90 Miles, so close yet so far. That is the slogan for the Flor De Gonzalez 90 miles line of cigars. 90 miles signifies the distant from the southern most point of the United states in Key West Florida to Cuba and the distance Arnaldo Gonzalez traveled when he fled his homeland to start a new life int he United States. Someday that may not seem so far if we can forge better relationships with the current communist government and hopefully better human rights on the Island. I assume that is why it seems so far, so distant. The 90 Miles Lancero is just a reach into my humidor, really not that far at all. It has been in there for almost 6 months now and it was one of the first to be made since it still has the temporary band on it.
The 90 Miles R.A. Nicaragua, as it is known, is an extension of the existing Flor De Gonzalez 90 miles line. The RA is a tribute to the late Roberto Alonso who was best friend and business partner to Arnaldo Gonzalez who founded the company. It is has a dark chocolate Nicaraguan Habano wrapper that encases rich Nicaraguan binders and fillers. The binder is also a Habano leaf. It is a beautifully constructed lancero that weighs in at 7×38 finished with a typical pig tail cap. The band is a temporary one on this sample, which I received at the IPCPR show in Vegas this past July, so I can not comment much on the band but I can certainly discuss the cigar itself.
Further examining the 90 Miles R.A. Nicaragua I give the barrel and foot a small sniff and detect notes of earth and spice with a hint of cocoa. There are some slight veins but nothing that should be alarming. The body feels tightly packed and as i bite off the pig tail I am getting a excellent draw.
I gently toasted the foot and gave it a few puffs. There is definite dry cocoa to start that is mixed in with white pepper and a touch of nuts. The pepper drops down a few notches as it moves through the first inch or so and there is a leathery note that enter the mix. The ash is shimmering white but lasts only about an inch. I don’t expect much more from a lancero ash. The 90 Miles R.A. Nicaragua is pretty consistent on dropping the ash every inch so I learned quickly not to try and tame this and keep my ash tray nearby.
The flavor shifted again in the second third to more of a fruity flavor – raisin or possibly plum – yea like a Japanese plum wine. there is a delightful sweetness of the tobacco coming through as this point and the strength picked up a bit in the second third. As we close in on the final third, the sweetness is shifting to a creamy chocolate sweetness. The smoke has been mouth filling all the way through so far. The ash line has been sharp.
The aroma by the final third is very sweet and pleasing to those that may be around you. The flavors have stabilized and are balanced on the palate. Is there such a thing as a spicy chocolate plum pudding. That is how I would describe the 90 Miles R.A. Nicaragua. A delightful smoke that is unfortunately limited in quantity but I to raise my glass and toast the late Roberto Alonso for inspiring such a excellent stick.