Cigar Review: Cigar.com, Blue Label

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Size: 6×52, Torpedo

Wrapper: Ecuadorian Connecticut

Filler: Dominican and Central American

Strength: Medium

Price: Box of 20, $49.95

Grade: 8.8 (MM); 8.7 (JJ)

Cigar.com graciously sent us a sampler of their 7 House Blends and today we review our first smoke, the Blue Label. This is their flagship blend that initiated the concept to develop their own exclusive blend; it is blended at the Tabadom factory and is intended to be a low price alternative to such blends as the Edge Lite, Montecristo White Label, and Romeo y Julieta Reserva Real. Learn more about the Blue Label here.

And away we go on a joint review of the Blue Label!

Take 1:
Pre-light, 1.4:

The appearance on this stick left a little to be desired and was the biggest deduction on this otherwise excellent stick. The wrapper was clean and pretty smooth, with a few non-obtrusive wrappers and a bit of plume, but there were several green spots toward the foot of the smoke and an oddly swiveled cap on this Torpedo. The label is a plain blue and silver and has touches of simple elegance.  The pre-light draw and aroma were very nice with a strong smell of barnyard and a wonderful sweetness from head to foot. The stick cut well and the sweetness was evident in the draw.

Burn, 1.8:
The blue stick lit perfectly and a nice even ring formed at the base; the draw was medium and I would have preferred a tad more smoke but nothing worth deducting for. The ash was a very clean white/grey that stacked well but started leaning around the 1.5 inch mark and eventually fell. The first 1/3 burnt very quickly but this did slow a bit as the smoke progressed. A medium draw held throughout.

Flavor, 2.7:
The flavor on this stick was a real treat; the first few puffs presented a gentle burst of pepper that quickly passed into a licorice-type sweetness. The sweetness carried this smoke and my interest with slight shifts in complexity at the 2/3 mark, where a bit of harshness arrived. This was a very consistent stick that did not quite have the body of a medium smoke. There was a bit of harshness again at the transition of the final third but I think this was mostly related to the burn rather than the flavor.

Overall, 2.9:
To the nub—I smoked this one to the nub! The overall nearly scored perfectly mostly because of the superb quality of this stick at such a low price; I would stand this stick up against most any $6-8 cigar. It’s an everyday smoke because of the value but it is not your ordinary every day, yard-work/golf course cigar. I suggest picking up one of these the next time you make a purchase from cigar.com. Though the appearance doesn’t blow you away, it’s the inside that matters, right?

(Total: 8.8)

Take 2:
Pre-light, 1.4
:
I am going to be brutally honest—the appearance of this cigar leaves a lot to be desired.  The wrapper is decent, with some discoloration and very noticeable veins. The smoke is firm to the touch until reaching the foot, where it is noticeably loose and not packed well at all. The label is very simple and does not add or detract from the aesthetics of the smoke. The pre-light draw produced a burst of flavor with a combination of cinnamon oil and cloves—it reminded me of Christmas growing up, with a sweet note on the end.

Burn, 1.7:
The cigar toasted and lit well and the draw is very easy. This in turn produced a very loose ash that did not hold well after the initial ½ inch or so into the smoke. The ash was a medium gray with slight discoloration but still looked good. Mouthfuls of smoke are produced and the cigar burns well after an initial run just after lighting. The looseness is nice, but produces a warmer and faster smoke without the proper resting time between puffs.

Flavor, 2.8:
This is where the cigar really stands out. The first puff produced fragrant notes of a smooth spice and licorice type sweetness on the finish. This flavor profile held until the 2/3 point, but then the cigar smoothed out and I picked up a grapefruit type citrus note. The 3/3 was very similar to the 1/3 with the return of the sweet spice, by this time the smoke was burning pretty hot and this produced some harshness.  I do not fault the smoke for this as this was my error in smoke management. All in all the flavor of this cigar was excellent and the next time I smoke one I will make sure to take my time.

Overall, 2.8:
If cigar.com would step up the construction of this smoke it would be an excellent smoke—my main concern on that is consistency. Right now, it is a good smoke for the money and I would definitely purchase a box for an everyday type cigar. This was a good way to unwind on a Monday afternoon and I look forward to trying out some more of the cigar.com smokes.

(Total: 8.7)