Cigar Review: Illusione ~888~ Claro

Cigar Review: Illusione ~888~ Claro

Illusione Cigars

Country: Nicaragua
Wrapper: Nicaragua
Binder: Nicaragua
Filler: Nicaragua
Size: 6 3/4″ x 48
Strength: Mild to Medium

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Overall Rating: 8.2

From time to time the big companies release a candela cigar, but they have been little more than a curiosity worth only smoking once. The wrappers tend to be too waxy, the draw tends to be tight and the the aroma unpleasing. That was until Illusione released it’s ~888~ Claro. It still retains the uniqueness of other candelas while being of high enough quality to put it on a level with most premium handmade cigars.
The Illusione ~888~ Claro may will not look like the other cigars in your humidor, but it well worth adding to your collection. A medium bodied cigar, it is mild enough for the novice smoker but complex enough for fans of more full bodied fare.

Pre-Light: The construction on the Illusion Claro is top notch, just like most of Dion Giolito’s other cigars. The green candela wrapper makes this fun cigar to whip out at your local cigar bar or on the golf course. It will definitely start a conversation. It is not as waxy as other candelas. There is a noticeable green tea and grass aroma from the unlit foot, and the draw is very easy.

Burn: Although the burn line on the Illusione ~888~ Ckaro doesn’t look so pretty, but it is fairly even without any major canoeing issues. The draw is near perfect, putting out tons of smoke. Dion Giolito (@illusionecigars) says that one that one reason his candela is different is that he chose a thicker wrapper leaf than most do.

Flavor: Once lit, the first half an inch has a strong green tea flavor. Soon the green tea flavor begins to mix with a black Darjeeling tea taste. As the second third of the Illusione Claro goes on tea, grass, oak, spiced apples and a sugary sweetness all mix together in a pleasing manner. I’ve never had a candela cigar with so much flavor. The flavor and aroma of the Illusione ~888~ Claro conjures up memories of San Francisco’s Chinatown in spring. During the final third of the cigar, oak and leather really come out with notes of black tea, mild spice and fresh cut hay in the background

Overall: I’m not generally a fan of candela cigars, but this one has me revisiting my opinion. It was much better than expected, is a good cigar in it’s own right. Sure it’s not an everyday smoke, but this is a great cigar for the summer months or St. Patrick’s Day. Illusione says as long as there is a demand they will continue to produce a candella, and These are definitely worth trying. Now that there’s a decent candela on the market I expect other companies to follow suit.

Pairing: When it comes to pairings, I enjoy the Illusione ~888~ Claro best with a good cup of tea (preferably Earl Grey or green tea). I have also found it pairs well with Woodford Reserve, Compass Box Hedonism, The Macallan 18 or a Grey Goose & tonic.

Reviewed by Jonathan David (@JonDavid1210)