Since 2005, Illusione cigars created by Dion Giolito set out to re-think the modern standard of cigar culture in the market today. Dion’s approach was “do the opposite from everyone else in the industry.” One subtle way was by putting the size descriptive front and center on the band, normally where the brand name would go. This is the case with the illusione 68.
With the crew expected back from Las Vegas this morning, I wasn’t sure how much time I had to enjoy a cigar for my morning review, so I searched for something I like to call a Dog Walker. This isn’t an original phrase, and it is quite common especially in the northeast where it has a dual meaning. A dog walker is a quick smoke to have while walking the dog, or freezing your balls off on a cold night because your significant other won’t let you light up in the house.
Illusione was one of the first boutique cigars I ever had, and they still continue to be amongst my favorites. The first series called The Original Document comes in a twelve different sizes with today’s being my favorite.
Size: 68/Petite Corona (4 x 44)
The Look: A small cigar in statute the illusione ~68~ features a Nicaragua wrapper. It has a dark rustic look to it, almost with beef jerky like appearance. There is a faint brindle like appearance to the wrapper which has some significant veins present, but the cigar feels smooth under the fingers despite it have the appearance of something rough, much like the man, Dion Giolitto himself. The cigar is well rolled with no soft spots and average weight.
The Notes: It’s hard to review a cigar of this size in thirds, so it will be more of a straight on review. The cold draw of the illusione 68 has sweet black cherry like note with the faintest notes of wood. The foot of the cigar serves up wood and earth. Once the cigar is lit there is a nice charred wood note present with a touch of leather. As the cigar smokes the sweetness of the black cherry begins to return with some floral notes thrown into the mix. The finish has a slight earth like component.
The Burn: A cigar of this size needs to be nursed like a fine glass of port, for if you smoke it too fast it will get hot and bitter on you fast. As the cigar burns it reveals a nice white firm ash that held on exceptionally for a cigar of its size. The draw was iconic with just the right amount of resistance and the burn line of the cigar was crisp.
The Finish: The illusione 68 is a cigar that is perfect for when the time is short. Despite its small stature the illusione 68 delivers a smoking experience that a lot of larger cigars just can’t match. This is one of those cases where size doesn’t matter, but the ability to deliver does, and this one is right on the money.