Posts Tagged nicaraguan filler

Saints & Sinners 2014 Cigars

Saints & Sinners - private social club and a brainchild of Pete Johnson of Tatuaje and Sean ‘Casper’ Johnson of L’Atelier.


CigarPhoto posted an exclusive summary of the Saints & Sinners 2011 kit, 2012 kit and 2013 kit.


The expectation was that each year will bring another kit filled with prototypes and regular production cigars. This time around Johnsons moved away from what they have done for the past 3 years and brought to the table three sets of 5 cigars. Some, if not all, will agree that the Saints & Sinners 2014 kit is the best yet. 

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Saints & Sinners 2013 Cigars

Saints & Sinners - private social club and a brainchild of Pete Johnson of Tatuaje and Sean ‘Casper’ Johnson of L’Atelier.


CigarPhoto posted an exclusive summary of the Saints & Sinners 2011 and the Saints & Sinners 2012 kits. 


The expectation was / is that each year will bring another kit filled with prototypes and regular production cigars. This week CigarPhoto is delivering an exclusive overview of the Saints & Sinners 2013 kit. In addition to prototypes and exclusive blends, Johnsons included the following regular releases in 2013 kit:

  • Tatuaje Regios Reserva 2013
  • Tatuaje Noella Reserva 2013
  • Tatuaje Belle Encre
  • Tatuaje Bon Chasseur
  • Tatuaje Black CG 2013
  • Tatuaje Cohete
  • La Dueña
  • L’Atelier Extension de la Racine

For an annual registration fee of $150, each member will receive:
1. Exclusive, one-off products available only to members (select products may not be available for purchase through the S&S webstore)
2. Everyday Tatuaje branded merchandise at the Saints & Sinners discounted club rate.
3. Access to members-only forums, where you can discuss the finer points of cigars, smoking accessories, spirits, and anything else associated with the Saints & Sinners lifestyle.
4. Access to the Pete Johnson video blog. Here, Pete will update members on everything PJHC. Watch Pete as he travels around the world, visiting his production facility in Nicaragua, engages fans on cigar tours, and dishes on anything else he feels his Saints & Sinners family should know.
5. First looks at new cigar blends, swag, as well as insider info on Tatuaje and other Pete Johnson brands.
6. The knowledge that a portion of your annual membership fee will go to an eclectic mix of charities that Pete chooses for their commitment to their particular cause.

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 Saints & Sinners 2013 Cigars Saints & Sinners 2013 Cigars

Saints & Sinners 2013 Cigars Saints & Sinners 2013 Cigars
Saints & Sinners 2013 Cigars Saints & Sinners 2013 Cigars
Saints & Sinners 2013 Cigars

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Reinado Grand Empire Reserve Petit Lancero Limited Edition (prerelease)

Cigar Review by Matt Zaccheo (guest)
Cigar Photography by Jay L (cigarphoto.net)


Jay’s Notes:

This week we are photographing and reviewing the Reinado Grand Empire Reserve Petit Lancero prerelease. Antonio Lam of Reinado will be making a follow-up splash at this year’s IPCPR’13 by introducing additional vitolas to his popular Grand Empite Reserve line – Petit Lancero Limited Edition (6 x 38), Corona Gorda (5 5/8 x 46), and Toro (6 x 52). In addition, “couple months” after the IPCPR, Antonio will be releasing the Gordo size (6 x 60). When asked why Gordo is not coming out at the same time as the other 3 new vitolas, Antonio responded – “Blend needs work for the size. We want to be able to translate the essence of the GER notes as close as possible and don’t feel it is there yet.” So, there you have it. Four additional vitolas to the popular Elegidos (5 x 55) original release.

If you have enjoyed the flavor & performance of the Elegidos but prefer the lancero format, the Petit Lancero might be just what you have been waiting for. Keep in mind though, the Petit Lancero will be a limited edition – 10 count boxes (250 boxes total).

Country of Origin: Nicaragua
Wrapper: Nicaraguan Habano Maduro
Binder: Nicaragua
Filler: Nicaragua
Length: 6”
Ring: 38


Matt’s Review:

Cut: Palio
Drink: Unsweetened Lipton Cold Brew iced tea
Palate: Fresh

# cigars smoked for review: One…..it was all I could get my hands on!

Pre-light: The cigar presents itself with an oily and attractive mocha brown maduro wrapper. It’s not as oily as the Elegidos, but it still exudes that sexy, velvety tactile experience. The palpable veins and ultra fine tooth create subtle color variations and accentuate deeper dark chocolate and reddish hews. Perfect symmetry: tight, crisp seems and evenly packed throughout. Off the foot, the pre-light aroma is gripping: huge plum, raisin and sweet tobacco. Way too sexy for the barnyard! The cold draw gives up more sweet tobacco and jammy notes balanced by earth and hints of leather.

Draw:  Classic lancero: a little snug, but not uncomfortable.

Flavors: The lead in is an initial warm blast of red pepper spice(tip of the tongue) that commands your attention and gradually fades out into a wave of sweet cedar, dark chocolate, and moist earth, while soft wisps of leather try to emerge from the depths below. It’s a much more lively and spirited red pepper spice up front and on the retro hale when compared to the Elegidos. It may be petite, but it sure as hell is bold as brass coming out of the gates! Saucy……I like it!

The smoke starts off bright and sharp on the palate. There are delicate floral and herbal notes that unfold to soften the cedar edge. The core is earth and dark chocolate. The finish is long…….coffee, roast nuts, and soft leather. Getting into the second third, around the second ash drop, it is clear that act I has closed………but the show must go on.

A very interesting transition / transformation occurs: the smoke becomes much more dense and lush, yielding a bigger mouth feel on the palate. The crisp floral and herbal notes are put to rest and the overall texture gets much creamier. A distinct sweetness, not present at all in the 1st third, starts to reveal itself. It’s not the blackstrap molasses I get from the Elegidos. It is a lighter / less aggressive and more delicate sweetness … it’s honey! This in and of itself is worth the price of admission … but it’s not even close to the best part.

Simultaneously, as the mouth feel is becoming much more substantial and creamier, the warming sensation of the red pepper on the tip of my tongue changes dramatically!  The honeyed sweetness builds and a particular floral note becomes readily apparent … it’s mint! On the tip of my tongue, throughout the second third of the cigar, a wonderful cool minty, fresh grated nutmeg spice led into a long, smooth finish of earth, coco, coffee, leather, and more roast nuts. The leather is more assertive throughout the remainder of the cigar and the mild cedar evolves into more of a toasted oak. The honey and mint mesh well and subtle graham cracker notes fleet in and out…… it’s truly a happily ever after moment going on here.

The strength and body build throughout the cigar. For me, it was a solid medium that developed into full throttle…..hitting the final third! The flavors are BIG and diverge and contrast at points, but are never conflicting or opposed.  She will tangle you in an elaborate complex web. Damn….MORE please!!!

Burn: Required one touch up. Tight potash grey salt and pepper ash.

Construction: Excellent

Description Adjectives: Rollercoaster. Big things come in small packages. Petite….my ass!

Box Worthy: Oh HELL yes!

Overall: Another clear winner from Reinado. I love the GER blend and this vitola showcases it’s different characteristics and attributes extraordinarily well.  When I was growing up my parents taught me if you were going to do something….do it right. This is a job well done…done right….. and not to be missed.


Please consider the following posts:

* http://cigarphoto.net/blog/2012/11/reinado-grand-empire-reserve/
* http://cigarphoto.net/blog/2011/02/reinado/

 

* DISCLAIMER: Reinado Grand Empire Reserve Petit Lancero sample was gifted by Antonio Lam of REINADO. Antonio’s generosity had no impact on the actual experience. The cigar spoke for itself.

 

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L’Atelier LAT46 Selection Spéciale

Cigar Review by Steve Royston (guest)
Cigar Photography by Jay L (cigarphoto.net)

This week we are photographing and reviewing the L’Atelier LAT46 Selection Spéciale. This corona-gorda vitola, made at the My Father factory in Nicaragua, is the latest release from the L’Atelier Imports stable.

This is a true Corona Gorda vitola, measuring 5 5/8 by 46. In a market plagued with obese sticks, this cigar really tickles me pink. Just as I believe the original LATs coming in boxes of 15 was smart, this one coming in boxes of 10 is even smarter. Same basic box concept as the originals; same original band with the addition of a secondary “Selection Spéciale” band. Alright, enough of this mumbo jumbo. Let’s get down to business.

For starters, the wrapper is noticeably darker than the originals, as it is a higher priming leaf. Same proprietary blend as the original LATs. Construction is flawless with the same flag top finish as the originals. The smell of the foot is of hay and amazing tobacco. It literally transports me back in time some 10 years ago when I was first smitten with everything that had to do with cigars. The draw, with a shallow straight cut, is ideal for me. Just a little bit of tug. This has been consistent in both the prerelease (2) and the market release (2) I have smoked for this review.

As soon as I light up, I’m smacked with spice both across my palate and on the retrohale, which is very intense. It has very savory characteristics to start. Toasty, smoky, and cedary. The aftertaste, thus far, is just barely dropping hints of flavor I associate with the core LATs but not quite discernable yet. The lingering mouth feel is smooth with just a touch of grit, almost like an ultra-fine sandpaper; enjoyable. A full inch in, the burn has been RAZOR sharp (not touch-ups) and has a very nice white/gray colors with touches of black throughout. A flavor of toasted artisanal bread has made its way to the forefront of flavor with strong cedar on the retrohale. (Side note: Something interesting I’ve noticed with every one of these I’ve smoked is a tingle on my lips, across my palate, and in the back of my throat. Certainly not unenjoyable, just very interesting.) The spice on the retrohale has stayed fairly intense, but is very enjoyable for me. With the halfway mark approaching, a strong effervescent characteristic has developed. This is something I’ve noticed not only with the LAT46, but the original LATs as well and I thoroughly enjoy it. It’s like menthol without the mint, if that helps explain it any better. The toastiness is still present up front, with the mocha notes I get a lot of in the originals coming through in the aftertaste. With this stick, it’s like clockwork that as soon as you pass the halfway mark, the strength really spikes in intensity. It goes from a nice, consistent medium, to full bodied in the blink of an eye. Cedar is one of most consistent flavors in this stick, which makes sense because it’s very present in the originals. However, I interpret it as a more woody cedar in the 46, whereas it’s sweeter in the originals. I might attribute this to the amped up quality of the wrapper. Nevertheless, it’s a great flavor. Into the final third of the cigar, the construction really shines! Not very warm to the touch and not spongy. The effervescence has really intensified in the retrohale. The mocha aftertaste has all but fade away and has given way to a nice roasted coffee bean characteristic with just a touch of graham cracker. Finally snubbed it out with about a ¾ inch nub.

Final Thoughts:
Smoking time: 1 hour 10 minutes. I personally love this cigar just as a love the original LATs. It’s has the same base bones, but the high priming wrapper really gives it its own unique flare. I often tell people who are trying LATs for the first time that they really need to pay attention to it, as they might overlook a lot of the subtle nuances. The 46, just as its big cousins, seems to make quick changes almost from puff to puff. The flavors jump around and really make for an enjoyable smoking experience. As far as rating this cigar goes, I won’t. I don’t believe in the numbers games. What I will say is this. I will be smoking many more of these! I’ve already set aside a box for aging and I can’t wait to see what time will do to these smokes, provided I can keep my grubby paws off of them! Happy smoking my friends!

Country of Origin: Nicaragua
Wrapper: Sancti Spiritus (Ecuador)
Binder: Nicaragua
Filler: Nicaragua
Length: 5.625″
Ring: 46

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EP Carrillo Medalla D’Oro

This week we are photographing and reviewing the EP Carrillo Medalla D’Oro. This lonsdale vitola, made by the master blender Ernesto Perez-Carrillo, is an exclusive release for the Federal Cigar - New Hampshire chain owned by Rick Gadway. Right off the bet one will recognize the obvious a) Medalla D’Oro is a continuation of the New Wave Connecticut Short Run 2012 and b) Medalla D’Oro packaging is not too far from the Cuban staple – Bolivar Gold Medal. EP Carrillo Medalla D’Oro and Tatuaje Federal Cigar 90th Anniversary 109 – REDUX ‘Hassell’ are hitting the market in march of 2013 to commemorate Federal Cigar’s 92nd Anniversary.


Visually, from extra foil packaging to standard bands, from smooth wrapper to elegant pigtail (as depicted below), the EP Carrillo Medalla D’Oro screams class ! Slightly oily, golden brown Ecuadorian Connecticut wrapper, well blended seams, visible veins is what is on the cover of the EP Carrillo Medalla D’Oro. The draw was excellent from the very beginning to the very end. In the flavor department: woodiness, nuttiness, hints of dried fruit, spiciness which continued to increase as the time has progressed, and tiny bits of sweetness which at times felt “perfumy-like” (?). Great amount of creamy-in-texture smoke which coated and dried out the palate. Nearly perfect burn line throughout.


Carrillo-Gadway collaboration produces another winner, full stop. I went back and read my thoughts on the New Wave Connecticut Short Run 2012 after I wrote the above paragraph. Fortunately, not much of a departure ! I enjoyed the New Wave Connecticut Short Run 2012 quite a bit and hoped for a thinner vitola. The Medalla D’Oro is the answer. Delicious assortment of flavors, fantastic construction, good price point ($85 per box / boxes of 10) – box worthy purchase in my humble opinion !


Federal collaborations featured on cigarphoto.net:

Country of Origin: Dominican Republic
Wrapper: Ecuadorian Connecticut
Binder: Connecticut Broadleaf
Filler: Nicaragua, Dominican Republic
Length: 6.5″
Ring: 44

Construction > Excellent
Burn > Excellent
Enjoy > Absolutely ! 
Recommend > Absolutely ! 

Buy > Box(es) worthy !

 

 

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