Monday, September 24, 2007

The Smoking Lounge Review: Vegas Robaina Famosos

While not TECHNICALLY a Cuban Robusto, the Hermoso No. 4 is VERY close in size, so I decided to include this in my ongoing review series of "Cuban Robustos": Size: 5" (127 mm)
Weight: 10.86 grams

Box Code: AML SEP 06

Vitola: Hermoso No. 4

Country of Origin: Cuba

Tobacco Procedence: Vuelta Abajo

Factory: H. Upmann

Info: Don Alejandro Robaina is renowned by cigar aficionados everywhere as one of the best tobacco farmers in the famed Vuelta Abajo of Cuba. Each year, 80% of Don Alejandro's tobacco harvest is deemed fit for use as wrapper leaf for Cuban cigars (compared to only around 35% for other plantations). In 1997, Habanos SA honored him by launching a new line of cigars bearing the name of his famous farmland. This line was officially launched in Spain, in the spring of 1997, and was made available to the world market in the fall. Vegas Robaina cigars, made in Havana at the former H. Upmann Factory, have quickly become popular among cigar aficionados.

Don Alejandro has, himself, become a celebrity in the world of Cuban cigars, with many aficionados and tourists in Cuba flocking to his farm in the San Luis region of the Vuelta Abajo to meet the man himself and see his tobacco vegas.

This is one pretty looking cigar. Fairly firm for a Cuban cigar, but not too much so, construction seems to be a plus. Graced with a smooth milk-chocolate wrapper, delicious looking with nary a vein to be seen, this is one of the prettiest looking habanos I have seen to date.

Pre-Light: Clip was easy and a non issue. It was more like peeling the triple cap off than clipping anyway. There-light draw had a bit of resistance but was not difficult by any means. Notes from pre light were dry and earthy and /or woody.

Burn/Draw: This might have been the best burning Cuban cigar I have ever had! Almost all of the Habanos I have smoked needed a touch up at some point (no matter how minor) but this one was the first true light and forget. The burn was long and slow and cool, it took about an hour to smoke this cigar. The draw was in the middle of the scale, not loose, nor tight, and I think that helped the nice cool burn. The ash was firm and mottled, and held for about two inches.
Flavors: This is one very tasty cigar. It starts with a birth of rich, organic earthiness. Then it settles in to a plethora of nice dry notes. That is the aspect that intrigued me the most about this cigar. There is no real discernible sweet note in this cigar. There are plenty of fabulous dry notes, that nice earthy base note, and on top of that there were several different burning wood smells and tastes. this cigar is staunchly medium strength and medium bodied, which I think fits the profile of the stogie quite well. The flavor was pretty consistent the whole way down the length of the cigar, with not much in the way of change or development. On the whole I would say that this is a good Cuban cigar to have at a herf, where you want something much better than average, but consistant that does not necessarily demand your attention to examine its nuances (because you know what you are going to get here). This would make a good staple Cuban cigar, and you should try it if you get the chance. Recommended.


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