Montecristo Sevens

Hey, I’m back, and just in time to interrupt this week’s Jerrython. (Try not to look so sad. He’ll be back soon.) I owe The Great Torpedo for bailing me out last week, and we can’t have him burning himself out. I hope to make up for my week AWOL with another very interesting and unusual Stogie.

Up for review this week is special edition Montecristo that you may have never seen before. Atlanta has more than it’s share of cigar shops, and even though I’ve been to all of them, I’ve never seen these. Of course, that’s an exaggeration, but the truth is I hadn’t even heard of it until I saw them online sometime late last year. In fact, there isn’t even that much information about these smokes online even now.

What I was able to find out is that these Montecristos are called “Sevens” because they are rolled exclusively by “level 7” master rollers in the Dominican Republic. Reportedly, these torcedors are the best of the best when it comes to transforming loose tobacco leaves into a fine cigar. Additionally, the Sevens only come in one vitola, a churchill, and are sold only in special tins. And that pretty much covers what I know, let’s see if those master rollers have the golden touch.

Cigar Stats:
Size: 7 x 50
Wrapper: Ecuadorian Sumatra
Binder: Dominican Republic
Filler: Brazil, Dominican Republic
Smoking Time: 2 1/4 hours
Beverage: Water
Price: MSRP $10.00

The Pre-Smoke
You might think that one of the tell-tale signs of a true super premium is have two bands. That funny sound you hear right now is the Montecristo Seven chortling in a condescending manner. Because this smoke not only has the dual bands at head and foot, but it also has a cedar sleeve. And wait, what’s this? When you slide the the cedar and band fuselage off the cigar you see a third, previously hidden band, identical to the one above it.

All kidding aside, it really is a heck of a presentation. It reminds me a bit of the multiple envelope scheme employed in wedding and graduation invitations. But also impressive is the wrapper leaf underneath all the pomp and circumstance. It’s a very smooth, chocolate brown color, decorated with thin light colored veins.

The scent of the wrapper varied from one cigar to the other. One was very much a potent compost, while the other had a very distinctive prune scent. In both cases the scent at the foot was a dusty chocolate.

Possibly more striking than the visual appearance was the sweetness of the cold taste. Often the cold taste is just a hint of a flavor, or a combination of flavors. But the syrupy sweetness of the cold taste left nothing up to the imagination.

The Burn
Generally speaking the Montecristo Seven gets good marks in the burn category. The ash was solid and white, and the burn line was straight until right around the final third. And though the burn line did stray or get jagged, it was never serious enough to require intervention. The draw was just a touch on the tight side at the beginning of one cigar also, but not enough to bet bothersome.

The Flavor
After all the build up and the pretty packaging, it’s a little disappointing to be able to sum up the flavor in a sentence. And I did just that when I gave one to a friend a few days ago. I told him, “It’s like eating cake frosting for two hours.” He seemed to find that that idea intriguing. And I did my best to smile while I said it.

Truth be told, I spent the better part of my time smoking these cigars searching for flavors other than the very prominent syrupy or frosting like sweetness. It just seemed to me that this cigar should be more complex and subtle than it was tasting. I did pick up a bit of nuttiness early on and cedar at various points throughout (a little sharper at the end), but that’s about it.

The Price
Though the MSRP for the Montecristo Seven is around $10 a stick, I doubt anyone will be surprised that it sells for considerably less than that online. If you decide to spring for them, you’re looking at a figure closer to $8.30 a stick. But be advised, I haven’t seen any place that sells singles.

Going with the $8.30 figure, it’s hard to complain too much about the price. It’s a large cigar, constructed of quality tobacco by supposedly the best hands to ever touch the leaf, and did I mention it has three bands? Seriously though, the price seems reasonable for a high end smoke of it’s size.

The Verdict
As I’ve mentioned before, I do have a sweet tooth, and I appreciate sweeter flavors in cigars, but the Montecristo Seven was just a little too much of a good thing. It’s the difference between eating a small piece of cake and the whole thing. You enjoy the piece, but the entire cake gives you a stomach ache. And frankly, it gets a little dull around half way through. (Both the cake and the cigar.)

I realized while I was taking notes that I enjoyed the first one I smoked the most. It’s the cigar I had with a cup of coffee while doing some work before the review process. That’s when it occurred to me that this smoke has all the flash and depth of Vegas without the high-roller price. This cigar would be perfect around a poker table with some drinks or on a guys night out. The serious cigar smoker could use the distraction of friends and booze, and the newbie will have something cool to smoke that doesn’t stink up the joint with vanilla-bourbon scented essential oils.

Liked It: Well… I didn’t hate it…
Buy It Again: Probably Not
Recommend It: Buy a tin for poker night or for your next trip to Vegas. (Or anytime, if you’re really into sweet cigars.)

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