Monday, March 17, 2008

My Weekend Cigar: Gran Habano #5 Corojo Lancero

This past Saturday, George Rico, Vice President of Gran Habano cigars, paid a visit to the Famous Smoke Shop Retail Store for a cigar tasting event. I'm a big fan of this fine Honduran label, and can't begin to count how many cigar smokers I've turned on the their Gran Habano #1 Connecticut cigars.

Gran Habano also produces three other premium selections: Gran Habano #3 Habano cigars, Gran Habano #5 Corojo cigars, and the highly-rated Gran Habano 3 Siglos cigars. I've found all of their cigars to be full-flavored and consistently well-made. Moreover, their wrapper leaf is first-rate, especially on the darker cigars like the Gran Habano #3 Habano and #5 Corojo - rich in color and deliciously oily.

During the event, George was kind enough to give me a sample of a new frontmark that's been added to their Gran Habano #5 Corojo selection. It's a 7½" x 40 Lancero. (See above photo of us at the store, with me holding the cigar.) I don't usually smoke thin cigars, but George told me the Lancero size is coming back in popularity.

The Gran Habano #5 Corojo Lancero has a Cuban-style pigtail cap, and if it didn't have the Gran Habano band on it, you'd swear it just stepped off the boat from Havana. The Corojo wrapper was thick, dark, and oily. The first act was quite spicy, but about two inches down it rounded-out to a very smooth, full-bodied smoke. Perfectly balanced flavors of sweet tobacco, earth, cedar, and pepper dominated, and the cigar improved even more so in the final third. Due to its complexity, it's actually a hard cigar to describe. All I know is I enjoyed it immensely, and in spite of its kick, the cigar was never overpowering.

Thanks to George for giving me the opportunity to preview this svelte and heady little beauty that will be arriving at retail cigar stores within the next few weeks.

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