Cigar Review: Espinosa Maduro Toro

Cigar Review: Espinosa Maduro Toro

Espinosa Maduro Toro

Size: 6” x 52

Wrapper: Mexican Maduro

Binder: Nicaraguan

Filler: Nicaraguan

Strength: Medium-to-Full (airing on the side of Full)

Price: $8.60

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Grade: 9.2

Having hit store shelves roughly a month ago, the Espinosa Maduro is the namesake follow-up to Erik Espinosa’s first solo release, the Espinosa Habano. Made in his picturesque La Zona factory in Estelí, according to the company’s press release, this cigar is reminiscent of brand owner Erik Espinosa’s personal taste.

Enough about that – let’s toast the foot!

Pre-light (1.8): The Toro showcases a very comfortable box press that is not too severe, while the semi-oscuro Mexican Maduro wrapper appears to be devoid of obvious veins. Sometimes Mexican wrapper tobacco has a tendency to look and feel a bit rustic, but this grade of leaf is smooth to the touch.

To the nose, the pre-light aromas are what I expected based on the blend: pepper, Earth, and a bit of leather.

Burn (2): The draw has just the right amount of fluidity and openness, which allows for fairly prominent plumes of white smoke. Throughout the smoke the ash has definitive rings that make it appear to be a bit loose, but thankfully the cigar retained its ash without any accidents. The overall burn was even and the draw maintained its fluidity throughout.

Flavor (2.7): From the very beginning the pepper wasn’t as nearly palate-forward as I had expected given its prominence on the nose, but it was definitely there. The front of the draw was rather nutty and there was a noticeable “peppery-char” on the back of the draw. Roughly ¾” of an inch in the pepper notes began to mellow as the middle third of the cigar gave way to strong Earth and early hints of a rich chocolate note.

Mellowing out a bit more as I passed the halfway mark, I began to taste a bit of sweetness and cream that became more noticeable as I smoked my way into the final third of the cigar. As I nubbed the Espinosa Maduro, the cigar’s strength truly entered the full-bodied realm and the pepper returned for a strong finish.

Overall (2.7): There have been some good things coming out of La Zona lately and this cigar is no exception. The Espinosa Maduro Toro is a solid smoke and in my opinion, box worthy as a great, everyday Maduro. It’s a nice alternative the medium-bodied Habano and displays a good mix of “old school” and “new school” cigar making.

I wouldn’t describe the Espinosa Maduro as a very complex cigar, but that is meant to be taken as a compliment: often today manufacturers try too hard to make something they can market as complex and those cigars almost always fall short of the hype. Erik Espinosa has made a solid, dependable cigar that is both refined and approachable, and that’s a winner in my book.