Smoked: Macanudo M Espresso with Cream
Big thanks to the Testing Lab for giving me this review opportunity.
You can tell what you are in for the moment you take the cello off. This cigar gives off an intense aroma of coffee, cream, and overall sweetness. The cigar arrived in perfect condition. No hard or soft spots, and the wrapper has a subtle toothy, barber-pole look to it.
The cold draw was dominated by coffee and creamy sweetness.
Upon lighting, the perfect draw allowed for an even burn that required zero touchups.
The first third was predominantly cream flavor with the coffee/espresso taking a back seat. There were some notes of leather and wood on the finish. Ash held tight until almost two inches in.
The decrease in the cream sweetness started at the 2/3rds point. Not entirely, but it allowed the coffee flavor to show it's face more. The aroma coming off the cigar is absolutely delightful. It's warm and comforting. The wood and leather notes are a bit more prevalent but only really surface on the finish. Almost zero pepper or spice is detected.
For the final 1/3rd it's worth mentioning that throughout the cigar, there was a nice sweetness on my lips after each puff. This remained consistent until the very end. The cream flavor hasn't disappeared completely but it certainly has diminished. Coffee and some dark chocolate bitterness is front and center. The finish remains the same with the wood and leather.
Overall, this cigar is good. I tried to set aside personal bias and just experience what the cigar had to offer. While infused or flavored cigars aren't my personal favorites, I can't argue with a perfect burn and a smooth draw. This cigar had that in spades. Keep in mind this is the first review I have ever written and am still learning how to pick up more specific flavor notes. The infusion/flavoring of this cigar gave it an amazing aroma when smoked. It's flavors were consistent barring the infused creaminess that faded away towards the very end. This cigar is certainly worth a try.
Rating: 3 out of 5
Notes: I find the 100pt rating system unnecessary. There isn't a huge difference a 92 and a 93. I have my own spin on the 5 star system. I will only give a cigar a 1 out of 5 if I have tried it twice and both times the cigar was unsmokeable. Either due to poor construction, burn, or undeniably rancid taste. A cigar that gets a 2 out of 5 has a rough burn but decent enough flavors that leaves me wanting another with a better burn. A 3 out of 5 has perfect construction and good flavor, just isn't flavors I necessarily enjoy. A 4 out of 5 has perfect construction and outstanding flavor. A 5 out 5 cigar to me is near impossible to achieve. Not only does the cigar have to burn perfectly every single time, it also has to taste incredible. But there is one more requirement, that it be memorable. It has to fit the moment so wonderfully that it becomes a part of the memory.