When creating cigar blends, a Master Blender focuses on how different cigar leaves work together much like a food recipe with varying ingredients offer the consumer a pleasant and balanced array of flavor sensations. The blender also needs to understand how the bunched leaf in the finished cigar combusts to offer a proper burn and draw throughout the experience. Usually, cigar blends are expressed in multiple vitolas (sizes), when they are released to the consumer. The challenge for the blender is to get the flavors and burn consistent across the various vitolas. One of the more difficult vitolas to bunch and roll, to answer this challenge, is a large ring gauge cigar. Smaller ring gauge cigars like a lancero are said to be the hardest.
This year, Drew Estate released a new blend for their economically priced Nica Rustica line named the Adobe.
The Nica Rustica Adobe was released in 3 different vitolas including a large (6 x 60) Gordo:
- Toro (6 x 52) – MSRP $5.76
- Robusto (5 x 54) – MSRP $5.20
- Gordo (6 x 60) – MSRP $6.48
The Adobe blend is described as:
- Wrapper – Habano
- Binder – Brazilian
- Filler – Nicaraguan (Estelí and Jalapa)
The Nica Rustica Adobe comes packaged in 25-count boxes that feature colorful original artwork by Subculture Studios Richard “Dog” Diaz, who captures the rugged, robust and rustic essence of Estelí. Diaz’s romantic vision of Estelí also incorporates the city’s official symbol and proud emblem, El Brujito, a petroglyph of a native shaman carved some 6,000 years ago onto a rock on a mountain near Estelí.
Today I would like to offer a review of the Nica Rustica Adobe Gordo which I smoked two of but also want to note that I also enjoyed the other other two vitolas in the lineup and found them to be consistent in both burn and flavor when compared to each other and the gordo. Kudos to Drew Estate for the care they put into making this line, especially considering the wallet friendly price.
The Nica Rustica Adobe has a medium to dark brown wrapper which I would describe as milk chocolate brown. The cigar and it brethren vitolas are well packed and demonstrated no soft spots along the barrel. There is mild sheen to the wrapper leaf and very few noticeable veins. The wrapper is satin smooth to the touch and a well applied double cap finishes the presentation.
Two bands adorn the Nica Rustica Adobe and both use the same aqua blue and black motif. Though the design is basically the same as the original Nica Rustica, the colors are a stark contrast and they just pop on the cigar. The red NICA RUSTICA is easily noticeable on the aqua blue background. There is also the name ADOBE printed on the bottom of the band. There is a footer band on this rendition that declares it a DREW ESTATE product from Estelí, Nicaragua
Running the Adobe along the nose I picked up a mildly pungent wrapper along with a light natural tobacco sweetness off the foot.
For this particular one I used “The Baller” cutter by CigarMedics to open the cap which when cold puffed gave me a draw that was more open than I normally like while offering cold draw notes of pepper and pungent (kind of like a curry). Quite an interesting start.
I used my triple flame torch to warm the foot of this gordo to an even orange glow and drew in the first puffs of of vibrant spicy pepper to begin the journey. Follow along as burn the Adobe to ash.
Cigar Review Notes
- Rich vibrant spicy pepper especially on the retro – ouch!
- Extreme volume of smoke that is thick and creamy
- Light grey ash forms on top of a medium thick char line
- Pepper recedes as fruit notes move forward
- Ash fell early revealing a flat but centered burn cone
- Savory spice spice notes begin to develop
- Cream notes join the mix and balances the profile
- Cocoa nuances tease the palate in the second third
- Sweet nutty aromas waft off the foot
- Strength ratchets up near the midway point
- Continued spice as the prevalent note
- There was a bit of wave in the burn moving toward the final
- Medium plus in strength – I would say the other vitolas more to the medium side)
- Total Smoking Time was a smooth 1 hour and 50 minutes
I was pleasantly surprised with this new Nica Rustica Adobe. In fact I had smoked through the Free Style Live package that were un-banded and every one was guessing what it was – Kudos to Kevin Shahan form Cigar Prop for figuring out it was a new Nica Rustica before it was announced. Even then I was thoroughly enjoying the nut and pepper notes with the balanced cream and sweetness though each journey. I would have liked to see a bit more flavor development through the second half but this is a cigar that is so affordable yet so good you can not help but add a box of these to your rotation. Pick your size because they were all consistent in burn and flavor. I rate this a pleasant 93.
Point Deductions: (-1) Flat Burn Cone; (-1) Less Flavor Development in the Second Half; (-1) Mild wave near the final
Bonus Points: (+1) Buy a Box; (+1) Consistent and Balanced across multiple samples