Country of origin: Honduras
Ring gauge: 50
Rating: ★★★★ (very good)
I smoked this cigar with no plans to post a review, but felt compelled to report my experience...all I can say is WHOA!
Camacho Cigars boasts that this line is produced from "first-generation Cuban seed (1997 Vintage) Corojo leaf grown in Honduras’ Jamastran Valley, where the fertile soil and climate compare to Cuba’s renowned Vuelta Abajo region", and is supposedly the only 100% pure corojo in the world. Corojo is a Cuban tobacco varietal which is typically shade-grown and used for cigar wrappers.
I was not prepared for this review, as I did not take any photos of the cigar, the beautiful promotional package in which it was shipped, or the chronology of its burn. I received this cigar as a free gift from Camacho Cigars some time in early October (I believe from some Facebook or Twitter promotion). As per my routine, I never smoke anything I receive via mail immediately - so I placed the stick in one of my humidors retained in its cellophane, just to assure that it would be in optimal smoking condition when I was ready for it. Hey, who knows how long since it had been packaged, sitting in the mail outside of a properly humidified environment for an unknown length of time! So after a little over two months, I decided to transfer it to my travel humidor to enjoy one day while on my various daily excursions in the Smokeasy mobile lounge. Today was that day...
While assessing its suppleness (which was consistent and perfect), I admired the silky, light brown maduro wrapper, which was moderately veiny. The wrapper seams were not easily distinguishable and the cap was smooth and tight. The scent was earthy and a bit musty. I employed a nice clean guillotine cut, to which the cap remained fixed to the shoulder. Pre-draw was bold and revealed some mild spiciness, which was accompanied with a mild "twang" on the tip of the tongue - uh-oh, I had a feeling that this stick was prepared to give me a little kick. Well, the promotional material DID warn that it was a full-bodied cigar that would knock me on your ass!
Using wooden matches, the cigar lit very easily and the first draw provided a great deal of smoke, which was consistent throughout. While it did not put me on my ass, the first third was heavy with body with some SERIOUS black peppery flavor - enough to ward off any novice smoker whose palate may not be ready for this. The black pepper and some earthy bitterness just coated my palate and I felt like I just ate some hot-ass Ethiopian food and would perhaps need some sips of water - but I did not punk out and continued to see what more this stick had to offer. I will admit that retrohaling during this first third made me cough like a newbie just a little; however, I appreciated the robust cinnamon-like spicy notes even better.
The second third lost its pepper and gave way to some rather pronounced charred woody flavor, which was enjoyable. At times, I believe there may have been some subtle leather undertones. The draw remained easy and the burn was even, with production of long, tight ashes. The hearty boldness was unchanged throughout the smoke. The finale delivered a surprising transition to smooth caramel-toffee notes with some elements of creaminess. The cigar did not burn hot towards the end, but burned itself out with about a 1 1/2 inch-nub remaining. I didn't bother to re-light, as I believed that the cigar had already given all it had to give, and I was already satisfied.
This smoke was quite a pleasant surprise - full-bodied maduros with complex flavor profiles are my personal preference. I definitely would not recommend this cigar to a novice, but would indisputably recommend to my aficionados who love cigars that pack power and intensity comparable to Habanos. As it stands, I haven't met a Camacho cigar that I did not like...
According to the company website (www.camachocigars.com), in addition to the Toro, the Camacho Corojo is available in three other vitolas: Figurado (6 1/8" x 42/54); Cetros (6 1/2" x 44); and Churchill (7" x 48). However, you may find the Gigante (6 1/2" x 54) and the Monarca (5" x 50) available at various online retailers. Enjoy my friends!