Team Cigar Review: Joya de Nicaragua Antaño Gran Reserva Belicoso

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Cigar Details: Joya de Nicaragua Antaño Gran Reserva Belicoso

  • Vitola: Belicoso
  • Length: 6″
  • Ring Gauge: 54
  • Country of Origin: Nicaragua
  • Wrapper: Nicaragua
  • Binder: Nicaragua
  • Filler: Nicaragua
  • Factory: Joya de Nicaragua
  • Blender: Undisclosed
  • Price: $11.15
  • Release Date: August 2017
  • Source: Joya de Nicaragua

Aaron-Loomis

 Aaron Loomis

Jiunn-Liu

 Jiunn Liu

Pre-light Experience

The wrapper is dark brown and has quite a bit of marbling to it which is a nice look. A couple of veins are visible but are smooth. The seams are also smooth and blend in very well due to the marbling. The belicoso head is finished off fantastically with three caps. There are two bands, the first being the traditional Antaño band and the second is just below the primary that has the same color combination and denotes Gran Reserva. The aroma from the wrapper is a light barnyard note while the foot gives a syrupy stone fruit sweetness. The pre-light draw is very faint and is a mix of hay and raisin sweetness.

Pre-light Experience

The Joya de Nicaragua Antaño Gran Reserva Belicoso has a faintly oily Colorado maduro shade wrapper. Construction is top notch as veins are well pressed, seams tight and a uniformed give persists. The head is finished off with a well applied triple cap. Nosing the wrapper tells raw cedar, barnyard and faint floral notes. Nosing the foot gives dark chocolate and white pepper. Cold draw reveals hay, cocoa and dry cardboard.

First Third

Initial draws bring a subtle mixture of cedar and baking spice. At a quarter inch in, the same mixture becomes much more full. At a half inch in, I’m getting a graham cracker note from the mixture of components. At an inch in, the profile becomes a bit darker as the cedar moves to a slightly charred oak note and the baking spice fades back some. The retrohale also carries the slightly charred oak. As the third comes to a close, the profile remains a slight charred oak along with some baking spice in the background. The strength in this third was slightly above medium.

First Third

The first third’s flavor profile consists of coffee beans, sharper baking spices, creamed nuttiness, dry wood and balanced faint black pepper. Retrohaling heightens both the black pepper spice and baking spices. Further, it also brings a cherry type fruit tartness. The finish is medium in length with tapered dry wood and subdued baking spices. Strength and body is medium.

Second Third

As the second third begins, the slightly charred oak continues as the baking spice completely leaves the profile. The retrohale is now a light and clean oak note. At a half inch in, some cream joins with the slightly charred oak which smooths things out a bit. At an inch in, a slight vegetal note joins in with the oak and cream. As the third comes to a close, the vegetal note has slightly increased to mix with the charred oak while the cream has left the profile. The strength in this third has increased to medium-full.

Second Third

Towards the middle of the second third is where the cigar really starts to hit it’s stride. There is greater depth of coffee beans and the baking spices have an effervescence to them tasting almost oily in nature. There’s also an underlying creamed nuttiness to each mouth draw and finish. Retrohaling allows for the coffee beans and baking spices to really shine. Strength nears medium-full while body maintains medium.

Final Third

As the final third kicks off, the cigar continues with some charred oak and vegetal notes. At a half inch in, the vegetal note drops back quite a bit and is only present on the finish while the slightly charred oak is at the forefront. At an inch in, the vegetal finish went away leaving just the charred oak note. This is how the cigar finished. The strength in this third remained medium-full.

Final Third

No changes to talk about aside from the strength moving to a consistent medium-full. The core flavors still remain, providing delicious notes of coffee beans, sharper baking spices and effervescence. Still very much enjoying the underlying creamed nuttiness.

Burn

Just some slight waviness throughout, never needing any attention. The ash held on in one inch increments.

Burn

Burn performance was very good. Just one touch up needed, straight burn, tight ashes averaging 1.5 inches in length and a cool and slow burn.

Draw

The draw was slightly tighter than I prefer, but didn’t cause any issues with the smoking experience.

Overall

This is another nice offering from Joya de Nicaragua. The flavor and strength level started subtle and then eased higher the further I got into the cigar which is appreciated. Cedar and oak along with some baking spice made for a nice flavor profile. True to the brand, strength gets up in the medium-full arena so fans of the Antaño will be right in their wheelhouse. It was nice seeing this variation of the line and it is one that I will gladly smoke more of.

Aaron
Jiunn
Very Good Pre
Light
Very Good
Good First
Third
Good
Good Second Third Good
Average Final
Third
Good
Very Good Burn Very Good
Very Good Draw Amazing
Good Overall Good

Draw

Perfect draw for this belicoso vitola. Not necessarily easy to achieve, but these sample reviews caused zero issues.

Overall

All in all, a flavorful cigar with above average strength to match. If you think something like the Joya Cabinetta is too light and Joya Antano Dark Corojo is too strong, this will fit the perfect middle ground. Flavors were easily identifiable and most importantly delicious. Well worth picking up a few to enjoy (especially the belicoso format).

Aaron Loomis

SCORE

6.57

Cost/Point

$1.70

Scoring System

Jiunn Liu

SCORE

7.07

Cost/Point

$1.58

Scoring System

Team Cigar Review: Joya de Nicaragua Antaño Gran Reserva Belicoso
Aaron LoomisTeam Cigar Review: Joya de Nicaragua Antaño Gran Reserva Belicoso

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