One of the great things about cigar-driven events, or events involving cigars is that there will always be some complimentary cigars in circulation. The second cigar i received in such a manner during the recent event at Etoile, Hotel Equatorial was the Romeo y Julieta Petit Corona.

(Image lost) Romeo y Julieta Petit Corona

Slightly boxed-pressed, this cigar is typical Romeo y Julieta: the wrapper is perfect, clean from any disfiguring veins, and pleasantly shiny from a thin layer of oils. Taking a few moments to run my fingers over the wrapper and feeling its construction was a plasure in itself. Construction wise, Cubans are still among the best there is. The scent test was equally successful. A light floral bouquet was mixed into the fresh tobacco aroma.

(Image lost) It has an impressive wrapper

A quick burn from the torch and this cigar was up and running. Initial draws were a bit tight – unusual since i didn’t detect any tight knots or bunching in the cigar prior to lighting. Taste wise, its exactly what you would expect from a Cuban Romeo: a touch of peppery spice to the lips and palate, washed over by fragrant tobacco accents. Decidedly pleasant and enjoyable though the amount of smoke produced was perhaps not as volumnious as i would have preferred.

(Image lost) Notice the “flowering” effect of the ash

(Image lost) Notice the split wrapper – improper humidification

Problems with this cigar, just like with the Romeo y Julieta Cedro de Luxe i wrote about earlier, lies in the consistency of the burn and taste. Having to relight this cigar more than once, i struggled the whole time trying to keep the burn even without too much success. The “flowering” of the ash is quite ugly. By about half way through this cigar, the taste, which was pleasant before, became quite harsh and tannic for a moment. After an inch or so, this taste problem righted itself, but it certainly left a disfavourable impression towards the consistency of this cigar.

Verdict: Yet another Cuban cigar to confirm my belief that Cuban cigars have, overall, suffered a tremendous drop in quality, perhaps due in large part to practices of overproduction. The tobacco itself is still impressive, hence the overall positive flavour, but its not being given enough time to age hence the inconsistent burn and tastes.

ADVICE: Whenever you buy a Cuban cigar nowadays, give it a bit of time to mellow out in your humidor. Or if you insist on buying from divans to smoke on the spot, make sure you take something from a box that’s at least 2-3 years old. Any younger than this, and you may be setting yourself up for disappointment.