This review is the seventh in a series of collaboration reviews that we will be doing. We have invited cigar reviewers from other cigar review sites, podcasts, blogs, etc. to join the Blind Man’s Puff staff in doing some blind reviews using our format. If this initial series goes well, then we may reach out to even more sites to make these collaboration reviews a semi regular event. This collaboration review is with Logan from Cigar Federation, Josh and David from Cigar Memoir, and Kip from Half Ashed.
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.
Ring Gauge: 54
Country of Origin: Nicaragua
Wrapper: Mexican San Andres
Factory: Tabacos Vallé de Jalapa, S.A.
Blender: Arsenio Ramos
Number of reviewers: 5—–Logan (Cigar Federation) David (Cigar Memoir) Emmett (rhetorik) Josh (Cigar Memoir) Kip (Half Ashed)
Age: 3 Months
Release Date: September 2014
Contributed by: Sindicato Cigars
“This cigar was a very firm box square box press with a very dark maduro wrapper. It has a closed foot and a quasi pig tail cap, with out the pig tail. Just based on looks, I am going to assume it is a San Andres wrapper.” –Logan (Cigar Federation)
“The pre-light aroma was subtle but nice. I can smell hay, wood and pepper. Taking a cold draw, I can feel the pepper tingling on my lips. I have a feeling I know where this cigar is headed before it even touches a flame.” –David (Cigar Memoir)
“BAM! Pepper bomb. In your face. The first inch of this cigar attacks your senses with a wave of pepper. As I sit outside, in below freezing temperatures, I can approve of this strong pepper as it gives you a full flavor even when your sense would normally be a bit dulled from the cold. In the background, there are wood tones and every once in a while, a subtle whiff of sweetness, but then it is gone and BAM more pepper.” –David (Cigar Memoir)
“The first few minutes of this cigar produced copious amounts of smoke and spice. The spice is peppery very Nicaraguan in character. In fact, I’d go so far as to say it’s AGANORSA-esque. Being a big fan of Casa Fernandez produced cigars, this is quite good. There is a bit of sweetness, but it’s well in the background.” –Kip (Half Ashed)
“The second third was similar to the first in terms of body, but did kick up a bit in the strength department. In terms of flavor, the core flavors remained the same but the black pepper was much more pronounced and there was a very nice candy like sweetness. The sweetness was enjoyable and complimented the black pepper well.” –Logan (Cigar Federation)
“The second third provides a creamier mouth-feel with the addition of nuttiness to the profile of Mexican chocolate and wood. The pepper is still the dominate player though, sitting at the back of the throat. The retrohale does, however, smooth out a little bit. The sweetness picks up a bit at the halfway point which helps to balance out the overpowering pepper, if only a little. A bit of floral makes an appearance rounding into the final third.” –Josh (Cigar Memoir)
“The final third reached the peak in terms of strength and body. Also, the most flavor depth was shown in the final third. There were notes of green chilies, cinnamon and anise. The earth, pepper and sweetness were still present but were toned back to let the other flavors come forward and shine.” –Logan (Cigar Federation)
“This third is more earthy than the previous, and a bit stronger. The spice is subtle green pepper and lingers. There is also the addition of anise spice. This cigar is finishing out nicely, not getting hot. This was a solid cigar.” –Emmett (rhetorik)
“The draw was a little tight at first, but loosened up after the first third. Smoke production was good.” –Emmett (rhetorik)
“The burn was a bit wavy at times but it never got in the way of smoke production.” –Josh (Cigar Memoir)
“I had no construction issues whatsoever outside the bit of loose wrapper around the head. I actually removed a section of the cap to facilitate smoking it – but at no detriment to the smoke. The shoulder held together just fine and provided an excellent smoke.” –Kip (Half Ashed)
Overall Strength: Medium-Strong
Overall Body/Complexity: Medium-Full
Overall Experience: 93
“Overall, a pretty good cigar. I would have liked to see a little more in the way of flavor transitions throughout the entire cigar, but the last third was pretty awesome. I am going to take another stab at what the cigar is, so if I am wrong you can laugh at me. Pretty sure this was made with Aganorsa tobaccos and about 100% sure it uses a San Andres from Aganorsa. I believe this cigar is the Sindicato Maduro which released at IPCPR 2014.” –Logan (Cigar Federation)
“In the end, I just can’t find it in me to recommend this cigar to anyone unless all they wanted was a one and a half hour smoke with nothing but pepper. The vitola itself is an appealing idea, but without something more substantial to back up the design it is not something you would go back for a second time.” –David (Cigar Memoir)
“This was a very enjoyable smoke. While it wasn’t the best burn or draw, the solid flavors made up for it. It wasn’t extremely complex but the flavors were good enough to make it worth while. I would definitely smoke this again.” –Emmett (rhetorik)
“This cigar was an absolute pepper bomb. I kept hoping it would subside, but alas it never did. If you’re a big fan of pepper, perhaps you’ll love this, but for me it completely distracted from the other flavors, which frankly, were pretty good. Who doesn’t love chocolate and wood in a cigar? If you must smoke this, pair with a strong drink to dull the senses. Going with what Logan did in the last collaboration review, I’m going to take a stab at what this is. I won’t say a brand but there is no doubt in my mind this was a Nicaraguan cigar with a San Andreas wrapper.” –Josh (Cigar Memoir)
“As I said earlier, this has been my favorite of the three collaboration smokes with Blind Man’s Puff. This cigar performed for over two hours, and I enjoyed every last puff. This one was right up my alley.” –Kip (Half Ashed)
Smoking Time (in minutes): 103
To view the complete scores and notes, click here.