Each year, a cigar festival is held in Honduras. In 2011, each Honduran cigar-maker was asked to prepare a blend for a blind tasting competition known as ’Humo Jaguar.’ Over 200 well-versed panelists participated in the tasting of each blend, taking every aspect of cigar making and enjoyment into consideration. The Humo Jaguar 2011 by Miami Cigars was last year’s winner. Blended by Nestor Plascencia, this Honduran puro boasts a combination of Cuban-seed long-fillers, a binder from Talanga, and a Honduran Oscuro wrapper from the viso priming. For today’s review I procured a sample of the Robusto (5 x 52) vitola to see what made this entry stand out above all the rest.
The Humo Jaguar was wrapped in a hearty Oscuro leaf with a few thick veins and visible specks of oil throughout the length of the cigar. Construction appeared super-solid, with a sturdy triple-cap snugly in place, and pre-light draws were sweet and woody with just a hint of spice. After a quick and easy light I was off and smoking.
The first 3rd of the Jaguar presented a very nice, mellow, and earthy pepper spice, along with some cocoa sweetness. The draw showed a resistance that seemed perfect for the taste profile, and despite my best efforts taking huge, deep puffs, the cigar had not a trace of bite to it. This was not a bad start at all.
In the next third I was treated to more chocolaty earth and lingering pepper, with some added nuances of coffee, butter, and molasses. The burn had gone slightly crooked, but the stick was now rocking a decent brownish-grey ash. By this point I had a significant little nicotine buzz going on, and I decided to slow down a bit.
Going into the last 3rd the flavors stayed consistent and continued to mesh together well. During this portion the sweetness really began to shine through, and I was also picking up a bit of dried fruit and some saltiness. Just before I finally put the stick down the smoke became majorly creamy and brought me to a smooth and clean finish.
For whatever reason, Honduran stogies have kind of been my thing lately, and the Humo Jaguar was right up my alley. This cigar had great, vivid flavors, a good bit of complexity, and what seemed like the perfect amount of body. There were only very minor issues with the burn, and the draw was spot-on. This is one that I’d stack up against a good IPA or dark beer any day, and I give it a well-deserved grade of B+. I’m no psychic, but I can clearly see a 5-pack of these landing in my humidor sometime in the very near future.
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