Cigar Review: Cubao

Cubao

Size: 5.5×52, No. 6

Wrapper: Ecuadorian Sumatra Oscuro

Binder: Nicaraguan

Filler: Nicaraguan

Strength: Full

Price: Box of 20, $123.00

Grade: 9.1

From the boys at EO Brands, with the help from Don Pepin Garcia, comes the Cubao. Released back in 2008 at the IPCPR show, this is a great addition to the EO Brands line of cigars, most notably the 601 Series and the Murcielago. The Cubao is sold in boxes of 20 and is available in six uniquely odd sizes: 7.1×49 (No. 1), 6.1×52 (No. 2, Torpedo), 7.5×38 (No. 3, Lancero), 4.9×50 (No. 4), 6.1×50 (No. 5), and 5.5×52 (No. 6).

You can visit EO Brands, which was recently acquired by Rocky Patel Premium Cigars, online and follow them on Twitter. There is all sorts of interesting stuff going on in their neck of the woods, including a brand redesign on the 601. I have not heard whether or not there will be a design or blend change to the Cubao – perhaps Erik or Eddie can stop by and help answer this.

We’ve reviewed other EO Brands cigars in the past, so check our reviews of the 601 Black, 601 Red, and the Murcielago. I have enjoyed Cubao’s but until now have not taken the time to form a review, so let’s toast it!

Pre-light, 1.8:
The Pepin blended No. 6 has a nice oily wrapper which is smooth to the touch. Minimal veins adorn this smoke and it is well packed with no soft spots and sports a very nice triple cap. Along the wrapper are notes of rich tobacco with fragrant barnyard at the foot. The cold draw is very spicy with a rich tobacco finish. Looking at the foot more intently, you can definitely see the different tobaccos that make up this filler. The band is very simple and fits the nature of the smoke.

Burn, 1.7:
Upon lighting, the Cubao produces a ton of smoke with a very easy draw. The burn is relatively even throughout and does not require any touch ups or re-lights. The ash is a light gray in color but does not hold well, as it is very flaky. Smoke temperature is good at my pace, but I could see it warming up a bit without proper rest between puffs.

Flavor, 2.8:
The first puff on this smoke produces a ton of pepper spice, a Pepin trademark, with a hint of sweetness in the rich tobacco finish. The first third does not mellow in the spice department and leaves red pepper notes on my lips. The pepper is intertwined with a creamy texture with a hint of bitterness. The second third produces the same level of spice but I am picking up notes of coffee and bitter chocolate. The sweetness has left the building, but the finish is still excellent and very tasty.  The last third finds a decrease in the spice department but it is still present along with coffee and bitter chocolate. The finish is still long and really lays heavily on the palate, really nice on the exhale. Exhaling through the nose multiple times throughout the smoke almost made my eyes water with the spice, not a bad thing, but be prepared.

Overall, 2.8:
Spicy is the main flavor profile in this smoke and it is paired nicely with some darker notes to give it a good balance. I really enjoyed the easy draw and didn’t really have to worry at all regarding smoke management. EO and Pepin have produced some excellent smokes and the Cubao blend joins those ranks.  Priced at a very modest six to seven dollars a smoke, this is a good go to for a full bodied and full flavored smoke. I have a No. 3 resting in the humidor and we will toast that foot somewhere down the line for comparisons sake.

(Total: 9.1)

Don’t forget about our contest! (here)