Cigar Review: Southern Draw Jacob’s Ladder Lancero

Cigar Review: Southern Draw Jacob’s Ladder Lancero

Southern Draw Cigars
Country: Nicaragua
Wrapper: USA (Pennsylvania Broadleaf)
Binder: Nicaragua
Filler: Nicaragua
Size: 6 1/2 x 40
Strength: medium-full to full
Price: $9.35

Overall Rating: 9.3

Our 2017 Cigar of the Year, the Southern Draw Jacob’s Ladder, is now available as a lancero! Just like the toro vitola that earned the top spot on our Top Ten Cigars of 2017 List, the Jacob’s Ladder Lancero is a full bodied cigar that features a Pennsylvania Broadleaf wrapper from Lancaster County, and is a fitting addition to the Jacob’s Ladder line. This box-pressed lancero manages to capture the flavor profile of the original, while having something a little unique of its own. The Southern Draw Jacob’s Ladder is going to be a “must try” cigar for the lancero lover.

Pre-Light: While the Southern Jacob’s Ladder Lancero has many visual similarities with the larger vitolas in the line, there are several distinct differences as well. Like the original release of the Jacob’s Ladder, the lower part of the cigar is wrapped in cedar and features a covered foot. One of the things that sets the Jacobs Ladder Lancero apart is the pigtail cap, which it shares with other Southern Draw lanceros such as the Kudzu Axil and Firethorn Pome. Perhaps the biggest difference between the original Jacob’s Ladder and the lancero, is that the lancero is neatly box-pressed. Underneath the cedar is a very dark soil colored Pennsylvania Broadleaf wrapper that is very dry to the touch. The Jacob’s Ladder Lancero is as appealing to the eye as the flavor profile is to the tongue.

A mixture of earth and cedar (imparted by the cedar wrapping) aromas are noticeable from the wrapper of the Jacob’s Ladder Lancero. Due to the foot being covered, there aren’t any distinct scents from the cigar’s foot. An easy cold draw allows through a very distinct cocoa flavor.

Burn: It is almost a bit of a bit tiring to once again say how great the draw is on a Souther Draw cigar, but Southern Draw’s use of the slogan “Simply the perfect draw” is certainly not an exaggeration. The Jacob’s Ladder Lancero is a well constructed lancero. From beginning to end the cigar is very even burning. A light gray ash does have a tendancy to fall off with little warning, due the cigar’s small ring gauge.

Flavor: Pleasant cocoa and earth flavors begin instantly upon lighting the Southern Draw Jacob’s Ladder Lancero. There is a wonderful mixture of sweetness, pepperiness and earthiness to the cigar’s flavor profile. Flavors of sweet cocoa, earth, cedar and black pepper play nicely of each other on the tongue. The retrohale during the first third is a pleasant blend of cocoa and pepper. During the transition to the second third, the cocoa and pepper take a slight backseat to the cedar and earth notes. On the retrohale during the second third, there is mix of cedar, cocoa and pepper, although the pepper has mellowed slightly through the nose. As the Jacob’s Ladder Lancero enters the final third the flavor profile the flavor profile’s pepper on the tongue increases by leaps and bound, but never becomes unpleasant. The cedar note all but disappear during the last third of the cigar. The Jacob’s Ladder Lancero’s retrohale consists of dark chocolate and with a background note pepper in the final third. The cigar finished with flavors of chocolate, earth and pepper until the cigar is burning the fingers holding it.

Overall: When Robert Holt first told me there would be a lancero version of the Toasted Foot 2017 Cigar of the Year I could not help but be excited, but often times some blends don’t always translate to well to the lancero vitola, however the Jacob’s Ladder is not one of those blends. Immediately upon lighting the Southern Draw Jacob’s Ladder Lancero the flavors begin to dance on the tongue and tickle the nose, and they don’t let up until nothing but a nub is left of the cigar. The easy draw allows through plenty of cocoa, cedar, earth and pepper flavors. Few places are as good at making use of Pennsylvania Broadleaf as AJ Fernandez’s factory in Nicaragua, where the Southern Draw Jacob’s Ladder is made. I really liked the Jacob’s Ladder Lancero, and it had all the characteristics that made the Jacob’s Ladder Toro our 2017 Cigar of the Year. While there is a good amount of strength to the lancero it is a slight bit milder than the robusto, toro or gordo. I’d definitely recommend this cigar to anyone looking to enjoy a medium-full to full bodies lancero. This is definitely a box worthy cigar for the lancero lover.

Pairing: Like the larger Jacob’s Ladder cigars, the lancero pairs quite well with a good bourbon. The Colonel E.H. Taylor Small Batch Bourbon is an excellent choice for pairing with the Jacob’s Ladder. (Thanks go out to Robert Holt for introducing me to that one.) Those looking for a good single malt to pair with the Jacob’s Ladder Lancero will find a Highland whisky such as the Dalmore 15, Glenmorangie Quinta Ruban or Oban Little Bay.

Reviewed by Jonathan David (@toastedfoot)