Thursday, February 27, 2014
The Connecticut Yankee has a rustic appearance to it. It isn't unsightly but it has a certain ruggedness. The habano connecticut wrapper is a dark brown with slightly blotchy coloration. The veins are visible but smooth and I don't see them causing any burn issues. Underneath the wrapper lies a mixture of Dominican and Nicaraguan tobaccos. The wrapper has very little aroma to it, the only thing I can detect is a faint hint of barnyard. The foot offers up a good bit more smell, offering notes of barnyard with hints of cocoa. I was going to v cut this one but decided against it and instead used a punch to clip the cap. I found a near perfect draw with notes of cocoa and a very faint sweetness. I used my buggati b1 that my loving wife gave me to toast the foot and get things started.
The initial third opens with a barrage of flavor, the most noticeable being notes of wood with a mild earthy spice. There is very little spice to be found, even on the retrohale. The finish is long and woody and seems to be very crisp so I'm glad i I brought plenty of water with me. You may notice in the pictures, I also brought a very bright flashlight and one of my pistols. The question has been asked of why I seem to have a pistol with me when I smoke at night, so I will answer that here for you all to see. I live well outside the city limits and we have dogs that run the rural roads. Most of the dogs will run from their own shadows or if you make a loud noise. Others are not so leary or skiddish. In fact, not terribly far from where I live, a four year old was mauled to death by a group of these dogs just a few days ago. I have also seen big cats in my neck of the woods, and I don't mean the domestic house cat type. But oh well, back to the cigar. As I progress through the first third of the cigar the woody notes become more of an oaky flavor as notes of espresso begin to pop in and out.
Going into the second third the woody oak notes move out of the foreground to give the espresso some time in the sun. The espresso notes have fully developed and are very pleasant. Towards the end of the second third there are some notes that resemble sourdough that jump in very briefly.
The final third brought the woody oak notes back to the foreground as the espresso begins to fade away. The sourdough flavors are still present and have been joined by a salty component.
This one was a bit of a disappointment for me to be perfectly honest. While tasty, I expected more flavors with so much going on in the first inch of the cigar. It was very smooth and well constructed, only requiring a couple of very minor burn corrections. The body has been consistently medium throughout the burn and it was never at any time harsh on the palate. The ash held to over an inch before falling each time and was a salt and pepper gray. I would recommend giving this one a try, especially for the price point. It would be a perfect yard-gar or work smoke. The price point on these is 2 dollars and some change so you wouldn't be out much to give them a try. You can grab a box of 30 of the robusto box press for less than 70 bucks at http://stogieboys.com/victor-sinclair-connecticut-yankee-box-press-robusto.html
You can also get your own membership to the Big Sexy Smokers Club from StogieBoys at http://www.stogieboys.com/cigar-club
By joining, you can have a mini Christmas every month like I do. You will also receive a complimentary desktop humidor, lighter, and cutter just for joining. It's a win-win situation so jump on over and smoke next months cigars with me!
Friday, February 21, 2014
Now to the part that you want to know about the most, how does it smoke. I removed the cellophane from the cigar and found the body to offer notes of hay and sweet field grass, while the foot offered notes of hay and molasses. The Conecticut wrapper houses a blend of Nicaraguan and Dominican binder and filler leaves. The wrapper has a beautiful light brown, oily shine with visible yet smooth veins. The body of the cigar is a bit on the spongy side so I expect a nice easy draw but there are no soft spots or imperfections. I clipped the cap with my trusty V cutter and did find an easy draw with notes of molasses. I toasted the foot and began my journey.
The initial third opens with toasted nut flavors by the bucket load. It is off to a very smooth start with only a touch of spice on the retrohale. The finish is toasty but does leave a bit of black pepper tingle in the back of the throat. At about half of an inch into the burn the toasted nut was joined by notes of coffee and an unidentified sweetness. The finish has taken a caramel-like tone and the smoke has become very creamy. As I progress through the first third, the flavors are developing nicely. The toasted nut flavors have moved aside a bit to allow the coffee notes to take the spotlight.
As I begin the second third the coffee notes gain a touch more depth and are still being supported by the toasted nut notes in the background. There are very faint notes of cinnamon that keep coming and going. They are infrequent and faint but still detectable. There are also some caramel notes popping in every once in awhile. Somewhere around the halfway point of the burn, the cinnamon notes become more defined and more frequent. They remind me somewhat of the "red hots" candy hearts and even seem to have a touch of sweetness to them.
The final third didn't see a whole lot of change, but I've got no complaints. This has been one very tasty and oh so smooth cigar. The coffee notes held the foreground, pretty much, since they joined the profile but were nicely supported by the other flavors.
Final Thoughts? StogieBoys has hit a homerun with this stick. It started out, for me, medium in body and held at that point consistantly throughout the burn. Construction was top notch. The ash held firm to over an inch each time before falling. I made no burn corrections or relights while smoking this stick. The SB Classic is an incredibly smooth and flavorful cigar that would be perfect for a beginner or a seasoned smoker. It would not only be a perfect morning smoke with a cup of coffee, but a great any time smoke as well. I thought it might be a quick burner being a touch loose on the roll but it took about an hour from clip to nub to smoke.
You can find these only at StogieBoys (stogieboys.com/sb-classic) and are priced at around 3 bucks per stick. I can see me grabbing a box of these to fill the humidor I received with the Big Sexy Smokers Club.
Monday, February 3, 2014
The Loose Cannon series is one of the newest offerings from Mike Chiusano of C&C Cigars. He is the former president of Cusano Cigars, so he is a seasoned cigar veteran. The body of the cigar is firm with with a touch of sponginess but no soft spots or imperfections. The milk chocolate brown wrapper has minimal veins with visible but smooth seams. The body offers notes sweet field grass and the foot offered notes of molasses and hay. I V cut the cap with my StogieBoys V cutter and found a perfect draw with only the flavor of sweet tobacco on the cold draw. The wrapper is a Dominican Habano that houses a Dominican binder and filler. I used the lighter that came with the StogieBoys Big Sexy Smokers Clube welcome kit to toast the foot and get things going.
The initial third opens with a ton of woody notes and just a total barage of flavors. The flavors started to settle in around the half inch mark as the woody notes became more of a sweet cedar flavor. There is nice bit of spice to counter the sweetness, especially noticed on the retrohale. The spice is a black pepper spice and isn't overpowering, it does leave a nice tingle on the palate and the back of the throat. As I progress through the first third the sweet cedar gains some character and definition as it is joined by some honey-like sweet notes. The finish is crisp with a toasty tone. Nearing the end of the first third, some espresso notes join the mix.
The honey notes kick it up a notch in the second third as they are joined by a nutty almond flavor. It reminds me of the honey-almond nouget inside a toblerone candy bar. The sweet cedar moves into the background a bit to give the honey and toasted almond some time in the spotlight, which is shared with the notes of espresso. The sweetness has increased just a bit and so has the black pepper spice. This cigar is very well balanced on the sweetness and spice so far. The body started out just a touch on the medium-full side of medium and has been consistent so far. Somewhere around the midway point some fruit flavors begin to pop in and out.
There wasn't a lot of change in the final third, but no complaints from me. The fruit notes take on an apricot flavor, really more of a candied apricot. The honey-almond, sweet cedar, espresso, and black pepper all survived through to the end. This was a fairly complex cigar with the way the flavors presented themselves and danced around on the palate. It was smooth and never harsh throughout the burn and the burn line required no corrections. The ash held firm with a dark gray color for just over an inch at a time before falling off into my waiting ashtray. Overall this was an outstanding cigar, which I have found to be the case with all the C&C Cigars I have smoked so far. It is the quality and flavor you expect from Mike Chiusano. I look forward to what he has instore for C&C Cigars' future blends. StogieBoys has these for 8.25 per stick in the toro size reviewed here, or a box of 20 for about 112.00. This is about the price point I would expect for this flavorful stick. At the time of this review the loose cannon cigars are buy one get one free on singles and five packs, so what better time to grab a few. You can find this deal at http://stogieboys.com/cigardon-feature .
I have had a chance to use the included lighter as well. I am a Xikar fanboy but I do own some torches that are not xikar. This is one of those lighters that you will fall in love with regardless of your usual fire creating choices. I really like the soft flame and the torch in the same lighter body. I like to toast the edges of the foot with the torch and then use the soft flame to actually light my cigar. Calll me crazy but it seems to keep the tobacco from getting so hot. I have lit probably a dozen cigars with this one so far and had to refill it at around cigar number 11 (that includes me playing with the lighter too). While it may not be a xikar or a bugatti lighter, it is still a quality piece of pyrophenalia that would be perfect to add to you collection, or to give to a new cigar smoker who may not have invested in a good torch yet.
The final verdict on the membership kit? I give it a huge thumbs up! This makes my seventh humidor that is in service and it works just as well as any of the others I have. So far the Big Sexy Smokers Club has my attention and recommendation.
As noted in a previous post, the cigars sent to me for the month of January were the Thurman Thomas Hall of Fame Toro, in Connecticut and Maduro. I have already reviewed both of these cigars on the site, so I will provide a link to those below. They are some tasty smokes, you might say Hall of Fame material. I know my word-play is rusty. Until next time, keep em toasty and step over to StogieBoys and check out the Big Sexy Smokers Club for yourself, I believe you will be pleased.
Thurman Thomas Hall of Fame Maduro
Thurman Thomas Hall of Fame Connecticut
Thurman Thomas Hall of Fame Maduro
Thurman Thomas Hall of Fame Connecticut