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Man, I love October. Not only does it mark the start of Fall, but it is also for all intents and purposes Cigar season, with all the new brands and blends from the IPCPR trade show making their debut in rapid succession. It’s like every time I turn around there’s yet another new stogie on my desk, just waiting to be tested. Let’s just say there could be far worse fates. One of our latest arrivals is the 7-20-4 1874, the 2nd release from Kurt Kendall’s recently resurrected 7-20-4 cigars. Taking its name from the original 7-20-4 cigars which closed its doors after the embargo in 1963, this brand is one I hadn’t really heard much about until now. Curious to see what the 1874 was all about, I chose the Corona Especial (5 3/4x 46) for today’s review.
The stick wore a slick and oily Habano wrapper with just a couple of minor blemishes, and appeared to be well-constructed with a nice even fill. I really liked the band on this stogie, it was about as classic-looking as they come, which is quite fitting for this vintage frontmark. Pre-light tastes gave off caramel, coffee, and smoky cedar through an appropriately firm draw.
After a quick toast of the foot and an easy light, the cigar gave off a well-balanced taste of cedar, espresso, and a light bit of unsweetened cocoa on the finish. We were off to a pretty straight burn with just a slight lean, and the stogie was producing a neat grey ash. Right around the one-inch mark a major cream note kicked in, serving as a nice
contrast to the rich and woody flavors at play.
In the second third the profile evolved a bit, as strong notes of espresso and roasted nuts mingled with a malty sweetness. The culmination of these flavors reminded me at times of the taste of organic peanut butter, which was pretty interesting. By this point the burn had corrected itself, and the cigar was still burning nice and cool. The flavors remained consistent, with the smooth cream note popping up every so often to round things out.
The last portion of the cigar came across as a bit more full-bodied, with notes of caramel sweetness and plenty of rich tobacco flavor. The 1874 stayed straight-burning and clean-tasting as it took me through a long, smooth finish.
The 7-20-4 1874 turned out to be not only classic in appearance, but also in taste. This cigar didn’t wow me with intricate complexity, but it did have decent flavor progression and a “traditional” vibe to it that I found to be quite enjoyable. This stick was woody, creamy, and nutty with just the right amount of sweetness, a profile that I would gladly revisit. I would recommend this cigar for anyone looking for a no-nonsense smoke with super-smooth performance and classic character, and today I’m giving it a solid B grade. Seriously, how could I not like a cigar that gives off notes of peanut butter?
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