Today I look at a new addition to the shelves of 2GuysCigars.com. Since it’s release I’ve looked forward to running into the rep for Altadis USA. Ever since he handed me one, I was hooked. In my travels around the USA, I would grab one if I saw them on the shelf. Now, they are at my fingertips on a regular basis.
The Belicoso is the only size that is box pressed in the portfolio of H. Upmann Nicaragua by AJ Fernandez and it is the size I reach for 2:1 on the other sizes.
H. Upmann is among the oldest cigar brands in existence. In 1843, banker Hermann Dietrich Upmann arrived in Havana, Cuba to conduct business for an import/export company based in Germany. The banker seeing the potential, purchased a cigar company and the brand was born in 1844. Today the brand exists as a Cuban brand owned by the Cuban government and a brand for the free world owned by Altadis USA.
Cigar Review: H Upmann Nicaragua by AJ Fernandez
Wrapper: Ecuador Sumatra
Binder: Nicaraguan Corojo 99
Filler: Nicaraguan Criollo 98, Dominican Piloto Cubano
Length: 6 1/8″
Ring Gauge: 52
The Look: The cocoa colored Sumatra wrapper is loaded with oils and has no visible veins or imperfections. The cigar is rolled and box pressed to perfection. The primary band of blue and gold denotes H. Upmann Nicaragua while the secondary band denotes AJ Fernandez. In the hand the cigar is firm to the touch with no soft spots, and a well packed foot.
The Notes: The cold draw of the H. Upmann Nicaragua by AJ Fernandez has a raspberry note with dark chocolate complimenting it. The aroma off the foot is slightly earthy along with a cocoa sweetness and a touch of cedar. Once the cigar is toasted and lit the raspberry note from the cold draw carries over to the first few puffs.
As we smoke into the first third, the raspberry notes pull back as the cigar develops lints of earth and cocoa. The cocoa becomes the dominant flavor profile and it carries over to the aroma of the resting cigar. The retrohale offers up some subtle coffee notes and earth, while adding the slightest hint of pepper.
As the first third comes to a close and we transition into the second third the cigar develops a peanut taste complete with redskin on them. The note is dominant during the transition of thirds, but as its dominance fades, notes of coffee develop. The retrohale offers up some addition nutty notes with a long finish of red pepper.
The last third sees notes of peanuts return with hints of rye and cocoa to start things out. As we move past where the primary band was, the cigar sees wood become the main flavor profile with pepper on the finish that is enhanced on the retrohale. In the background is a subtle coffee component keeps things interesting until the cigar is put down.
The Finish: While I wouldn’t label the cigar as overly complex, the flavor profile and strength is right in my wheelhouse. Its a medium bodied cigar that transitions to full by the time we put it down. It’s consistent and for me it is enjoyable. It’s something that I have smoked on a regular basis over the last year in excess of two boxes, so I am glad to have them available at my place of employment.
Price: $9.59 / $169.99