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Irish Cigar impressions sponsored by MTuccelli!

90+_Irishman90+_Irishman Loveland, COPosts: 12,440 ✭✭✭✭✭
Ok so first things first, this isn’t my overall review of this cigar but rather a first experience and impression of it instead. Mike sent me a bunch of cigars about a week ago asking for my opinion on them and even went so far as to send two of every cigar just to make sure I didn’t get a bum stick; his generosity never ceases to amaze me so thank you Mike, really! The first one that I’ve tried so far is the Honduran based Rafael Gonzalez. I am saying that this is just a first impression because the smoking circumstances that I enjoyed this in was less than ideal, it was raining out and I smoked it in on the drive to work. Due to the rain and driving it did not burn right and was a little hot but I think that is solely due to the conditions. Ok disclaimer over lol and on to the impressions ;)

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This is what one of the online retailers has to say about it: “Rafael Gonzalez cigars present a well-balanced, handmade cigar of very high quality that's also moderately priced. The filler blends choice Honduran, Dominican, and Nicaraguan tobaccos with a rich-tasting Connecticut broadleaf binder capping in a silky U.S. Connecticut shade wrapper. The Cuban version is reputed to be very mild, but this Honduran-made edition is more medium-bodied with an appealing nutty flavor, while retaining its Havana cousin's smoothness and inviting aroma.”

the cigar lit quickly and well with the BIC lighter (all I had with me DOH!) and started off a little wet and hot but after the first quarter inch settled into the main flavors with fairly cool smoke and dense rich clouds of it as well, the ash was tight and well-constructed and the cigar felt really well in the hand but was a little soft and spongy, once again due to the humidity from the rain I’m guessing. Dryboxing this for 30 min to an hour would really help I think and is what I will do in the future for the next try. It opened with a very nutty flavor, a smooth and subtly sweet almond and was mellow and creamy with a mild and light leather and fragrant cedar. From there it grew into a roasted peanut flavor with caramel and a more robust leather that started to taste oily as the cigar burned and this profile stayed the same through the smoke just varying in intensity on some of the flavors. The finish was long but ended slightly bitter and a bit ammonia. By the final third, a sweet and tangy spice caught up and joined in to help balance the growing strength which was a solid medium. It was a sweet and smoky chipotle pepper spice along with some toasted tobacco notes that faded into a cedar and oiled leather finish. All in all though not a bad first impression and something that can be a great morning smoke or commute smoke if enjoyed in more favorable conditions, but like I said the full review will be up soon when I take a second crack at this in better conditions.

Thanks for reading guys, and thanks again Mike!
"When walking in open territory bother no one. If someone bothers you, ask them to stop. If they do not stop, destroy them."

Comments

  • ToombesToombes Posts: 4,506 ✭✭✭
    Droooooolllll...! Awesome review for an "impression".
  • 90+_Irishman90+_Irishman Loveland, COPosts: 12,440 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Toombes:
    Droooooolllll...! Awesome review for an "impression".
    LOL thanks Dan, didn't feel it was fair to actually call it a review with the cirumstances being against it, but I think this would be a great morning smoke with coffee or a drive to work smoke.
    "When walking in open territory bother no one. If someone bothers you, ask them to stop. If they do not stop, destroy them."
  • ToombesToombes Posts: 4,506 ✭✭✭
    90+ Irishman:
    Toombes:
    Droooooolllll...! Awesome review for an "impression".
    LOL thanks Dan, didn't feel it was fair to actually call it a review with the cirumstances being against it, but I think this would be a great morning smoke with coffee or a drive to work smoke.

    Duly noted, Brett. ...and the search begins, again...
  • MTuccelliMTuccelli Posts: 2,629 ✭✭✭
    Great review Brett, I am positive you will find a different smoke with a little dry box time and on a not so humid day. This is why I sent 2 and I am glad you will revisit it again in the future. This is not a very expensive stick and one I was considering as a good yard gar or to handout to buddies looking for a budget stick. Thank you for taking the time to review a few sticks for me.

  • marineatbn03marineatbn03 Spring Hill, FLPosts: 2,670 ✭✭✭
    Irish makes me hungry with his reviews, lol.
  • mmccartneydcmmccartneydc Posts: 3,407 ✭✭✭
    marineatbn03:
    Irish makes me hungry with his reviews, lol.
    +1
  • 90+_Irishman90+_Irishman Loveland, COPosts: 12,440 ✭✭✭✭✭
    MTuccelli:
    Great review Brett, I am positive you will find a different smoke with a little dry box time and on a not so humid day. This is why I sent 2 and I am glad you will revisit it again in the future. This is not a very expensive stick and one I was considering as a good yard gar or to handout to buddies looking for a budget stick. Thank you for taking the time to review a few sticks for me.

    No problem Mike and thank YOU again brother! I agree that it should be a 180 degree difference with drybox and no rain and also think it is a great stick to hand out or smoke when you aren't dedicating your time to experience the cigar, but rather just smoke one and do something while you smoke.
    "When walking in open territory bother no one. If someone bothers you, ask them to stop. If they do not stop, destroy them."
  • 90+_Irishman90+_Irishman Loveland, COPosts: 12,440 ✭✭✭✭✭
    mmccartneydc:
    marineatbn03:
    Irish makes me hungry with his reviews, lol.
    +1
    HAHAHA sorry guys, I just do what I can lol
    "When walking in open territory bother no one. If someone bothers you, ask them to stop. If they do not stop, destroy them."
  • marineatbn03marineatbn03 Spring Hill, FLPosts: 2,670 ✭✭✭
    I had to track down some pecan pie after that one
  • 90+_Irishman90+_Irishman Loveland, COPosts: 12,440 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Final Blend Robusto

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    Manufacturer: San Rafael Cigars (Based in California to my knowledge)
    Size: Robusto 5” X 50
    Wrapper: Brazilian Mata Fina Oscuro
    Binder/Filler: Dominican, Columbian and Indonesian
    Box Age: A few months

    Backtsory:
    Before I smoked the Final Blend I really knew very little about it. I chose to research and find out all I could after I smoked it so as not to influence or bias my review on it. That being said however, this was one of the cigars that a close and dear friend of mine, Mike Tuccelli, bestowed upon me asking for my take on them. I didn’t want to bias my opinion one way or the other so I went into each review blind to get a fair assessment of each cigar. Mike, thank you my friend I have truly enjoyed this gracious opportunity that you have bestowed upon me brother!
    The Final Blend is a cigar that is exclusive to Famous Smoke Shop and can only be purchased from their site. Learning more about it and calling their company I came across this description and the information I provided above:

    “Final Blend cigars are the result of a marathon cigar sampling session held in Nicaragua, and as so often happens, the very last blend is what earned these uber-flavorful, medium-bodied cigars their name. The 'final blend' is...a core of Dominican, Colombian and Indonesian tobaccos rolled in dark, oily Brazilian Mata Fina Oscuro wrappers. Earthy, sweet, and spicy flavors weave in and out as notes of cocoa and coffee bean surface for a deliciously complex, MUST-TRY cigar.”

    Draw: The draw was just about perfect on this bad boy, somewhat loose to make for an effortless draw but just enough resistance to produce volumes of smoke. 10/10 pts
    Burn: The initial light was effortless as well with only the first third needing a touch up or two from the lighting of it. The burn was fairly straight but had some waviness to it, however all was self correcting. 8.5/10 pts
    Construction: The Final Blend was just a touch rough looking, the seams were tight but there were two or three heavy veins, some uneven box-pressing, and two small sections of the cap that weren’t fully smoothed down. None of this affected the cigar mind you, but did make the appearance more rustic. 8.5/10 pts
    Body: In general Oscuro wrappers are quite the powerful body, but this one was deceptively smooth and mild. The first 2/3rds of the Robusto were medium body at best, with only the final third growing into a weak full body. Enjoyable all the way through. 9/10 pts
    Smoke Time: 55 minutes

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    Smoking Experience:
    I clip the cap with my trusty Xikar Xi guillotine cutter and light it up with a double torch lighter. She lights up quickly and immediately starts producing clouds of white dense smoke, which is already cool and smooth even on the very first draw while lighting. It starts off with the classic maduro profile, but with a twist; it is smoother and more aromatic with a distinct bouquet to the core of it that is very similar and reminiscent of a bold and spicy Merlot wine. It has a red wine grape tone to it along with a spicy sweet red pepper. The finish is clean and short, starting with a leather musk the quickly turns to a very dry tasting cedar and a black pepper aftertaste. The balance, something I was not expecting to be anything special, is actually quite good and in harmony with the medium body. The first major turn for this girl starts early on at just past the 1” mark and drops the dry cedar and spicy tones along with the black pepper aftertaste. It smoothes out to a velvety milk chocolate and honey roasted peanut with a chewy mouth feel to it. The leather musk has settled down as well but is still there floating in and out of the profile. The burn stays fairly sharp with just a few wavy parts here and there. Right about a third into the robusto I pick out a distinct black cherry flavor as a very subtle undertone that is very unique and really focuses my attention on the cigar. The undertone shows up right at the tip of your tongue as the smoke first hits it, then disappears to show up again on the finish with the milk chocolate and peanut. As it burns down the black cherry note strengthens from an undertone to a full-on distinct note in the profile, making the balance of the cigar really shine with complexity and refinement, and holding my attention fast. For such a dark and toothy wrapper that in my experience normally leads to a intensely robust and bold flavor profile, somewhat like a sledgehammer versus a small ball peen hammer, this profile is very delicate and refined. No one flavor overpowers another and all of them are rather subtle and subdued, but in combination with one another and the phenomenal balance that it has right now, it is a fantastic flavor bomb ripe with unique notes and tones. The ash holds tight to nearly 2” which is where I decide to ash it so that I don’t wear it, a tendency that I am still trying to break lol.

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    The strength becomes a somewhat weak full, and the flavor grows to have some balls as well. It is much more robust and chewy with the smoky wood and chocolate becoming the main core. The nutty notes are the finish now and the cigar changes very little from here on out to finish slightly hot and bitter at the final nub. All in all, this girl caught me by surprise and I really enjoyed smoking it!

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    Rating Scale:

    Balance: 25 out of 25 pts. It was dynamic and allowed the balance to continuously grow and shift to match the changing strength, superb!
    Construction: 17 out of 20 pts. The uneven box press and partial loose cap took it down a few points.
    Draw: 20 out of 20 pts. Nothing wrong here, great draw!
    Flavor: 17 out of 20 pts. It had some great flavors, but the last third lacked the complexity that I enjoyed so much earlier on and got hot and bitter.
    Wow Factor: 11 out of 15 pts. I was really not expecting much of anything and it came out of nowhere and blew me away, great cigar!

    Total Score: 90 Pts.

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    "When walking in open territory bother no one. If someone bothers you, ask them to stop. If they do not stop, destroy them."
  • MTuccelliMTuccelli Posts: 2,629 ✭✭✭
    Brett this review affirms what I felt about this stick as being a good one for sharing with good close friends. As always your reviews are spot on and truthful

  • 90+_Irishman90+_Irishman Loveland, COPosts: 12,440 ✭✭✭✭✭
    MTuccelli:
    Brett this review affirms what I felt about this stick as being a good one for sharing with good close friends. As always your reviews are spot on and truthful

    Thanks Mike, glad you enjoyed the read and really appreciate the kind words, thanks a lot!
    "When walking in open territory bother no one. If someone bothers you, ask them to stop. If they do not stop, destroy them."
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