AusDyer

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  1. I'm trying to find any info about the blend but I can't. Checking the video it seems to suggest they're non-Cuban, largely Nicaraguan? But it's vague. Any chance of just an answer on that question? Or an appropriate link?
  2. I'm new to this Nudies line. I can't find a single piece of info anywhere about what tobaccos are in them? Are they Cuban custom blends or what?
  3. I made a comment regarding this elsewhere but felt this needed it's own thread. It's a very interesting subject to me and I'm interested to hear others's experience and thoughts on it. Not too long ago, I learned that a few companies outside of Cuba, like Davidoff, have more grading categories for their leaves as well as their other stricter quality control measures which produce much greater consistency of good construction and drawing of their cigars. Because they have more grades of leaf from the tobacco plants to fine tune blends, by comparison to these methods Cuban factories are therefore randomly mixing up different blend components from higher or lower on the plant but just grouping them together as one blend component due to the tradition. Another example of greater QC is how Perdomo refuse to use any leaves from the very base of the stem that have wilted into the soil (causing extra bitterness) which most cigar manufacturers don't do. While I don't like Dominican Davidoffs or Perdomos much for their bland flavour, this clearly helps in QC quite a lot, as their consistency (both in blend and construction) are far higher than with any Havanas. Just imagine if the Cuban factories graded their leaves more finely and updated some of their processes like this, how consistently great Cuban cigars could be. For reference, here's a time-coded link to a video at Davidoff where they're talking a little about their blending and categorization methods: "The traditional, normal way of classification of the leaves of the plant had only 3 grades - volado, seco and ligero. What that means is that "seco" is maybe 60% of the plant. Imagine. That means maybe at least 8 leaves are considered to be the same. You know if you take leaves 5 and 6 or you take leaves 11 and 12, they're different, so when you make the blend according to that, it's going to be different." https://youtu.be/bjOiWzekvOk?t=246
  4. Excuse the double post but I find this really interesting and worth being discussed far more often. This is more to do with the flavour and strength consistency than burn issues of course, but still, I felt you guys would be just as interested. Here's a time-coded link to a video at Davidoff where they're talking a little about their blending and categorization methods: "The traditional, normal way of classification of the leaves of the plant had only 3 grades - volado, seco and ligero. What that means is that "seco" is maybe 60% of the plant. Imagine. That means maybe at least 8 leaves are considered to be the same. You know if you take leaves 5 and 6 or you take leaves 11 and 12, they're different, so when you make the blend according to that, it's going to be different." https://youtu.be/bjOiWzekvOk?t=246
  5. I've found that to simply be blend/leaf and construction consistency problems on the whole, unless you're doing something drastic with how you're storing them or you're tired, hungover or been eating hot spices. Being from the same box doesn't always mean much (it still can mean a much higher chance of close consistency though, but certainly not always). The cigars have come from all over the factory over the course of each day, rolled by a whole array of different rollers and from many different bales of loosely graded and manhandled tobacco leaves. I even wonder if the odd roller might occasionally pocket a nice leaf here and there for themselves, leaving the odd cigar missing a blend component. Actually, in terms of blending, I only recently learned that a few companies like Davidoff have more grading categories for their leaves as well as their other stricter QC measures. So, as they have more leaf grades to fine tune blends, by comparison Cuban factories are randomly mixing up different blend components from higher or lower on the plant but just grouping them together as one blend component due to the tradition. Perdomo refuse to use any leaves from the very base of the stem that have wilted into the soil (causing extra bitterness) which most cigar manufacturers don't do. While I don't like Dominican Davidoffs or Perdomos much for their bland flavour, this clearly helps in QC quite a lot as their consistency (both in blend and construction) are far higher than with any Havanas. If the Cuban factories graded their leaves more finely and updated some of their processes like this, just imagine how regularly great they could be. In terms of flavour, there is an element of how alive your taste buds are too of course. Sometimes I really want to smoke a good cigar, but I just know my taste buds are off that day for whatever reason. But mostly it's just inconsistency in over-produced handmade products made from leaves isn't it. Padrón are always lauded (possibly alongside Davidoff) for being the best in consistency in their cigars but even with Padróns I've found quite big differences in flavour and complexity between boxes, under-filling issues and once an enormous stem down the middle of the bunch that spoiled the burn and taste.
  6. Yeah, I agree with Rob that they don't tend to change blends, at least of classic vitolas, very much. However, different crops of tobacco can vary quite a bit from year to year. I've found Havanas in general have quite recently become much more homogeneous in their flavours in fact, with a sweeter, caramel type flavour in most of them. I've even noticed a slight hint of a Nicaraguan-esque flavour in many Havanas over the last couple of years - that Padrón natural kind of tinge. Anyone else found this or am I imagining things?
  7. Rob always gives Kenny a hard time about lighting his cigar properly even when he lights it perfectly. When he says that in this video, Ken's burn is nice and even. You really have to do something quite stupid on lighting to cause a cigar to taste bad, and a good cigar is generally a good cigar whatever you do. I used to buy into the whole meticulous treatment of cigars so you don't spoil them thing, but after many years I've found probably 95% of the time what's to blame for bad flavour and bad burning of cigars is the actual blend, tobacco quality and internal construction and moisture content of the cigar. I find the whole thing about lighting a cigar for 2 hours with 10 special cedar spills and not touching the flame to the foot (some even say don't cut the cap before you've spent all day lighting it) to be absolute nonsense. I've torched cigars every which way. I've also stored cigars too dry and too humid (over-humidified probably being a much more common source of issues particularly in very young cigars). When the cigar is good it'll burn and taste good. When they're constructed and blended properly they seem to just burn nice and evenly however quickly you may torch it. Bad tasting blends cannot be blamed on how you light the cigar and let's face facts, there are far more bad and even pathetic blends and construction coming out of Havana (and other places too) than great ones.
  8. Yep. 898s are generally a bit stronger and fuller flavoured. They have more coffee bean/espresso, earth and pepper. Lusitanias are actually quite soft and mellow cigars - cream, wood, hay, sweetness (maybe a touch of caramel). Both are excellent cigars when on form and will age very well, but a good 898 has more legs before they start to soften out too much.
  9. If you guys are going to review D4s again, how about doing a series of doing all the major Cuban robustos from similar 2020 dates?
  10. Cheers. Yeah, I thought they must be as the 2019s are the only ones with that "bullet cap" shape. Looking forward to trying the ones I've ordered myself, but it might be January before I receive them now due to covid/postal service issues. I've heard very good things anyway, despite a few complaints about burn issues.
  11. And bloody fun to read, mate. I've been enjoying you guys' video reviews since only a year or two after you started making them. Only just now have I stumbled upon your Kenfessions. I often find myself fully agreeing with you, and when it comes to these stubby little chodes that cigar companies are pumping out now I certainly do. This bit at the beginning of the review cracked me right up: "Honestly, my first impression was that I was at the dentist. It feels like your gob has been wedged open and something bad is about to happen." Brilliant. Your cigar reviews once lead me to buy a full box blind online from Geneva based purely on the box code. They were Punch Royal Selection from MGT ABR 07. They were incredible cigars and just as you'd described. I already felt your tasting notes were solid but ever since then I've trusted your FOHtv cigar reviews over any other youtube reviews...even despite the incessant bickering. I've also wondered if you've ever tried a Padrón 2000 maduro or even a Family Reserve 44 or 50 (natural wrapper)? I'd be fascinated to hear your thoughts on those Nicaraguan cigars. I've been exploring new worlds a lot more lately. Though I've not found anything that really floored me, the 2000 maduros are really unique and superb for the price. They'll really clear your sinuses too. The FR 44 and 50 naturals are expensive but a really good example of just how delicious Nicaraguan blends can be - certainly the best Family Reserves of all the ones I've tried. On the whole though, I've still not found anything as great as really good examples of the best Havanas.
  12. Nice! I only just ordered a small selection of Warped cigars from the US myself a few days ago. Are the bandless ones the Lirio Rojo 2019? I'd be interested to hear your thoughts on those in particular.
  13. Sadly, greedy profiteering always damages the quality of products. It always happens once some management school team sees that a great product is selling really well, so they decide why settle for making huge profits when we could make enormous profits by cutting corners and selling some junk with a shiny label instead? Especially with luxury goods like fine cigars, you can sell a lot of relatively complete rubbish with a "limited" label and 3 bands for many times it's worth, and by the time people have realised they're not very good, they've all sold anyway and you move onto the next special release that everyone will buy no-matter how average or poor it is. If you actually make an exquisite cigar, sell it for a year or two, then swap the blend to something cheaper and not very good et voila... many people will keep buying it anyway and your profits will skyrocket.
  14. My most recent one was a box of 10 Monte 2s. I decided on a whim to grab a box of 10 (if I found one that looked like it might be good). The very first box I opened in my local B&M was oozing oil, dark choc wrappers and loose bunching at the feet. After feeling a few, they all seemed to have perfectly even give throughout (no tight feeling spots). I bought them immediately and smoked one the following day to try out. It was the best Montecristo #2 I've ever smoked in my life. Immediately, I went back and asked to look through their other boxes. None of them came close to the look, feel and potent box aroma. They kindly noted down the box code I gave them and found 2 more boxes of 10 from the same code in stock at another of their stores and had them sent over to my local. I checked them out and sure enough both of these other boxes were almost identical. I smoked 2 from one of the other boxes and another 3 from the original box I bought. Every last one has been amazing. They are crying out for a few years' aging though, because they're incredible already at a very young age and have plenty of richness and power in the back end to indicate that a few more years will improve them even more. So, I've had to bite my lip and squirrel them away. As is usually the case, these Monte 2s are loosely rolled, which is evident at the foot and from feeling the give along the length of each cigar. The draw is very easy, but still has a subtle pull to it. The box aroma is potent and gorgeous and the wrappers dark and very oily. They are very rich medium-full, milk chocolate, oaky, lashings of cream, coffee, black pepper and a hint of honey. I've also had Monte 2s which were sickly pale with a bright yellow tint, covered in little white water spots and had a completely different flavour - very light, cedarwood, white chocolate, cream and a little baking spice. Then, of course, there's the majority of them which I find tend to be thoroughly bland or even acrid (especially when tight). The wild variation in Havanas is bizarre when you consider how incredibly consistent many other cigar manufacturers can be.
  15. Because nearly every great Havana cigar I've ever had has been rolled loose. I've been smoking cigars for over 16 years and always wanted to find good firm rolls that draw well, but more often than not, they don't with Cuban cigars. They mostly will draw adequately, sure, but strangle the flavours off somewhat. These P2s I had were incredible and very loose, but with just a nice hint of "elastic" resistance. Of course you can find complete "wind tunnels" that don't burn well, overheat easily or even are just clearly missing some element to the blend or something and don't have great flavour. That's a different matter and applies equally to any roll quality. I agree with that but I've gone through this before many times and sometimes managed to get the box code/date of the cigars that were outstanding. After sourcing more boxes of the exact same code and wrapper shade, I found the same great quality. That's why I'm asking for experienced recommendations on box codes.

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