By: Oliva Cigar Co.
Country of Origin: Estelí, Nicaragua
Wrapper: San Andreas Maduro
Filler: Jalapa Valley Ligero
Strength: Medium Full Bodied
This is a very dark and earthy looking cigar with a slight oily sheen. It’s what I would call lumpy. Many times a cigar will be an almost perfect cylinder but this cigar pulls off the shabby look fabulously. It has a super thick and multicolored dark brown wrapper with very minor veins and lots of tooth. There was one small spot where the wrapper was missing, but this is not uncommon. The stick is topped with a nicely constructed triple cap. The foot is well packed with no stem to be seen. The band looks almost identical to the regular Oliva V except for one small detail; it has Maduro written in italic cursive on the side.
The pre-lit foot gives off a hints of hay and wine with gobs of earthy fermented tobacco. The wrapper is chocolate, wine, black pepper, with what can only be described as a bit of saltiness. The pre-light draw tastes of raisins and leather and leaves a tart sweetness on the palate. Looks and smells are tantalizing.
Upon toasting I noticed a fragrance of roasted nuts and after the first puff I was blown away by how smooth the finish is for a Ligero laden Maduro. The retro-hale was not so gracious, sabotaging my senses with pepper burn that cooled to leave notes of cashew. The smoke is mouthwatering and juicy. I anticipated having to spit. In the first third, sweet raisin, leather, and a deep charred chocolate engage the palate leaving a slight tingle at the back of the throat and pepper on the lips. The pepper comes on a little stronger with each puff, but is a perfect compliment.
Right away I noticed how incredible the cigar is. It has an array of flavors, tons of depth, and a spice that continues to grow but never overpowers. The perfect draw and construction help produce a lot of tangible smoke. The bouquet is oily and floral. Expect others to notice the intoxicating scents coming off the cigar. By the time I got a quarter in, it began to settle down as the flavors combine, becoming more floral on the tongue.
Two thirds in, the spice disappeared almost completely. The floral notes increased and a tangy sweetness was left on the tongue. The V Maduro tastes more like the assorted sun grown Habano cigars than your average Maduro. The prevailing flavors here are earth and wine. As a sign of things to come, I was already beginning to feel heady. Ash is a light gray, tinged with darker areas. It holds on for about an inch and a half. Burn line was exceptional. As it settled, it became a motley of flavors, rather than jumping from one to the next. Right when I believed the spice to be gone, it would come back with a warm pepper descending on the palate.
By the final third, a massive amount of sweetness descends. The floral notes weaken and give birth to notes of coffee and earth. All this was tied together with a sugar sweet finish and smoke that brings to mind a nostalgic moment. The flavors infused and mellowed while the body bursts with strength. This is a cigar for fully fledged smokers, initiates beware. It’s worth getting a little woozy, but you should probably fill your stomach before toasting.
This was a very difficult cigar to classify. It’s floral bouquet and nutty retro-hale were possibly more reminiscent of a , but a sweet, dark coffee and earth were predominantly displayed here. Combined with the ebb and flow of the black pepper spice. This is everything you want in a Maduro. Sweetness, body, and strength. Deep dark flavors, and yet refined and interesting. The floral, wine, and nut qualities were an unexpected surprise.
Overall: 5 Stars
Appearance: 5 Stars
Construction: 5 Stars
Flavor: 5 Stars
Value: 5 Stars