United Cigar comes from United Cigar Group and is one of the few truly boutique cigars on the market today, sold in less than 100 retail shops in America. Both the Maduro and Natural utilize Connecticut Broadleaf tobacco with the darker leaves being used for the Maduro. The blends are the same between the two, however the Maduro versions utilize a higher priming of tobacco which creates more strength.
Cigar: United Cigar Box Press
Size: 5 x 54 (Robusto)
Wrapper: Connecticut Broadleaf
Filler: Brazilian Mata Fina, Dominican Habano Corojo and Dominican Habano Criollo 98
Source: United Cigar Group
The Look: The band of the cigar features a shield of red white and blue, that reminds me of the AHL team the Rochester Americans. The brown band is distressed and a brown ribbon with white text denotes United. The box press is fairly ugly with some creases in the wrapper near the cap. The natural shade of Connecticut Broadleaf that adorns the cigar has some thin veins and some nice oils despite a rough feel under the fingers. The United Cigar is well packed with no soft spots.
The Notes: The aroma off the foot of the cigar is sweet with some chocolate notes and a hint of apricot. The cold draw of the cigar has an earthy component to it with a sweetness as well. Once the cigar is clipped it is very much reminiscent of a Padron Thousand Series.
The first third of the cigar has some sweetness to it with underlying notes of coffee and nuts. As we progress deeper into the first third the sweetness becomes a defined cocoa and the third comes to a close some spice develops through the nose and slightly on the aroma.
The second third of the United Cigar Box Press sees the stick continue with notes of nuts and coffee, but the spice begins to kick further up through the nose and some notes of clove that develop at the half-way point and linger for about an inch before dissipating.
The last third sees an increase in cocoa notes, although they come off more as the powder used in hot chocolate compared to pieces of cocoa. On the finish there are notes of dark chocolate and a lingering spice.
The Burn: The United Cigar Box Press has burn that is even and consistent through all the samples I have smoked. The burn line is thin, and the medium gray ash holds for a third of the cigar. The draw was perfect, and the cigars never needed to be touched up, or relit as they burned from first light to last puff.
Overall: At a recent meeting David Garofalo out a box of these out, and I kinda rolled my eyes when I saw them. Not wanting to sit through a two and a half hour meeting with nothing to smoke, I reluctantly grabbed one and was quite surprised at what I experience. So much so that I took another one right after, and asked to take a couple for the road. Needless to say I was quite impressed with how these smoked and the taste profile they produced. The United Cigar is a box press that smokes well, with a favor profile that reels you in from the first puff. One can make comparison to the Padron Thousand Series and in a blind taste test with the bands off, I chose the United Cigar Box Press Natural.