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  1. Review: La Flor de Cano Casanova. Release: RE Italia 2016 Vitola: Petit Robusto. 50RG by 4.3inch (110mm) Production: 6000 Ten count boxes made. Box # 560/6000 Box Code: PTR DIC 16 Date: August 5, 2017 Start Time: 4:04PM End Time: 5:10PM Reviewers Notes: My style of cigar reviewing is “open”. I try to jot down what I’m experiencing with every draw. When you see a “/” consider that a break in between puffs. What I leave out in fancy prose is made up with observation. Consider each segment a play by play. This style works for me. I hope you enjoy it. Visual: Nice looking wrapper. Seems firm. This particular example has a bit of flakey wrapper damage by the foot. Therefore, It will be sacrificed first. There are also some green spots on the wrapper. Aroma at cold: Sourdough. Baking spice. Very “fresh”, “clean” aroma. Almost reminds me of a Hoyo de Monterrey. First Third Loose draw / Vegetal notes / tannic finish / chalky / flakey foot / nutmeg / dry, chalky finish / toasted almonds / tannins / good burn / vegetal, green pepper / same / finish is very tannic (like a red wine) / bitter so far / too young? / nutmeg / lots of smoke / faint cocoa notes / cocoa again / smoother finish on this draw / toasty tobacco / chalky finish / tannic / very loose draw, have to sip the cigar / cocoa / End of 1st Third Second Third Full bodied draw with some baking spice / ash still on / green pepper / tannic finish / cocoa, still dry on finish / green pepper & dry finish / green pepper and tannins again / cigar is becoming bitter / green pepper / tangy tobacco / bitter draw / dry finish persists / off white ash / harsh, bitter flavour / too rushed of a release perhaps? This cigar has serious rough edges / makes a lot of smoke like a Drew Estate Liga or Undercrown series cigar / slight cocoa finish / cigar loses wind, for puffs revives it / out anyways! / purge, relight. Lit purge burns off a lot of gases / better flavour on this draw, similar to an HDM / I remove Italia Regional band / tannins again , but slight nutty after taste / green pepper / sharp, hot pepper taste lingers on the tongue / green pepper / again / toasty tobacco / End of 2nd Third Third Third Toasty tobacco / chalky finish / nutmeg tones return / cigar is somewhat strong / tannic tobacco / buzz comin on / bold, toasty tobacco / fizzy feeling on tongue / lots of smoke / I take the main band off / tap off ash / flakey wrapper reveals green spot on the binder / two draws of green pepper (but charry) / tannic / cigar is strong / green pepper and tannins / purge and relight again / fizzy tobacco flavour / weird fizzy tobacco notes two more times / smoke production drops / this fizziness is giving me a bit of a buzz / I curse at the airplanes that fly over every 3 minutes / toasty tobacco / chalky mouthfeel / thin wrapper flaking off here and there / hint of floral notes / nutmeg on finish / minty flavour pops up twice / toasty tobacco / smooth draw / bitter note / toasty tobacco / minty finish / tap off ash / toasty tobacco / minty / END Conclusions , thoughts, score. I think this release is just too young. Green spots on the wrapper and the binder hint at rushed production and/or sub par tobacco supply. The cigars’ main flavour profile is bitter and tannic. I've been a big fan of Italian regionals since the La Escepcion Selecto's Finos; which were/are glorious. I passed on the PL Robusto and the RA Short Perfecto. The La Escepcion Don Jose turned out to be an excellent cigar. The Flor de Cano Casanova to me, does not deliver. I did not hate the PL and RA Italian RE's. They just didn't excite me. They smoked well in that there were no offputting flavours dominating the experience. The Casanova though does not fit into that mould. It just made me shake my head. This was a rough cigar to smoke. It's dominant flavour profile was tannic and bitter. That is not a good sign. I get the impression the tobacco used was taken the moment it looked ready and then rolled. Cuba has been flooding the market with this vitola which makes one wonder just how hard they were hit the past few years on the crop yields in terms of quantity and quality. I don't hate this vitola, there are some good cigars that share it. The packaging, the band is nicely done. The product inside is not ready for prime time. There is a small glimmer of hope though. If the tobacco within was not allowed to fully mature, then perhaps over time, this cigar can smoothen its' rough edges and make for a much better smoking experience. I hope that is the case. I didn't go too deep on these, but I'm not looking forward to smoking 14 more of these if they're going to behave as this one did. As for the score. Given the underwhelming performance in "the now" I'm going to have to give it an 82 . I can only hope time is kind to these. I personally won't smoke another for at least two years. Thanks for reading. BW.
  2. To say I am looking forward to this cigar would be an understatement. My favorite Marca and a great size to boot. I know the "Monte 80th" fever is in full pitch right now, but has anybody heard anything about this cigar since it was announced? I wouldn't be surprised if this cigar never showed, or if it does, in very low quantities. Considering the yearlong+ delay for the "2015" Monte 80th and the majority of folks who tasted both stating that the current release cigars are very different in flavor than the pre release cigars. I'm not sure where the Tobacco for the 16's is going to come from. The wrapper leaves are just about the same size (165mm vs 167mm) and they clearly had issues getting enough together for the 80ths. Maybe I am just being pessimistic, if I prepare myself for the worst case I can only be happily surprised if they are released. Right? Best case scenario they release them on the island early November to coincide with my trip.
  3. Our good friend Hamlet Paredes has placed #23 in Cigar Journal's Top 25 of 2016 with his Tabaquero Toro. That is a huge achievement! Congratulations Hermano! Hamlet at #23
  4. @Mattb82's recent topic on Petit Coronas got me thinking about longer cigars, especially in consideration of @earthson's reply in that topic. Whilst I don't mind the ring gauge (47 rg on a Churchill, 49rg on a Double Corona) I don't seem to smoke enough of these, I always seem to reach for the shorter and standard ring gauge cigars by preference. Do you do the same? Give me 2 hours to enjoy a cigar and I find I'll nearly always try to fit a Minuto/Perla or Petit Corona in there! So let's have a look at current regular production of Double Coronas and Churchills... What cigar from this list do you tend to gravitate to and why? One common reason why cigar enthusiasts may not reach for longer cigars is due to a perceived lack of complexity for the time it takes to smoke them. Do you find this true or not? (The table above was screen captured from an advanced search at Cuban Cigar Website here) A couple of points to consider... The Romeo y Julieta Churchill topped @El Presidente's 2015 poll after being 'out-of-favour' for a time The Bolivar Corona Gigantes is currently in @El Presidente's top 5 cigars coming out of Cuba at the moment The Quai d'Orsay Imperiales and Saint Luis Rey Double Corona are rumoured to be discontinued The H.Upmann Sir Winston is a seasonal production cigar and I have no doubt would sell out within minutes if offered for sale on an upcoming 24:24 The San Cristobal de La Habana El Morro is currently not available amongst retailers. This doesn't mean it won't return nor it isn't available at your retailer.(Incidentally, the same applies for the El Rey del Mundo Choix Supreme, Saint Luis Rey Serie A and Diplomaticos No.2)
  5. A good friend invited a bunch of us to his cottage up in northern Ontario. Roughly a 3 - 4 hour drive from Toronto. I used this opportunity to enjoy the fresh air and quiet to light up some cigars and a enjoy "a few beverages" First off, the view. A nice quiet lakefront. Neighbours are about a football field apart on either side. None across the lake. First smoke of the trip. RA Superiores A Behike 56 from 2011 on the following morning after breakfast. Later on the same day, I braved an NC. A Liga Privada No 9 with about 3 years of age on it. Not much to say about it. Not much flavour wise going on. Was tempted to pitch it at the halfway point but given the sheer relaxation of the environment and the knowledge that I could make up for this stick with a better one, I smoked it all the way through. At least it didn't ruin my palate. Later in the evening, I followed it up with a custom roll. Hamlet's take on an RA 898 with a closed foot (I added the band). I must say, I've had these for about 3 years now and they're really coming out on their own. Very close to the RA blend. A real pleasure to smoke. My after lunch smoke the following day. A La Escepcion Don Jose Later in the evening by the campfire, a Hamlet Tabaquero Salamon. (sorry for the picture quality). This was a really good balanced smoke. Some rich notes here and there but smooth overall. My last smoke of the trip the following day, an ERDM Choix Supreme from 2009. Delicious.
  6. What a season it's been so far! How is your team going? I found it very interesting to see that after six rounds, North Melbourne and the Western Bulldogs were one and two on the ladder and playing a 'premier' match on a Friday Night! The Kangaroos are six wins from six, their best start to a season since 1979. Two other teams, the Adelaide Crows and the Sydney Swans played a recent match at the Adelaide Oval where there was a 'kick in it' until the final 20 seconds of the game. As a Swans supporter, it was a great effort and a great match, no disgrace in losing by 10 points in one of the matches of the season so far. Ironically, the experts did not figure both teams in their final eight before the season began....but then again, what do the experts know? After all, many of the same experts predicted the Fremantle Dockers would win the premiership in 2016 and they are none (as in wins) from six! Some other highlights for this season... Brent Harvey (North Melbourne Kangaroos) is 12 games away from breaking Michael Tuck's record for the most AFL/VFL games of 426. Lance 'Buddy' Franklin (Sydney Swans) recently passed Wayne Carey's all-time goal count of 727. Only 30 players have scored over 600 in their careers and only 5 over 1000. Matthew Lloyd for Essendon was the last player going for the 1000 mark when a knee injury curtailed his career. Can Buddy Franklin keep his 3.6 goal average per match going? Has the recent rule change/s to keep the ball in play, together with the interchanges been lessened per game, made the game quicker/harder on the players? Is it right to penalise teams for putting the ball out of play as a defensive tactic?

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