Joya de Nicaragua Red Robusto: A beautiful jewel of a smoke?
As the oldest manufacturers of premium handmade cigars in Nicaragua, Joya de Nicaragua have an impressive portfolio including some of the most popular Nicaraguan cigars on the market. The Joya Red forms part of their modern line up and is a cigar that I have been looking forward to smoking for quite a while.
This Nicaraguan puro looked as though it had been crafted out of milk chocolate as I slid it out of its protective cellophane. The wrapper glistened temptingly and left a creamy oil on my fingers as I gave the cigar a once over. Aromas of caramel, caraway seeds and Biscoff cheesecake tickled my nose as I admired it.
Giving the Joya Red a gentle squeeze from head to foot, I noticed that whilst it both felt and looked well packed at the foot and up to the mid point, as I got to the band it felt a little spongier. The v-cut revealed a lovely, easy cold draw with notes of caraway cream whilst the wrapper left a gentle oil on my lips. Without further ado, I lit up and started to savour the cigar.
The first flavours that I got from the Joya de Nicaragua Red Robusto were slightly bitter almonds and minerals, almost like tonic water but without the effervescence. Before long though all bitterness had subsided and I was left with a delicious creamy, salted caramel flavour.
Smoking my way through the first third, the mineral notes were a constant companion whilst cream, caraway and caramel danced around each other. The construction of the Joya Red in the first half was perfect and I ended up with a strong one inch ball of ash sat neatly in my ashtray. The room was filled with delightful aromas of cedar and warm tobacco as I hit the mid point.
Right the way through the middle third of the Joya de Nicaragua Red Robusto the creamy, smoothness of the flavour built as the mineral notes became more gentle. This wasn’t the flavour profile that I have always associated with Nicaraguan cigars. There was no heat or peppery spice in the flavour at all, it was much more subtle.
The Farinelli cocktail that I mixed myself really complimented the cigar; the vodka enhanced the minerality whilst the Campari and amaretto played off each other to bring out the creamy texture of the smoke and nutty flavours out of the Joya Red.
Unfortunately when I took the band off, the sponginess that I had felt at the start revealed itself as crumbly ash. No longer was I getting pristine ash balls and I found myself tapping the cigar every few draws to avoid spilling ash on myself.
Towards the end of the final third the more familiar peppery spice started to creep in, albeit surrounded by cream, and I enjoyed the Joya Red right down to the nub. Aside from the crumbly ash that I suffered in the second half of the cigar, this lighter bodied Nicaraguan cigar was a pleasure to smoke. It is one that I would happily savour again and I think would make the perfect morning, or summer afternoon cigar with either a cocktail, as I enjoyed it, or with a cup of coffee.
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Joya de Nicaragua Red Robusto Cigar Details
- Vitola: Robusto
- Length: 5¼”
- Ring Gauge: 50
- Smoke Time: 2h
- Source: James Barber
- Origin: Nicaragua
- Binder: Nicaraguan
- Filler: Nicaraguan Jalapa, Condega, Estelí
- Wrapper: Nicaraguan Habano Criollo Claro
Joya de Nicaragua Red Robusto Review Summary
This Nicaraguan puro perfectly showcases the minerality of Nicaraguan tobacco. Whilst the flavours in this cigar were mouth-watering, my enjoyment was diminished by a crumbly ash in the second half. This isn’t enough to put me off smoking another one, which hopefully won’t have the same issue.
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