Cigar Review: Viaje Super Lance Exclusivo

Cigar Review: Viaje Super Lance Exclusivo

Viaje Super Lance Exclusivo

Size: 7.5” x 46

Wrapper: Nicaraguan Criollo

Binder: Nicaraguan

Filler: Nicaraguan

Strength: Medium

Price: $10.80

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Grade: 8.0

The ninth vitola to be released in Viaje Cigars’ Exclusivo series, the Super Lance Exclusivo is another take on brand owner Andre Farkas’ personal blend.  The Exclusivo happens to be my favorite of the Farkas blends which led to an added anticipation of the this unique Cigar.    I was also intrigued by the unique Vitola as I am a big fan od Lancero’s and was curious to see what this oversized variation would do//  Falling in line with Viaje’s small batch-limited release platform, this particular Vitola just goes to show how the size of a particular blend can truly affect its delivery on the palate.

Enough of that, let’s toast the foot!

Pre-light (1.7): The first thing that struck me about this cigar was its unusual size.  The Vitola had the length of a lancero,  with the ring gauge of a corona gorda.  Intriguing enough!.  The texture of the wrapper leaf was slightly bumpy and contained a few minor imperfections, but nothing that struck me as unusual. The cap had a slight pigtail.  Perhaps the most attractive feature was the foot itself, where I could easily discern the different filler tobaccos used based on color.

To the nose there were overwhelming notes of black licorice and sweet raisin, which is not entirely out of character for some Nicaraguan Criollo.

Burn (1.5): As I puffed away it was impossible to not notice the color of the smoke as it made its way into the atmosphere: it emitted slightly yellow and morphed into a unique shade of gray. Could this be due to the deep silver-gray color of the ash? Who knows. The ash on the Super Lance passed the inch test and burned slowly and evenly.

Much to my disappointment, things took a turn for the worse further into the Super Lance Exclusivo, as the final two inches proved to be a problem:  A compromised draw, combined with an inability to keep the cigar lit, left me struggling at times.

Flavor (2.4): During the first third of the lancero I was shocked to not taste any of the black licorice or raisin notes that were so prominent on the nose; instead there were was a nice sweetness and a bit of leather. The deeper into the first third I smoked there emerged a woodiness to the cigar and roughly an inch and a half in, the body seemed to become a bit bolder as well.

This slight increase in strength carried itself well into the middle third of the smoke, but the overall flavors transitioned into something much more creamy and nutty. Sadly this flavor profile only lasted so long before transitioning back down to a medium-bodied smoke and everything left to taste was began to lose it distinctive characteristics.

The final third of the cigar was ruined with draw and burn issues, and I think it’s only fair to attribute the bitter char I tasted at the beginning of this section to those issues. On a more positive note, delicate notes of toasted nut, cream and anise did peak through, but the compromised draw prevented this flavor, which is one I have come to expect, and love from the Exclusivo blend, from reaching its full potential.

Overall (2.4): In general, the Viaje Super Lance Exclusivo was  good  looking cigar with a promising and unique flavor profile.  Unfortunately the Super Lance was unable to deliver in full. Various construction issues prevented what would otherwise be an intriguing cigar from reaching its full potential once I smoked past the halfway mark.

If you are a fan of the Viaje Exclusivo series, then you owe it to yourself to try it in the Lancero format – especially if you have had some or all of the previous releases. It really is interesting to see how a blend manifests on the palate in different Vitola’s, but in my opinion, last year’s release was superior.  I’ll definitely smoke the Super Lance again to see if I just had a bum stick, after all I had never been let down by an Exclusivo before.

Score: 8.0