H Upmann Connie 1 - LRL NOV 01 (Blind Group Tasting)

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H Upmann Connie 1 - LRL NOV 01 (Blind Group Tasting)

A cigar group that I belong to is doing a blind tasting of 9 cigars over the course of the summer, this cigar being the first. All of the cigars came from Rob, and his team did a superb job of helping us put this tasting in place. There are 15 reviewers who are all seasoned Havana smokers and no reviews were released to the reviewers until all were submitted. Here is a short review….


96+ 0 votes

90-95 3 votes

86-89 2 votes

80-85 6 votes

75-79 0 votes

74- 2 votes

NA 2 votes (2 cigars had construction issues)

A few comments from the tasters…..

“The initial flavors included a hint of nuttiness, but it was otherwise a fairly flat and lifeless smoke with some vegetal and grassy tones. Initially, it did not taste like a Cuban cigar. The moisture content was quite high, which probably contributed to the firm draw but also caused the burn to be uneven throughout the smoke, requiring frequent touch-ups.”

“Very present per-light aroma of fresh tobacco… sweet to the nose with a hint of cognac. Big, rich and earthy right out of the shoot. Hints of woodiness… a very straight forward flavor profile. Little in the way of spice or floral nuances. Nice finish with good length.”

“A slight woody taste and a flavor I can't put my finger on dancing in and out. The smoke coats my mouth and the burn is perfect. I'm thinking this one should have rested a little more. Pretty muted flavors that seemed to want to come out but couldn't, it finished with a little spice on the tongue.”

“Consistent spice and leather flavor. Not floral. 2/3 of the way into this now and it’s burning a little uneven and needing some touching up. Getting stronger. Last inch or so it got a little hot and a tad bit of harshness”

“The prelight aroma was a strongly aromatic and reminded me of an

organic bog. Almost pungent. Not like anything I smoke. The core flavor gave way to a lime and tequila combo for a bit and then changed to a creamed stale coffee. These two notes went away rather quickly.”

“Upon lighting I was greeted by nothing. Almost a total lack of flavor.

Soon a little flavor appeared, probably Cuban but not real distinctive.

The barnyard smell was present, but unfortunately not on my palate. The

cigar had a good draw and seemed to promise flavor to come, but alas it

was not to be. A few more days of "dehumidification" may have helped as

I had to correct the burn several times, but any real definitive flavor

was absent.”

“….rich smoke with every draw. Initial musty taste gives way to more woody flavors. The woodiness stayed consistent throughout but lacked overall complexity. The complexity expanded some in the last 1/3 with a very nice woody finish to the palate.

Construction was wonderful with a near perfect burn and a dark gray ash.”

“…tons of smoke with a fairly consistent firm draw. It burned well requiring no corrections. I expected it to get stronger as the smoke progressed, but it actually got milder towards the finish. Flavors noted were as follows: floral, spice, and a baked bread flavor. I've not tasted the bread flavor in a cigar before and it was nice! I smoked it till it was burning my fingers and had to let it go. I really enjoyed this cigar.”

“The initial puffs had a touch of sweetness. That gave way to some vegetal flavor, and later some leather & earth. Although it was an enjoyable cigar, too me it seemed on the young side. Slightly disjointed flavors, and a touch rough”

“The first third brought flavors of wood, spice, and raw tobacco, with a mild creamy note that seemed to dance in and out. The tannic quality was very evident, almost coating the mouth like strong iced tea, which betrayed its youth. The middle third brought an increased intensity of wood and spice, and the tobacco transformed into more of a toasted character, all against a backdrop of lingering pepper. A slight menthol flavor was also noted. In the last third, leather, spice, and tannins were prominent.”

“…it started out very nicely, immediately interesting and "hitting the spot" right out of the gate. (I find that many cigars don't open up until close to 1/2" in or more, this one seemed open from the get go). Overall, I tasted a few distinct flavors, fairly consistent throughout the cigar. I did not taste a major progression or evolution of flavors, but instead the ebb and flow of the pronouncement and sublimation of a the following tastes:

· sweet tobacco (like the smell)

· browned butter / (slightly) burnt caramel

· cream

· wild grass (like a sprig used to chew on

These were all "subtle" flavors, dominated more by a very satisfying (ready for this?) "Cuban cigar" flavor.”

“Typical progression with a transition to more power and less finesse. A little pepper spice appears very late with a small nicotine kick. The end turns a little hot and strong and the end is pronounced. Very enjoyable cigar”

“The cigar was quite aromatic, so I lit it with high hopes. From the start, the main flavor was somewhat sweet, rich tobacco. By that I mean it tasted very much like an unlit cigar smells. Happily that flavor persisted through the length of the cigar and was complemented by a little black pepper after the first inch or so. Unhappily, the wrapper was reluctant to burn”

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» H Upmann Connie 1 - LRL NOV 01 (Blind Group Tasting)

Tremendous work, guys! You have done a very thorough job on this review, especially you, cigarnv. Shows a lot of thought and effort.

I love the HU Connaisseur, but like many HU's, they need a lot of time to show at their best. I have a box of '98's that fully reveal the intense spice and musty flavors inherent in this vitola. I'll post a review.

The verdict: Let 'em rest. ;-)

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