Blind Cigar Review: Joya De Nicaragua | Joya Red Toro


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: Joya De Nicaragua | Joya Red Toro

Blind Cigar Review: Joya De | Toro

Vitola: Toro
Length: 6″
Ring Gauge: 52
Country of Origin:
Wrapper: Nicaraguan
Blender: Undisclosed
Number of reviewers: 5—– (mdwest) (jliu) (pmr1010) (shuckins) (SosaCub4Life)
Price: $7.00
Age: 2 Months
Release Date: July 2014
Contributed by: Drew Estate

Initial Impressions

Blind Cigar Review: Joya De Nicaragua | Joya Red Toro

Blind Cigar Review: Joya De | Toro

Appearance: 93

“Tight seams and a well applied cap, this stick has a nice, clean look about it.” – (mdwest)

Aroma: 91

“Pre-light aroma nosing the wrapper tells light notes of wood and must. Nosing the foot tells a fairly heavy wallop of spicy red dried chilies. The type of spice that makes you almost want to sneeze. Pre-light draw gives way to some light spice, wood and natural tobacco.” – (jliu)

First Third

Flavor: 89
Strength: Medium
Body/Complexity: Medium

Blind Cigar Review: Joya De Nicaragua | Joya Red Toro

Blind Cigar Review: Joya De | Toro

“Right out of the gate, the cigar starts off with a wonderful balance of oak, semi-sweet chocolate, coffee, nuttiness, cream, bread / yeast, slight barnyard / hay and a long finish of lingering dried red chili and pepper. Through the retrohale, all these flavors pop even more. Great start! About an inch and a half in, there is an inherent lingering mouth feel of bitterness.” – (jliu)

“There was very little if any flavor to come through on the pre-light draw. Once I touched the flame to the cigar though, a nice light wood smoke and a hint of pistachio and other nutty scents drifted up to me. A tiny hint of bitterness was unfortunately one of the first tastes I got, but it wasn’t overpowering. Most of what I tasted was a nice slightly sweet smoke. There wasn’t much smoke during the first third which I was surprised about because there was a good amount of strength and flavor. The first third spent its time mostly the same with only a slight increase in flavor profile. Right at the end of it though, a little baking spice appeared with a buttery flavor.” – (pmr1010)

Second Third

Blind Cigar Review: Joya De Nicaragua | Joya Red Toro

Blind Cigar Review: Joya De | Toro

Flavor: 93
Strength: Medium
Body/Complexity: Medium

“Not much of a change in flavors from the first to the second third, but the flavors present become more defined and the “dirt” that sort of overshadowed the nutty and leather flavors in the first couple of inches seems to have disappeared. The smoke is surprisingly smooth, with no element of harshness. Things are improving.” – (mdwest)

“The spice seems to have picked up some going into the second third of the cigar. Can still taste some cedar and now what seems to be some earthy or hay notes as well. Cigar is still producing tons of great smoke. I have not touched up the burn line and it continues to get worse instead of correcting itself.” – (SosaCub4Life)

Final Third

Blind Cigar Review: Joya De Nicaragua | Joya Red Toro

Blind Cigar Review: Joya De | Toro

Flavor: 90
Strength: Medium
Body/Complexity: Medium

“As the final third began, the flavors were all coming together nicely and worked well together. The prune and buttery flavors were still working their way around and the baking spices took a back seat. Still not a lot of smoke produced, but it was very pleasant. The earthiness was gone now. Only a slight bitterness came back into the scene towards the very end, but it didn’t hurt the flavor or my enjoyment at all.” – (pmr1010)

“The final third started with the same flavors I had been enjoying throughout the cigar. Nice semi creamy leather along with a tasty nutmeg and cocoa mix that blended well with a faint but sweet cedar tasting tobacco. One difference is that the pepper bumped it up a notch to add a couple of baby kicks at the very end.” – (shuckins)

Overall Impressions

Blind Cigar Review: Joya De Nicaragua | Joya Red Toro

Blind Cigar Review: Joya De | Toro

Draw: 98

“The cigar had a goldilocks draw: not too tight, not too loose, but just right, with plenty of tasty smoke.” – (shuckins)

Burn: 91

“A reasonably straight burn line from start to finish that produced a very tight ash that easily held on for 2″+.” – (mdwest)

Construction: 94

“Great construction! Burn and draw was great. Just a minor deduction due to the flowery and flaky ash at times.” – (jliu)

Overall Strength: Medium
Overall Body/Complexity: Medium
Overall Experience: 91

“Not a bad stick, but probably not something I would seek out if I were looking for anything special or exciting. If the price were right, I might think about grabbing a few for days that I’m just looking for something to puff on while occupied with other tasks.” – (mdwest)

“This was overall a decent cigar. The balance of flavors in the first half was wonderful. The second and third core flavors of wood, cream and coffee makes it a great after breakfast morning smoke. Unfortunately, I couldn’t get over the bitterness starting from about an inch and a half into the cigar.” – (jliu)

“My only dislike was the time it took to develop, but that’s my own impatience when I can sense something good on the horizon. In truth, I had a hard time describing the flavors with this cigar. It grew and flavors changed and came back pretty regularly, but there were times that I tried to decide what I was tasting by taking a second puff only to find the flavor I was looking for had left for a short time. That’s not a bad thing when smoking, just if you’re trying to write about what you’re smoking. Overall, I enjoyed this cigar a lot and I would try to get some of these into my own humidor. I also think that this would be the perfect autumn cigar, that’s what it reminded me of the whole time I was smoking.” – (pmr1010)

“I really enjoyed this cigar. It was nowhere near a powerhouse, and that’s okay, because the flavors were some of my favorites. It’s definitely a recommendable cigar.” – (shuckins)

“The cigar was just “OK” for me. It started off pretty good with some nice spicy pepper, but then as the spice faded it became rather boring for me without much flavor. I would say that it is probably a good cigar for beginners since you can get a bit of spice but then also not get knocked out by the cigar. People who like lighter more mellow sticks would also probably enjoy this more than I did.” – (SosaCub4Life)

Smoking Time (in minutes): 82


  • Appearance 93% 93%
  • Aroma 91% 91%
  • First Third 89% 89%
  • Second Third 93% 93%
  • Final Third 90% 90%
  • Draw 98% 98%
  • Burn 91% 91%
  • Construction 94% 94%
  • Overall Experience 91% 91%

Total Score - Excellent

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To view the complete scores and notes, click here.

Blind Cigar Review: Joya De | Toro