Newly formed boutique brand Asylum was created by Kevin Baxter and Tom Lazuka of Miami, Florida, and is being distributed by Christian Eiora’s Tabacaleras Unidas. The brand, which launched just in time for IPCPR 2012, currently offers three lines: the Asylum, Asylum 13, and the mixed-filler Schizo. The cigars are rolled at the Tabacos Rancho Jamastran factory in Honduras, the same factory that brings us Camacho Cigars, and though the company has been fairly vague in regards to the exact blend used in the cigars, they have been described as using a “selection of the finest Nicaragua tobacco reserves.” Having been rather impressed with all of the new stogies that Eiora has been involved with lately, I decided to light up the Asylum 13 50 x 5 for a test-smoke in today’s review.
The cigar wore a simple black band bearing the name of the blend atop a slick and slightly marbled maduro wrapper. It was evenly-filled and topped off with one of the sturdiest cap-jobs I’ve seen in a while. Pre-light draws gave off a taste of crisp and sugary cedar, and without further ado I put the torch to the foot.
This stogie opened up with an earthy flavor and a lingering, zesty baking spice on the finish. As I puffed on, some sweet cocoa character became apparent, along with a note of nuts. The smoke itself was dense and plentiful, and the flavor was bold and full
In the second 3rd the cigar became very smooth, and the chocolaty flavor and the baking spice came together in what tasted like a perfect balance. By this point I had a nice thick ash going, and the stick was burning razor-straight and pouring out tons of creamy, aromatic smoke.
By the time I burned into the last third the Asylum 13 had reached its peak in terms of flavor. Here I had an ultra-rich tobacco taste accompanied by a palate-coating caramel sweetness, the baking spice morphed into a vivid nutmeg note, and all the different flavors complimented each other nicely. I continued to enjoy this juicy profile without interruption until I was left holding just a tiny, smoldering nub.
The Asylum 13 held good complexity, great construction, and spewed loads of full-flavored smoke from start to finish. This thing had zero burn/draw issues, was relentless in delivering savory and nuanced flavors, and packed a full-bodiedness that knocked me for a bit of a loop that I wasn’t expecting. All in all, this was a super-solid cigar, one that I will definitely smoke again. I award the Asylum 13 50 x 5 a grade of B+, and I now look forward to testing out the other blends from this up-and-coming brand. With Eiroa’s industry knowledge and experience in their corner, they certainly have the potential to go far.
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