As owner of Two Guys Smoke Shop, David Garofalo enjoys giving a quiz to his employees on a regular basis to see how much they are paying attention and to see what areas some training is needed. This past week I was subject to that test; and one of the questions I got wrong had to do with the most expensive cigar the shop sells. The answer was a Zino cigar that retails for $41 and being allowed to smoke at work, I was tempted to try one but in good conscience I couldn’t take advantage of David’s generosity.
Instead I opted for the Zino Platinum Scepter Series Chubby which was a cigar that I was first introduced to when I had an interest in a shop in Brooklyn, NY. I believe the release date to be 2008 and at the time my two favorite cigars were this and the Davidoff Short Perfecto.
According to the Zino website, “The Zeppelin of the Scepter Serie offers a wonderful balance of tastes. It is neither aggressive nor forceful, with an original personality. Sweetness is most perceptible in this Scepter Series cigar.”
Cigar Review: Zino Platinum Scepter Series
Size: 4 15/16 x 54
Wrapper: Ecuador Connecticut
Binder: Connecticut USA
Filler: Dominican Republic, Peru
The Look: Despite the more tradition sizes of cigars on the market, whenever I head Pink Floyd’s Have A Cigar, this is the vitola I envision in my mind’s eye. The Zino Platinum Chubby has a silver band with black writing that sits on top of a golden hue’d wrapper. The roll of the cigar is slightly porous with a few visible veins and a slight sheen to it from the oils. In the hand the cigar feels light but firm with no soft spots.
The Notes: The cold draw of the cigar is what you would expect from the Davidoff family, with earthy notes and a touch of wheat. There is also a buttery richness that is more of an afterthought but enhances the prelight draw. The aroma off the wrapper offers a subtle sweetness.
After we light the cigar the initial notes are a touch of pepper with an abundance of cedar. Settling into the first third of the Zino Platinum Scepter Series Chubby there is a buttery richness on both the aroma and the flavor profile. As the first third transition into the thickest part of the cigar some notes of cocoa begin to emerge.
The second half of the Chubby sees the cocoa notes becomes the dominant note with an emergence of a subtle coffee in the background and on the finish. Through the nose the cigar becomes sweet with the emergence of pepper. As the cigar comes to a close with a short finish the notes remain cocoa and coffee.
The Draw: With any perfecto shaped cigar the draw is often tight to begin with until you move past the tip. I’ve seen some people clip the tip of the cigar, but I feel this alters the cigar as any tobacco bunched in the filler placed near the tip could be removed utilizing this method. Once the cigar works past the tip the draw is flawless as is the burn. The lightly marbled ash is firm and holds for nearly the first half of the cigar. The cigar remained lit from first light to last puff with an ultra thin combustion line.
The Finish: Anytime I smoke a mild cigar of this caliber I question my cigar preferences. A lot of times we get sucked into what is new, and the stronger boutique cigars on the market. But a mild cigar when done right, stands above all else. That is the case with the Zino Scepter Series. Smooth and flavorful, the cigar is the definition of class and elegance.
- With a small tip; I don’t believe its necessary to toast the cigar because it could lead to carbon forming on the wrapper. I opted to us a quick light.
- I don’t remember the cigar being in a tube when it first came out. I remember the various sizes sitting in a tray on the shelves of The Humidor.
- I’m not sure why but my favorite size of any vitola is the Short Perfecto.
- I love the visual of a perfect burn on a perfecto sized cigar.
- Smoking time was 1 hour 20 minutes.