Blind Cigar Review: Fratello | Bianco II

Cigar Info

This is the sophomore release from our friend . In 2013 he released the original cigar, which has become one of the hottest new cigar brands, scoring a 90 in our own blind review here, and making our Top 25 list of 2013 here. This sequel uses a Mexican San Andrés Maduro wrapper and is said to be a touch stronger. The  ships in 20-count boxes and is available at retail in three sizes, each denoted by a Roman Numeral: I, at 6 1/4 inches by 44 ring gauge; , 6 by 50; and III, 5 by 56. A fourth size, at 5 by 44, is also being made, but will only be available as an event exclusive. The cigars are priced between $8.00 and $9.00.

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.

Vital Stats:

Blind Cigar Review: Fratello | Bianco II

Blind Cigar Review: |

Vitola:
Length: 6″
Ring Gauge: 50
Country of Origin:
Wrapper: Mexican San Andrés Maduro
Binder: Dominican Republic
Filler: Nicaraguan Condega, Peruvian Habano and Pennsylvania Broadleaf
Factory: Undisclosed
Blender:
Number of reviewers: 5—– (jliu) (SosaCub4Life) (McGreggor57) (Cigar Ninja) (NavyPiper)
Price: $9.25
Age: 2 Months
Release Date: June 2015
Contributed by: Fratello Cigars

Blind Cigar Review: Fratello | Bianco II

Blind Cigar Review: |

Initial Impressions

Appearance: 91

“Our review today is a super dark Maduro stogie, sized. The tale of the tape reveals its size to be 6X50. The head is rounded nicely and the cap is centered and well applied. The seams are awesome. Wrapper is rough textured and has some lumps and bumps under it. Not major ones, but what is there just adds to the rustic, old world appearance. As stated, the color is very dark and is uniform throughout. There is no give when pressed, this guy is rock hard. Can’t wait to punch the cap and get busy with this stogie!” – (NavyPiper)

Aroma: 88

“Heavy tobacco aromas with some slight barnyard hay and milk chocolate notes for good measure.” – (Cigar Ninja)

First Third

Blind Cigar Review: Fratello | Bianco II

Blind Cigar Review: |

Flavor: 89
Strength: Medium
Body/Complexity: Medium

“So far, the cigar is burning flawlessly. Razor sharp burn and an ash holding on super strong. There is a decent amount of spice in the first third both in the mouth and throat but also especially on the retrohale. There is some creaminess to it but a lot of peppery spice so far. The draw is great and it’s producing tons of smoke. I am enjoying it so far.” – (SosaCub4Life)

“An earthy peppery wood note gets my early attention. A hint of cedar on the finish adds enough sweetness to balance the other flavors. Both coffee and allspice make a brief appearance creating additional interest. This first third is quite enjoyable.” – (McGreggor57)

Second Third

Blind Cigar Review: Fratello | Bianco II

Blind Cigar Review: |

Flavor: 90
Strength: Medium
Body/Complexity: Medium

“Second third tasting notes gives a continuation of the first third’s notes. Still getting charred wood and light cream. The sugar cane sweetness is more impactful and the white pepper has died off about half as much as the first third (both in retrohale and non). Strength and body continues to be at a medium.” – (jliu)

“Moving into the second third, things were pretty much going along just like the first third. However, about half way in, there began a subtle change in flavors. The spice and pepper began to slowly grow in strength, and the coffee slowly began to take a back seat to the spice and pepper. By the time the third was done it was pretty much all spice and pepper.” – (NavyPiper)

Final Third

Blind Cigar Review: Fratello | Bianco II

Blind Cigar Review: |

Flavor: 88
Strength: Medium-Strong
Body/Complexity: Medium-Full

“Increasing leather allows the final third to mellow. A little cedar returns to the finish as the oak and earthiness begins to fade.” – (McGreggor57)

“The charred note has subsided some and the tobacco note has entered back into the fray. This cigar would pair well with most any peaty, oaky single malt or a barrel aged bourbon that isn’t too sweet. The mouth feel, I don’t know how else to describe it, has improved greatly in the last third and the strength and body have both been kicked up a notch. The pepper spice that was previously only apparent on the retrohale has come out to join the masses and it’s a welcome addition. The burn line is still super sharp and this stick certainly is as well constructed as it appeared to be from the onset. My compliments to the roller.” – (Cigar Ninja)

Overall Impressions

Draw: 98

“Perfect draw. Period. Nothing more to say!” – (jliu)

Burn: 93

“Good smoke production throughout with a dark gray ash that dropped on its own after each third. The burn line remained relatively straight.” – (McGreggor57)

Construction: 93

“The overall construction was fantastic. Draw was perfect, burn was perfect, ash held on amazing, cigar produced tons of smoke. This was one extremely well made cigar.” – (SosaCub4Life)

Overall Strength: Medium-Strong
Overall Body/Complexity: Medium-Full
Overall Experience: 89

Blind Cigar Review: Fratello | Bianco II

Blind Cigar Review: |

“Overall, this was a run of the mill good cigar. The pre-light experience was awesome, especially when nosing the wrapper. Unfortunately, this did not exactly relay to the smoking experience. I would smoke this again given the opportunity, but would not purchase any.” – (jliu)

“Overall, even with the cigar being mostly one dimensional it was a good smoke. The construction of the cigar was fantastic. The cigar was loaded with spice and smoked extremely well. If you like a spicy cigar that is made to perfection you will enjoy this one.” – (SosaCub4Life)

“I enjoy cigars that tell a story. The transition through the thirds were noticeable while staying true to the overall profile. There was enough fullness of flavors and strength in the beginning to caution newer smokers. On an afternoon signaling Fall is just around the corner, this cigar hit the spot.” – (McGreggor57)

“While the flavor profile isn’t exactly my wheelhouse, this is a cigar that I would happily smoke again. I wouldn’t call it boxworthy for me, but I would likely pick up a 5-pack if the price point is where I think it should be and for me that’s somewhere in the $7-$8 range.” – (Cigar Ninja)

“Obviously, the draw was very annoying and frustrating, but really that was the only downside to this stogie. I love Maduros, and the flavors, while limited to spice and pepper were enjoyable enough and were in my ‘favorites’ list, so I had no gripes with this stogie.” – (NavyPiper)

Smoking Time (in minutes): 65

  • Appearance 91% 91%
  • Aroma 88% 88%
  • First Third 89% 89%
  • Second Third 90% 90%
  • Final Third 88% 88%
  • Draw 98% 98%
  • Burn 93% 93%
  • Construction 93% 93%
  • Overall Experience 89% 89%

Total Score - Very Good

 

Reviewer
Appearance
Aroma
1/3
2/3
3/3
Draw
Burn
Constr.
Overall
Experience
jliu)9295888885100909388
SosaCub4Life)9788959295100979795
McGreggor57)908890909090909090
Cigar Ninja)9288908888100979590
NavyPiper)908890908875889090

To view the complete scores and notes, click here.

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