Infused cigars are one of the most creative kinds of cigars out there. Every flavored cigar is different, though. It’s not everyone’s cup of tea. The usual question that comes to mind for cigar enthusiasts when trying a flavored cigar is—why not? This, despite the reluctance to try new flavors that seem to push the boundaries on flavors. Some would prefer to make their own infusion, getting creative on storing their cigars in humidors with different flavors and aromas while experimenting on humidity. In this regard, the traditional, low-technology way of making flavors is still a solid choice.
|Wrapper Origin: Mexico||Shape: Corona|
|Length: 6||Ring: 46|
|Wrapper: San Andres||List Price: $68 (Box of 10)|
|Origin: Nicaragua||Strength: Medium|
However, if you just want to try a new flavor, a decent smoke from a reliable brand is not that bad. Drew Estate is our reliable brand when it comes to getting infused cigars to the right flavor. They made the Kentucky Fire Cured Hogs Tooth probably to help enthusiasts understand the cigar mix better. Infusion, after all, is a curated method. The artisans at Drew Estate most likely made sure to think of how enthusiasts may receive this flavor blend. However, I was not at all excited to think how bacon, maple, and cigars could result from an infused cigar with a flavored cap. But, knowing that Drew Estate is well known for making new flavors and different aromas, it was worth a shot. Would it have a balanced flavor? Maybe yes, or no.
Another thing that appealed to me with Kentucky Fire Cured Hogs Tooth is that it has a bourbon mix to its sugar and spice palette. This is one that is sure to fire up a cigar session. How can bourbon possibly change the cigar flavor? A lot. We drink bourbon on a variety of special occasions, so this fairly priced cigar involving such a flavor will be interesting.
Moreso, I can always revert to medium-bodied, classic cigar, puro, or a light, subtly infused cigar. So, let’s see if this one is a good blend.
Pull of Cigar
The aroma is cracking with the fire-cured scent that brings a unique taste to this line of cigars. To give you a background, this kind of cigar will release an aroma that carries with it a strong, burnt scent. Fire-cured cigars are not new, but Drew Estate did well to get the punch of the old curing process in this cigar. It gave me a bit of a jolt, but the familiar effect of this scent is similar to a campfire. It is strong but soothing, at least for me.
When fire-cured cigars are made, they are probably taken to burn slowly first, then cured to bring down to a temperature that is amiable for the leaf. According to Nicholas Melillo, Chief of the Broadleafs, the process goes like this:
“First off, Kentucky Fire Cured is from stalk-cut tobacco. The initial firing of KFC is done at low heat between 100 F to 115 F degrees and maintained until the color reaches solid brown. Once color is set, temperatures increase to 120F- 130F to completely cure down the midrib of the leaf and darken. Once the midrib is dried the temperature will be reduced and the smoke maximized with sawdust to finish the leaf. When KFC hits your olfactory nerve you know it! ”
This is the reason why the aroma can have an immediate effect because the flavor is somehow preserved by the slow cooking process. Smoking a fire-cured cigar is like burning the tobacco twice to a great effect. It bursts through the tobacco to bring a woody, charred aroma.
The wrapper has an old-school style to it with good color to show the classic feel of smoking a fire-cured cigar. The proof is in the pudding, though.
The cigar is well-built. In an hour of smoke, I rarely saw flakes in the cigar’s ash. With a decent amount of smoke from this cigar, the filler and binder hold up well. The burn is consistent, too.
I would say that this cigar is fair for an evening smoke. Feeling sentimental? Try it on while watching a sunset. I was probably going to do that, but on the next opportunity that arises, I certainly will. Because in my opinion, this is a cigar that can help a pre-dinner mood. That might seem odd, but the thing is that it has a bacon flavor as noted earlier, topped by some woody notes that come right off the bat. Its charred flavor that gently builds up has a little aftertaste that might carry over your palate. It won’t hurt your appetite; on the contrary, it will help you fix up a dinner salad. That’s as quirky as it can get, but a barbecue flavor does go well with some nuts, vegetables, and citrus flavors.
On the second third, the charred flavor maintains itself throughout. I puffed a decent amount of smoke during this time, and I tried having a retro hale which did not hurt with any bitterness. This is a medium-bodied cigar with some strong flavor but without bitterness. The bourbon and maple soften the fire-cured taste and remains a little bit on the palate. So, it has a consistent effect throughout. The woody, earthy tones are also felt in this part, preparing for the last part which will exhaust the fire-cured tastes.
The last part is probably where Drew Estate kept most of the part of the leaf that got a good color in the curing process. This is more of the same as the first two parts, yet affirms the quality of the cigar and the care put into curing this cigar.
I started to think that fire-cured cigars are quite a distinctive kind of cigar. Despite the strong flavor, the bitterness is not overwhelming. However, the barbecue flavor, which is more than just a hint, but can give a kick of campfire aromas and scents, can get overboard for some smokers. It is pretty consistent throughout, meaning, if you like it from the start you will enjoy it. If not, the maple and bourbon might not be enough to compensate for the flavor you are looking for. After all, charred aromas come from fire-curing a tobacco leaf which brings out its character. Nevertheless, there is a good chance you will enjoy this if you take it once a while or when you need a kick of strong flavor to help you concentrate a little bit. All in all, I enjoyed smoking and reviewing this cigar. I give it an 85.
Other Cigars Reviews
Other Drew Estate Cigar Reviews
Acid Kuba Kuba
The Acid line by Drew Estate, with its distinctive infused cigars, has maintained a prominent standing in the market since its introduction in the 1990s, notably featuring the Kuba Kuba brand as one of its flagships. The meticulous production process, held confidential by the company, employs 150 botanicals and curing in aroma rooms in Esteli, Nicaragua. With a detailed review pointing out its robust yet mellow strength, an intriguing blend of sweet, floral, and peppery notes, and a satisfactory smoking experience despite minor issues like canoeing, the Acid Kuba Kuba is recommended for both experienced cigar enthusiasts and newcomers alike, offering a well-constructed, flavorful smoking experience.
Liga Undercrown Maduro Gran Toro
Drew Estate’s rollers, driven by their passion for Liga Privada and seeking to overcome its availability issues, ingeniously developed the Liga Undercrown Maduro Gran Toro. This medium to full-bodied cigar stands out not only for its sophisticated design and royal blue and gold branding but also for its intricate flavor palette, which includes pronounced cocoa and cedar, complemented by nuances of earth, citrus, vanilla, almond, and cinnamon, all harmonized by a smooth retrohale. Its excellent construction promises a uniform smoking experience, highlighted by dominant cocoa tones and a unique bread-like sweetness, appealing particularly to veteran cigar aficionados. The cigar’s depth and opulence reflect its cost, leading to its high praise and a notable score of 88, as observed in the review of Liga Undercrown Maduro Gran Toro.
Other Nicaraguan Cigar Reviews
La Gloria Cubana Esteli
La Gloria Cubana, once a Cuban brand, evolved through relocation to the Dominican Republic and now features a Nicaraguan iteration, the La Gloria Cubana Esteli. Despite its Nicaraguan moniker, only its wrapper is from the country, with the rest hailing from Honduras. The Esteli, relatively new to the brand’s collection, presents a robust flavor profile from the initial light, offering notes of pepper, vanilla, milk chocolate, and an emerging coffee nuance. Throughout its thirds, the cigar maintains a consistent, rich taste, though it lacks transitional elements. Approaching the final phase, there’s a swift increase in strength, slightly overshadowing its earlier vibrant flavors. Despite this and its short smoking time, its compelling taste and excellent construction make it recommendable. This perspective encapsulates the essence of the review of La Gloria Cubana Esteli.
CAO America Potomac
The CAO America Potomac is a unique cigar primarily using tobaccos sourced from the United States, standing out in a market largely dominated by Latin American products. Handcrafted by skilled artisans, this cigar blends tobaccos from Honduras and Nicaragua, resulting in a medium-strength smoke that delivers bold flavors of sweet leather, coffee, and dark chocolate. The natural beauty of the Potomac River inspires its appearance. At the same time, its smoking experience is reminiscent of robust Connecticut broadleaf profiles despite some issues with uneven burning. Notably, this product is part of CAO’s global series, highlighting tobaccos from various countries, and competes favorably in flavor and quality with boutique brands despite CAO’s mass production scale. This review of CAO America Potomac underscores its robust flavors, excellent construction, and unique, all-American tobacco blend despite some burn issues.