Fratello Navetta Endeavor Toro Cigar Review
At the 2017 IPCPR in Las Vegas Omar de Frias was proudly showing off his latest creation that was set to see it’s nationwide release in the Fratello Navetta. The word Navetta is Italian and translates to Shuttle which ties into the fact that Omar worked on over 15 Space Shuttle mission while he worked at NASA. The cigar uses high priming Ligero and Visos tobaccos including single origin proprietary tobacco grown in Jalapa, Nicaragua.
Cigar: Fratello Navetta
Wrapper: Ecuador Habano Oscuro
Binder: Dominican Republic Viso
Filler: Nicaragua (Single Origin Jalapa)
Size: Endeavor (Toro)
The Look: The Fratello Navetta box has a sleek look to it with a matte black finish and is designed to look like one of the black tiles on the Space Shuttle. It has an authenticity to its appearance thanks to the insiders knowledge of Omar de Frias as the box uses a numbering system on it that would allow scientists to indenitify the location of the tile on the orbiter. The dark looking Oscuro wrapper has some medium-sized veins, and a fair amount of oils. The stick features the classic looking Fratello band this time utilizing colors of white, black and silver. There is also a footband that covers the lower third of the cigar using the same colors with the Navetta logo that is a hybrid of a tobacco leaf and rocket ship.
The Notes: The cold draw of the Navetta is sweet, which isn’t surprising considering filler tobacco comes from Jalapa. My personal experience is that tobacco from this region tends to have a natural sweetness to it. There is a hint of chocolate and caramel while the foot has a similar quality to it with a hint to spice that tingles the nostrils. Once the cigar is lit a subtle black cherry note is easily identified.
As we enter the first third the black cherry note fades as some spice begins to emerge with a hint of dark chocolate in the background. Around the time we took the first picture the cigar begins to remind me of a jelly ring with the mix of bitter dark chocolate and sweetness from the jelly inside. The sweetness of the cigar really begins to shine by the time the first third comes to a close with red pepper on the retrohale.
In the second third the sweetness has a defined cocoa and caramel, before the cigar turns to a leather component at the halfway point. The bitter of leather only last for a few puffs as a fig note begins to develop with a hint of roasted coffee that grows in intensity on the palate. The retrohale of the cigar has a subtle mint like quality to it that works as the dark chocolate makes a return as we move into the final stage of the Navetta.
The last third sees the cigar develop some shortbread notes, though they are fleeting. Some of the pepper from the retrohale makes its way to the palate as the cigar sees the reemergence of the leather note that appeared in the second third. That and coffee notes make up the finish of this well-rounded cigar that builds in intensity.
The Finish: The Fratello Navetta is different from anything else in the company portfolio and part of the reason is the proprietary tobacco from Jalapa that brings a profile that was enjoyable and dare I say out of this world. It’s wonderfully complex and for me is the best cigar from Fratello to date. It’s a dense cigar that has many stages as it smokes slow before reaching breakaway velocity that will have me coming back again.
Price: $11.39 / $202.99