Well, it has been a while since I wrote a review. Life sure gets in the way of having fun. Between the hectic times at work, family emergencies, vacations, children and just day to day stress, we often forget to enjoy life. It’s important to remember to make time for ourselves and relaxation. Whether that is reading a good book, hiking with your dog, doing yard work, traveling, sitting on a beach watching the sunset or for so many of us, enjoying a great cigar. I know, time spent on yourselves is a luxury, but it’s important to reduce stress anyway we can.
I know, enough of the public service advice on stress reduction. This review, I will talk about my experience with a new cigar that is making a lot of people curious. The San Lotano is a cigar created, blended and manufactured by AJ Fernandez, a third generation blender of tobacco. AJ is creating a lot of buzz with his new line of cigars, which include four different vitollas with three different wrappers; A Connecticut, a Habano and a Maduro. AJ"s grandfather first created this cigar in Cuba prior to the revolution. After a short run, this cigar disappeared until AJ resurrected the brand. These are made in AJ’s factory in Estelli, Nicaragua, which produces approximately 9 million cigars per year for himself and other brands. These made their debut in the United States last year at the IPCPR.
For my enjoyment, I smoked the San Lotano Maduro robusto, a 5 X 52 cigar. This cigar is a square pressed cigar, which some assume are box pressed. Not the case. It has a dark Mexican wrapper, fermented well, which allows for the great color and flavor. I am not a big fan of Mexican tobacco, but this one surprised me. I noticed a slight toothiness on the wrapper, as well as minor veining. I felt no soft spots on this cigar and it appeared to be well made. I loved the double band on this cigar as the brand band was well designed and went well with the appearance of this cigar. The "Maduro" band was a nice touch to this good looking cigar. Having a Mexican wrapper, matched with a Honduran and Dominican binder and Nicaraguan and Honduran filler created a well made, flavorful blend.
Pre-cut hints of dark chocolate, dark roasted coffee with a hint of black pepper. I cut the cap with my Palio, which is my preferred cutter. Pre-light tastes of a heavy chocolate, cocoa, dark coffee, cedar and pepper jumped out. I noticed a good draw with just the right amount of restriction.
After toasting with my Dupont Xtend lighter, this cigar took off. Lots of great smoke and flavor emitted from this cigar. Lots of dark chocolate, dark roasted coffee, a creamy cocoa, a slight barnyard and a sweet spice came through. This sweetness allowed for a nice blend to show its complexity. I noticed no burn issues in any stage of the cigar. The flavor remained somewhat complex and medium bodied in all three segments of this cigar, which is really enjoyable. I had no construction issues and overall enjoyed this cigar. It should be noted the Habano wrapper is more complex and the Connecticut is lighter, but this wrapper was more enjoyable for my smoking pleasure. Yes, I know, different smokes for different folks.
It is very nice to enjoy a cigar, which has been created at a reasonable price. That’s right, this cigar cost me $6.50 here in California. I throughly enjoyed this cigar until the last inch, when I picked up a hint of harshness from the nicotine. It was not bad, but tweaked my palate just enough. I will and have smoked many more of these, as the Maduro is the personal favorite blend of mine. I realize most folks don’t care for a rating number on a cigar, but in case you do, I rated this one at a 9.1 on the 10 point scale. This is definitely a cigar you need to try. In case you didn’t know this fact, AJ was a protégée of Don Alejandro Robaina, who taught him about growing, blending, rolling and creating a well made cigar.
Once again, I hope this review helps. With so many cigars out there and companies fighting over your money, you owe it to yourself to try as many cigars as you can. Be safe, watch your six, smoke something great and create a memory with a friend.
Angry Bill signing out