My Weekend Cigar: El Triunfador Lanceros by Pete Johnson
I was also seriously considering a Diamond Crown Figurado No.6, which I originally thought was a "Maximus" until I rechecked the band. Since I haven't had either, I figured I'd go for the No.6, but a couple of the guys around here kept pushing the El Triunfador Lanceros by Pete Johnson since they're very rare, and in their opinion, amazingly good.
So I'm in the cigar store on Saturday, searching the cases for the "ideal" candidate, and David behind the counter convinces me to go with the 7½" x 38 El Triunfador. This certainly was an impressive cigar. The color of the wrapper was a dark even color throughout and well packed. I clipped off the little pigtail and the pre-light draw was sort of a mix of roasted nuts and a note of coffee.
I paired the cigar with a mug of dark roasted Costa Rican coffee. Once lit, the cigar was incredibly creamy from the get-go and remained so throughout the entire smoke. What impressed me even more in some ways was the cigar's aroma. It was equally creamy, brimming with essences of coffee and cocoa. The cigar burned razor-clean, and ashed in perfect little light grey nuggets at about a centimeter each in length.
The predominant flavors were earthy, woody and nutty with little ripples of sweetness along the journey. Once passed the halfway mark, the cigar amped-up in flavor and some peppery flavors emerged, but it remained well-balanced and never overpowered me. I smoked the cigar down to just below half an inch.
So did it live up to its rep? Yes, but even though it was well-intentioned, I wish that it hadn't come with so much hype. After I finished the cigar, David, always the salesman said, "You have to smoke a couple of them to really appreciate them. They get better each time."
If you like rich, full-flavored Nicaraguan cigars with an exceptionally creamy bouquet, this cigar is a treat, and well worth the $9.00 I paid for it. Even if you aren't a fan of Lanceros, the El Triunfador is worth stepping outside of your regular shape to smoke.
~ Gary Korb