11. Cohiba Siglo VI. Though I’m usually loathe to enjoy a fresh one of these, this was quite nice. Gifted and enjoyed while having an amazing seafood lunch experience at Santy’s, I’ve no doubt it helped in my enjoyment of it. Strong, strong flavours of fresh-cut grass, hay, citrus, strong leather tones, and vanilla-laden whipping cream. Just wonderful to go with the kaledioscope of flavours present in that meal.
12. 898 custom, gifted from Yolanda at Melia Habana. Wonderful. I’ve actually not had that format from her before – I usually just have the piramides, which is what I picked up a bundle of this time as well. But this 898 was nice. Slightly peppery, but sweet at the same time. Reminded me of a vanilla / white chocolate laden Partagas 898. While it was damp, and constantly needed relights, it put out just the right amount of smoke, and had a wonderful draw.
13. Ramon Allones Superiores LCDH. Dic 2014 “ULA” coded, priced at $57.50 CUC’s for a 10-box. I found three super fresh, identically coded boxes of these at the Melia Habana LCDH, and scooped them up. Smoked amazingly well for being less than three months old. Strong RA flavours of stewed unsweetened fruit, with some molasses, dark old leather, and rich poundcake with a cherry tinge. Just wonderful. Perfect draw, perfect construction. RA releases lately have just been so stellar.
14. Ramon Allones Gigantes. Nov 2013 “MUL” coded, and snagged for $261.25 CUC’s for a 25-box. Perfect cigar. Aside from the many many Monsdales, this was my other favourite cigar of the trip. This was smoked during a wonderful seafood dinner at Ivan Justo’s, on a last night with Nino, Gino and Stefano. These are from a wonderful box I picked up at the shop at Commodoro, one of a handful of great looking boxes of these that I found (none with matching box codes either, if I recall correctly). For such a big cigar, it smoked impeccably. Wonderful draw, razor-sharp burn generally, fairly firm and solid ash. Flavours of old leather, mild cedar, light Christmas-cake tones, mixed with sweet prunes. Stellar. These are definitely ready to smoke now, but I’m also interested to see how this box in particular develops over the coming years.
So, that does it for this rundown. Hope you enjoyed a bit of the condensed reviews, backgrounds and photos.