Following the awesome success of 2011’s M356, Aging Room’s latest offering, the Havao Connecticut has finally hit shelves, including ours here at Best Cigar Prices. The blend consists of an Ecuadorian-grown Connecticut seed wrapper and Dominican Havano Criollo filler tobaccos, and is the first release under Habana Cuba’s new Boutique Blends front mark. It’s not everyday you get to sample a stogie from Cigar Insider’s highest rated brand of 2011, so naturally I was looking forward to today’s review. I pulled out the Brio size (5 ¼ x 42) for a test-smoke.
The cigar was very light in color, and the wrapper was flawlessly smooth, with little-to-no veins present. It had a nice little “boutique” look to it, sporting double bands emblazoned with the name of the blend, as well as Aging Room’s signature brass knuckles logo. Pre-light impressions were pretty much what I expected, as they gave off a mellow taste with notes of nuts and cream.
Upon lighting, I was met with a blast of dense smoke through an appropriately firm draw. The initial flavors were of the classic creamy and nutty Connecticut profile, with just a bit of white pepper on the finish. As I puffed on I began to pick up a very subtle sweetness, and notes of coffee. A nice, neat, grey ash was building, and the cigar was burning cool and evenly.
The second 3rd started off with a very rich taste, with more spice and less cream before tapering off to a very well-balanced taste of deep baking spice, sweet molasses, and a touch of earth. At this point I was surprised at both the fullness of flavor, and the considerable body this stick was packing. There were still no issues with performance at all, and I was digging the depth of character that I really wasn’t expecting.
In the last portion of the smoke there was yet more transition, with lots of buttery and nutty character shining through. As I neared the end, I realized my palate was thoroughly coated in earthy spice, and with about a half inch remaining I laid the nub to rest.
The Aging Room Havao Connecticut Brio was an absolute pleasure to review. It gave me zero problems with burn or draw, and was consistently smooth with good, nuanced flavor from start to finish. I did not expect this stick to be as spicy as it was, which turned out to be a pleasant surprise. All in all, I predict this will be a big hit, and I give the Aging Room Connecticut Brio an A grade. I have to say this was the best Connecticut wrap I’ve smoked in quite some time.