The list is out, these are the top 10 cigars for 2014 as listed by Cigar Aficionado.
1. Oliva Serie V Melanio Figurado
2. E P Carrillo La Historia E-III
3.Illusion Fume d'Amour Clementes
4. Hoyo de Monterrey Epicure Especial (Tubo)
5. Rocky Patel Royale Toro
6. Opus X PerfecXion X
7. Padron Family Reserve 50th Maduro
8. Ashton Estate Sun Grown 22- Year Salute
9. Monte by Montecristo Jacopo No.2
10. A. Flores 1975 Serie Privada Capa Habano
What a great list, and this year no Cuban cigars in the top 10.
Lite them up and enjoy.
PDR cigars has made quite a name for itself in the past ten years. A boutique brand with a modest, yet diverse selection of blends, PDR has made their latest Flores y Rodriguez 10th Anniversary Reserva Limitada in commemoration of their past decade in the cigar game. To say PDR has had a successful 10 years would be an understatement. Having made several cigars to make last years Top 25 Cigars of the world, it's no wonder people are taking notice.
Released this past summer at the IPCPR show in Las Vegas, the Flores y Rodriguez 10th Anniversary Reserva Limitada boasts a Habano Ecuadorian Wrapper with an Olor Dominican Republic Binder, and a 7-year old Piloto Cubano leaf complimented by Nicaraguan Jalapa Valley Filler. Keeping with an old-world ideal, the FyR 10th Anniversary comes in three classic Cuban Sizes; Robusto- 5 x 52, Grand Toro- 6 x 54 and finally the Wide Churchill-5 1/8 X 58. A good amount of buzz has surrounded this cigar, so I figured a review would be in order. So let's see how it holds up under fire (no pun intended)
- Cigar Reviewed: Flores y Rodriguez 10th Anniversary Reserva Limitada
- Country of Origin: Dominican Republic
- Factory: Tamporil, Dominican Republic
- Wrapper: Habano Ecuadorian
- Binder: Olor Dominican Republic
- Filler: 7-year old Piloto Cuban, Nicaraguan Jalapa
- Size: Wide Churchill (5 1/8 X 58)
The Appearance of the FyR 10th Anniversary is elegant to say the least, it's white and green band with a smaller black and gold one paint a picture of the refinement, and an air of ceremony. Coffee and cream colored, it's smooth wrapper is subtle with an aroma of a musky, almost leather scent with a note of wood, an all around great smelling stick. The cold draw gives off flavors of earth and yeast, a slight cocoa can be noticed in the background. It's firm to the touch with just a slight give, sturdy yet subtle.
First puff of the Flores y Rodriguez 10th Anniversary is a blast of complex flavors, most noticeable one is spice radiating across the palate. Taste of vanilla and cream linger after the exhale, soothing your palate, almost giving you a respite for the next blow of spice. Subtle suggestions of wood and yeast as well make it a unique flavor.
As time passes with the FyR 10th Anniversary, the spice begins to settle, it's hard to say if the blend of the cigar changes, or if ones palate acclimates to the boldness of the taste. Whichever it is, it's been a smoke that has kept my attention. Despite its robust profile, the Flores y Rodriguez 10th Anniversary is not much more than a medium-full stick, the draw is desirable and steady pulling a fair amount of smoke. It's creamy vanilla notes play a bigger role in the cigar, still blending with the spice in an interesting way.
The Home Stretch:
As we come toward the end, all traces of spice and complexity are gone, instead is a very simple and lovely taste of cream and leather remain in the Flores Y Rodriquez. Musky and relaxed, it envelopes your palate in a heavy warm blanket of just overall great tasting tobacco.
It goes without saying that PDR has done it again with the FyR 10th Anniversary. It's complex beginning and simple ending make it a cigar anyone can enjoy. Carefully crafted with wonderful flavors, it's a stick I'm sure many will
smoke again and again. Hey... I know I will.
The newest line from Crowned Heads dubbed Jericho Hill is the second blend to be made outside E.P. Carrillo's Tabacalaera La Alianza in the Dominican Republic. Instead, like the limited edition Las Calaveras before it, the Jericho Hill is made in the My Father Cigar Factory in Esteli, Nicaragua. But unlike the limited annual release Las Calaveras, the Jericho Hill is the first regular production line to be made outside La Alianza. This new partnership between Crowned Heads and My Father is exciting to say the least. With a new region and access to different tobaccos this new found friendship gives Crowned Heads a bigger park to play in.
The Jericho Hill was inspired by the musician Johnny Cash, and his performance of Cocaine Blues from his 1968 Album "At Folsom Prison". The song spins a grim tale of a man named Willy Lee, who, on a cocaine and whiskey binge spirals down a retched path of violence and crime. Willy Lee eventually ends up captured in Jaurez, Mexico. Where he pays for his misdeeds at the hands of the sheriff from- you guessed it... Jericho Hill. Manufactured in the My Father Cigars factory in Esteli, Nicaragua. The Jericho Hill's filler and binder are both Nicaraguan with a Mexican San Andrés wrapper. Coming in four sizes, this box pressed stick has peaked my interest with it's intriguing back story. For this review I elected to smoke the name sake for the infamous man of Cocaine Blues, The Willy Lee.
- Cigar Reviewed: Jericho Hill
- Country of Origin: Nicaragua
- Factory: My Father Cigars S.A., Esteli, Nicaragua
- Wrapper: Mexican San Andrés
- Binder: Nicaraguan.
- Filler: Nicaraguan.
- Size: Willy Lee (Boxed Press Toro) 6" x 54
The Jericho Hill is one that could easily be looked over on the shelf, it's non-assuming black and white band is neither bold nor memorable, yet its simple look and sleek appearance gives it a devil-may-care attitude, almost like it doesn't need to prove itself to anyone. Toothy feel and oak colored it appears ragged, yet refined; like Slash playing Beethoven. The aroma is a dark chocolate muddled with potting soil, an almost sweet candy scent permeates the nostrils. Black pepper and cocoa can be noticed on the cold draw, with a more visceral earthy tone which differs from the relaxed sweetness of the aroma.
The Jericho Hill Willy Lee starts off more complex than any cigar I've reviewed thus far, subtle notes of cocoa and and a touch of what I would describe as blackberries, mixing with something almost floral in the background. Smooth and slick much like the cool, sly musician this cigar was inspired by. It's easy to smoke and not lacking in intrigue.
Half way through, the Jericho Hill Willy Lee brings more dark chocolate and earthy tones to this symphony of flavor, all the little suggestions and subtle notes fade away to replace a more solid, substantial taste. The burn line has held fairly well, I've only needed to correct it once during this review, never straying far from good, but never getting too close to perfect. it's held it's own in a scrappy kind of way. The easy draw pulls a glorious cloud of smoke that would make anyone sit up and take notice.
The Home Stretch:
This cigar has remained a smooth, unwavering smoke. The Jericho Hill Willy Lee is medium to full, and not overpowering in it's flavor. Complex and subtle in it's start, while leveling out to a more simple straightforward taste. That idea continues as I come closer to the end, more mild in chocolate and earth it calms itself to a more simple taste of leather. Never burning too hot or too cold, it has held up beautifully.
Not all cigars are created equal, and it can be hard to find one that justifies switching from your go-to cigar to something new. However you won't have much trouble justifying the Jericho Hill. Rugged refinement and impeccable taste, the Jericho Hill can keep up with the big boys. It's smooth flavor and body make it a great way to cap off an evening. Despite it's namesake and background, this cigar is refined and subtle, something that can compete with high culture. It's safe to say if you give this stick a try, you wont be disappointed.
With admiration and a beaming smile, the name Jose Pepin Garcia is spoken among aficionados across the globe. Known for his cigars of pepper and spice blending beautifully with smooth leather and earth, it’s no wonder everyone speaks of the legend with such reverence. My Father Cigars has released a new blend to their extensive line last month during the IPCPR, A lighter, yet still stronger by industry standards Connecticut wrapper cigar, simply named My Father Connecticut. Blended by no other than Jose Pepin Garcia along with his son Jaime Garcia, a heavyweight in the cigar world, both in business and taste, their blends never drift far from the medium to full range, but it’s good to step out of one’s comfort zone every now and again. That being said, they have taken a step on the lighter side with this new My Father Connecticut. Needless to say I was very excited when I got to review one.
Cigar being reviewed: My Father Connecticut. Size: Toro ( 6 ½ by 54 )
Wrapper: Ecuadorian Connecticut.
Binder: Nicaraguan Corojo
Filler: Nicaraguan Habano/criollo
Factory: My Father Cigars Factory, Esteli, Nicaragua.
Pre-Light: To kick things off, the My Father Connecticut is a bit darker in color than your usual Connecticut. Smooth to the touch and very firm, once I took it out of its cellophane a blast of barnyard and caramel aromas greeted me, undertones of spices and mixed nuts tantalizing ever so subtly from the cold draw. After I had enjoyed such aromas and flavors, I placed this cigar back in my humidor, and waited till morning to enjoy it with a coffee on my front porch, like any Connecticut should be enjoyed.
First Third: With coffee in hand and feet in slippers I finally lit up my cigar. First couple puffs of the My Father Connecticut reveal a complex array of cocoa beans and sweet cream, with subtle suggestions of spice and pepper permeating my pallet. A glorious cloud of smoke can be easily drawn, medium in body and mighty in flavor, but never overwhelming it has started off wonderfully, let’s see if it can hold that taste for the rest of its smoking time.
Second Third: I have found that most Connecticut cigars can be a challenge to keep lit; even some lesser quality ones have a tendency to unwrap, however the My Father Connecticut presents no such difficulties thus far. A nice burn line and a long ash have held its own for a fair amount of time. Flavors of barnyard and coffee with cream muddled with sweet chai make a Connecticut apart from the rest.
Last Third: The creamy coffee and nutty taste in the My Father Connecticut are replaced by a more leathery earth flavor, relaxing and calming as it nears its end. Burn has remained consistent and true, sharp and crisp lines while never burning too hot it has been a wonderful way to start of the day, while still being a smoke that could end one just as well.
Overview: The My Father Connecticut is a solid smoke, firmly rolled from head to toe and a flavor bold and crisp. I have never been disappointed with a My Father, and the Connecticut is no exception. Blending every so wonderfully with bold flavors and light body it is one I would recommend in a heartbeat. Jose Pepin Garcia has delivered with the My Father Connecticut, but honestly… was there every any doubt he wouldn't?
Pairing tips: Light crisp beers, such as Hefeweizen or a fine white wine, (Chardonnay or Riesling) Or a good old cup of Coffee.
Reviewed by Sam Schuster.
Photo courtesy of My Father Cigars
The humidor at 21 Degrees will soon be bigger and better than ever stay tuned for more info. Pat and Linda went a little crazy at the trade show this year so we had to figure out how to get all the new cigars out. We will be posting pictures soon.