W – Nicaraguan
B – Nicaraguan
F – Nicaraguan
Origin – Tabacalera AJ Fernandez Cigars de Nicaragua S.A., Estelí
The brainchild of cigar stars A.J. Fernandez and Rafael Nodal of Aging Room, the Montecristo Nicaragua is made using 100% Nicaraguan tobaccos from the country’s top growing regions. Now, this is not the first all-Nicaraguan Montecristo cigar – that honor goes to the 92-rated Espada that first hit shelves way back in 2014. But, this is the first time that a core line Montecristo cigar has been made by a third party – none other than “current hottest cigar-maker on the planet,” A.J. Fernandez. So, there’s that.
Cold draws showed much promise with notes of smooth cedar and hints of milk chocolate.
After firing up I was greeted with a particularly robust intro – notes of dark wood in the vein of oak backed by some potent nutmeg spice and hints of vanilla. The word “picturesque” came to mind as I acknowledged the cigar’s razor-straight burn line crowned with a solid white ash. As I puffed on, the pepper ramped up considerably, increasing to near-tap-out level before allowing an earthy creaminess to take center stage. It may be a bit harsh to say, but this cigar showed more flavor action in the first two inches than some full Churchills I’ve sampled.
Cream and earth with a hefty pinch of baking spice on the finish led the way into the second third. A few draws later I began to detect the cedar I had tasted on the cold draw as well as a new accent of malty sweetness, making for a formidably complex and rounded profile.
In the home stretch the Montecristo Nicaragua continued to evolve, offering tones of big black pepper, fresh-baked bread, and something that reminded me of cola. The burn remained straight and well-behaved. Eventually things got pretty funky and I left the nub to smolder out peacefully.
Hot damn. The Montecristo Nicaragua is rich as all get-out with plenty of flavor transition and no “boring parts” to report. It’s an honor and a privilege to be able to smoke some of the best cigars in the world for a living, and this cigar definitely falls into that category. You can just taste the quality, as well as the thought that went into making such a uniquely tasty tobacco blend. As I mentioned in my last review, there is certainly no shortage of Nicaraguan-themed smokes these days, but this box-worthy offering manages to stand out from the pack in a big way – eclipsing both the Espada and Monte by A.J. in terms of engaging taste in my opinion. Folks, we have a winner. Grab yours here at a winning low price.