At the 2016 IPCPR trade show, Cornelius and Anthony showed off a reblended version of the Meridian line. It features artwork that falls in with the nostalgic branding the company has taken with its Cornelius and Daddy Mac lines. Meridian uses an Ecuadorian wrapper and Ecuadorian binder. Today we are reviewing the Cornelius & Anthony | Meridian Robusto.
This cigar was reviewed blind (no bands) by a panel of at least 4 reviewers. They did not know what they were smoking beforehand. The scores are an average of all the reviewers' scores with outliers removed. All of our cigars reviewed are shipped to the panelists with Boveda packs to ensure optimal smoking experience.
After taking longer than expected, in January 2017 the Meridian made it to the market. Meridian was a cigar that originally was showcased by Cornelius & Anthony at the 2015 IPCPR Trade Show. The original cigar was going to be made at PDR Cigars for Cornelius & Anthony. While there was a soft-launch, Cornelius & Anthony stopped the project before full distribution. A decision was made to re-do the blend and shift production to Erik Espinosa’s La Zona factory in Estelí, Nicaragua. The new version of the Meridian would make it’s re-release at the 2016 IPCPR Trade Show.
The Bailey family has been growing tobacco for over 150 years. The Cornelius & Anthony name is derived from Cornelius Bailey, Steven Bailey’s great-great-grandfather and the first member of the Bailey family to farm tobacco. It is also derived from Steven Bailey’s middle name which is Anthony. While Cornelius & Anthony has been on the premium cigar market scene for a few years, 2016 was a year where the company restructured its portfolio with four lines. Three of these lines (Meridian, Venganza, and Daddy Mac) are being produced at La Zona. The fourth line, Cornelius, is being produced in the United States at the El Titan de Bronze factory in Little Havana.
The blend for the Cornelius & Anthony Meridian consists of Nicaraguan and Dominican tobaccos covered by a Rosado wrapper from Ecuador. The Cornelius & Anthony Meridian is available in four vitolas in 20-count boxes. Corona Gorda: 5 1/2 x 46, Robusto: 5 x 50, Toro: 6 x 50, Gordo: 6 x 60.
Ring Gauge: 50
Country of Origin: Nicaragua
Wrapper: Ecuadorian Rosado
Filler: Nicaragua, Dominican Republic
Factory: La Zona
Blender: Erik Espinosa & Steven Bailey
Number of reviewers: 5 – Dave W. (mdwest) Isaac M.(The Nothing) Mickey T.(irratebass) Adam B.(Bushboy) Eric (smalls29)
Age: 5 Months
Release Date: January 2017
Contributed by: Cornelius & Anthony
“Milk chocolate wrapper with a noticeable sheen. Medium sized veins that add a touch of contour to the profile. Slight give when squeezed, but consistent firmness throughout.” –Adam B. (Bushboy)
“The aroma has a barnyard smell. A mixture of soils, harvested crops and animals. A nice smell of the country to me.” –Eric (smalls29)
“Mostly getting tobacco flavor, no sweetness or anything, just tobacco with some milk elements. Has a nice long finish, and on the retro I get that mustiness.” –Mickey T. (irratebass)
“While not a flashy beginning to this cigar, it has nice flavors of woods and spices. To me this is a nice outdoor, woodsy cigar. Nice flavors of cedar and oak with hints of spices and some pepper in the background.” –Eric (smalls29)
“Savory spices intensify in the second third, especially peppercorn, becoming full bodied. Partly through the second the toasted wheat bread made a turn to a toasted graham cracker–if you’ve ever made smores on a grill, you’ll recognize it. There was nothing soft about the first third, and the second third was still able to pick it up a notch.” –Isaac M. (The Nothing)
“Creamy nutty nougat. Draw is still very loose which is not a negative point. Smoke doesn’t have the chance to be harsh because it is mixing with a bounty of air flow. Flavors are pleasant, although muted due to the draw. Very nice burn line and zero construction flaws to this point.” –Adam B. (Bushboy)
“Still no change in the flavor profile, but thats not really a problem. You can get away with that in a robusto sized stick with me. I enjoyed the bold bread and nutmeg notes and am glad they didnt go away during the smoke.” –Dave W. (mdwest)
“Not much change in the flavors. Still maintaining a nice woody, camp fire flavor. Not much complexity but a nice steady smoke. The plus to this one is a wonderufl smelling smoke.” –Eric (smalls29)
“The cigar had a perfect draw, even with a shallow V-cut.” –Isaac M. (The Nothing)
“Very good combustion with consistent burn and a nice straight line produced from beginning to end.” –Dave W. (mdwest)
“Slight problems in the final third, although overall construction was pretty damn good.” –Adam B. (Bushboy)
Overall Strength: Medium
Overall Body/Complexity: Medium-Full
Experience Overall: 90
“Overall a great cigar. Not pretty, but well balanced, and with flavors that are right in my personal wheelhouse. I will definitely be buying some of these after the reveal, no matter the price point.” –Dave W. (mdwest)
“Dinner was done and the air was finally starting to cool when I went out to give this cigar a try. I was blown away initially by the huge flavors this cigar produced and I couldn’t have been luckier to have waited until early evening to smoke the cigar. It is quite intense, and I’m sure a lot of people would call it harsh. I couldn’t imagine smoking this earlier in the day.” –Isaac M. (The Nothing)
“The flavors that I was getting out of this cigar were pretty one dimensional at best, I was hoping there would be transitions, but sadly it didn’t happen.” –Mickey T. (irratebass)
“I would have preferred a bit more flavor and transition, however the overall experience was pretty good. Not a bad smoke, but I probably wouldn’t recommend this one to my buddies. Wouldn’t mind trying another if the price is right, but did not have the wow factor.” –Adam B. (Bushboy)
“Overall I consider this a nice smoke. Not much complexity but a nice flavors of wood, cedars, campfire and a bit of bbq steak. The flavors were consistent. The overall flavors remained nicely balance throughout. The tastes and smells reminded me of sitting by a campfire in the mountains while enjoy a good steak. This would pair well with a nice IPA or other similar beers.” –Eric (smalls29)
To view the complete scores and notes, click here.
Blind Cigar Review: Cornelius & Anthony | Meridian Robusto
Overall Score – 90 – Very Good
Blind Cigar Review: Cornelius & Anthony | Meridian Robusto
"Dinner was done and the air was finally starting to cool when I went out to give this cigar a try. I was blown away initially by the huge flavors this cigar produced and I couldn't have been luckier to have waited until early evening to smoke the cigar. It is quite intense, and I'm sure a lot of people would call it harsh. I couldn't imagine smoking this earlier in the day." -Isaac M. (The Nothing)