Psyko Seven Nicaragua Toro (6×50)
W: Nicaragua Desflorado 2007
F: Nicaragua Condega, Estelí, Jalapa
Origin: Agroindustrial Nicaraguense de Tabacos S.A., Condega
After getting her feet wet co-creating last year’s limited edition Friends, Family, and Fire with her cigar legend dad Omar, rising star cigar blender Indiana Ortez has conspired with Ventura Cigar Co. once again to release her first ongoing production blend: the Psyko Seven Nicaragua.
Blended using 100% Nicaraguan-grown tobaccos from the country’s top growing regions, the Psyko Seven Nicaragua showcases a Nicaragua Desflorado wrapper from the 2007 harvest. What is “desflorado,” you ask? Tobacco farmers sometimes remove the flower of a tobacco plant, forcing the plant to redirect its nutrients to its leaves. This process typically results in producing a stronger leaf, and is known as “desflorado,” or deflowering. For today’s review I broke out a sample of the Toro (6×50), which coincidentally happens to be Indiana’s favorite size of the blend.
Pre-light draws gave off a taste of smooth cedar with some subtle sweet nuttiness – an effective tease.
After lighting I was greeted with flavors akin to freshly-cut slabs of cedar soaking in a sea of baking spices. The spice ramped up in intensity with each puff for the first inch or so, eventually revealing some fiery red pepper flake vibes. Burn was spot-on and playful caps of grey ash were hanging on about a 1/2 inch at a clip. A little further in, a wave of thick cream came crashing over the profile to balance things out a bit.
In the 2nd third the spicy fireworks were still present, though now muted by a powerful creaminess. As the smoke progressed, the veil of cream thinned out to expose a smooth nuttiness similar to what I had tasted on the cold draw. The Psyko Nicaragua was beginning to really show some leg in terms of flavor. Meanwhile, the strength of the cigar had snuck up on me like a stealth bomber, leaving me in a state of relaxation that was greater than getting a full-body message but still a bit shy of eyes-rolling-back-in-head-and-drooling-level. Perfect.
As I burned into the last third the depth and complexity of the cigar’s profile were moving into focus. The cedar and spice notes were now supplemented by hints of leather and anise, and soaked in an awesome dark maltiness. I happily rode this juicy finale all the way to the finish line.
Not surprisingly, this proved to be another super-solid smoke with the Ventura Cigar name behind it. A flawless burn, distinct flavors with nice transitions, and an explosively tasty final third – this one checked all the boxes for me, and even threw in an unexpected extra bit of strength to push it right over the top. Speaking of boxes, I strongly suggest you pick up a box of Psyko Seven Nicaragua at your earliest convenience. If this is what Indiana’s first solo blending attempt tastes like, the rest of these industry guys are in serious trouble.