Thursday, October 3, 2013

San Cristobal Seleccion Del Sol

The San Cristobal Seleccion Del Sol is another cigar that proves that a cigar band can be an effective marketing tool. If you visit my personal Pinterest site you will see that I have a fondness for parrots and my desire to own and smoke this cigar won over my thriftiness forcing me to pay full retail to obtain one.

This cigar was released by Ashton cigars in 2009 and is created from tobaccos all grown by Don Pepin Garcia on the family “Estrella” farm in Esteli, Nicaragua. This cigar is described on the Ashton web site as being medium to full-bodied with a rich and complex flavor profile. Let’s see how it turned out.

Quick Details
• Cigar Size: 5 x 52
• Origin: Nicaragua
• Wrapper: Nicaraguan
• Binder: Nicaraguan
• Filler: Nicaraguan
• Price: $8.00 Online

San Cristobal Seleccion Del Sol
Construction: Holding this cigar in my hand, the first thing I notice, besides the cool band with the parrot and the second band around the foot, is the overall quality of construction. The wrapper, which is held in place with a double end cap, has a medium amount of tooth and contains only a couple small veins. As I check along the body I find that overall the cigar is a bit hard; hard enough for me to wonder if it will affect the draw and, it did.

Along with the draw being a bit tight, another area I found disappointing about this cigar was the cold aromas. Both the wrapper and the foot only have faint aromas of earth mixed with cedar. On the bright side though, the cold draw has notes of sweet cream mixed with a bit of earth.

Flavor: Once the foot was toasted and the cigar was burning the first flavors to reach my palate were a nice mix of earth, spicy cedar and a hint of leather. This medium-bodied mix continued to the cigars’ mid-point where I was hit with several puffs of tongue burning red pepper. I was just about to pitch the rest of the cigar when the red pepper was instantly replaced by a nice blast of straight sweet cream.

In the final half, the earthiness and leather gradually came back as the strength built more toward the full-bodied range with a long finish of cream, leather and earth.

Burn: As I said earlier, the draw was a bit tight and this made lighting this cigar a bit of a chore but, finally I had it burning. Once it was burning it produced a nice amount of sweet, nutty scented smoke. In the first half the burn was even and left a tight white ash that held on for over two inches. In the second half the burn took off and canoed down one side enough that I corrected it three times.

Overall Insights: Overall this cigar was a disappointment for me. Perhaps my infatuation with the ring had set my expectations too high, perhaps not though. While this cigar was above average in aesthetic value considering the ring and the high quality construction, it left me wanting more for my $8.00 with nearly nonexistent cold aromas, a nearly tasteless wrapper and a terrible burn line. While this cigar looks great through the glass top of my humidor, I just can’t justify rating it above the third drawer.

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