Cigar Review – RyJ Romeo No. 2 tubos, Ago 2008 “MAS” box code; Final Score – 86

So, here’s my second cigar review to start off this blog.  Since I decided to get this blog off the ground and running, I’ve was thinking over what cigars I’d like to review first.  My initial three?  Romeo y Julieta Coronitas en Cedros (done yesterday), RyJ Romeo No. 2 tubos (this review here), and Montecristo No. 4.

The Coronitas en Cedros that I had yesterday was damn good.  I was very happy with the end result on that one.  Can the Romeo No. 2 fare as well?  Let’s see how it rolls along…

On to the review:

Reviewed Cigar:  Romeo y Julieta Romeo No. 2 tubos

Box Date:  Ago 2008

Factory / Manufacture Code:  MAS

Packaging:  25-box, standard dress box, tubos

Price per cigar:  $4.68 USD (online vendor, 2008)

Length:  5 1/8″, or 129 mm

Ring Gauge:  42

Format:  Petit Corona

Weight:  9 grams / 0.3 oz (out of tube)

Construction/Appearance & Pre-Light:  This is another cigar that comes from a box I bought in 2008, and is from one those same first orders that I started keeping a log with of my purchases to track box codes, prices, retailers, etc.  As I mentioned with the Coronitas en Cedros review, while I don’t smoke a lot of these RyJ’s anymore due to changes in my tastes, I still will keep (good, hand-picked) boxes of these in my humidors.  These are always good for a good core hit of RyJ flavours for me, and the presentation of these are always nice, especially with the RyJ artwork and the tubos.

These were machine made up until 2002, and this particular box was the first one that I got after they started doing a painted tubos – previous to these in 2008, the tubos were a simple unpainted brushed aluminum, with some red text printed on it with a bit of golden yellow.  I do like the painted tubos with some of the other lines (Cohiba, Montecristo, etc.), but with RyJ, part of me wishes they’d have stayed with the unpainted brushed aluminum with the red and yellow printing on it.

The construction on this particular smoked cigar was decent enough.  Slightly rustic and rough looking wrapper to it, but lovely colours again of a reddish-tinged Colorado maduro.  No soft- or hard-spots.  The triple cap on this was PERFECT – I love when a cigar’s triple cap slightly curves down the curves of the head itself.  This lends it a decent anchor for when the head is cut – I hate when it’s a fairly shallow triple-cap, and if you cut too much of it, the edges of the triple starts to unravel as it gets wet from saliva as you smoke.

After clipping, the draw on this one was fairly restrictive, but passible.  Tasting it at cold, I was getting cherry tones, damp old leather, and loads of brown sugar.  Almost of “demerara” sugar, that really dark, damp, dark brown sugar that has quite a measure of molasses in it.  Wonderful.

Opening Impressions:  After lighting up and initial draws, the draw was just perfect when lit.  The body/density of the smoke was too thin though, barely present honestly.  Hits of wet, old leather and dome damp wood.

First Third:  Into the first third, it didn’t perform too well.  After about the first 1/8 of an inch into the cigar, the draw bogged right now.  Horribly restrained draw.  Minimal amounts of smoke, and just the leather tone, surrounded by some dark cedar wood.  The sugar sweetness and cherry tinge disappeared – the excitement was waning for me.  Thankfully – I had a big glass of rum and was yet again sitting in the hot tub!  Coulda been worse…

Second Third:  Into the second third…it got worse.  Paper.  Cedar scented paper.  That’s what I seemed to be smoking.  Overly restrictive draw continued.  To add on to it, I started daydreaming heavily – I honestly don’t even remember anything from the start of the 2nd third, all the way into the opening of the final third.

I started thinking about some close co-workers – they’re in a tough, scary, sandy spot right now.  Though we haven’t heard too much, I know it’s hard going for them.  All my best thoughts and best wishes are travelling their way.

So, I tried to clear my mind of other thoughts.  Next thing I knew…

Final Third:  Into the last third, and where the hell did this come from?!  Suddenly, as I was literally just about to pitch this damn thing, the draw seemed to open up, and thus the flavour flood came a flowin’.  DAMN!!!!  Dense, lush puffs of smoke.  Huge intermingling hits of dark cherries, cedar wood, mild chocolate, and almost an unsalty pistachios tone.  Brown sugar goodness.  Some leather tones too.

This final third – damn, if only the whole cigar had been like this.  Nubbed it, and savoured this last chunk slowly.

Finishing Comments / Overall Impression:  I really wished this cigar had been throughout what the final third ended up being.  Wow.  Such a turnaround for this cigar.  I was so close to chucking it and giving it a 77-80 or so.  But this final third really redeemed it.  And that’s unfortunate, because had it not been as restrictive as it was earlier, I have no doubt it would have been stellar.  Likely a plug / tight spot of some sort that I ended up suffering through and smoking through when I was daydreaming through the second third.

Final Score:  86

Total Smoking Time:  1 hr and 15 minutes

Paired Beverage:  Havana Club Anejo 7 Anos and Coke Zero

Last Meal:  Roasted-garlic-and-red-pepper Kraft dinner, 2-1/4 hrs previous

Date & Time Smoked:  September 23rd, 2014; lit up at 3:10 pm, done at 4:25 pm

Smoking Conditions:  Sunny, light wind at 22 km/h, 19 degrees Celsius, 57% RH

Thanks for reading my review. Hope you enjoyed it.

Cheers all.

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