Valentine s Day: Romeo y Julieta Cigars
With such a romantic sounding brand name as Romeo y Julieta cigars, it seemed appropriate to smoke and review not only one, but a charming couple of these cigars, both from the 1875 line. The cigars are made by Altadis in the Dominican Republic, using Dominican filler tobaccos and Indonesian wrappers. The first cigar was a torpedo, which was covered with plume as a result of being well aged in my humidor for over two years. It measured 6 inches long with a ring gauge of 48 (this size and shape may no longer be widely available). The second cigar was a Churchill, measuring 7 inches long with a ring gauge of 50. That cigar was in my humidor for about three months.
Both cigars were medium in flavor, with a spicy taste that was very noticeable. After lighting the torpedo, the flavor immediately exploded on my palate. The taste went from very good to nearly great, but then began to fade after the halfway point. I had to put the cigar down with about 2 1/2 inches remaining. The Churchill also started out tasting very good, but did not improve as I continued smoking. Like the torpedo, the taste also began to fade after the halfway point, and I had to put the cigar down with about 3 inches remaining. Although the tastes of both cigars were similar at the beginning, the subsequent improvement in the torpedo could mostly be attributed to the greater amount of time that it spent in my humidor. Aging cigars in a properly maintained humidor will greatly improve the flavor of almost any decent stick.
Draw & Construction
Both cigars were very well made, burned evenly, and had good draws, but the Churchill did require a couple of relights. Although any brand and/or size of cigar can occasionally require a relight, I have experienced a few more of these issues with the longer sizes. There were no other major issues with their construction to negatively impact my enjoyment of either cigar.
At a cost of around $4 per stick when purchased in a pack or box (more if purchased as a single), these cigars are an excellent value, but only if you can take the time to age them for at least a few months, and you do not mind extinguishing a cigar with more than two inches remaining. There are other cigars in this price range that may taste fairly decent with a more consistent flavor throughout the length of the cigar, but many lack that something extra that makes a cigar memorable. Romeo Y Julieta cigars have a noticeably spicy flavor, and not just a hint of spice, which distinguishes them from many of their competitors, in my opinion. I recommend avoiding the larger sizes, and choosing a vitola (size & shape) under 6 1/2 inches. Give them a try, especially around one of those romantic holidays.
Thursday, February 14, 2008