Escobar Natural Robusto: Nicaraguan King, or pretender to the throne?
I am always excited to try new cigars, especially those that have made it to the UK market. When Rebellion Cigars offered me the opportunity to smoke and review one of the newest additions to their portfolio, the Escobar Natural Robusto, I was keen to give it a go and see what this collaboration between the award winning rapper Nas and Puros Privados was like.
The publicity for the Escobar cigars boasts about aged Habano tobacco, secret methods and promises you “an experience of the best… natural cigars found on the market today”. Setting this marketing hyperbole aside, I settled down for the evening to review this elegant looking stick and see what secrets this Nicaraguan cigar had in store for me.
Being a closed foot cigar, the only aromas I got from the cigar were those emanating from the Ecuadorian Habano wrapper. Floral notes mingled with hay and cocoa as I felt the cigar from head to foot. The filler felt firm and even, although there seemed to be a gap between it and the binder near the band.
Using my v-cut, I was met by a bit of low flying tobacco from the head, but also a fairly easy draw with notes of cream, custard and bay leaf leading the way. There was however a distinct pepperiness left both at the back of my mouth and on my lips. Having lit the Escobar Habano Robusto, this flavour was to become a near constant companion.
At the outset, the white pepper was accompanied by creamy nuts and just a hint of cocoa. I also tasted something that reminded me of sucking on a pencil when I was a child. There was a good amount of smoke, but I did find that it had a secco rather than a creamy texture, and it left my mouth rather dry. On the retrohale, alongside the pepper, I got a distinct note of meat and bonfire. With this sort of flavour profile, I wanted my drink pairing to cut through the pepper and offset the dryness. For this reason I chose a Caipirinha.
Smoking my way to through the middle third, the peppery flavour diminished a bit, but was replaced by a bitterness reminiscent of thick, strong black coffee. Every so often I got a little tickle of vanilla essence, but there wasn’t any sweetness to it. It was during this middle third that I started to have some burn issues. The ash, which had been dropping at regular half-inch intervals, became noticeably crumbly. The smoke remained thick but dry, although the cocktail was a spot on pairing.
Upon entering the final third, the pepper started to ramp up again, as did the bitterness. A good blow through, which produces quite a firework display, cleaned up the flavour and revealed a return of a minerality, alongside burnt wood. By the time I laid the Escobar Natural Robusto to rest, the room was rather full of smoke, although it didn’t smell unpleasant.
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Escobar Natural Robusto Cigar Details
Escobar Natural Robusto Review Summary
After smoking a couple of these cigars, construction issues aside, the flavour palate is not really to my taste. However, fans of a more peppery flavour palate will probably enjoy this cigar more than I did.
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