In the words of Steve Saka, “Muestra is the humble, common word for “sample” in Spanish, however it takes on much more important, sometimes reverential, meaning when used in a handmade cigar factory. A muestra is the vision of the ligador and torcedor realized, it is the promise of a new experience and possibly the key to financial success for the fabrica. Muestras are hoarded and coveted by not only their makers, but by the cigar smokers who seek to catch a glimpse into the cigarmaker’s soul within their smoke.”
The Muestra de Saka contains tobacco from all four tobacco growing regions; Condega, Esteli, Jalapa, Ometepe and is rolled at Joya de Nicaragua.
Cigar: Muestra de Saka
Country of Origin: Nicaragua
Ring Gauge: 52
The Look: The Muestra de Saka comes in a chocolate-colored wooden box emblazoned with gold lettering that showcases the Dunbarton Tobacco & Trust logo and the brand, Muestra de Saka. Inside this box sits 7 cigars each in its own wooden coffin with the brand and logo in black vertically down the center. The cigar itself only has a foot band of yellow that denotes the brand with the word Exlusivo over it. The dark Habano wrapper is loaded with oils and a few veins, none of which detract from the beauty of the leaf. In the hand the cigar has a nice weight to it, and is firm with a well packed foot.
The Notes: The cold draw of the cigar offers up notes of mocha with a subtle spice that lingers in the background, while the aroma off the foot is meaty with hints of figs and a subtle spice. The cigars come wrapped in cello, and I wonder if this was by choice so the cigar didn’t absorb some of the wood aromas from the coffin.
Once the cigar is toasted and once lit a there is a battle going on with a sweet mocha note and an earthy note. The bothy fight for supremacy as the cigar develops of a base note that is woodsy. As we move deeper into the first third a subtle vanilla develops as the earth begins to move toward the background. With the first third coming to a close the notes are coffee, mocha, and cedar with hints of vanilla on the long finish.
In the second third of the cigar things change-up considerably. Some strong espresso notes take control which is a carry over from the first third but as we move toward the half way some notes of leather develop that pick up in potency as we smoke through to the next third of the cigar.
In the last third of the Muestro de Saka sees the cigar lose its complexity with a primary note of leather and a long dry finish. There isn’t much going on with the cigar other than the leathery mouthfeel at this point.
The Finish: I was looking forward to the release of the Muestra de Saka, but for me it just did not live up to expectations outside the first third of the cigar. Once the cigar began to lose its complexity I lost interest in the cigar. Perhaps I’ll give it another shot after a few months of aging but for me this one lacked a wow factor. I will however say this is my opinion, and you should formulate your own opinion on every cigar you smoke.
Price: $14.99 / $94.99 (Box of 7)