March 4, 2010

Series Review: El Triunfador #3

I'm not going to go into much detail with the intro section of these reviews because they are all from the same line of cigars. I'll list the specifics, my smoking environment, and then get right to the review. Again, these cigars were provided by New Havana Cigars. Please visit their site to help support this blog. 

To kick off this new review series, I decided to start with the vitola that is right in the middle of the line in size: the El Triunfador #3. I figured this stick could be a good base to see how the blend tastes and then move on from here with smaller and larger sizes.


Vitola: Corona Gorda
Length: 5 5/8
Ring Gauge: 46
Wrapper: Ecuadorian Habano
Binder: Nicaragua
Filler: Nicaragua
Price: $6.52 (when bought in boxes of 25)
Smoking Location: House of Cigar, Columbus, Ohio
Beverage: Coke

The El Triunfador #3 had a beautiful wrapper. The color was an even, dark, milk chocolate brown with minimal veins. The scent of the unlit cigar was of sweet tobacco with some earthy notes. Once clipped, the overall draw was free with slight resistance and had a mild sweet tobacco flavor. I pinched the cigar from head to foot and the stick had a give to it, but no soft spots that I could detect.

First Third
Once evenly torched, the El Triunfador #3 opened up with a blast of strong white pepper flavor. I could feel the spice not only on the front of my palate but also resting in the back of my throat. Anyone that has smoked a  Tatuaje cigar knows the flavor I'm talking about. The smoke was thick and creamy when exhaled, but the finish was rather short. Around six or seven puffs into the cigar, the white pepper spice started to fade and a cedar flavor started to make it's way to the forefront.  This was a great compliment to the opening spice and seemed to really mellow the cigar out. The ash on the stick was tight and compact and it took a good knock on the ashtray to fall -- which was a pretty nice surprise on a cigar with this ring gauge size. The body was right around medium but dipped somewhat into the mild side.

Second Third
The second third of my El Triunfador #3 started out pretty much the same as the end of the first third with a strong cedar flavor and a creamy smoke texture, but then it changed up. I started to detect some flavors of anise (licorice) and a very mild peppermint. These flavors really woke me up and took me awhile to nail down. The cedar tastes were still there, but the flavor profile had become more complex with these additions. The burn on the cigar had started to be a little crooked, but it corrected itself. The draw was still perfect and the body was now a solid, mellow medium.

Final Third and Final Thoughts
El Triunfador #3, in it's final third, really hit the mark. The complex flavor profile with the cedar, anise, and peppermint, were joined now by the reemergence of the white peppery spice. The only negative I had during the final third of this cigar was the strange burn, with the burn running down one side of the stick and also some odd tunneling in the ash. The burn line was easily corrected with my torch and the tunnels didn't cause any issues in the draw, but I thought it was worth noting. The body kicked up slightly, but I would still put it in the medium category.

Final thoughts:  I could smoke the El Triunfador #3 back to back. The different flavors were always mixing up the experience and I never got bored. The body was right around where I like a stick to be when not having a huge dinner beforehand, and the finish on the smoke was far from overpowering. I did have some slight burn issues, but nothing that wasn't easily manageable with little effort.  If the rest of the El Triunfador line in the series of reviews mimics the #3, I would say Pete Johnson has another winner.


Post a Comment