La Aurora - Barrel Aged

Rob1110Rob1110 Posts: 1,455
I picked up two of these about a month ago, planning on having one soon and letting the other age for a while. I've been a fan of La Aurora since I first tried their Emerald Tubo Preferido on the recommendation of a local shop. I'm new to the whole review process, so I'll do my best.

Here's the Ad for this stick: The Aurora Barrel Aged cigar is a creamy, full-bodied smoke with hints of caramel. Aurora takes Corojo wrapper leaf and ages it in old rum barrels. This process darkens the wrapper to an Oscuro and adds a ton of flavor.

Pre-light: Nice clean, fresh tobacco smell with subtle sweet undertones. Very nice smelling cigar with a pleasant pre-light draw.

Construction: I'd have to go with the word "perfect" to best describe the construction here. Minimal veins, no soft spots, wrapper and cap in beautiful condition - flawless seams. Even throughout the smoking experience, there were absolutely no wrapper problems, the burn was even all the way down and the cap never even showed any signs of beginning to unravel (I used a punch, so the wrapper was mostly intact, not cut). The draw was never too loose, never too tight and always produced LOTS of smoke. Ash held tight and even throughout.

Flavor: I'd put this one up there in the full flavored department. However, not too spicy (which seems to be the overall end result of most full flavored/bodied cigars these days). Starts off VERY woody, (distinctly oak) and reminiscent of a good aged scotch. This woody/earthy tone begins to fade, but remains beneath the surface throughout the rest of the cigar. After an inch or so, a slightly sweet and slightly spicy aroma is introduced (not too sweet or spicy - but undertones of fruit and spice found in a good aged rum). This lasted about two inches before a very strong and distinct leather note dominated the pallet, with the return of that oak found in the first inch. By the end (last quarter) of the cigar, I found a very strong, bittersweet cocoa note became pronounced with smokey undertones to it. It was around this point that I began to really feel this cigar in my belly.

Overall: This cigar was absolutely beautifully presented, a pleasure and privilege to smoke and well worth every penny spent on it (reasonably priced at just over $8 for a churchill). If this review intrigued you at all, I'd encourage you to get out there and try one of these cigars. Now if I can just keep my paws off the other one in my humi, we'll see what some age can do to blend and mellow this beauty.
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Comments

  • Bad AndyBad Andy Posts: 848
    I'm intrigued by the barrell aging. It works for wine and whiskey why not tobacco too. I will try to grab some of these when I get home in a few days, maybe bring a few back to the sandbox with me if they are that good. Thanks for the review.
  • urbinourbino Posts: 4,517
    Darn good review, Rob. I'll have to grab a coupla these at some point.
  • pilot711pilot711 Posts: 176
    Sold! Good review- good enough to make me want to give one a try. Thanks.
  • kuzi16kuzi16 Posts: 14,616 ✭✭✭
    Im not familiar with this cigar (I know, im scared too).
    here is my train of thought. this cigar is aged in an old rum barrel. this will, in theory, give it a unique flavor. rum is a sugar based white spirit and has very neutral flavor. Should it be treated like an infused cigar or not? if i get one can i put this cigar in the Humi with all the others and not have it change anything?
  • Bad AndyBad Andy Posts: 848
    Good point Kuz but in those cases would cello help with that at all. I know that it is a porous but would the cello stop any of the 'flavors' from mixing too much.
  • Rob1110Rob1110 Posts: 1,455
    kuzi16:
    Im not familiar with this cigar (I know, im scared too).
    here is my train of thought. this cigar is aged in an old rum barrel. this will, in theory, give it a unique flavor. rum is a sugar based white spirit and has very neutral flavor. Should it be treated like an infused cigar or not? if i get one can i put this cigar in the Humi with all the others and not have it change anything?


    Thanks for all the comments everyone. And Kuz, upon smelling this cigar, there is no strong "infused" or "flavored" scent to it. I stored mine in the celo just to protect them from getting bumped around, but I wouldn't worry at all about storing them without it on.

    I'm not too surprised that you haven't heard much about this one. It's a fairly new line and though Aurora seemed to want to push this cigar due to the novelty, I really haven't seen them around too much, including online. I caught one or two ads in magazines and online. I'm actually surprised we're not seeing a lot more of them around, considering the potential market.

    It's worth a try and I really hope everyone enjoys it at least as much as I did. I wouldn't want to disappoint.
  • kuzi16kuzi16 Posts: 14,616 ✭✭✭
    Bad Andy:
    Good point Kuz but in those cases would cello help with that at all. I know that it is a porous but would the cello stop any of the 'flavors' from mixing too much.
    If its acting like an infused cigar then cello will not help at all. cello stopps almost nothing. but from the post directly below the one i quoted i would say it may not impose much flavor. if thats the case then is it just novelty that they are in the barrel to age? if it doesnt change the flavor much if at all whats the point?
  • Rob1110Rob1110 Posts: 1,455
    Found this on the Cigar Aficionado web site:

    Roll Out the Barrel: Cask Aged Aurora Cigars

    Posted: Friday, July 27, 2007

    By David Savona

    Few cigars are made from tobacco aged in barrels, so the cigar men at Aurora S.A. think they have something special with their Aurora Corojo Oscuro Barrel Aged Cigar.

    All of the tobacco used to make the cigar spends time in old oak barrels that once held Dominican rum. The idea is not to impart flavor to the cigar, but to keep the tobacco in a nearly sealed environment, concentrating the heat and the aging process.

    "Last year we said, Let's put the wrapper in barrels for one year," says Jose Blanco, director of sales for the Santiago, Dominican Republic, company.

    When they were opened, it smelled like heaven, said Blanco, and the tobacco "got real dark." Aurora already barrel-ages the tobacco used inside its Preferidos, 1495 and 100 Años cigars, but aging the wrapper as well is new for the company.

    The Corojo Oscuro Barrel Aged Cigar will come in four sizes, retail for $6 to $9 and debut at the Retail Tobacco Dealers of America trade show in two weeks.

    From the July 17 issue of Cigar Insider.
  • kuzi16kuzi16 Posts: 14,616 ✭✭✭
    good to know. thanks for lookin that up.
  • DiasFlakDiasFlak Posts: 342
    i want to try one of these ...
  • phobicsquirrelphobicsquirrel Posts: 7,349
    I've eyed these as well but can only find boxes. Very nice review BTW.
  • Rob1110Rob1110 Posts: 1,455
    phobicsquirrel:
    I've eyed these as well but can only find boxes. Very nice review BTW.


    Thanks. When I picked up the two singles, it was tough to find them anywhere. I just did another search yesterday and found them all over the place. Try a google search, you should get plenty of matches and most sites are pretty comparable on prices
  • rmccloudrmccloud Posts: 160 ✭✭
    The local B&M had an event with La Aurora a couple of weeks ago. I picked up a couple of these smokes. Can't wait to try one. The others from the La Aurora line that I have had have been great.
  • Big DanBig Dan Posts: 69
    you have me sold on this one ive been going back and forth on wether or not i want to spend the money on this cigar bcuz its a little pricey at the shop i buy at and since im starting out i like to feel the cigars and pick them out to just get the hang of everything. but you have definiatly convinced me to give this a shot
  • j0z3rj0z3r Posts: 9,403
    If you do decide to pick one up Dan, make sure you keep it in your humidor for a while until you get a good grip on smoking the cigar like a cigar. I noticed you mention in another thread that your cigars taste bitter and that you were a cigarette smoker...those two combined lead me to believe that you are smoking the cigar like a cigarette which will ruin the taste about 10 times out of 10, and there would be nothing worse than to spring a chunk of change on a cigar and destroy it by over-smoking. As always, my life philosophy is to take your time and do it right, you'll seldom go wrong with that method.
  • Big DanBig Dan Posts: 69
    actually you are very right with that accusation. i mentioned earlier that i was smoking the cigar like a cigarette and it mostly tasted bitter and charred and i seldomly got the taste i was looking for. i am trying to take it slow however im trying to try various cigars to see where my pallat lies and which flavors, blends, and strenght, i enjoy the most. as i also mentioned earlier i didnt really taste that much flavor in my first cigar and i kept puffing more and more to draw out that flavor i guess i need to do the opposite or try a stronger cigar im or a little of both
  • rusiriusrusirius Posts: 565 ✭✭
    Big Dan:
    actually you are very right with that accusation. i mentioned earlier that i was smoking the cigar like a cigarette and it mostly tasted bitter and charred and i seldomly got the taste i was looking for. i am trying to take it slow however im trying to try various cigars to see where my pallat lies and which flavors, blends, and strenght, i enjoy the most. as i also mentioned earlier i didnt really taste that much flavor in my first cigar and i kept puffing more and more to draw out that flavor i guess i need to do the opposite or try a stronger cigar im or a little of both
    Coming from an ex cigarette smoker, I'll tell you this... I don't know if it's just my tastes, or if it's because I smoked for many years, (quit about 8 years ago) but... The mild cigars aren't typically very enjoyable for me... Some are decent and make for a nice change of pace, but to me many of them pretty much just "Taste" like cigarette smoke... No real body... Now I'm sure a lot of this is just that my pallette isn't refined enough to pick out the very subtle nuances of flavor, but still it is what it is... The medium to full bodied cigars are where I find most of my favorites lay... It's not all about the body either... If I might make a suggestion... Try something that's medium to full body with a nice dark maduro or sumatra wrapper... Something like a Vegas 5 Miami or something similar... Try one of those if for no other reason just as a comparison to what you've been smoking... I think you'll be pleasently surprised!
  • Big DanBig Dan Posts: 69
    im definiatly all for going right in to medium to full body cigars however i just think it might be like a overload idk i just want to get my feet a little wet right now. do you think that medium - full would be overwhelming? im guessing your answer is no considering you just told me to buy one? im looking for a smooth creamy cigar with a good amount of flavor that isnt too overpowering
  • urbinourbino Posts: 4,517
    j0z3r:
    my life philosophy is to take your time and do it right
    Your wife/gf must be much happier than Shirley's.
  • rusiriusrusirius Posts: 565 ✭✭
    urbino:
    j0z3r:
    my life philosophy is to take your time and do it right
    Your wife/gf must be much happier than Shirley's.
    Nah, you just train 'em to be happy... Stick out tongue [:P]
  • rusiriusrusirius Posts: 565 ✭✭
    Big Dan:
    im definiatly all for going right in to medium to full body cigars however i just think it might be like a overload idk i just want to get my feet a little wet right now. do you think that medium - full would be overwhelming? im guessing your answer is no considering you just told me to buy one? im looking for a smooth creamy cigar with a good amount of flavor that isnt too overpowering
    As long as you smoke it correctly, no I honestly don't think you'll find a medium or full overwhelming... And it's not just the body... A maduro or sumatra wrapper you'll find adds some ..... sweetness... It typically starts to introduce some of those more cocoa / coffee / richer flavors... Don't get me wrong here, I'm not talking about flavored cigar sickening sweet... Just a barely detectable hint... But the richness of it I think you'd find quite to your liking... I personally don't really understand the whole "start out with very mild cigars and work up" idea... People have different tastes and find different things appealing... Some of the first cigars I was ever introduced to was a 4-pack of Los Blancos... The cigars themselves were basically the same, but the wrappers were different... There was a Connecticut, a Crillio, a Sumatra, and a Maduro... From that pack I discovered right away that the Sumatra and the Maduro were my two favorites... They were all basically a medium body, but the darker wrappers made all the difference in the world...

    Something like that in my opinion is a great place to start...
  • j0z3rj0z3r Posts: 9,403
    Starting out medium would actually be my recommendation as well...any new smoker that wanted to try a cigar, I'd hand them a 5 Vegas Classic... it is smooth and has a rich flavor but is not overwhelming at all.
  • Rob1110Rob1110 Posts: 1,455
    One of my first suggestions to new smokers is always the Ashton Classic. Some consider it mild, some on the mild side of medium. All the same, it's mild in a sense that it's creamy (coffee with cream, roasted nuts, sweet undertones), not spicy and may still have some nicotine kick, but for the novice smoker. That being said, Dan, it sounds more like you're looking to develop your pallet than get a nic rush. Look for cigars in the mild-medium range and read some reviews, see what other people said, what "notes" they tasted in the cigar. I believe Kuzi also wrote up an article on developing your pallet that you might find helpful.

    When it all comes down to it, it's experience, and everything is based on your personal taste. Also, I think most of the guys on here will agree that your taste will change over time. So, my personal suggestion is to buy 1 or 2 of those barrel aged and throw them in your humi until you feel you're ready for them and your pallet is developed. At the same time, pick up some smokes that people recommend, or read some reviews and find something that might suit your taste. Again, see what flavors people reported and try to find them in each cigar. Build your own reviews. Most importantly, relax and enjoy.
  • FourtotheflushFourtotheflush Posts: 2,555

    I am curious about the posts about smoking cigars wrong.  Are they implying that former cigarette smokers tend to smoke their cigars too fast?  I am not a cigarette smoker, but think that I am a fast smoker and am always telling myself to slow down and enjoy the smoke.  As a newbie what are the reported methods of the 'puff puff draw' then wait etc?

    Curiosity is killing me, as I never seem to have enought time to smoke so I alway feel like I am rushing a cigar in.

     

  • dutyjedutyje Posts: 2,263
    The puff-puff-draw method will smoke inherently more quickly. Try to keep the smoke for a longer period of time. Move it around your mouth, let a little bit dribble out. Put a little more out through the nose. Enjoy it and put it out slowly. This will take time, and when you're ready for your next draw, a good amount of time will have elapsed. They say one draw per minute, but I find myself drawing about every 45 seconds.

    Try to find a good 90 minutes or more to get a cigar in. Rushing tends to make the experience less enjoyable and less relaxing. If you have less time, you can smoke a smaller cigar. I find that the ccom house blends, as mixed filler cigars, burn pretty quickly as well, and are great for a 60-minute smoke.
  • FourtotheflushFourtotheflush Posts: 2,555

    Thanks for the feedback.

    This leads me to my next question.  Is there a thread about retailers of cigars - specifically on line distributors?  Or is this a faux pas because we are all using the cigar.com forum.

    I actually want to **** about another distributor.

  • rusiriusrusirius Posts: 565 ✭✭
    Fourtotheflush:

    I am curious about the posts about smoking cigars wrong.  Are they implying that former cigarette smokers tend to smoke their cigars too fast?  I am not a cigarette smoker, but think that I am a fast smoker and am always telling myself to slow down and enjoy the smoke.  As a newbie what are the reported methods of the 'puff puff draw' then wait etc?

    Curiosity is killing me, as I never seem to have enought time to smoke so I alway feel like I am rushing a cigar in.

     

    I think by the very nature of cigarettes that cigarette smokers would tend to be bad cigar smokers initially... Or rather tend to do it incorrectly...

    What I mean is this... A cigarette doesn't taste good... It's not something to kick back and relax with... It's not designed to give subtle changes through or various nuances in flavor, etc... It's designed almost entirely for one purpose and one purpose only... To get a healthy dose of nicotine (and all the other horrible additives) into your bloodstream as quickly as possible...

    Now keep in mind I'm allowed to say all these things because I was a cigarette smoker! ;) When I'd run out back during work and suck down a cigarette, it wasn't because I had some time to kill and wanted to unwind... It was because I wanted that rush of nicotine flowing through my system. No... I didn't want it... I NEEDED it...

    In fact, I'd venture to say that most cigarette smokers were probably like myself... Puffing away generally almost as fast as you could handle... Why? Because that damn thing was burning up rather I was puffing on it or not... Look at all that lovely smoke (i.e. nicotine and other addictive additives) going to waste! Quick, puff it before any more of it get's loose!

    Get the picture? With that in mind, I think it's fairly safe to assume that almost any cigarette smoker who decides to try cigar smoking but knows almost nothing about it will attempt to smoke it basically the same way they smoke a cigarette... Puffing away every few seconds...

    Most cigarette smokers aren't used to the idea of smoking something to TASTE it... It was never about taste before!
  • rusiriusrusirius Posts: 565 ✭✭
    Fourtotheflush:

    Thanks for the feedback.

    This leads me to my next question.  Is there a thread about retailers of cigars - specifically on line distributors?  Or is this a faux pas because we are all using the cigar.com forum.

    I actually want to **** about another distributor.

    In general I'd think it best to keep any discussion of other distributors off limits... Just for the sake of being polite to Alex (the owner of ccom)...

    However... If you want to *** about another distributor, I see no problem with that... PROVIDED the distributor goes unnamed... If anyone reads your story and is interested in who it was, you can rest assured they'll PM you and ask in a private communication...
  • dutyjedutyje Posts: 2,263
    You hit on an important point there, Shirely -- feel free to complain as long as you don't name the retailer. There's no such thing as bad publicity. Someone may read the story, and say "gee, I've never heard of them before" .. next thing you know, they're on the site and comparing deals and talking themselves into your experience being an anomaly.

    I can say with 100% certainty that you will not get better-quality service from anyone other than cigar.com. I don't want to bad-mouth the others. There are good retailers out there, sure, with competitive prices and quality service. But you will not find better service than cigar.com.
  • Big DanBig Dan Posts: 69
    ruserius brings out one of the best posts ive seen on cigarette smokers turned into cigar smokers. i smoke cigarettes and i do exactly wat he says when i smoke a cigar i freak out when i see all that smoke go to waste i just want to suck it all in but i kno ur not supposed to and its a struggle the whole way through. i try to taste it but the second it escapes my lips i bring the cigar back to my mouth as quikly as possible. and that totally ruins the cigar. so ya i guess i have to learn patience with this and jus keep working on it its an entirely different mind set for me
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