Today I would like to take you to the Connecticut River Valley where some of the finest tobacco is grown much on farms whose harvests are sold exclusively to Drew Estate. In the case of the H99 Phineas Gage, it is a special hybrid corojo/habano that was created for the wrapper of the cigar.
During the recent May 12 “Freestyle Live: Special Edition” broadcast, that aired from 7 to 9 p.m. Eastern on the company’s Facebook Live page (facebook.com/drewestatecigar) and YouTube channel (youtube.com/drewestatecigar), Drew Estate announced that it is adding a new vitola, a 7 x 40 Lancero, dubbed Phineas Gage, to its Liga Privada H99 Connecticut Corojo lineup. The taste and aroma of the Phineas Gage’s Connecticut Corojo Hybrid tobacco might just make you a changed person.
The Liga Privada H99 Connecticut Corojo Phineas Gage Lancero is an event-only cigar available exclusively to all qualifying Drew Diplomat Retail Program partners. The Lancero’s name is inspired by the improbable story of Phineas Gage, a railroad foreman, who in 1848, survived a grievous accident when an iron rod was driven completely through his head, forever changing his personality. Also known as “The American Crowbar Case,” Gage’s story became a medical curiosity and spearheaded psychological and neurological studies into how the brain affects personality development.
All Liga Privada H99 Connecticut Corojo cigars feature a hybrid wrapper that’s derived from Stalk- Cut Habano and Connecticut Corojo seed, grown exclusively for Drew Estate in the Connecticut River Valley. The wrapper’s natural sweetness is accentuated in the Lancero format.
The blend is described as:
- Wrapper – Stalk- Cut Habano and Connecticut Corojo
- Binder – Mexican San Andres Otapan Negro Último Corte
- Filler – Honduran, Nicaraguan and Pennsylvania Green River One Sucker
The Liga Privada H99 Connecticut Corojo Phineas Gage Lancero’s are packaged in 10-count boxes with an individual petaca for every cigar. Limited to three boxes per event, the Liga Privada H99 Connecticut Corojo Phineas Gage Lancero has an MSRP of $19 per cigar.
For this review I sampled 2 of these cigars which I received from the company at their Barn Smoker events in 2022.
The Liga Privada H99 Connecticut Corojo Phineas Gage Lancero is cloaked in a stunningly beautiful, oily reddish-brown wrapper that exhibits a gentle marbling throughout. The cigar is fairly firm with just the right give when pressed between the fingers. A well applied double cap finishes the presentation.
A single band adorns the cigar. It uses the standard Liga Privada design with the name Phineas Gage printed in a red script across the band. The right side of the band denotes that it is an H99 varietal.
Running the Phineas Gage along the nose, I quickly noted an enticing baking spice aroma along the barrel while the foot intrigued my sense with notes of chocolate and nuttiness.
I used my double blade Xikar cutter to open the cap by slicing it straight across the shoulder of the cigar. Once opened I moved on to some cold draw puffs that I felt were just a tad more open than I prefer but not wide open. The draw offered notes of chocolate and raisin with a pleasant cinnamon spice.
With the pre-light exam out of the way, it was time to settle down and fire this one up for another Drew Estate journey. Using my single flame torch, I warmed the foot and drew in the first blast of spicey notes to start things off. Follow along as I burn this one to ash.
Cigar Review Notes
- Initial spicey blast and dry fruit notes start the journey
- Solid white ash develops on top of a medium thick wavy char line
- Raisin notes fill in the early profile
- A finely structure burn cone is revealed upon the first ash drop after an inch plus of burn
- Spice reveals itself as cinnamon
- Strength increases to solid medium into the second quarter
- Hint of natural sweetness balances out the profile
- Earthy Aroma wafts off the foot
- Spice begins to increase
- Bit of a metallic bite deep in the second quarter and lasts for a few puffs
- Dark Chocolate notes develop in the 3rd quarter
- Slight off burn develops but does not require a touch up
- Cinnamon and chocolate down to the end
- Full strength
- Total Smoking Time was 1 hour and 35 minutes
Drew Estate Founder and President, Jonathan Drew states – “The Liga Privada H99 Phineas Gage Lancero hits you like a spike right through your brainbox and you’ll never be the same.” I agree 100% with this statement. Starting off mild to medium in strength the H99 Phineas Gage continually ratchets up in strength getting to full by the end. It definitely made me a tad woozy by the finish. The cigar offered enticing notes such as cinnamon, dark chocolate and raisin. For the most part, the flavors played well on the palate but it did have a metallic note for a while, deep in the second quarter. Check one out if you are at an event and you be the judge. I rate this an 89.
Point Deductions: (-1) Wavy burn; (-1) Off burn in 3rd quarter; (-2) Metallic Notes midway; (-1) Small Wrapper Crack late in the burn