Debonaire is a cigar from Phil Zanghi, and if that name isn’t familiar to you, it should be. Back in 1996 Phil Zanghi and his partner at the time Rocky Patel began Indian Tabac. In fact, one can say based on a Smoke Magazine article from 1999, that it was Zanghi who was the primary reason Rocky Patel quit his day job as a lawyer to focus on cigars.
Eventually the two would split up and go their own ways. Phil Zanghi is now the man behind Debonaire Rum and Cigars. Labled as Ultra Premium the new Debonaire Maduro was launched at the trade show this year.
Cigars: Debonaire Maduro
Size: Robusto (5 x 50)
Wrapper: Connecticut Broadleaf
Binder: Dominican Republic
Filler: Dominican Republic & Nicaragua
The Look: Featuring an oily looking wrapper from the Connecticut River Valley, the Broadleaf that adorns the Debonaire Maduro is oily and has a silk like appearance. Slightly toothy like a typical broadleaf, the cigar lacks the thick veins one would expect to find on the wrapper. While there, they are thinner than expected which helps bring out the beauty of the wrapper. The cigar is firm to the touch, with no soft spots and a well packed foot. It also feels rather hefty for a Robusto.
The Smoke: The cold draw of the cigar has a slight floral like note, and an abundance of grapefruit. Something new for me as I have never experienced this before in a cigar. The foot of the cigar is earthy like the dry dirt of a baseball diamond and a hint of pepper that tingled the nostrils.
Upon first light there is a nice amount of spice in the aroma that has me a little concerned to blow it through my nose, and a sweetness on the draw of the Debonaire Maduro. As the cigar settles down I prepare myself for the first retrohale which serves up some white pepper but as it subsides it heightens a cinnamon note on the cigar.
In the second third of the cigar, there is a sweetness that begins to develop and it reminds me of the grapefruit experienced in the prelight. As we delve deeming into this portion of the smoke, it begins to take on a raisin like taste. After we ash the cigar, some of the earth notes began to develop with continued white pepper through the nose.
In the last third of the stick, the sweetness becomes almost white grape like, with some mocha and earth. The white pepper through the nose tones down a bit and the aroma of the cigar becomes sweet.
The Burn: The cigar starts off with a little bit of an uneven burn line and a thicker carbon line then I would like to see on a cigar. I personally feel that after some aging of this in your own humidor the aesthetics should change. According to a stamp behind the band, the cigar was banded on June 25th, 2014. The draw was iconic with a marble looking ash that held on for close to a third of time.
The Finish: The thing that really amazes me about this cigar is how at times it feels like a classic maduro with an abundance of sweetness to the smoke, but then at other times it embraces the modern maduro with strength. There is totally enjoyable war going on within the cigar of good vs evil, or in this case classic vs modern. The cigars are fine to smoke now, but with some aging I expect the score to rise.
You can check out the review from Sam Stogie of the original Debonaire.
Also, Phil Zanghi was a guest on a past episode of The Cigar Authority.