Oscar Valladares has been growing his cigar business ever since he and Island Jim Robinson collaborated on the iconic Leaf by Oscar. Now, after years of growth he has a full portfolio of cigar blends and brands under his wing. This year, at the Premium Cigar Association (PCA) trade show, he showcased two new blends, the Super Fly and the Wild Hunter. Today’s review is on the latter – the Wild Hunter which I smoked two of for this review.
The Oscar Valladares Wild Hunter is a Honduran puro that comes in two different wrappers – natural and oscuro. For this review, I sampled the oscuro blend which is described as:
- Wrapper: Honduras
- Binder: Honduras
- Filler: Honduras
The Wild Hunter is expressed in a single 6 x 52 toro vitola and comes packaged in 20-count boxes. They are priced with an MSRP of $9.50/cigar. The boxes are designed to appeal to hunters, with vibrant images of wooded areas. Each box has the cigars packed with loose tobacco leaf which is a nice presentation.
The Oscar Valladares Wild Hunter oscuro is a heavily marbled, medium brown cigar that has some noticeable veins. It is packed well, with no soft spots detected and it is finished with a simple cap.
The cigar is adorned with a single band, at least the one I got from the show. I notice on the company’s website that an additional footer band has been added to distinguish between the “natural” and “oscuro” blends. The primary band uses a pale orange and yellow motif and boldly declares it as the “Wild Hunter” and includes the company’s logo below. The background on the band uses a camouflage look.
The pre-light offered aromas of floral notes along the barrel and a natural tobacco sweetness off the foot.
Once I opened the cap using a straight cut, I drew in some cold puffs that graced the palate with a notes of mild spice and earth all through a snug draw.
A double flame torch does the trick to warm the foot and get the journey started, a journey that began with some harshness and more restriction than I usually prefer. Follow along as I burn the Wild Hunter to ash.
Cigar Review Notes
- Tad harsh to start with a snug draw
- White ash evolves on a thin and wavy char line
- Flavors settle in after an inch with vanilla being the first to break through
- Medium volume of smoke
- Vanilla is joined with a butter note
- Sweet and floral aroma wafts off the foot
- Woody cedar notes enter start of second third
- As the ash fell it revealed a centered cone
- Jagged burn midway
- Popcorn notes appear highlighting the early butter
- Coffee nuances add to the mix
- Another off burn starts
- Bitter and Astringent notes enter
- Moving into the final there are some spice notes that rest on the back of a sour profile at this point
- A light cocoa aroma takes it to the final
- Medium in Strength
- Total Smoking Time was 1 hour and 35 minutes
Overall, the Oscar Valladares Wild Hunter oscuro was not the best to come from Oscar Valladares Tobacco & Co. Though it had some decent flavors and aromas in the first half, it started rather harsh before settling in. The second half had less enjoyable notes. The burn was also troublesome starting with a slight wave that morphed into an off burn and even after a touch up the burn issues continued. I rate this an 87.
Point Deductions: (-1) Wave in burn; (-1) Off burn developed; (-1) Touch up required; (-1) Harsh start; (-1) Sour notes; (-1) Astringent; (-1) Medium Volume of Smoke; (-2) Money Better Spent