And the wheels keep turning!
Even with the FDA regulations looming over the cigar industry it doesn’t seem to be slowing down manufacturers and brand owners from collaborating and joining forces to create new blends, flavors and experiences. One of these collaborations is the joint force of Mombacho Cigars SA and Mo Maali. Claudio Sgroi, President and Master Blender of Mombacho Cigars SA worked with Mo Maali to create what is now known as the Patina cigar line. The collaboration worked so well, that Mombacho Cigars SA named Mo as the national sales director for the company in May of this year.
A little background on Mr. Maali, for those that don’t know him. He was the Casa de Puros retail store manager in Forest Park, Ill and also the founder of the Sultans of Smoke (SoS) cigar blog. He has been running the blog since 2014.
In the press release, Maali explains;
“When we flew down to Nicaragua to meet with the factories we had an idea of what we were looking for, but not necessarily a specific factory in mind. After we met with Mombacho, it became clear early on that ours and Mombacho’s visions and values were very similar. If you watch the Mombacho X film you hear Claudio discuss how Mombacho is a family, and that’s real, I experienced it myself. We wanted more than a factory that could produce us a cigar, we wanted to be a part of a family, and that sums up the relationship between Patina and Mombacho.”
The love continues as Claudio Sgroi added:
“We are honored to be chosen by Patina Cigars to produce their first line here at our home Casa Favilli in Granada, Nicaragua. We are excited about blending and working together in this project and we are thrilled to welcome them to the Mombacho Family!”
So here we are in the post FDA cigar regulation era and these two cigar men have decided to produce yet another cigar line and blends for your enjoyment. All I can say is – The Blending will not Stop! We enjoy new blends and love to see the industry push the envelope and that is what the Patina line is doing. The Patina Cigar Line is the first from Mombacho that incorporates tobacco from outside of Nicaragua.
I had the pleasure of meeting Mo at the IPCPR this year and he explained his reasoning and mantra for the name Patina:
“Patina is an oxidation process that, over time, produces a green film over bronze or copper. In the same spirit, our experiences in life shapes our opinions, attitudes and beliefs. Just as those buildings underneath the patina retain their original character, we too as human beings will always be ourselves at our core. No matter what happens in life, always be true to yourself.”
There are two blends in the Patina lineup; Habano and Connecticut. For this review I will be talking about the Patina Connecticut blend which is described as:
- Wrapper – Ecuadorian Connecticut
- Binder – Nicaraguan & Pennsylvania
- Filler – Nicaraguan & Pennsylvania
The Patina Connecticut is available in 4 vitolas and packaged in 16-count gloss white cabinet boxes.
- Rustic (Robusto 5 x 52)
- Bronze (Toro 6 x 52)
- Oxidation (Toro Gordo 6 x 56)
- Artifact (Churchill 7 x 49)
The pricing starts at $9.95 for the Robusto and goes up to $12.95
I sampled the Patina Connecticut Bronze for this review which I received from Patina Cigars for the purpose of reviewing on Stogie Press.
The Patina Connecticut is a silky smooth Ecuadorian Connecticut cigar that is solidly packed and finished with a triple cap. I have to say there were a few green spot blemishes on the wrapper but not anything that impacted the experience. There is a vein here and there but the texture of the wrapper was smooth and silky.
There was an enticing sweet spice aroma along the barrel and notes of fruit and hay off the foot.
The band on this cigar tells a story with its design. It uses a turquoise and copper motif that signifies Patina in color. You know the look, like when copper oxidizes. Thinking back about the small green blemishes on the wrapper I wonder if that was done by design, I mean that would be cool if Mo thought that out. The center of the band has a white stair case that reflects the steps of at Casa Favilli. In fact, there are 16 steps to that staircase and not coincidentally, there are 16 Patina cigars in a box. Get the picture?
I sliced the cap and gave it some cold draws. The draw had some restriction to it and offered a distinct pepper note with a background of fruit. The pepper increases on the palate as I roll the cigar around some more.
So far so good – but now comes the true test as I fire it up and turn this beauty to ash!
Cigar Review Notes
- Early notes of light pepper and coffee start the journey
- Delicious syrupy sweetness enters after an inch
- Mild pepper tingles the nasals
- The creamy smoke is medium in body and very clean on the palate
- Sweetness increases as it moves through the first third
- Light grey ash develops
- A little touch of spice enters moving into second third
- Floral fruit aroma develops
- Almond fills out the profile
- Centered and flat burn cone as the ash drops
- Slight sheen on the wrapper above burn line
- Spice and cedar build into the final third down to the finish
- Ash picked up and continued to the nub
- Mild to Medium in Strength
- Total Smoking Time was 1 hour and 10 minutes
Overall, the Patina Connecticut was a pleasant and easy smoking experience. Though not complex in flavor, there was just the right amount of balanced transitions to make me want to smoke another one soon. The burn was perfect and the ash outstanding. This is certainly a well constructed and tasty Connecticut cigar that was blended and aged to eliminate any characteristic bitterness one normally gets from Connecticut wrapped cigar. This is one to smoke in the morning in my book, as the sun rises and the cool breeze blows in. Enjoy it with a creamy cup of coffee to start your day.