An interesting topic of conversation led to the cigar we picked for review today. That conversation was based on the recent sale of Drew Estate to Swisher International. We discussed how over the history of time, not many brands have faired well after a merger. These brands tend to go down hill as new ownership tries to tinker with the old brand. Very rarely does a brand get better. Camacho is one of these rare occasions (Sorry, Christian!).
Purchased in 2008, the Camacho brand recently got a facelift at the hands of marketing genius Dylan Austin. The facelift of the cigar helped bring new life into the brand and a new identity in creating The Bold Standard.
Cigar: Camacho Diploma
Size: 11/18 (6 x 28/54/48)
Wrapper: Habana 2000 (Ecuador)
Binder: Authentic Corojo Ligero
Filler: Corojo, Navarette Ligero, Criollo Ligero
The Look: The vertical wrapper spells to Camacho in what has become their recognizable font and logo. Above it states, Infamous since 1962 and below it states that it is Built Bold. The side of the hand has purple accent and the word Diploma with a description that reads, “A complex, revved up smoke begging to be taken for a spin”. There is a foot band of black and silver as well. As for the wrapper, the appearance is rugged and tough looking with some rustic qualities and above average vein structure. It appears to be well packed with a hefty weight to it for the size.
The Notes: The cold draw of the Camacho Diploma serves up notes of caramel with a hint of raisin. The sweetness gives the appearance of a cigar that might not be strong, but the ligero filler warns us otherwise. The foot of the cigar reminds me of a fig newton cookie with some underlying spice.
Once we light up the Camacho Diploma the initial notes are of coffee before giving way to some strong pepper notes that cause me to sneeze. As we progress further into the first third of the cigar the pepper subsides a bit that reveals some underlying sweetness. About a half-inch in some leather notes develop erasing the sweetness. The first third closes out with notes of coffee, pepper and leather.
As we enter the second third of the Diploma by Camacho there is a note that is citrus like, bordering on orange and continued coffee. Around the half way point some of the sweetness from the pre-light draw begins to show itself, but it fails to make a prolonged appearance at any given time.
Entering the last third of the Camacho Diploma the sweetness becomes more dominant but the focal point is cedar, coffee and nuts. The finish of the cigar is short, which means it doesn’t linger for a prolonged period of time. The balance of the cigar really stands out as well making this an enjoyable experience.
The Burn: The medium gray color ash held well, with no flake. The draw of the cigar is fluid with the right amount of resistance. The burn line was crisp and the cigar remained cool to the touch all the way til the end. There really isn’t much to say here as the cigar was exquisitely constructed.
The Finish: The Camacho Diploma is a cigar that I personally often overlook when it comes to other Camacho cigars, but every time I smoke one, I say to myself I should smoke one more often. A full-bodied cigar that doesn’t overwhelm with a nice complex flavor profile that is consistent.