Cigar Review – Aging Room Quattro F55 Stretto (Pre-release)
Last week we received a couple of un-banded samples of Boutique Blends’ upcoming release, the Aging Room F55 Quattro. This small-batch stogie comes on the heels of Aging Room’s recently released Haveo Connecticut, and contains a blend of 100% Dominican-grown Habano-seed tobaccos beneath a 9-year-aged Sumatra wrapper. Considering the great response we’ve had to each of Aging Room’s previous releases, I figured it was a good time to take a sneak peek at the Quattro F55.
The vitola I was given as a sample was the Stretto (4 ½ x 46), which had a very unique box-pressed shape unlike any I had previously seen. The press appeared to be rounded at three of the corners, and very sharp and straight on one edge (see photo). The mottled brown wrapper on the cigar was fairly smooth with some pronounced veins throughout the length of the cigar. Pre-light tastes were of a slightly sweet woodiness and a bit of dry baking spice. My curiosity was officially piqued, and I got right to the toasting.
The cigar lit up with a super-rich, earthy taste, with notes of cedar and a decent amount of palate-tingling pepper. This stick had an overall meaty flavor, and was producing a lot of thick smoke through an effortless draw, leaving a solid grey ash in its wake. Just as I got through the first inch of the cigar a sneaky bit of caramel sweetness began to emerge on the finish.
As I burned into the second 3rd I suddenly realized that this was a seriously full-flavored cigar. The flavors in this portion were deep and rich with notes of strong baking spice, earth, and espresso, along with a cream note that really helped to balance the more robust flavors at play. The Quattro is billed as medium-to-full in body, and it was also at this point that I began to feel the power of this stogie- the strength definitely snuck up on me and I had to take a little breather before continuing. After I had caught my bearings I noticed a strong note of roasted nuts joining the cast of existing flavors.
The final third of the cigar didn’t show a lot of transition in taste, but the stogie continued to burn cool, clean, and straight, and the flavor remained relentlessly robust with a bit of dried-fruit sweetness on the finish. This portion actually proved to be the smoothest and most well-balanced in my opinion, and I enjoyed it until there was hardly anything left to enjoy.
The Aging Room F55 Quattro was undeniably full-flavored, more so than I was expecting. As I mentioned above, this was a sample, and the cigar is fairly new, which would explain why it tasted a bit “fresh” to me. I would have liked it to have had a bit more subtlety and complexity, which I think would to be fairly easy to achieve on these with a little rest. As far as burn and draw are concerned, the Quattro gave an exemplary performance. Overall, I would say that if bold Nicaraguan flavor and a beautiful box-pressed burn are your cup of tea then you ought to give these a try. The Aging Room line has yet to disappoint, and these should be arriving on our shelves sometime in the very near future.
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