OK, you may have some questions on this one. In fact, you may not have heard of Didier Cigars and neither did I until I presented the 2021 Cigar Lounge of the Year award to Executive Cigar Sandford, FL. Erica Everett, the co-owner of the lounge, handed me a cigar that she was excited about carrying. That cigar, the Didier Cigars – The Elie is the subject of todays review.
Didier Cigars was founded by Didier Lazare Benitah who was born in Saint Germain en Laye – Paris, France and has been a Miami, Florida resident for over 20 years. His appreciation for cigars sprouted from his vast travels and flourished to where a cigar became his go-to source of relaxation and inspiration; a soothing way to clear his mind at the end of a busy day on set. He founded Didier Cigars in 2016 and has been growing it internationally ever since.
According to the Didier Cigar website:
“The Elie is a special edition cigar and was designed by Didier for his personal enjoyment with a multitude of scarce, select and rare vintage tobacco leaves. It is an extremely complex blend that starts out with dueling flavors of light spicy peppery notes and woody-earthy aromas stimulating at the back of the palate. It takes you on a journey that begins as a mellow Medium bodies smoke but ends as a full-bodied experience that holds nothing back.“
The Didier Cigars – The Elie has blend described as:
- Wrapper – San Andres, Mexico
- Binder – Cuban Seed – Habano 2000
- Filler – Esteli, Nicargua
The Elie is expressed in a single (6 x 60) Toro Gordo and comes packaged in 20-count boxes. Executive Cigar Sanford retails these for about $23.00/cigar.
The Didier Cigars – The Elie sports an oily dark brown wrapper that is light on veins and is solidly packed from head to foot with no discernable soft spots. A well applied triple cap finishes the presentation.
Three bands adorn the cigar. The primary band uses a black and gold motif and proudly displays the company’s logo in the center A secondary band is placed just below the primary using the same motif and includes Didier’s signature and declares the cigar as the “Grand Reserva – Edicion Exclusiva”. Finally, a purple satin footer band is applied.
Running the cigar along the nose, I picked up a pungent fermented leaf note along the barrel. The foot exuded notes of pepper, nut, and cocoa.
I sliced the cap straight across the shoulder and gave it some cold draw puffs that delivered a growing cayenne pepper note puff after puff. The pepper was quite pronounced but there was also a touch of butter and the early pungent note in the background.
With the pre-light examination out of the way and my palate intrigued for what kind of journey I was about to embark on, I used my triple flame torch to warm the foot slowly to an even orange glow and drew the first of a number of peppery blasts to the palate and nose. Follow along as I burn this one to ash.in the first
Cigar Review Notes
- First light hits the palate and nose with a peppery blast – no surprise there
- A pleasant floral fruit aroma immediately wafts off the foot
- A solid white ash forms on top of a thin char line
- Continued pepper notes evolve and rest on the lips and back of the throat
- Fruit notes make their way onto the palate as the pepper begins to pull back
- Excellent volume of smoke
- An off burn begins to show, but I leave it be to see how it develops
- Aroma shifts to more of a toast and jam after inch and half of burn
- Ash is holding tight and the burn is doing its best to even out
- Chocolate notes evolve as the strength ratchets up
- The long solid ash eventually falls revleaing a decent burn cone
- Espresso nuances join the mix deep in the second third
- The early chocolate has become more of a dark chocolate and swirls in and out of the profile
- Spice and sweet cream notes enter in the final
- Full Strength
- Total Smoking Time was 1 hour and 50 Minutes
After smoking tow of these, I found the Didier Elie to be very close to how the company described the cigar. The strength starts easy but builds to a full dose by the end of the journey where as the pepper hits you right off the first puff and descends to open the true character of the blend. Like the company states – flavors go from subtle and nuanced to balls out bold. Notes of floral and fruit start the palate pleasure followed with toast, jam, chocolate, and espresso. This was a most enjoyable blend and it finally brought me back to earth with notes of cream and spice but with a full charge of neuron exciting nicotine. It did a have a bit of a wave and a slight off burn through the first third but it found itself without the need of a touch-up and wow did that solid ash carry for a long burn before it fell. The draw was excellent with a full volume of smoke from the get-go. This is worth picking up a fiver of. I rate this a 94.
Point Deductions: (-1) Slight Wave in burn; (-1) Off burn developed but did not require a touch-up;
Bonus Points: (+1) Extreme Ash’ (+1) Well Balanced blend of complex flavors and aromas