Cigar Aficionado #5 Cigar of 2020, Punch Short de Punch


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Just now, prshah25 said:

 Whoa! This box is very ugly .. you should return it if possible.

I’m working with the vendor on that! (Of course it wasn’t from Rob, one of my few times venturing out) 

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3 hours ago, prshah25 said:

Rob is the best vendor out there. I don't venture out even if I find a better deal. 

100%. This was only my second order out of 70 or so boxes that wasnt from Rob, learned my lesson! 

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On 1/13/2021 at 8:06 AM, prshah25 said:

It was the best kept secret. now it will fly off shelves and increase in price.

Do many CC smokers actually care what CA does or says when it comes to Cuban cigars? 

Probably not, but probably also wishful thinking on my part that the prices won’t go up, so regrettably you’re likely right. 

I honestly think I could predict CA scores for CC better with a dartboard than a tasting. They rate SdP several points over Fundis- I love the former cigar, but...

image.gif.3771c83970894fb2727ca6b3310a816a.gif

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3 hours ago, juri said:

i wonder what #1 will be, they gave padron FR 44 maduro a 95 twice this year, but they already have a padron in the top 3... and say what you will about CO out of all of the COTY lists they are the only one to have at least 3 cubans each year, most sites like cigar journal or cigar snob your lucky to see 1 or 2 and dont get me started about halfwheel.... i dont think they have had a cuban on their top 25 in YEARS lmao in fact they gave the punch 898 a 75!!!!

so my money is on monty no. 2 since like i said a padron made 3rd and so far there has only been 1 cuban in the top 10, and when monty's are on (2020 they have been epic) they get very high ratings (winning in 2013 with a 96 and regurly getting 94/95 also picked up a 3rd place in 07)

LOL exactly about Halfwheel! They’re an absolute joke when it comes to Cubans. They almost NEVER review regular production. It’s like their Cuban reviews attempt to perpetuate the myth here in America that Cubans are overrated. 

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48 minutes ago, Kaptain Karl said:

LOL exactly about Halfwheel! They’re an absolute joke when it comes to Cubans. They almost NEVER review regular production. It’s like their Cuban reviews attempt to perpetuate the myth here in America that Cubans are overrated. 

Halfwheel is useful for getting recent cigar tool & buisness news, but their Cuban cigar reviews are absolutely meh and useless IMHO.  Agree with your point @Kaptain Karl! ?

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On 1/12/2021 at 4:42 PM, MrBirdman said:

Do many CC smokers actually care what CA does or says when it comes to Cuban cigars? 

I haven't since 2000. The rough patch in CCs hasn't recovered in their eyes. The scores they put up for some of these NCs are just silly. Not to mention they have some odd review criteria like only smoking the first inch of only one example.

1 hour ago, Kaptain Karl said:

LOL exactly about Halfwheel! They’re an absolute joke when it comes to Cubans. They almost NEVER review regular production. It’s like their Cuban reviews attempt to perpetuate the myth here in America that Cubans are overrated. 

HW is a bit odd. They do seem to grade CCs VERY hard. Anything above a 90 is a monumental achievement. And they smoke three cigars and average the score, so if they get one dud it turns a 93 into a 85. I believe that was the case with their review of the LGC Orgullosos. 

3 hours ago, SmokyFontaine said:

is there any general wisdom with respect to rest time on these? I have a box of January 20, and a big part of me wants to sample the first from it

They're pretty new, so not really. Usually, Punch with some body age very well (the DC stands out). Punch Punch is a little less intense and usually is good to go within 2 years. But most Punch back in the day were known for great aging potential (RS, SS, Coronas, Ninfas, Churchills).

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11 hours ago, SmokyFontaine said:

is there any general wisdom with respect to rest time on these? I have a box of January 20, and a big part of me wants to sample the first from it

I think it is not going to go too far out on a limb when saying a wide current consensus on this forum being that these are pretty good fresh. And that holding across a wider range of factories. Perhaps one of the reasons why they appealed to both panels of CJ as well as CA.

Sampled my first from Sep 19 at eight months and they were very fine. So I’d say just delve into them and see for yourself.

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8 hours ago, NSXCIGAR said:

The rough patch in CCs hasn't recovered in their eyes.

I get that impression too - though I have always assumed (see the embargo thread for the failure of assumptions :) ) that they ranked NC cigars so highly and basically ignored CC because their audience smokes mostly NC and Habanos SA doesn’t contribute much to their ad revenue. In other words, they know where their bread is buttered!

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40 minutes ago, CigarZen said:

I saw a CA rating tabulation.  CC received the highest percentage of 90+ scores.  If I recall they also had the greatest number of cigars rating 90+
 

I was surprised.

I can believe that. Most CCs are coming in to a very small window of 89-93. Very rarely have I seen them put a CC in the gutter in the last 15 years but a lot of NCs end up in the low 80s. 

Basically, the highest and lowest ratings are NCs. CCs keep a flatter curve right around 90. 

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4 hours ago, juri said:

might be true for their top 25 but if you head over to the connoisseurs corner they are pretty much exclusively cuban and its the only place they give out 99's and 100's.... i would of said 98 too but they just gave one out today lol, but 97/98 is low as they go i think

if you listen to the guys talk in random youtube videos (they show up on Ajay Patel YT page) here or there or interviews they seem to mostly smoke cuban at home and that only smoking the first third is a myth

https://www.cigaraficionado.com/connoisseurscorner

The Connoisseur's Corner is different. Shanken, Savona, Mottola and Suckling smoke almost all of those and obviously they're not going to lay a Cohiba 1966 down after a third. I consider the CC to be more of these guys' personal cigar journal.

As far as the CA raters smoking only the first third, it's not exactly that but not far off. This is a Reddit AMA post from Greg Mottola addressing it:

If a cigar is disagreeable for the first inch, it is scored accordingly and no more of the cigar is smoked. It doesn’t matter if it becomes the greatest cigar in the world afterward. Any cigar that requires anyone to smoke through a bad first inch is a seriously flawed cigar and will be rated accordingly. Normally, it takes ⅓ to ½ of the cigar to develop its natural flavors. That’s how much we generally smoke. It’s the most practical way to produce as many cigar reviews as we do. We rate around 75 cigars per issue of Cigar Aficionado, which comes out 6 times a year, plus entire brand verticals and new releases in the Cigar Insider, which we put out about every other week.—Mottola

https://www.reddit.com/r/cigars/comments/3wt19a/ama_david_savona_executive_editor_of_cigar/cxywdlv/

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3 hours ago, NSXCIGAR said:

I can believe that. Most CCs are coming in to a very small window of 89-93. Very rarely have I seen them put a CC in the gutter in the last 15 years but a lot of NCs end up in the low 80s. 

Basically, the highest and lowest ratings are NCs. CCs keep a flatter curve right around 90. 

Here’s the link:

https://www.cigaraficionado.com/article/special-report-2020-year-in-review

 

 

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5 hours ago, Lrabold89 said:


This is very true ...for all vendors ....I’ve seen a range of quality from turd to gem ...through about 8 boxes


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Yea, I wouldn't normally mention it but in the case of these I think I've seen 2 really nice looking boxes out of like 12 bought blind. Could just be luck, or more variability than some other CCs. Hard to say, but yea

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6 hours ago, CigarZen said:

This makes sense to me and since since they take into account consistency and quality control Cubans in the end get hurt the most in the Top 25 rankings. I always pay attention to the CC reviews and find quite often there are subtle comments on the draw or the wrapper/construction more frequently than others.  We have a perfect example in the picture of this thread that shows how lucky we are to have a vendor help us avoid those issues. 

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