January 13, 2010

Review: CAO Gold Vintage Bouchon

Tonight I went to the local B&M and grabbed an off-the-shelf smoke I'd had a few times before -- a CAO Gold Vintage Bouchon.. I was in the mood for something mild/medium in body because I had not had dinner, but not a cigar boring in flavor nor smoke volume and this cigar fit the bill.

The CAO Gold Vintage is another cigar released in 2009 by the Ozgener family that is often over-shadowed by the highly praised La Traviata. The story behind the CAO Gold Vintage, as I understand it, is that it is comprised of the same blend as the normal CAO Gold release but with a aged 2004 Ecuadorian Connecticut wrapper. According to the CAO website, Ecuador experienced a "banner harvest" in 2004. All of the CAO Gold Vintage wrappers come from that harvest and have been carefully aged and selected for this cigar.

Vitola: Bouchon/Figurado
Length: 6.75
Ring Gauge: 60
Wrapper: 2004 Ecuadorian Connecticut
Filler:  Nicaragua, Honduras
Binder: Nicaraguan
Origin: Honduras
MSRP: Aprox. $8.75
Smoking Location: House of Cigar, Columbus, Ohio
Beverage: water


The wrapper on my CAO Gold Vintage is very smooth and soft.  Pinching the cigar it has a slight give but isn't spongy. The aroma coming off the cigar is of a very mild, sweet tobacco. After cutting the head, the draw is perfect and the taste is sweet. I had not smoked this size of the CAO Gold Vintage before, but from the pre-light assessment, it shaped up just like the other sizes offered.

First Third

After lighting up this CAO Gold Vintage, I immediately tasted sweetness and creaminess with some slight notes of molasses just on the finish. The cigar produces tons of smoke both when puffing and when resting. I'd rate the body from mild to medium. As others have said, I would agree that this is a great smoke for the morning paired with coffee or, in my case, an evening before dinner.

Second Third

The second third of my CAO Gold Vintage stayed true to the first third with strong creaminess and smooth sweet flavors. The molasses flavor was amped up quite a bit, with several very spicy-sweet puffs.There was a very slight hint of leather in some of the finish which was intriguing. The ash on the cigar was very strong and held for well over two inches.

Final Third and Final Thoughts

The final third of my CAO Gold Vintage saw the molasses flavor take over the cigar and some of the cream drop off. It seemed to dry up a bit but never to the point where it felt harsh or hot. The burn on this cigar is perfect...no really...perfect. I never had to touch it with the torch after the light and the burn line was thin and straight. The body picked up slightly towards the nub but not enough for me to rank it more than a mild/medium cigar.

My final thought on this cigar is it is fantastic and what is advertised. CAO claims this is a mild/medium body cigar with a lot of flavor and I agree 100%. I got a strong sweet/molasses flavor mixed with cream that stayed pretty consistent throughout while smoking. I recommend this cigar to anyone who wants an easy smoke that is not boring.

Would I buy it again? 100% for sure

Would I buy a box? I have a box :)



  1. Well done Dan; I haven't had the Vintage Gold but it looks like I will now. I love the shape on that one. Great description.

  2. I have been less then impressed by CAO cigars in the past, but I will definitely give this one a try. I am looking for a good morning smoke to replace the Por Larranaga Cuban Grade, and this sounds about right.

  3. Dan, great review. I too picked one up at House of Cigar on Sawmill and am looking forward to it immensely.

  4. Smoking one now. Really nice. More full then I expected but nice!