*Note: this is not a blind review, this is just my personal thoughts to give a quick take on a cigar that was won in a twitter contest.
Beginning with the Edicion Limitada 2014, Las Calaveras will be an annual release that is a respectful homage to those who have passed away in the year before, and is intended to be a celebration of their lives and remembrances, rather than a mourning or a symbol of sadness and death. Each year, we all lose a friend or loved one, or know of someone who has endured that same loss. In today’s fast-paced world, it is all too easy to forget the fragile nature that is life. Often, in the race to gain material success, we lose sight that our true legacy are the lives we touch and the love we leave behind once we pass on. It is in this spirit that Las Calaveras pays tribute to those who have touched our lives and shared their love.
A total of 3,000 boxes (72,000 cigars) of Las Calaveras EL 2014 were produced at the My Father Cigars S.A. factory in Esteli, Nicaragua, under the supervision of Jose “Pepin” Garcia and Jaime Garcia. The Garcia family has garnered a reputation as makers of some of the world’s finest cigars, including Cigar Aficionado magazine’s “Cigar of the Year 2012.”
LC550 – 5” x 50
LC652 – 6” x 52
LC754 – 7” x 54
Wrapper: Ecuador Habano Oscuro (8th priming)
Initial Impressions: After talking with Jon Huber of Crowned Heads, he informed me that this is indeed the final blend that will be shipping around May 12th. He was also kind enough to send me some pictures of that cigar with bands. The wrapper is very dark, almost black and has a lot of tooth. The color is very even and there are a few medium-sized veins. The triple cap is perfect. The aroma I get from the wrapper and foot is a spicy sweetness, like an oriental dish.The pre-light draw is just the sweetness and some earth.
1/3: Not a whole lot of spice up front, but a lot of dark, rich flavors. The flavors so far are a dark espresso and dark chocolate, the kind you hope for when you see a cigar this dark. As the third moves along further, I’m getting very meaty and peppery undertone in addition to the espresso and dark chocolate, like a peppercorn steak.
2/3: Not much change in the flavors so far, besides the spice backing off a little. The burn/draw/construction are all fantastic though. Part way through, the smoke becomes noticibly creamier, which adds a nice dimension of complexity.
3/3: This third makes a smooth transition into a more woody flavor, but still dark, like oak. Just a hint of pepper is still present on the tongue and finish. At the end of the smoke I pick up a char taste, almost bitter, but nothing to bother me. I think these little edges will be ironed out with a little more rest.
Overall: Overall, this was a tremendous smoke, not even taking into account the fact that it’s pretty young and hasn’t been released yet. I can only imagine how these will be in 6 months or a year. The draw and burn were both spot on and I had no issues with construction. I think Jon Huber has struck gold again with this release and I will definitely pick up a box for myself. I personally give this a score of 96 (Extraordinary).