Boutique or “Salon” cigar companies are coming up in the cigar community more and more each day. I was searching on Twitter for new companies and came upon a new company called Nicaraguan Cigar Co. and figured, why not follow them and see what they are all about. Shortly after I was offered to review their cigars for NTA and today I’m going to take a first impression of the Condega Serie F Petite Robusto.
Condega is the area in Nicaragua where the “famed” Esteli city is in. A lot of people have heard of Esteli, but not so much of Condega which adds to the mystique of this cigar. I’ve noticed a good number of great cigars come from Esteli, which means they also come from Condega; so lets see how this one fares up.
Vitola: Petite Robusto
Source: Sample from company
First Thoughts: Atop the cigar is a deeply and neatly applied double cap giving plenty of room for a cut. A medium brown wrapper with a few small veins covers the Serie F. The cigar has an overall firm feel with no hard of soft spots. The foot has a hay aroma to it. The whole cigar has a pleasant aroma to it, though I can not put my nose on exactly what it reminds me of. The cold draw is dead on. Its not too loose or too stiff, its right where I like to have a cigar draw at.
Construction: The draw stayed consistent throughout the cigar. Slightly less than milkshake thick, but not loose at all. The burn was slightly wavy, though it did not affect the smokeability. A white ash forms close to the burn line, then turns to a dirty white color as it cools and gets farther from the burn line. Each ash held for about 3/4″ or so without any thoughts of it dropping.
Flavors: First flavors I get are fairly woody with a faint spice and dark chocolate undertones. Being from Nicaragua, I figured this would be a spice or pepper bomb, but the spice was minimal. About a third into it,I got a little taste of a sweetness that was suprisingly nice and unexpected. The sweet taste had a chocolate malt taste to it, but not extremely sweet.
About half way, the malt chocolate note turned into more of a chalky chocolate powder taste. The last portion of the cigar went back to the beginning with the woody and faint spice. With about an inch or less to go the flavors seemed to drop off and got a little bland.
Final Thoughts: It started off with a faint spice that I wished had ramped up more in strength, but it did the opposite. The flavor strength started off med to med-full area, then eased off to the medium flavor strength. The woody, spice and malt chocolate notes I did like, but wished they had been more announced in strength.
Overall, I’d say it was a medium bodied and flavor cigar. Has a slight complexity to it, with nice flavors. Though, I do wish the flavors were stronger and they hadn’t dropped off at the end. Its not a great cigar, but it’d be good for a mid morning smoke with a cup a light coffee on a cool morning. I think this blend would be awesome in something with a smaller ring gauge and a longer length; possibly a corona gorda or lancero possibly.