The latest release of the Muestra de Saka known as The Bewitched hit the shelves earlier this year but it was a originally a cigar that Steve Saka made to celebrate the Owl Shop of Worcester’s 75th Anniversary.
Steve Saka explains it the best:
“Originally this was a liga I created to celebrate the Owl Shop of Worcester’s 75th Anniversary. For those of you who know Zack and his shop, please know we do so with his blessing. In fact, he is the one who said this cigar was too good to not share it with our other accounts, so please thank him on my behalf. I was ecstatic that Zack blessed my crafting more because from the moment I finished this liga I was spellbound by it, so much so I decided we would call the release ‘The Bewitched’ because of how it so captivated my own palate: So intricate, so harmonious, so refined, so difficult to define, yet so difficult to ignore. Everyone I smoked made me want to smoke another.”
Well then, thank you Zack and thank you Steve for releasing an amazing liga to the market. The Bewitched is the 6th release in the Muestra de Saka series, a line of cigars that have unique blends and vitolas. Each is made in extremely limited quantities that reflect the blend machinations of Steve Saka who notes – “To smoke a Muestra de Saka is to embark upon a journey with me in which I greatly welcome your companionship”
Dunbarton Tobacco & Trust describes the blend of The Bewitched as:
- Wrapper – Dark Grade A1 Ecuadorian Habano
- Binder – San Andreas Negro
- Filler – Nicaraguan and USA
The Bewitched is expressed in a single 6 5/8 x 48 Toro Extra vitola. Like all the previous vitolas in the line, except the “Muestra de Saka U-Boat”, it comes packaged in individual cedar coffins in a 7-count box. MSRP has been set at $19.75/liga. For this review, I sampled 2 of the Dunbarton Tobacco & Trust – Muestra de Saka “The Bewitched” cigars which I received from the company for the purpose of reviewing on Stogie Press.
Once you slide off the coffin top and remove the Muestra de Saka “The Bewitched”, you are presented with a beautifully constructed semi round box pressed cigar. The wrapper is dark brown in color with a hint of marbling running throughout. It has minimal veins and fine oily sheen in the light. There is a just a little give along the barrel when pressed between the fingers. An expertly applied pigtail cap finishes the presentation. I would also like to point out the dark leaf swirl in the filler when looking at the foot.
A single footer band adorns the cigar that uses the same yellow, black and red motif as previous ligas in the line. In this case, it declares it as “The Bewitched” in black, printed over the red MUESTRA DE SAKA printing.
Running The Bewitched along the nose I picked up a slightly pungent barnyard aroma along the barrel while the foot has a slight campfire aroma.
Once I opened the cap with my CigarMedics Baller cutter, I proceeded to give it some cold draw puffs that were smooth in the draw and offered a little bit of the campfire taste along with some pepper spice and creaminess.
Using my double flame torch, I warmed the foot to an even orange glow and drew in the first puffs of peppery notes to start the journey. Follow along as I burn this one to ash.
Cigar Review Notes
- Initial light offers a fine pepperiness along with a touch of balancing cream
- Quite delicious start to the journey
- Light grey ash forms on top of an even medium thick char line
- Chocolate aromas are already wafting off the foot
- Cedar notes join the mix after about an inch of burn
- Ash fell in a decent solid chunk revealing a well formed burn cone
- Dark chocolate evolves and begins to fill in the profile
- Burn is extremely well behaved
- Cream and spice notes join the profile moving into the second third
- Mouth watering citrus notes begin to build
- Sweet caramel aroma develops
- A pleasant nuttiness and pepper develops moving into the final
- Medium Plus in Strength
- Total Smoking Time was 1 hour and 40 minutes
I will say it here and now, I very much enjoyed the latest Muestra de Saka “The Bewitched”. From unique pre-light aromas and tastes through the journey to the nub, this cigar is one that offers a balanced and pleasurable array of flavors and aromas. Not only was the profile spot on, but the burn was excellent carrying a nice solid ash before drops and maintaining an even burn line puff after puff. I saw this consistently across the samples. I especially enjoyed the early cream and the core of chocolate notes that evolved from a “chocolate chip” note to a dark chocolate. The caramel aroma added to the pleasure. I know this is a pricey cigar but then again, you definitely get what you pay for with this gem. If your wallet allows you, this is a box worthy cigar for sure. I rate this a solid 97.
Point Deductions: NONE
Bonus Points: (+1) Box Worthy, (+1) Pleasurable and Consistent Across Multiple Samples; (+1) Even burn down to the Nub