The Diesel Atonement is the latest collaboration between AJ Fernandez and STG’s Justin Andrews, this time as a TAA exclusive. Last year, the Tobacconists’ Association of America (TAA) had 13 exclusive releases one of those coming from from Scandinavian Tobacco Group (STG) under the Diesel brand. This latest cigar for the brand is described as an “unapologetically-bold, limited-edition.” The cigar was originally going to be called the Diesel Tempest, but was changed when it actually hit shelves in October of 2022. No info was given as to the change.
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.
Diesel Atonement comes in just one size, a 6 x 52 box-pressed toro. The blend uses an Ecuadoran Sumatra wrapper, Connecticut Broadleaf binder, and Nicaraguan fillers. Production was limited to 1,000 boxes of 10. The boxes themselves are are novel-inspired in appearance. The cigars have an MSRP of $10.00 per cigar.
Ring Gauge: 52
Country of Origin: Nicaragua
Wrapper: Ecuadorian Sumatra
Binder: Connecticut Broadleaf
Factory: Tabacalera AJ Fernandez Cigars de Nicaragua S.A.
Blender: Justin Andrews & AJ Fernandez
Number of reviewers: 5 – Sean F. (fullermaine) Angel M. (Angel) Chris M. (Chris) Noah S. (Noah) Randy B. (randobush)
Age: 4 Months
Release Date: October 2022
Contributed by: General Cigar Co.
Initial Impressions – Diesel Atonement TAA 2022
“The wrapper on this toro is a deep chocolate brown with a nice oily sheen to it. The color is fairly consistent, though I can see just the lightest mottling in spots. There is a light tooth, minimal veins, and just a few, barely visible blemishes. The box press is soft, and fairly symmetrical. A large, but semi sloppy triple cap tops it off.” –Chris M. (Chris)
“I am not able to decipher a lot of scent from the body or foot on this stick. What hints my sniffer does pick up are musty in nature, a subtle mix of barnyard and a faintness of chocolate.” –Noah S. (Noah)
“Right off the light I get a bold black peppercorn, molasses, deep earth and cream. The earth shifts into a coffee bean and raisin combination just a few minutes in, and down to a cream heavy coffee and raisin just a few minutes later. The molasses also takes a step back fairly quick, as a slightly sweet bread note takes over its spot. The peppercorn loses its sharpness by an inch, becoming a moderate level black pepper. A very light wood note joins the finish around that point as well.” –Chris M. (Chris)
“In the first third, I pick up flavors of leather, coffee, and cedar. There also appears to be a small green pepper flavor which comes in at the end, leaving some spice on the tongue and lips. The smoke is slightly dry and a little warm, but all together so far an enjoyable cigar.” –Angel M. (Angel)
“There is still an admirable savory sweetness out front with a sweet smoked paprika, and now dried oak bark, left on the palate for the finish The draw, and the smoke output are exceptional, with thick and creamy mouthfuls of delicious smoke.” –Randy B. (randobush)
“Spice continues to rule the foreground heading into the second third with the same heady mix of cedar and cardamom although the smoke has smoothed out considerably. A third touch-up is needed to correct a burn that has been wobbly enough to warrant attention. No biggie though. The retro continues to balance the spice with an underlying sweetness that is less baking spice now and more like a spicy Mexican chocolate distinctly reminiscent of a Mexican San Andres wrapper.” –Noah S. (Noah)
“Earthy notes with a subtle hint of black pepper.” –Sean F. (fullermaine)
“Ash fell at 3” in, going into the final third. The cigar is hitting on all cylinders, with most all cocoa notes gone, and creamy, spicy, savory, nougat, now comes together, with a finish of salted butter and paprika.” –Randy B. (randobush)
Overall Impressions – Diesel Atonement TAA 2022
“Exceptional draw from start to finish.” –Randy B. (randobush)
“A wobbly burn was persistent throughout which required a handful of touchups to correct, but I consider this to be but a very minor issue and otherwise this stick burned beautifully.” –Noah S. (Noah)
“This is definitely a good looking cigar, with a very even pack. My guess is that a slower burning leaf ended up closer to one side than the other. The burn issues weren’t the worst, and the smoke output was amazing so I can’t be too upset.” –Chris M. (Chris)
Overall Strength: Medium-Strong
Overall Body/Complexity: Medium-Full
Experience Overall: 97
“Another perfect cigar! Notes of peanut, tea, leather, earth, and black pepper mix well in this cigar. Great draw and burn. Beautiful dark grey ash. I didn’t want the enjoyment to end. I’d want this cigar in my humidor.” –Sean F. (fullermaine)
“Overall, this was a very good cigar, the flavors carried all the way through with a few minor transitions, which were the loss of the pepper flavor after the first third, and the addition of the cocoa in the second and final third. The slight dryness and warmth of cigar were not so severe that I would say it was a deterrent, but you definitely want to have something to drink while you’re smoking this cigar.” –Angel M. (Angel)
“This cigar had pretty nice balance throughout, with a little dip in the middle. I was slightly surprised that the body never pushed past medium after the initial light up, but it still kept me pretty interested with subtle shifts along the way. The construction didn’t need enough work to turn me off of picking this up again. I’d probably throw this in my lineup on occasion.” –Chris M. (Chris)
“Hats off to the torcedor who expertly rolled such a beautiful cigar and hats off to the blender for the incredible balance of flavors that dazzled my palate. From the first puff to the last this smoke was nothing short of stellar! Spice bombs typically aren’t my go to when I reach in the humidor but this one hit different as the abundance of spice was offset and balanced with just the right amount of sweet. The contrast of flavors was enjoyable and intriguing enough that I didn’t miss the lack of significant transitions and it certainly did not detract from the overall smoking experience. I would love to try this cigar again and would love to pair it with pint of a bitey flavorful IPA or a nice spiced rum on the rocks.” –Noah S. (Noah)
“I really like this cigar. It was aesthetically pleasing, satisfyingly delicious, and a real pleasure to smoke. Its transitions were noticeable throughout, while maintaining its core flavor profile from start to finish… never getting bitter or off-putting. Just damn good.” –Randy B. (randobush)
Smoking Time (in minutes): 74
To view the complete scores and notes, click here.