La Gloria Cubana Artesanos De Miami Churchill

I’ve got a question for you. What’s my favorite cigar to review? If you said a pre-lease cigar you’re absolutely right. (“I don’t care” also accepted.) So it is with great enthusiasm that I light up the cigars for this week’s review. This new Artesano de Miami cigars by La Gloria Cubana is due to drop sometime in June.

How did I get my hands on this new cigar so far ahead of its release? I’d like to say the answer is I’m terribly important and influential. In truth it’s because Ernesto Perez-Carrillo is hitting the road to introduce this new cigar to enthusiasts at their local B&M’s. I stumbled into just such an event, with no idea that a brand new cigar was being introduced.

The Artesano de Miami line is planned to be a pretty limited release when it hits the market in June. Current figures place production in the 200 to 250 thousand for 2008. And with that, you know everything I know about the cigar. Well, everything but how it performs. Let’s check it out.

Cigar Stats:
Size: 6 7/8 x 49
Wrapper: Unavailable
Binder: Unavailable
Filler: Unavailable
Smoking Time: 3 hours
Beverage: Water
Price: Unavailable

The Artisan’s Foot

The Pre-Smoke
One of the things I overheard in the cigar shop while people tried out the Artesanos De Miami was “just look at how oily it is”. I don’t know if it will come through in the pictures, but this really is a surprisingly oily cigar. Usually I add a cursory note of a slight sheen in my notes when I review a cigar, but this really stands out. To the point where I’m sure they won’t need to give the cigars the old Vaseline treatment for the catalogs.

Beyond the noted oiliness, I was also impressed with the other aesthetics of the cigar too. The churchill is incredibly smooth and contains only one or two veins. Additionally this cigar comes decorated with a modified golden band with an antiqued looking take on the lady in the logo. It’s just a great looking band on a great looking cigar.

The golden band

I also found the cigar to be very firm. Enough so that it raised some concerns about the draw.

The scent on the wrapper was a pungent but sweet compost. But the flavor at the foot that was more interesting. In the first case it smelled like a curry dish. That’s right curry. The second cigar I sampled smelled a bit more raisiny at the foot, which I find considerably more common than curry!

The Burn
I was right to be a little concerned about draw. The first cigar had a firmer draw than I prefer. However, the draw on the second was perfect.

Inversely, the first, firmer drawing smoke held a great solid ash, while the looser drawing smoke was a bit flakier, especially in the first third. I regret now not getting a picture of that initial ash on the first cigar.

That second one started off flaky…

One thing that was a little disappointing was that I had issues with the cigar going out a little too often with both churchills I smoked. Typically the cigars would go out at least once in the second third, and then repeatedly in the final third, if not smoked pretty quickly. (However, I did not have this problem with the pyramid I smoked at the event. That thing burned like a dream all around.)

The Flavor
This cigar begins on a spicy note. In addition to rich flavors that resemble savory, smoky, jerky, I got a lot of peppery spice. At points I also tasted the distinct flavor of ligero.

As the cigar progressed into the second third I was greated with a sweet ligero flavor followed by smoother, less spicy and sometimes creamy flavors. I did get a lot of earthy cinnamon in this third and a little bit of creaminess.

I didn’t notice too much of a flavor change as the cigar burned into the final third. The earthy cinnamon was still prominent. There was an increase in the creaminess and sweetness not long before the cigar finished.

The Price
Its still early days when it comes to this cigar, and I didn’t get any information on pricing. I’m thinking that it might be a little more expensive than La Gloria Cubana cigars, because of the limited release, but that’s just speculation.

The Verdict
I thought this was a great smoke, and I’m really looking forward to trying them again down the road. I’m particularly interested in getting my hands on another one of the pyramids I smoked at the event. Of three vitolas I sampled, the pyramid was the one I enjoyed the most. Though I have to mention that the corona was an intriguing little ligero bomb. (I predict it will be a pretty popular little smoke.)

It’ll be interesting to see if (and how) they differ once released. And I’m looking forward to finding out the particulars of the tobaccos used and the price. I’d recommend keeping an eye out for these cigars when they hit the market in June.

Liked It: Yes
Buy It Again: Yes
Recommend It: Yes

Tower of Burn
Here for your viewing pleasure is my trademark Tower of Burn.