Wrapper: Mexican San Andres
Binder: Jalapa Habano Rosado (Nicaragua)
Vitola: Toro 6×54
Brand: Dapper Cigar Co
Factory: NACSA (Nicaragua America Cigars S.A.)
CigarNoise Price Range: $11-$14
Source: Small Batch from IPCPR 2017
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Dapper Cigar Co El Borracho – First Thoughts
Ian Reith of Dapper Cigars said that he wanted to do a take on the San Andres/Nicaraguan combo that Padron’s famous for and thus El Borracho was born. He notes that several cigars are named after La Loteria, a card game, and El Borrracho (The Drunk) was the only one that resonated with him. You can read more in his interview on Small Batch.
El Borracho is a square box-pressed cigar with an oily, seamless wrapper. It looks, feels, and smells like quality through and through. From the foot, I experienced heavy scents of fresh leather, earth, and dark chocolate. A cold draw emphasizes much sweeter notes, hinting at an interesting experience.
Dapper Cigar Co El Borracho – First Third
Cream, Leather, Earth, Chocolate, Nougat, Pepper, Cherry, Cedar
My very first puff contrasts my expectations. El Borracho is creamy with mild notes of leather and earth accented by what I can only translate into a combination of nougat and chocolate. Pepper chimes in almost as an afterthought, and most likely I wouldn’t have picked it up if I wasn’t running through the usual checkboxes for a review. It’s a gentle sort of pepper that accents the blend rather than steals the limelight.
Just shy of the one inch mark, hints of cherry and cedar take the stage as pepper becomes more aggressive. It’s a combination that I never would’ve put together myself but it harmonizes beautifully with the background flavors and creamy texture. El Borracho coats my palate with oils and has a very long, satisfying finish that showcases several transitions much like espresso as it cools down.
The mechanics are equally pleasing at this point, with the square box-press performing much better than imagined. A crisp char line and maintenance-free burn line only enhances this experience.
Dapper Cigar Co El Borracho – Second Third
Cream, Nougat, Cinnamon, Pepper, Dark Chocolate, Leather, Coffee, Caramels
Dropping the ash, El Borracho becomes shy all of a sudden, allowing that nougaty sweetness and subtle hints of cinnamon to shine through as the other flavors retreat. As the ash builds, pepper is the first to come back with a vengeance. Dark chocolate, leather, coffee, and caramels soon join the party as well.
The body has intensified significantly as we approach the halfway point, approaching medium-full territory. Leathers, dark chocolate, coffee, pepper, and cinnamon build on each other in layers. Here, one flavor is dominant. Moments later, another takes the lead role. Each time the flavors deepen and come back more vibrant than before. It’s like when you’re listening to a piece of classical music and the moment builds, making you almost uneasy with anticipation.
Dapper Cigar Co El Borracho – Last Third
Cream, Mocha, Cedar, Earth, Leather, Pepper, Fruit
Dropping the ash yet again, El Borracho once again retreats and gives me a moment to collect my thoughts. Wow. This cigar brings another dimension to the word complex: varying tempo with multiple flavors and transitions. It really is like smoking art.
This segment begins and ends much like a hybrid between the first and second thirds. The body is deep and rich now, with well developed flavors of mocha, cedar, earth, leather, and pepper taking the stage. Subtle hints of fruit linger frustratingly just beyond recognition as well.
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