Brian’s The Week In Smoke, Issue 24

It’s time again for another issue of Brian’s The Week In Smoke. In case this is your first Week in Smoke, be advised that it covers many (though not necessarily all) of the cigars I’ve smoked in the past week (or the past month, or however long it has been since the last issue), along with a couple of quick thoughts that came to me at the time. These are not full reviews, but quick blurbs based on a single smoking experience. As such, they may be influenced by the natural variations that occur from one cigar to another. Your mileage may vary. (If I know the cigar well enough to comment, I may mention if an experience strays from what understand to be the norm.)

An appearance in The Week in Smoke does not preclude nor guarantee a future in-depth review. Whenever possible, I’ve linked to more a thoughtful and thorough review of the cigar in question. (Or maybe I’ve linked to a photo of Jerry The ‘Stache. You won’t know until you click.) Enjoy!

Four Kicks Selección No. 5
My very positive experiences with the Mule Kick late in 2012 renewed my interest in the Four Kicks line, specifically, the well received Selección No. 5, a size I don’t think I’d tried yet. I found it to be woody, nutty and peppery with rich notes of syrup, caramel and chocolate. I love the vitola, and while it’s no Mule Kick, it is a very good smoke.

Jameson Santos De Miami Alma
I don’t recall when or where I got it, but this Santos De Miami has been resting comfortably for quite a while. Long enough that plume was beginning to appear on the underside. The cigar tasted as good as it looks, offering me great roasted nut flavors, earth, cedar and a savory, syrupy richness. Deeper into it, I was struck with how it seemed a little like smoking a graham cracker, maybe one with a little honey on it. This is another one of those times when I ask myself, “why don’t I smoke these more often?”

Nestor Miranda Special Selection Danno 2012
The Danno 2012 has been on my list of cigars to try for a while now. It got off to a mellow, but chewy and aromatic start. The profile surprised me, sticking with an easy-going medium body throughout, tasting of leather and sour cream mixed with light caramel. Chocolate, pepper and a smoky quality eased their way in later. This Danno 2012 experience was so unlike my previous Special Selection experiences, I have to wonder if either the blend was missing some vital component, or my palate was a little off. Which isn’t to say it was a bad cigar, just unexpected. In fact, I nubbed it pretty easily.

Partagas 1845 Robusto
When the Partagas 1845 made both Jerry and Charlie’s top 10 lists for 2012, it gave me pause. I wondered if I missed something the first time around. I’m not one for New Year’s resolutions, but I resolved to revisit the 1845. (And now I’m good with resolutions until next year.) I had generally positive impression of the 1845, I remembered it being pretty good, and I thought the band was kinda cool. In terms of flavor, it was medley of earth, pepper and chocolate, with some notes of coffee and charred wood. The profile sweetened up a little around half of the way in. You know what? It’s better than I remembered.

Perla Del Mar Perla M *
Perla Del Mar is a box-pressed Connecticut leaf-wrapped cigar that J.C. Newman brought to market last year, and I was recently sent several different sizes to try. It was a good looking cigar both before I lit it up and after, and had an enjoyable profile. I noted toasty, grain-like flavors, wood, cream, earth and a sweet cedar that lingered in the finish. It was a solid smoke each time, and this vitola was no exception.

Rocky Patel Freedom Robusto *
Based on the name and the patriotic colors of the band, it looks like we have another candidate for the 4th of July smoke. But that’s still half a year away, so for now, let’s focus on the flavor. Just like ‘Merica herself, there’s a lot going on here: Roasted nuts, spice, chocolate, wood, pepper, sweet smoky spices and coffee. You know, it wouldn’t be a bad choice of smoke when the fireworks are bursting in air, or anytime, really.

Toraño Noventa La Esperanza
Officially discontinued long ago, I was a little surprised to find a box of Toraño Noventas in an area cigar bar. (I have since looked, and they can still be found online.) The body seemed lighter than I remembered, but six years aging will do that to a cigar. It was woody, slightly nutty and bready, with cinnamon and raisin-like sweetness emerging toward the end of the cigar. Despite mellowing out, it was still a tasty smoke, one best enjoyed early in the day.

* Big Brother would have you know these cigars were gifts or free samples, and that my opinions on them is suspect. My opinions are my own, your response to them is your own. No amount of comment trolling will change that.

** I have too many smokes, and this denotes that the smoke in question has been sitting in one of my humidors for at least a year, and thus qualifies as “aged”. If my collection continues to grow, the chances are good I’ll be on that Discovery Channel show about people who hoard stuff and face eviction.

Some of the pictures in Brian’s The Week In Smoke first appeared on twitter. If you’d like to see these lists constructed in real time, follow Brian on twitter. If you don’t, you’ll make the Fail Whale cry.