Friday, August 20, 2010

Illusione Cuchillos Cubanos 40 - Friday, Aug. 20th

While I am a short and fat man, the cigars I generally go for aren't short and fat. I've got enough of that in every day life. I typically go for either long and thin (lancero!) or short and thin (corona!). It's rare that I pick up a cigar over, say, 52-54 ring gauge. Any more than that and it just gets awkward to smoke and difficult to keep in my mouth when I want to flip pages on the deck.

Also, being budget minded (read: I'm half Scottish), I'm a big fan of cheap cigars. Not bad cigars, which is a completely different category, but cheap cigars. So when I found out that Dion had put out the Chuchillos Cubanos line of mixed premium filler (long and medium instead of medium and short) in sizes that really are my huckleberry, I was stunned. How did I let a budget cigar by an awesome manufacturer in thinner ring gauges slip by? Why didn't my Scottish Radar go off? Damn thing must be broken. I found out about it pretty much a week before the IPCPR and I began calling/emailing places down in NOLA to pick some up to smoke. But Dion got my back.

When I ran into Dion at IPCPR, he told me to stop by the booth because he had a pack of Cuchillos Cubanos for me. I tried to pay for them (I always feel bad) but he wouldn't hear of it. I stopped by briefly to pick them up on the first day because I wanted to smoke them at the Cigar Press party with him. I felt bad nabbing them and jetting but I got to talk to him later on anyway so I didn't feel too bad. Also, I stopped by the booth several times. Dion was busy so it was mostly to take pictures but, soothed my aching integrity. Anyway, at the Cigar Press party I burned through four out of the five in the pack (2 for me, 2 for my mooching cameraman). I really liked them at the party but at that point I'd burned about four cigars already so I didn't want to do a write-up when I got back. So I decided I'd review the last one for you now. Alright alright, let's do dis. First, some pictures!

Sweet box. I want to add tildes to the title but the Blogger ones aren't spaced right.

We're gonna need a bigger box.


I really like the packaging on these. The box got kinda squished in my pocket but it kept the cigar(s) in good condition. And the graphic on the front is cool. Anyway, review:

First quarter: This cigar is what I refer to as a "ninja cigar". When you first light it up, it starts off pretty mild and mellow. It's easy-going with relatively light flavors of leather. Then, just as you get settled in to read and you're not paying attention....BAM! The Chuck Norris of spice roundhouse kicks your tongue into a previous epoch. Your tongue is bombarded with so much zesty spice it's tasting things in the 1800s. It's so delicious. It's all red pepper and black pepper. I make it sound super heavy on the spice but it's just right, really. It's not overbearing and it doesn't overwhelm. It's just the right amount...but sneaky.

Half-way: The spice fades a touch to make way for some delicious leather. It's like smoking a spicy chamois. How can you argue with that?

Third quarter: Spice has backed off in its intensity and fervor. It's now slowed down to a more leathery, creamy, and spicy beastie. It's starting to get another flavor too...

Fourth quarter: ...and that flavor is toast. I swear to the gods above, you get to the nub and the thing tastes like toast with jalapeno jelly and a glass of milk. In...y'know...smoking terms. Whatever, I tried. It's hard to explain smoking flavors without referencing food but it makes it sound awkward.

Yeah, these cigars are pretty sweet. My cameraman liked 'em too. The consensus we came up with is that they're an all day cigar: they're easy going enough to smoke them all day but they won't leave you bored. Oh..and the price? It's about $20 for 5. Yeah, this 5.25 x 40 shorty is a favorite now.

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