Got this stick from the Testing Lab. Here's what I thought.
Nice looking barber pole, although interestingly, the colors of the stripes were so similar in tone, I didn't even realize it was a barber pole until after I removed the cello. The dry looking wrappers were nicely applied.
The aroma around the foot is of a strong creamy mocha. The cold draw tastes of creamy sweet notes with a touch of cedar.
After lighting, on the first draw, you're hit with a blast of deep, albeit not particularity dark, espresso on the palate. After a few puffs the espresso mellows on the palette but, the bitter coffee notes are still there on the retrohale. The finish is creamy with a hint of sweetness. Mild in strength but med in body, while not heavy, it does puts out a fairly dense oily smoke which coats the palate. Overall, the first third puts out a consistent mellow and creamy coffee, not too dark, not too sweet.
During the second third, the smoke, while still creamy, dries out substantially. The coffee notes pick up along with cedar, while the sweetness tones down.
During the last third, the coffee and cedar notes seem to merge, giving it a sweet hay character with some coffee bitterness on the finish. The smoke also develops a chewy character as it begins to dry out the palate a bit more. Towards the very end, the cigar begins to smoke “hot” with dark bitter tones taking over, nevertheless, it's not unpleasant and certainly maintains that espresso character.
Overall, the cigar had a good burn with some slight unevenness (which needed correcting once), good draw with a tight white ash.
Not sure to make of this one, while flavored cigars aren't exactly in my wheelhouse, I have smoked a lot in the past and in particular, a lot of coffee infused cigars at that. This one is much more mellow in its overall tones then others I've smoked. A big difference is that this stick appears to forgo the sweetened tip, which most of its other coffee brethren utilize, leaving it a much less intense (but not detracting) coffee experience. This cigar is creamy with an overall coffee aroma rather then an in your face, sweet coffee attack on the palate, which for me, is a good thing. Overall, if you like coffee infused cigars, or looking for a nice mild morning cigar, which won't ruin your palate with sugary sweet flavors, this is one to try.