My Weekend Cigar: Cubao No.1
However, Saturday night permitted me to enjoy the entire experience, and I was more comfortable with the Double Corona-sized No.1, which weighs-in a 7 1/8 x 49. Like its 601 cousins, Cubao is made by Don José Pepin Garcia, and the No.1 just received a "92" rating in the October 7 issue of Cigar Insider.
The Ecuadorian Sumatra Oscuro wrapper is not almost black in color like most "oscuro" wrappers. It's more bronze in color with a lush, smooth-looking patina. The cap shaved-off cleanly, the cigar drew perfectly, and the pre-smoke flavor was spicy (as advertised) and very woody.
Once lit, the first few puffs were very spicy. It stayed that way for about the first three-quarters-of-an-inch, then suddenly rounded out to a predominantly dark, woody flavor with a long finish. I remember the Cuban Corona at the show being much spicier and for a longer period of time, too. So here again, size and length make a difference. I paired the cigar with a bottle of Luna de Luna Red Merlot/Cabernet, which Patrick selected, and it really complemented the cigar well.
The cigar remained well-balanced through the last act, and although it was not a very complex cigar in terms of flavor, I liked where it locked-in and the consistency it maintained during the entire smoke.
Is it a "92?" I think more experienced cigar smokers will agree it's definitely in the ballpark. What I can tell you is I enjoyed it immensely. For you new cigar smokers, you may want to hold-off a while on the Cubao, but if you like spicy, full-bodied Nicaraguan cigars, go for it.
~ Gary Korb