Cigar Review: The Oscar Habano

Cigar Review: The Oscar Habano

Oscar Valladares Tobacco & Co. 
Country: Honduras
Wrapper: Ecuador (Habano)
Binder: Honduras
Filler: Honduras and Nicaragua
Size: 5” x 50
Strength: full
Price: $10.95

Overall Rating: 9.1

Oscar Valladares made a splash with his Leaf, which came wrapped in a tobacco leaf rather than cellophane. Now Oscar has followed that up with a cigar that comes in a candela sleeve in place of cellophane. In a first for Oscar Valladares Tobacco, The Oscar features Nicaraguan filler, as well as Honduran, giving this full bodied cigar a bit more kick to it. If the initial reactions, both at the IPCPR in Las Vegas and my local retailer, The Oscar is bound to be Oscar’s biggest hit yet.

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Pre-Light: Instead of cellophane The Oscar comes wrapped in a green candela leaf sleeve, and fits perfectly with the previous Leaf cigars, while now allowing for easier removal and inspection of the cigar beneath. Unfortunately, the sea green band is nearly completely covered until the cover is removed. The cigar beneath the sleeve is a dark earthy brown Ecuadorian Habano wrapper, with few prominent veins.

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The wrapper of The Oscar has an aroma of leather, spice and earth. From the unlit foot of the cigar there is a mix of earth, chocolate and natural tobacco scents. A good cold draw lets through earth and cocoa notes with a mild hint of spice.

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Burn: The Oscar is a very even and slow burning cigar that holds its ash well. A good draw allows through plenty of smoke.

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Flavor: The Oscar wastes no time with earth and cocoa notes right from the start. Just behind the earth and cocoa flavors, is a very slight spice that is more prevalent through the nose than on the palate. As the first third gets going there is a blend of earth and cocoa with dark coffee beans, spice,leather and a very slight yeasty sourdough bread note. A steak-like meatiness begins to appear during the transition to the second third of The Oscar. The second third of the cigar sees a good many flavors mingle together including earth, coffee, cedar, spice, nutmeg and mild pepper. During the transition to the last third of The Oscar there is a black pepper that blends nicely with coffee, earth, cocoa and cedar. The Oscar is a hard cigar to put down with the mix of earth, coffee, cocoa, cedar and pepper notes lasting through to the very end.

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Overall: The Oscar seems like a natural follow up to the Leaf by Oscar. What really sets The Oscar apart from previous Oscar cigars is the fact that it makes use of Nicaraguan filler tobacco, giving a bit of pepper and a little kick to the cigar. Fans of some of Oscar Valladares’ past full bodied cigars, such as the Leaf by Oscar Maduro, will find The Oscar is a cigar they are likely to enjoy even more. Personally, I found The Oscar was a cigar that I wished was longer when I got to the end. It’s definitely a cigar that the full bodied cigar smoker will want to give a try.

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Pairing: The Oscar pairs extremely well with a good sipping rum such as the Zafra 21. Interestingly, I fount that The Oscar also pairs nicely with a peaty single malt such as the Ardbeg 10, Oban Little Bay or Lagavulin 16.

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Reviewed by Jonathan David (@JonDavid1210)