Wrapper: Brazilian Habano Oscuro
Filler: A blend of Nicaraguan tobacco from various regions
This is cigar is the fourth installment for my anniversary series. And like the other three, there is a reason I chose this particular cigar. When I first started reviewing cigars, one of my favorites was the original Ave Maria line. That cigar was also the cigar the got my dad hooked on enjoying cigars with me. That cigar will always be special to me. Not only did it bring my dad and I closer, but it gave me a regular smoking buddy.
Thankfully I met someone who lives near and frequents the Cigar International Superstore, because without him, I most likely would not have had the ability to review this cigar. Since the original Ave Maria has been a personal favorite of mine for about a year, I could only imagine how this one would compare.
The packaging on this cigar is awesome. This cigar comes is a fancy coffin case. When you open the coffin, it lifts the head of the cigar up so you can grab it easily. The cigar has a very dark brown, oily wrapper. The wrapper is very smooth with just a couple smooth veins. This cigar is very solid all the way through. The torpedo cap is perfectly smooth and come to a nice point. The smell coming off of this cigar has sweet chocolate scent to it.
Once I lit this cigar up I was met with a sweet and spicy flavor combination. The combination is resembling cedar and pepper. There was a strong earthy base to the smoke that allowed the cedar and pepper to stand out quite a bit. After a few puffs a strong coffee flavor came out and took the flavor to a new level. Throughout the entire first inch, the earth, coffee, cedar, and pepper were all strong.
Once I got down to the one-inch mark, the cedar and pepper started to mellow out a little bit. The mellowing allowed some light leather notes to come out and blend with the coffee.
The second third was quite different than the first. The cedar sweetness was completely gone, but a new sweetness came out. Chocolate notes started forming almost immediately. The bitterness of the black coffee picked up a little bit as well and coated my palate. By halfway a little bit of the spice same back, and the leather built up a bit as well.
The last couple inches were completely different yet again. The sweetness picked up and the spice picked up a little bit more as well. The sweetness wasn't just chocolate, the cedar came back too. With the two different sweet flavors, the bitterness of the coffee was dulled a bit. There was also a ton of wood and earth throughout the last couple inches and the finish was very sweet. The smoke actually became very creamy at the end as well.
The ash on this cigar wasn't nice as all. It was shades of gray, black, and brown. The ash was also flaky, but held on for about two inches at a time. The burn wasn't even until about the halfway point. I never had to correct it though. The draw was actually very easy for a torpedo and it produced a thick white smoke. The smoke also gave off a very earthy aroma with a light spice.
This cigar is very good and very complex, but I just don't think it is a $20 cigar. I think there are several better choices for the money. But if money wasn't an issue, I wouldn't mind having several of these. If the burn pattern was better I would surely have rated this one higher, but I think an 8.75 out of 10 is a fair score.
Thanks for reading,
Zack the Stogie Man