Berger & Argenti Entubar V32 Rogue Rothschild

Do no adjust your monitor, the cigar I’m sacrificing to the Tower of Burn this week really does have a column of tobacco sticking out of the foot. If you’ve never encountered the Berger & Argenti Entubar V32 (or even the regular Entubar line) before, you might be wondering its appearance means somebody needs to sharpen the cutters at the factory. Rest assured, their blades are plenty sharp. What you see is intentional, and for more details on that, and everything else regarding the V32, I turn you over to a very thorough press release:

ENTUBAR V32 is a highly limited production run that prominently features a unique half-inch 32/64”) diameter channel of ligero positioned in the center of the cigar barrel extending 3/8” beyond the trimmed foot. Utilizing a bold new blend, ENTUBAR V32 is a Nicaragua ‘puro’ uniting deeply aged filler and binder tobaccos from the Esteli, Condega, Jalapa and Jinotega growing regions – and enveloped in a prime Jalapa Valley Cuban-seed Maduro wrapper. ENTUBAR V32 is exquisitely packaged in dark cedar boxes of 20 cigars and available in four (4) unique sizes: Khilla Korona (4 7/8” x 50); Rogue Rothschild (5 5/8” x 54); Tremendo Toro (6 1/4” x 56) and Bruto Belicoso (6 3/8” x 60).

“ENTUBAR V32 is the most difficult and explosive cigar I’ve ever produced, but I’ve done so without compromising the brand’s balance or complexity,” said Michael Argenti, president of Berger & Argenti. “I was only able to produce 80,000 cigars on a limited run, not only because it is very challenging to make, but also due to the scarcity of top quality materials we’ve used to produce this exceptional cigar.”

ENTUBAR V32 is the latest ENTUBAR brand extension to pay tribute to the time-honored Cuban cigar making technique known as ‘entubado’ while also establishing a revolutionary new process of manufacturing premium cigars. Each deeply aged Nicaraguan filler leaf that comprises all ENTUBAR cigars are carefully rolled creating delicate ‘scrolls’ of rich, flavorful tobacco. This age-old method ensures open chambers of air flow from the foot to the head of the cigar. The ligero tobacco, which lends the cigar its unique full body, are bunched independently and then placed into the center of the remaining ‘entubado’ rolled filler blend. This ‘channel’ of ligero tobacco ranges the full length of the cigar and extends 3/8” beyond the finished trimmed foot, creating a startlingly unique ‘fuse like’ appearance that assures a superior draw, flawless conical burn with a long white ash, and a myriad of complex flavors channeled directly onto the palate.

That covers the background, let’s set this unusual looking smoke alight.

Cigar Stats:
Size: 5 5/8 x 54
Wrapper: Nicaraguan Jalapa
Binder: Nicaraguan Jinotega
Filler: Nicaraguan Esteli, Jalapa, Condega
Smoking Time: 1 3/4 hours
Beverage: Water
Source: Samples From Berger & Argenti
Price: MSRP $12

The Pre-Smoke
Ordinarily I’m not a fan of anything that makes lighting the cigar more difficult. I don’t care for either the shaggy or the unfinished foot, at least not in my regular rotation. And I’m on the fence with the Entubar vitola. It does take a little more effort to light properly, but there is also an advantage or two to the unusual shape, which I’ll cover later.

Aside from the ligero column and its crime scene colored bands, the Entubar is a good looking cigar. It has a dark rustic wrapper with a nice oily sheen, fine veins and no surface flaws that I could find. The construction also seems good at this point, the stick is very firm and consistent and feels heavy for its size. The cold draw is easy, and produced a savory molasses flavor.

The Burn
The main advantage to the protruding plug of ligero becomes clear once the Entubar V32 is lit. Having a 32 ring gauge support beam of hearty ligero running down the center of your cigar means you don’t have to worry as much about accidentally dropping an ash in your lap, even if the ash sometimes appears cracked and a little delicate. So you’re probably going to win that long ash competition. Unless your up against a stouter V32.

In all other respects, the Entubar V32 performs well, easy draw, ample volume of thick smoke, and even burn.

The Flavor
Though specifically advised to toast the entire foot, just for fun I lit the ligero plug first and took a few puffs before lighting the rest. The dense, peppery earth I tasted was not surprising. Once completely lit, the Entubar v32 developed into a very spicy cedar that backed off quickly into a densely syrupy combination of nutty and savory caramel with occasional hints of vanilla and graham.

The smoke maintained a viscous mouth feel into the second third (in a good way) developing some rich chocolate flavor. From puff to puff the flavor varied between a savory caramel, something akin peanut brittle, decadent chocolate and aromatic cedar. I still got the occasion note of graham and vanilla, but not nearly as obvious or as often as in the preceding third.

In the final third, the smoke no longer had such a thick, syrupy texture, though it wasn’t light by any means. Pepper began to appear, chocolate and a less aromatic cedar decided to stick around until the end. In the final puffs, the cigar concluded with earthy cinnamon.

The Price
It’s probably for the best that this is a limited production smoke. Not because it’s bad, but because it’s a little on the spendy side. It might have some trouble catching on in a market brimming with budget-conscious consumers and excellent $7 and $8 options. I’d be far more inclined to buy if the Entubar V32 were a few bucks cheaper.

The Verdict
The Entubar V32 is delicious and complex and there’s no getting around that. Whatever my reservations may be about the price, the fact is, I want to smoke it again more than I want the twelve bucks in my pocket. I don’t think this will lead to a box purchase (though who knows, we’re only just getting acquainted), but I don’t think I could walk away from a shop with just one. I’ve been impressed with many of the cigars produced by Berger & Argenti, but this is easily their best. If you haven’t had one yet, you really should.

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

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