The Bolivar line was first established in 1901 by Jose Rocha as was named after Simon Bolivar. In 1954, the Bolivar line was bought by Cienfuentes y Cia and production was moved to the Partagas factory. One of the most popular vitolas in the line is the Royal Corona which is a robusto measuring 4 7/8” x 50 ring gauge. In 2006, Cigar Aficionado rated it the top cigar of the year. The Bolivar line has always been considered one of the most powerful cigar lines from Habanos SA. This cigar has a box code of SVF JUN 05 which means it was made June 2005, but I’m not aware of what factory uses SVF for their code.
Let’s see how it smokes!
The cigar is actually pretty ugly. The veins of the cigar are pretty obvious, but don’t jut far out of the wrapper. The wrapper is still fairly smooth. The wrapper does have a mottled appearance, but the contrast isn’t too bad as you can see. The cap and the wrap are top notch.
Toasty tobacco, hay and heavy leather are the main notes I pick up. The leather is the most predominate and the notes aren’t harsh. On the foot, hay is strong with a hint of spice. Draw is pretty tight on the cigar too. That concerns me.
The first third is really smooth. It’s probably because of the age on the cigar. The strongest note is its cedar flavor. There is an underlying sweetness that is accompanied by a nutty flavor that is reminiscent of brazil nuts with a hint of spice. I do have a spot on the wrapper that is not burning that is because one of the large veins. I’m hoping that is will fix itself.
The second third got stronger which is way I expect from a Bolivar. The cedar notes and sweetness have intensified. Pepper has made an entrance and is making its presence known on each puff. It seems to be getting stronger as the cigar shortens. There is also a more earthy sweetness in the second third which should be even stronger on the last third. I have yet another spot that won’t burn on the wrapper. This time there is no vein so I don’t know why it’s happened this time.
Not much of a change on the last third, but the nuttiness got even more intense. Cedar is still there and it’s strong as well with the spices mellowing out. The sweetness isn’t as prevalent, but it’s still there in the background. The strength is actually increased even more. This is definitely a full flavored cigar.
The Bolivar line is known for their full flavor and strong strength. The Royal Corona lives up to that reputation. The strong notes of cedar, nuts, pepper and earthy sweetness make this one very flavorful cigar. It is not for newer cigar smoker though so be aware of that. The initial tight pre-light draw loosened up after lighting up the cigar which I was happy about. This cigar was Cigar Aficionado’s cigar of the year in 2006 and I know why. You can’t go wrong with the Royal Corona. I still prefer the Corona Extra and the Belicoso Fino better, but this is still one very fine cigar. If you can get some, don’t miss out.