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Gran Cantidad is one of two brand-new Best Cigar Prices exclusive blends from General Cigars, makers of Punch, Macanudo, CAO, and a slew of other top cigar brands. These sticks feature a mix of Nicaraguan and Dominican filler tobaccos, along with a Brazilian Mata-Fina wrapper, and a Mexican San Andres binder. The Gran Cantidad seemed to boast quite an interesting blend of tobaccos, especially for a bundled stogie, so it was with great anticipation that I set out this afternoon with a sample of the Robusto (5×50) for today’s review.
The stogie wore a pretty slick, dark brown wrapper with a few thin veins running down the length of the cigar. Construction looked good, with an even fill and sturdy cap-job in place. Cold draws gave off tastes of cedar, fruity sweetness, and hay, and it was finally time to light up
The Gran Cantidad started off way smoother than its appearance would suggest, with a savory and full taste of cocoa and cream, with just a bit of spicy tobacco on the finish. The burn was off to a pretty straight start, and a firm, dark grey ash was beginning to build. As I puffed on the cigar became extremely creamy, and a background note of baking spice began to surface.
In the second 3rd I was treated to more rich cocoa, a bit of dried fruit sweetness, and more body to the smoke in comparison to the super-smooth intro. Eventually some light black pepper joined the party, adding to the complexity.
In the last third this stick was still smoking nice and cool and producing a ton of thick smoke. The profile stayed consistent, with each of the aforementioned flavors popping up now and then, and the majorly thick creaminess resurfacing as I brought the Gran Cantidad down to the nub.
Now obviously the Gran Cantidad is our baby, and of course I wanted it to be good, but it wasn’t. Instead, it was truly great. I was genuinely shocked by the smoothness and depth of character this stick held. This thing had awesome, complex flavor, a straight burn, and completely smooth smokability. I can honestly say that the Gran Cantidad was ten times better than 90% of the bundled smokes I’ve sampled, and I have certainly sampled my fair share. The budget stogie can be a tricky one in terms of getting the blending right, but in this case I think the guys over at General hit it right on the head, and we couldn’t be more pleased with the results. I urge you to give these value-stogies a shot, as I think you’ll be rather impressed as well.