Montecristo Edmuno Cigar Review

Next to Cohiba, Montecristo is perhaps one of the most recognizable Cuban cigar brand in the world. Their flagship cigar, the Montecristo No. 2, considered one of the finest full-bodies torpedo cigars made by many cigar aficionados, rated as a 94 by Cigar Aficionado (Feb 2008 edition).

I, not being a fan of torpedo shaped cigars or full-bodied Cubans (yet), opted for the Montecristo Edmundo. Montecristo also makes a shorter version, the Petit Edmundo, which is also very highly rated for those who are shorter on time or prefer a smaller vitola. I have not  tried the Petit Edmunodo yet, but from what I hear, it hits the sweet spot sooner. Definitely on my to try next list.

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Montecristo Edmundo

Origin: Cuba
Format: Robusto
Size: 5.3
Ring: 50
Wrapper: Cuban
Filler: Cuban
Binder: Cuban
Made: Handmade
Smoke Time: ~90 minutes
Price: $8.80, box of 25

Construction

20091210-Montecristo-Edmundo-Cuban-Cigar-002Beautifully constructed, this Robusto vitola named after Edmundo Dantes, the hero in Alexandro Dumas’ famous novel, “The Count of Montecristo”, a favorite reading for the torcedores of the Montecristo brand.

This is a large puro measuring 5.3 inches with a 50 ring. There is hardly any veins in the wrapper with no soft spots when gently squeezed. There is plenty of tobacco packed into this beast. The wrapper has a nice naturally, oily sheen and smells great. (2010-01-25 UPDATE: I found something quite interesting. Apparently the Montecristo Edmundos that come in the tubos are 50mm ring gauges where the Edmundos from a box of 25 are 52mm. Not entirely sure why the tubed version would be noticeably smaller.)

The cigar band is a very simple design, perhaps the smallest and least decorative of its other Cuban brothers. The band design is so boring and uninspiring (Montecristo name on top and Habana at the bottom with a Fleur in the middle) you could think the cigar was a counterfeit if not for the beautiful construction, the perfect triple cap, and the robust flavors.

I received the Montecristo Edmundo 3-pack that comes in a very nice package, complete the Country’s seals of authenticity. The Edmundo in the 3-packs come in a very attractive yellow metal tubo with the ornate Montecristo logo, the cigar name, and a bar-code on each. Inside, lays an Edmundo wrapped in a thin piece of cedar to help lock in the flavor. What’s great about the metal tubos is that they prevent the cigar from getting damaged when traveling with a stick. Normally I carry cigars i plan on consuming in a Cigar Caddy, but with the tubos I can travel light and not worry my cigar being destroyed in my pocket or bag. Even with the tubos, you’ll still need to place them in a humidor to keep them until you’re ready to enjoy them.

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My friends and I have not had any burn issues with the Montecristo Edmundo. Once started, it keeps a very precise burn until the end, no corrections needed. The salt-and-pepper ash produced is solid an holds for an inch-and-half easily. Because of the size and how well it’s packed, it’s easy to get large billows of nice white smoke.

Flavor and Taste

20091210-Montecristo-Edmundo-Cuban-Cigar-006The Montecristo Edmundo has a wonderful medium-to-full-bodied taste that remains unchanged except near the end. The flavors are buttery, with pepper, vanilla, chocolate with a hint of coffee beans throughout, but pickup more in pepper once you hit the last 1/3rd.

This is a cigar that you need adequate time to enjoy. Try rushing it and the strong flavors will kick your ass like gulping down hard Scotch, shot after shot. To truly appreciate this masterpiece, you need to take sips and let the taste flow around in your mouth before letting it out. I’ve tried to smoke these down to the nub a few times, but the flavors get too strong for me near the end, so generally I know when it’s time to put it down, it’s time to put it down. Also because this is more of a medium-to-full body cigar, make sure you have a hearty meal before enjoying one, or you will get sick.

The 5-pack of 3-packs (15 cigars) I have has a date code 2007 of making them 2 years-old (3 years, if you consider that the leaves are aged a year before being used) and from what I’ve read, can only get better with age.

Value

Purchased in a box of 25, the Montecristo Edmundo works out to $8.80 per stick. Purchased individually, the cost becomes a bit more on the pricey side of ~$13. Even at $13 a cigar, I definitely think it’s worth the value unlike the $36 Opus X Churchill I had.

For those who can legally acquire these beauties, they come as a single tubo, a 3-pack of tubos, a 5-pack of 3-packs (15 Edmundos), and a clamshell box of 25.

Conclusion

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This has become one of my favorite cigars, so far. If you want to experience Cuban cigars at its finest, I would certainly recommend the Edmundo for its beautiful construction and yummy flavors. For $8.80 a cigar, you’ll be hard pressed to find even a Cohiba that taste as good for the same price.

Be sure to read other reviews:

Montecristo Edmuno Gallery

Ramon Allones Specially Selected (RASS) Cigar Review

One of my favorite cigar formats is the Robusto because it generally packs a lot of flavor and takes about ~45 minutes to enjoy making it great for after lunch, after dinner, and/or enjoying with friends. The Ramon Allones Specially Selected consistently tops the list as one of the top in its class. This Cuban puro rated an 82 by Cigar Aficionado in its August 2009 magazine and is consistently highly rated by many other online cigar aficionados here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here.

Being so highly rated by so many, I knew I couldn’t go wrong with the RASS; my thoughts inside.

Continue reading Ramon Allones Specially Selected (RASS) Cigar Review

Cohiba Gran Reserva, It’s Like Burning Money

A little late with this post, but better late than never. As a huge fan of Cohiba cigars (the real one, not the Red Dot), I was shocked at the announcement of a new, extremely limited cigar: the Cohiba Gran Reserva, which is essentially a Siglo VI made with limited supply 5-year aged tobacco. I was even more so shocked when the price was announced, $125 per stick, making this even more expensive than the Fuente Fuente Opus X LBMF (CigarInspector.com review) cigar’s ~$80 per stick price tag pale in comparison. There will only be 5,000 boxes of 15-cigars made of the Gran Reserva, making it extremely limited production and extremely pricey at $1500 a box. Cigar Aficionado has given it a perfect 100-points in a non-blind taste test.

© Smokingstogie.com
© Smokingstogie.com

The Cohiba Siglo VI Gran Reserva is beautifully constructed and comes in an equally beautiful display case. But the big question that lingers is: how good is a 100-point cigar? Check out reviews by SmokingStogie.com (with lots of great pictures) and World of Cigars.

cohiba-gran-reserve-smokingstogie-01Judging from the people who have had the opportunity to have one, it’s heavenly. Apparently the secret of the Cohiba Gran Reserva is the use of the Ligero leaf, the top part of the best tobacco leaves and since there isn’t much of the Ligero leaf on each tobacco plant, it takes a number of them to make a single cigar.

Be sure to checkout the YouTube video by Friends of Habanos:

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HOFzLllIxtg[/youtube]

Fuente Fuente Opus X Reserve de Chateau Cigar Review

I was first exposed to the Opus X, Arturo Fuente’s premiere line of cigars, back when I first started smoking cigars some three odd years ago. At the time it was considered one of the best smokes, consistently rated at 90+ points with Cigar Aficionado and the price most certainly reflected that. At the time it was too rich for my blood, and having no baseline as to what constituted a bad, good, or great cigar, I opted to pass.

Years later as I started getting back into this past-time and having had a number of cigar brands, I was beginning to understand and develop what I liked in terms of taste so I figured it was time to take a whack at the Opus X. I stopped into a semi-local B&M store at Valley Faire Mall in San Jose that I knew would have some in stock and ended up picking up the Opus X Reserve de Chateau, a churchill length cigar and it stayed in my humidor for a measly thirteen days before I decided it was time to try this baby out.

Continue reading Fuente Fuente Opus X Reserve de Chateau Cigar Review