Perdomo Exhibicion Sun Grown Churchill

One thing you can count on every year is a bunch of new releases from the folks at Tabacalera Perdomo. Which is good thing for cigar reviewers looking to cover new ground. According to our very concise interview with Nick Perdomo at IPCPR earlier this year, they brought a mind-boggling 30 new SKU’s to market this year. Heck, that’s almost enough new product to cover every review I did 2011. Of course that includes some re-releases of discontinued cigars and line extensions, but that’s still a lot of new smokes.

One of their major new releases was the Exhibición line, which for one reason or another haven’t been on my radar. That is until I bumped into Chris Harper, Perdomo’s National Director of Sales at Tobacco World‘s annual birthday bash. He asked me if I had reviewed any of their Exhibición cigars yet, and I told him I didn’t think I’d even smoked one yet. He slid a Sun Grown Churchill in my shirt pocket and said, “here, review that.” I told him I would, and bought four more to flush out the review pool.

The following is an excerpt from the official press release about the Exhibición Line:

Each Perdomo Exhibición is meticulously blended with factory aged Cuban-seed Nicaraguan fillers, including 4 year aged seco leaves from the renowned Condega region, 5 year aged viso leaves from the famous Jalapa Valley, and 6 year aged ligero leaves from the powerhouse valley of Esteli. These Cuban-seed tobaccos have been carefully aged to perfection using time-honored methods passed down through the Perdomo family from generation to generation.

Achieving the perfect Perdomo Exhibición requires wrappers that have been carefully hand-selected and well aged for 6 years prior to qualifying for Perdomo’s bourbon barrel aging process. The Connecticut wrappers are barrel aged for an additional 6 months, the Sun Grown wrappers for an additional 10 months, and the Maduro wrappers for an additional 14 months.

Perdomo Exhibición is packaged in elegant 20 count boxes in the following sizes: Double Robusto (5 x 54), Toro Grande (6 x 54), Churchill (7 x 54), and Torpedo (7 x 54). The manufacturer’s suggested retail prices are $6.50 to $8.00 per cigar (excluding local and state taxes), reflecting Perdomo’s continued dedication to providing premium hand-made cigars at affordable prices.

Well-aged tobacco in bourbon barrels? Sounds promising. Let’s check it out.

Cigar Stats:
Size: 7 x 54
Wrapper: Bourbon barrel-aged Nicaraguan Sun Grown
Binder: Nicaragua
Filler: Nicaragua
Smoking Time: 2 1/4 hours
Beverage: Water
Source: Purchased by reviewer (plus a sample)
Price: MSRP $7.50

The Pre-Smoke
The Exhibición Sun Grown had one the lightest wrapper leaves of any cigar I reviewed this year, and also probably the only one that consistently featured a small green color splotch or two. The tan leaf had a nice sheen to it though, and mostly fine veins. Aside from the minor color irregularities, I found no issues in my visual inspection.

In some cases the cigars were a little lumpy, but there weren’t any soft spots or other cause for alarm. The wrapper had a sweet hay aroma, which was echoed by molasses and hay in the cold taste.

The Burn
The Exhibición Sun Grown burned well, though it wasn’t without its quirks. The ash, while solid and durable, often had a very flaky appearance, and the burn line like to wander in the second and final thirds. A touch up or two were required, but the flawless draw, and ample smoke volume made these details seem trivial.

The Flavor
Things began a little dry on the palate with a spicy, acidic cedar flavor. But as the cigar warmed up, the body grew syrupy, and the acidic quality took on a pleasant orange citrus character. Caramel appeared just as the stick burned into the second third.

The Exhibición Sun Grown really hits it’s stride in the second third with hints of graham sweetness, coffee, cinnamon and even almond complimenting the predominantly orangey-cedar profile. Just before the cigar moved into the final third, the flavors and spice intensified and a I picked up a little pepper and charred wood.

The sweetness faded quickly as the cigar burned through it’s final inches, bringing the cigar to a conclusion that was similar to its beginning: orangey, spicy cedar. Only this time it was a little earthier than it had been to start.

The Price
Perdomo has become know for reasonably priced smokes, and this is no exception. It’s worth noting that part of their approach to keeping costs down is absorbing the S-CHIP taxes instead of passing those along to their customers. That’s something I know we all appreciate.

The Verdict
Tabacalera Perdomo’s Exhibición Sun Grown is a good cigar at a great price. Churchills aren’t my preferred vitola, but the size never seemed to be an issue. There was enough going on flavor-wise to keep me interested, and the stick isn’t so potent that I couldn’t light it up early in the day. I had the chance to smoke the Double Robusto in the course of this review, and it didn’t strike me as an obvious better choice, unless smoking time is a factor. I think Perdomo fans and lovers of sun grown tobacco will undoubtedly enjoy the Exhibición Sun Grown.

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

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