could see only light veins from the milk-chocolate brown wrapper, but the feel was otherwise smooth and not oily. Excellent construction, with no issues in lighting, needing to re-light, nor with the burn. There was a decent amount of white/light-blue smoke if you look for that. Similarly, if it’s of interest, the ash held to just short of an inch before starting to fall off.
Flavour & body: Just a touch of white pepper to start (and I’ll say now, one of few hints of spice) that quickly faded after the first few puffs, then vanilla, light cocoa, chocolate and even caramel (but again, I don’t think this is an terribly sweet smoke), with oak and other woody flavours being probably the most prevalent. There’s also obvious nuttiness complementing this all the way through. These main flavours continued together throughout the cigar. I’m not going to break it down into thirds, as like a lot of Central American cigars, this stick didn’t really change or progress a lot, but rather was very consistent. Even with the variety of flavours, it’s not too complex. To my palate it would rate nothing above medium in taste, body and strength.
Some mention has to be made of the different leaves that went into this blend. The different leaves undoubtedly lend themselves to the mix of tobacco flavours, as hinted at by my number of adjectives used above. It’s fun (and a learning curve) to try and pick them out for someone relatively new to cigars like me, whereas a seasoned smoker of regional puros could probably define them better or maybe even assign the flavours as influenced by the particular leaves used.
Summary: Did the Nestor Miranda Art Deco live up to its appearance, both in and out of the box? Was it worth the price? Will it age any better? It’s a very good quality cigar, for sure. I thoroughly enjoyed all 3 I nubbed for this review. Like most non-Cubans, I’m not sure I can see it improving much over a long time, but for such a good cigar so young, why not buy it by the box and smoke them now as you get them!
Rating: Easy an 8.5 out of ten.
Again many thanks to Tim, Cheers Mate.