It has been quite a while since I wrote a cigar review. I had wanted to really do it consistently, but only managed to do two and that’s about it — so goes pretty much anything I want to do blog related.

For the last few weeks I’ve had a pretty interesting cigar sitting in my humidor that I picked up at my local Cigar Lounge, Royal Havana. Tonight I decided to spark that smoke up and as I was getting ready to open up its interesting packaging I decided, hey why not blog about it.

So here we go.

LEAF by Oscar Maduro 6″ x 50

Purchased from Royal Havana Cigars in Willoughby, OH.

Strength: Med/Full
Wrapper: Nicaraguan Maduro
Filler: Honduran
Origin: Honduras
Shape: Toro

This cigar comes courtesy of Jim Robinson from Pittsburgh’s Leaf & Bean, George Rodriguez of Rodrigo Cigars and Oscar Valladares.

The first thing you notice about this cigar is the fact that its wrapped in a tobacco leaf. Well aren’t all cigars wrapped in a tobacco leaf you might say, yes they all are – but not in the same way that this cigar is.

All cigars are wrapped in a tobacco leaf that holds the filler tobacco leaves within a cigar, then they are usually individually wrapped in cellophane. The Leaf by Oscar, however, tosses out the cellophane and instead uses another tobacco leaf.

At first glance this makes for what you think is one damn ugly looking cigar. Once you remove that outer layer however, you reveal the beauty that lays inside.

A dark and shiny maduro wrapper glistening with oils and very few visible veins.

The pre-burn aroma on this cigar is light with an earthy, leathery smell. My untrained nose thought it got a hint of saltiness that made me thing of the seaside.

I used the built-in punch on my Vector torch lighter to put a “figure eight” hole in it. The pre-light cold draw was light and hay-like.

It lit up very easy, which surprised me a little bit with how oily this stick was. The first few puffs were a little overwhelming in their spiciness, but that was just at the very beginning. This is a strong cigar with its maduro wrapper, but its by no means a cigar that will knock you on your ass in its strength. Once I got into the first third I noticed a dark-chocolate type aftertaste that was very pleasant as well as a slight saltiness. I don’t know if its due to the oils, but this cigar burns fairly quickly, fairly even though as well.

Once into the end of the first third towards the start of the second third the dark chocolate notes really picked up and I also noticed coffee flavors. While I was pairing this cigar with a hopped up Citra IPA, I think it would be better suited with coffee or a nice imperial stout.

IMG_20150709_214608Into the final third, the cigar the saltiness was still there, but it also started to get a little sweet as well. The dark chocolate and coffee notes make me really wish now that I had paired it up with a nice stout the flavors that this cigar gives really calls for it.

In conclusion, this cigar is by far one of the darkest darkest cigars I’ve ever smoked, but by no means is an in your-face super strong powerhouse. It was smooth and creamy at the end with some salted chocolate notes in the middle. A medium-to-full smoke throughout. While the packaging may be a little on the gimmicky side, it is very cool none-the-less. While I wouldn’t go out of my way to hunt this stick down, its a damn good smoke that next time I enjoy I’m absolutely going to pair with a nice chocolate stout.