saltbox

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Everything posted by saltbox

  1. There’s been some small bits recently, including on 24:24. I’ve got two boxes, codes MTS SEP 20 and SOP MAY 21. Montecristo Especiales and Cohiba Siglo V are the only two I haven’t seen on 24:24 in the time I’ve been around (~1.5 years). I’ve luckily managed to snag Monte A, MdO4, and 898s all from 24:24, as rare as they’ve been.
  2. Got this in a trade, have been looking forward to trying out some RyJ with more age than the rest of my stock to compare. It's not a lot of age, but aside from a SUE JUN 15 box of Wide Churchills everything else is 19 or later. My wife has been curious about cigars, so I've been helping her sample a little bit of everything. She was working on a TEO JUN 19 Petit Royal while I smoked this. So far, her preferences have been Partagas Short > RyJ Petit Royal > Montecristo No. 5. First third: opens with cream, nuttiness, spices, nutmeg, and cherry. The Mediterranean spices and spiced cherries come through quite heavily. Middle third: nuttiness takes on a strong almond character with heavy sweet and savory spices. There's a rich, dark tobacco spine to the flavor profile now. It's a much darker profile than the Churchills, which are my favorite of the RyJ lineup so far. Last third: more of the same but richer. The rich tobacco notes form the foundation of the profile with sweet savory spices and crushed almonds sprinkled over top. Overall: not bad, a more tobacco-forward version of the Romeo y Julieta flavors I've experienced so far. 88/100
  3. Picked this box up a while back and I've included a few in trades, but this is the first one I've actually smoked myself. Rested about 6 months with about 15 years of age. This particular stick was quite ugly compared to the others, looking quite dusty, so I made it the first sacrifice. Pre light, the aroma off the wrapper is very reminiscent of my recent regular production Punch, but much lighter and more floral. First third: opens with an extremely smooth and elegant blend of floral notes and honeyed nuttiness. I've seen mentions of a Juicy Fruit like note before and have never gotten that with the other Punch cigars I've had, but there's an intense bright fruity sweetness on the retrohale that's almost cantaloupe like and I guess this must be it. Smooth creamy nuttiness and melon sweetness. Middle third: the nuttiness slowly becomes richer and takes on a more roasted character. A creamy coffee joins the profile as well. Both changes continue to intensify over the third. Last third: the delightful melon sweetness has faded away for the most part, though there's still a hint of it on the retrohale. Baking spices suddenly intensify in this last third and give it a surprising amount of kick for a 15 year old cigar. Overall: beautifully smooth Punch nuttiness but with a melon fruitiness that came out of left field for me. 91/100
  4. I spent most of Dec spoiling myself with CCs so I've been spending most of Jan/Feb so far continuing working through my NC stash, but these are easy enough to sneak into shorter breaks before a longer smoke later in the day. I'm nearing the end of this box and have another three resting. So far I haven't been amazed by these and have been hoping for some evolution with age to change my mind but no such luck yet. First half: opens with the familiar creamy shortbread note, as per usual. This box has been in my tupperdor for well over a year at this point, so whether it's the age or the rest, whatever spice these cigars might've had earlier on has all but dissipated. It's just a pleasant smooth creaminess. This particular specimen seems to be a bit lighter bodied than the others from the box, though I've also been smoking a lot of NCs recently and it could just be relative. Second half: not much evolution, though I also don't pay as much attention when I'm smoking one of these shorties. The flavor profile does become a bit more medium bodied than the first half, and a nice bit of milk coffee emerges as well. Overall: this one wasn't the best showing for the box, unfortunately. It was still a pleasant smoke and a nice way to take a quick break during the day. I'm looking forward to cracking the next box open. I've not heard much about how HUHC has varied over the years, but my other boxes are all JUN 20 boxes across three different factories: EOL, LTO, SOR. 86/100
  5. Fair point, I think my question is more specific to those seed/plant changes as they seemed much more drastic based on how old timers have described them. This is exactly what I'm curious about: was that the prevailing attitude? Did most people think that the new flavors were worse, but still good enough and different enough from non-Cubans to just roll with the change begrudgingly? Or did the change happen slowly enough that people weren't sure exactly what was happening until they had the clarity of hindsight? With the new seed harvests being slowly integrated into the blends due to the different aging times for seco/ligero/wrapper and longer resting/aging times in general, did it take time for people to catch on?
  6. There's a wealth of information about the changes Habanos blends have been through over the years in threads like this one: In the modern era, there don't seem to be many, if any, changes of the magnitude mentioned in that thread. If Montecristo changed next year and became a light bodied floral cigar, I would certainly be very confused and very annoyed, but I'm curious: how did people react to these major shifts? Were people unhappy? Angry? Did it mostly go unnoticed by the masses? Were they seen as an improvement in flavors at the time? Or decried as the end of Cuban cigars? (I'm guessing yes on that last one) Did people quit Cubans because the flavors were so different?
  7. I figured a review or two of these would be informative given previous conversation about these elsewhere on the forum but it's probably a good idea to (generously) avoid crossing the line of talking about other vendors here.
  8. My understanding is his full name is Papo Robaina, but I have no evidence either way other than what I’ve seen online.
  9. Same deal as the Alex Gonzalez: curious enough that I was willing to take a chance. 7 days of freezing and 2 months of rest for this fatty. First third: opens with a nice cream and nuttiness, kind of like a Punch but without the spices. As the cigar picks up, some shortbread joins the mix, leveling out at a nice light-medium body. Middle third: shortbread becomes the predominant note, like an Upmann, but with a subtle honey note on the finish that's quite pleasing. Last third: the shortbread becomes richer but also dryer in texture. There's an occasional honeyed nut note that appears intermittently as I near the end. Overall: this one smoked a lot like an Upmann, specifically the Petit Corona. The honeyed nut note reminded me of the 2020 colorado rosado Nudies I had the chance to try. Not bad, but we'll see how this improves with rest (2 months is far short of what I'd normally wait) and how the thinner ring gauges smoke. 87/100
  10. Like many I was curious about these sticks, having never had a farm roll and not foreseeing any opportunities to procure any from a source I felt 100% confident about. I ended up freezing these for a week and letting them rest for 3 months before finally trying one. The "Siglo II" name is obviously just a reference to the vitola, but I've found that most of the sticks, especially with the bigger vitolas, run a bit fatter and sometimes a bit longer than they're supposed to be. Decided to try out this one first, as the narrow ring gauge probably lends itself to acclimating faster than some of the other much fatter ring gauges. First third: opens with a nice cream, hay, and a touch of grassiness. There's an interesting tartness on the finish, not quite RASS-like but similar. Maybe more inline with a SLR Regio. The flavor slowly becomes richer, taking on a rich tobacco note with a touch of cocoa and creamy coffee. Middle third: twangy sweet cream and a blend of tobacco, cocoa, coffee, and hay. The notes are hard to pull apart. It could probably be described both as balanced or muddled. The cigar is extremely smooth though, no harsh notes or pepper, just a smooth medium body. Last third: flavor profile doesn't change much. It actually reminds me of the notes I get off of Habanos cigars that are a bit underfilled with the hay notes, but lacking the harshness that accompanies underfilling. It's definitely well rolled, no fill or burn issues throughout the smoke. Overall: I feel pretty certain that this is Cuban tobacco (but I also only got 2/5 in the blind tasting so 🤐). As for how good it was... meh. It was pleasant and smooth for sure, but it also seemed to lack any particularly distinct flavors. The Habanos marcas all seem to have their unique characteristics but if their was a generic Habanos flavor profile that they all built off of, I imagine this would be it. I would describe it as Montecristo cream with a touch of coffee meets Romeo y Julieta rich tobacco notes. It has been only 3 months of rest, though, so I'm intrigued to see how these age and how the other vitolas vary. 3 months is only half of the rest time I usually put in before trying something for the first time. 88/100
  11. I've noticed in the last week or two that the forum will sometimes load a logged out view of the forum even though I'm logged in. This mostly happens under times of heavy load around 24:24, though I've had this happen intermittently at other times as well. I've tried clearing cookies but that didn't make any difference. Clicking the sign in link on the page just leads to an error page (presumably because I already have the authentication cookies).
  12. If you love Warped it’s worth trying out. I like Warped, bought a few things, and wasn’t disappointed but also wasn’t amazed.
  13. I’ve heard the same said about Villiger and find those claims really hard to believe. The marketing around the blend is definitely designed to imply it. If it is true, I didn’t taste it at all. I found the Atabey to be overwhelmingly bland and the Byron not much different from a Davidoff.
  14. Decided to pull out one of the Club Kings after trying the Partagas Capitol the other day. Bought this one also just because I wanted one of the tins for no particular reason. First third: opens with a basic light nuttiness with a touch of leather. Some mediterranean spices, cardamom and rose water emerge shortly after the first few puffs. As the third progresses, a rich tobacco note not unlike that of the Cazadores comes forward and becomes the main base of the flavor profile. Middle third: some dark woodiness comes forward as well and joins the tobacco note to form the new primary notes on the palate. Rose water, nutmeg, and the faintest touch of red berry sweetness. Last third: some peppery spice creeps in, as the cedar and tobacco continue chugging along with some perfume-like floral notes on the retrohale. Overall: this one was just okay. I wasn't as impressed with this as I was the Partagas Capitol. The flavor profile was really driven by that dark woodiness and tobacco note and lacked the creamy twang that seems to differentiate the higher end cigars in the marca. 85/100
  15. It's been about half a year since I tried the first out of the box, so decided to pull another one and see how the box is developing. First third: shortbread, chocolate, and a touch of that powerful black coffee note I associate most strongly with the Magnum 46. There's much more cocoa here than I remember from before or in any other Upmann I've smoked. The black coffee attenuates to a nice milky coffee over the course of the third. Middle third: a nice, balanced blend of shortbread, cocoa, and milky coffee. The wrapper split which I hadn't noticed (but in hindsight is visible in the pre-light shot), starts to expand aggressive as the burn line reaches it, so I quickly applied a patch of rolling paper and cigar glue to stop the spread and give some structural integrity. Last third: the shortbread continues to get richer and fuller through to the nub, ending on a high note. Overall: my first Upmann No. 2 had much more of a tobacco edge to it and was much more similar to the Magnum 46 I've smoked. With only another 6 months of rest, this box seems to have mellowed out much more to those core Upmann flavors. The No. 2 and the Magnum 50 are up there as my two favorites from the Upmann line so far. 90/100
  16. Bought one of these tins along with one of the Romeo y Julieta Club Kings just because I thought the tins were fun about a year ago, and finally getting around to trying one out. I'll have to grab one of the H. Upmann Regalia's soon just to complete the set. First third: opens with cedar, paprika, savory spices with a reasonable kick of pepper, and a touch of cream. The creaminess slowly picks up but with the cedar note retains a darker character than I get with Partagas Shorts. A bit of graham cracker appears at the end. Middle third: cream, cedar, savory spices, honey sweetness. The sweetness here is brighter and stronger than I get out of Shorts, which are the closest comparison I've had in the Partagas line. Last third: flavors basically continue on in the same fashion, but in the last inch a bit of hay comes in as the cigar hits an underfilled patch, which I had noticed when cutting the cigar. Overall: quite enjoyable, felt like a more rustic Partagas Short with more cedar, more peppery spice, but also more sweetness. 89/100
  17. It's totally up to your personal palate! I should say that I have previously observed that the creaminess of Aladino is slightly sour and a touch dirty when compared to the clean creaminess of Cubans, so you might still think it tastes like dirt depending on how sensitive you are to that note. The bigger vitolas can also get a bit of a strong mineral note to them, which I think is common to Honduran tobacco in general, but this lancero didn't have any of that.

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