Saturday, December 10, 2016

Diesel Heart of Darkness review

Country: Nicaragua
Wrapper: Eduador Habano, Oscuro
Filler / Binder: Nicaragua
Length: 6
Ring: 58
Cost: $7.25

Background: Again I have to give a thank you to Cigars on this cigar. It found its way to my mailbox, by their recommendation, and they were spot on with my normal tastes. It’s another in the line of AJ Fernandez offerings, who is one of my favorite blenders, and specifically is one of the Diesel line. Each of the Diesel cigars has been interesting, and this one specifically is billed as being strong, dark, and rich.

Appearance (0-20):  Following most of the Diesel tradition, the standard script is on the top band with Heart of Darkness along the bottom band. Both bands are in matte black and grey, with a matte gold script on the lower band. The wrapper of the cigar has a nice rich brown color, like that of a dark chocolate. The wrap looks well done and there are no noticeable veins or imperfections.
Score: 18

Construction (0-20): Diesel has made a name for itself in terms of consistency. This one feels solid to the touch and silky. The initial cut was completely clean of debris and the prelit draw was slightly tight. Post lighting it stayed tight through the first third, but loosened up properly. The ash held for about two inches at a time, though the burn line didn’t always stay completely sharp. No touch ups at all needed.
Score: 18

Strength (0-20): Full strength? The answer to that simple question is a resounding YES.
Score: 20

Flavor (0-20): Lighting this one up gave me a bitter and harsh taste. Not a good start. But the roughness evened off within a few puffs and transitioned to a very bitter espresso with hints of wood. The retrohale added a heavy black pepper spice to the palate. The flavor remained relatively steady with some additional weavings of leather, a slight bit of salted caramel, and earthiness. However, the rich espresso with wood and pepper was the real star of the show.
Score: 17

Value (0-20): $7.25 per stick puts this into the realm of a lot of other solid smokes. But its honestly a fair price given the quality of this stick.
Score: 17

Additional Notes: Paired with water, provided by Cigars

Overall (0-100): So this limited line from Diesel definitely lives up to its name – the Heart of Darkness. It’s dark, rich, and packs quite a punch. If you like cigars that are on the heavier end of things, this one will be right up your alley. However, I will warn you straight out that this one is bitter and peppery (even though it’s pretty well balanced overall). AJ Fernandez once again did a great job, and at $7.25 it’s in the correct price range for the power you’re getting. A thank you goes out again to Cigars for dropping this one to me.

Score: 90

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Thursday, December 8, 2016

Need a holiday gift for cigar smokers + GIVEAWAY!

Its that time of year again, where people are constantly trying to figure out what to buy for the cigar smoker in their life. Spoiler alert - this one should absolutely be a no brainier! Buy them a trip to Cuba! Or maybe Nicaragua! Or how about an all around the world smoking trip?!

Okay so lets be realistic. The holidays are almost here and there is no way you can just drop a chunk of change on a trip to Cuba (or another wonderful cigar smoking location) without causing some financial questions to arise. But that doesn't mean that you cant at least find something good for your loved ones that are cigar smokers. Holts has put together a nice little section to their site for the holiday gifts, including swag, cigars, and a whole array of fun stuff. Take a look for some quick and easy gifts that wont break the bank! I'm personally eyeing up that Fuente Rare sampler myself...

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Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Black Label Trading Company announces Deliverance Nocturne to ship this week

December 6, 2016 — Black Label Trading Company (BLTC) is pleased to announce they are shipping DELIVERANCE NOCTURNE to select retailers this week.  The Nocturne was hand crafted at BLTC’s own factory; Fabrica Oveja Negra in Esteli, Nicaragua.

“We are excited for the second release of Deliverance Nocturne and the addition of the 5x56 perfecto to the long and short salomon vitolas.  These vitolas have been really fun to work with but require a lot of time on the rolling tables.  They are the perfect vitolas for highlighting the richness and strength of the Pennsylvania tobacco,” said James Brown of BLTC.

DELIVERANCE NOCTURNE features a Pennsylvania Broadleaf wrapper with Pennsylvania Ligero and Nicaraguan filler & binder.
Country of Origin: Nicaragua
Wrapper: Pennsylvania Broadleaf
Binder: Nicaraguan Habano
Filler: Nicaragua & Pennsylvania
Perfecto – 5 x 56 (20 count) MSRP $10.00
Salomon “Snub Nose” – 6 ¼ x 36 x 56 (12 count) MSRP $12.00
Short Salomon “Snub Nose” – 4 ¾ x 40 x 56 (18 count) MSRP $10.00

Black Label Trading Company is redefining the standards for cigar making. With a “less is more” philosophy, Black Label Trading Co. creates hand crafted premium cigars of the utmost quality in small batch, limited quantities.

BLTC cigars are available for purchase through Boutiques Unified.  For more information email