Cigar Review: Viaje Full Moon 2016 Collector’s Edition
Size: 6” x 56
Overall Rating: 9.1
It’s Halloween again. That time of year when we have to pass out candy to cute kids dressed like Elsa and teenagers dress like god knows what, in hopes that no one eggs our house. (Personal Opinion: If you’re old enough to drive, you’re probably too old for tick or treating…just saying.) The constant up and down to the front door can get a bit frustrating, and nothing helps with frustration like a good cigar. Luckily, Viaje has just the right good cigar for this holiday. The Viaje Full Moon 2016 Collector’s Edition is a good full bodied cigar, that is sure to make passing out candy or the costume party your significant other drug you to a little more bearable. (You can totally tell I’m more of a Christmas kind of person.)
Pre-Light: The latest Viaje Full Moon has a very dark brown Nicaraguan wrapper that is similar to wet soil, which makes the creepy Jack-o-lantern on the band really stand out. Such detail was put into this cigar’s band that it really is something special, and it looks almost like a print make with an old fashioned woodcarving. The cigar features two band variations. In the background of one you can even spot an ax buried in stump, which may or may not have belonged to Farmer Bill Hatchet. In the background of the other there is a scarecrow (and not the friendly “If I Only Had a Brain” kind) and a creepy barn where the Stuffed Turkeys are likely being fattened up for Thanksgiving. This year the Viaje Full Moon features the Viaje Collector’s Edition foot band also. Finished off with a closed foot and a fantail pigtail cap, the 2016 Viaje Full Moon screams Halloween like no other cigar on the market does…even the Monster Series.
Cocoa is the dominant aroma from the cigar’s wrapper, though there is a slight bit of earth and nuts also. Since the foot of the cigar is covered, there are no unique scents coming from the cigar’s foot. The pre-light draw on this year’s Full Moon is a bit on the firm side. Flavors of cocoa, nuts, earth and hints of cinnamon and spice come through on the cold draw, making it hard not to think of autumn.
Burn: The Viaje Full Moon 2016 Collector’s Edition starts off with a slightly firm draw, but as the cigar gets going the draw eases considerably, so that overall the draw is very good. The cigar burns even for the most part, with a somewhat wavy burn line during the first half. (Only one of the four smoked for this review needed correcting from a lighter.) A gray ash with a slight yellowish tint clings to the Viaje Full Moon well, and does not fall off unexpectedly.
Flavor: The 2016 Viaje Full Moon begins immediately with a bit of leather and spice, which is soon joined by dark cocoa and cinnamon. Once the first third of the cigar really gets going there is a sweet interplay between sweetness and spice. Sweet flavors of cocoa, earth, leather and coffee notes blend with all spice, cinnamon and very minor hints of pepper. As the Full Moon burns into the second third there is a pleasing mix of cocoa, coffee and spice form the backbone of the cigar’s flavor profile. On the retrohale, pepper and spice mingle with coffee and earth notes. During the final third of the Full Moon there is an uptick in complexity with dark cocoa, cinnamon, coffee, walnuts, spice and black pepper. The Viaje Full Moon ends with a mix of cocoa, coffee and pepper.
Overall: Viaje has always been “hit or miss” in my opinion, with either great cigars or mediocre/average cigars, but the Viaje Full Moon 2016 Collector’s Edition is definitely in the “hit” category. It’s got a bit more complexity than I was expecting, and has much more depth of flavor than previous editions of the cigar. Full bodied Nicaraguan fans, especially those who liked cigars such as the Viaje Collaboration 2014 or Farmer Bill Hatchet, will find the newest Full Moon is a cigar that should suit their tastes. Interestingly, though it could just be me, this whole cigar manages to call to mind both the holiday it is themed for and the time of year that it occurs, even the flavor profile has a fall like characteristic to it. Personally, I really enjoyed the 2016 Viaje Full Moon, and have picked up several more since initially trying the cigar.
Pairing: The full moon pairs well with a wide variety of beverages, from single malts to pale ales. Personally, because it is that time of year, I find a nice Dad’s Root Beer goes pretty well with this cigar. For those looking for something a little stronger, a Not Your Father’s Root Beer (which contains alcohol) is a great choice for pairing with this cigar.
Reviewed by Jonathan David (@JonDavid1210)