Here is something you don’t see every day, a new cigar brand from Davidoff, and I don’t mean a new blend with a Davidoff brand mark, but a fully new brand line. Introduced at the 2018 IPCPR in Las Vegas, Back2Back cigars is essentially a reintroduction of the Room 101 Big Payback – remember that cigar, it was pretty damn good.
If you recall, Matt Booth was connected with Davidoff, before going silent, and then reemerging on the cigar scene after a short hiatus. Of course this is business, and Matt created the Big Pay Back blend while under the Davidoff umbrella. When he left Davidoff, the company kept the blends but let him take his brand names with him. I guess you could say that was nice, but the brand name with out the blend would not be the same cigar.
Enter Davidoff in 2018 and they took the Big Pay Back blends and re-branded it as Back2Back. One can only assume they knew what a fine cigar it was. There are 2 blends in the Back2Back line; Connecticut and Nicaragua. Today I offer a review of the Back2Back Nicaragua, which I received at the Smoke Inn Great Smoke 2019.
The Back2Back Nicaraguan blend is described as simple as simple can be, it is a Nicaraguan puro:
- Wrapper – Nicaragua
- Binder – Nicaragua
- Filler – Nicaragua
They are expressed in 3 vitolas including the huge 7 x 70:
- 5 x 50 – MSRP $6.49 (packaged in 50-count boxes and 10-count bundles)
- 6 x 60 – MSRP $7.49 (packaged in 50-count boxes and 10-count bundles)
- 7 x 70 – MSRP $8.49 (packaged in 30-count boxes and 10-count bundles)
The Back2Back line is hand rolled at Diadema Cigars de Honduras, S.A., Honduras and I give credit to Davidoff for keeping the price point similar to the original Big Pay Back.
Before I get into the review, there is one more point to be made about Back2Back cigars. The boxes and footer bands highlight artwork from two New York based graffiti artists – Fernando Romero and Mike Baca. You may know them as UR New York (URNY) and this is not the first project they worked on for Davidoff, you can see their art on the Davidoff Zino Platinum also. The duo are also brand ambassadors for the Zino Platinum. They have also done artwork for Red Bull, Showtime, Nike, Gatorade, VH-1, and Reebok to name a few.
For this review, I sampled the Back2BAck Nicaragua 5 x 50 robusto.
The Back2Back Nicaragua is a dark brown cigar with a nice oily sheen and smooth to the touch. It has a simple cap and a few veins running along the shaft. It has a decent weight for a robusto and seem solidly packed.
There are two bands that brand the cigar. The primary band uses a black and white motif. The brand name “BACK2BACK” is printed in white and the the letters “UR” are printed above the brand name, also in white. One should note, the Connecticut uses a reverse pattern for the primary band. The secondary band is a brightly colored “graffiti” artwork from the URNY duo.
Running the Back2Back Nicaragua along the nose, I picked up a mildly pungent fermented leaf aroma, along the barrel but not much off the foot.
I sliced the cap with my double blade Xikar cutter to give it a straight cut, as I normally do. The cold draw was decently restricted and offered notes of earth and pepper.
Using my double torch lighter, I warmed the foot, and took in the first spice laden puffs and started the journey to Burn it to Ash!
Cigar Review Notes
- Journey starts with spice and a light bitter note
- Medium grey ash develops resting on a thick char line
- Coffee and chocolate notes enter
- Smoke is very smooth on the retro-hale
- Still some bitterness lays on the palate
- Honey aroma begins to waft off the foot
- Cedar joins the profile
- Spice builds on on the nasal blending well with the honey notes
- Flavors settle entering the second third
- Ash fell revealing a centered but flat burn cone
- Full volume of smoke has been there since the start
- Off burn developed that eventually required a touch up
- Spice and honey with added coffee notes entering deep in the second third
- Creamy notes add to the profile with the aroma shifting to more of a bread note
- Spice takes control with a hint of sweetness and citrus in the final third
- Medium in Strength
- Total Smoking Time was 1 Hour and 20 Minutes
Overall, the Davidoff Back2Back Nicaragua Robusto was a pleasant smoking experience with a delicious array of notes including chocolate and honey. I like that mix. From a construction perspective there was wavy burn that eventually morphed into a thin off burn that required a touch up and then the burn behaved through the second half. Even with that issue, I would suggest picking up a bundle of these for your rotation considering the excellent price point. I rate this an 89.
Point Deductions: (-1) Wave in Burn; (-1) Flat Burn Cone; (-1) Bitterness in First Third; (-2) Run in Burn; (-1) Touch Up