Team Cigar Review: E.P. Carrillo Allegiance Sidekick

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Cigar Details: E.P. Carrillo Allegiance Sidekick

  • Vitola: Robusto
  • Length: 5″
  • Ring Gauge: 50
  • Country of Origin: Nicaragua
  • Wrapper: Ecuadorian Sumatra
  • Binder: Nicaragua
  • Filler: Nicaragua
  • Factory: TABOLISA
  • Blender: Undisclosed
  • Price: $12.00
  • Release Date: November 2022
  • Source: Developing Palates via Corona Cigar Co.

Aaron-Loomis

 Aaron Loomis

Seth Geise

 Seth Geise

 John McTavish

Jiunn-Liu

 Jiunn Liu

Pre-light Experience

Aaron: The wrapper on the E.P. Carrillo Allegiance Sidekick is medium brown with some marbling, along with some lightly raised veins. The seams are smooth and the caps well applied. There are three bands, with the primary and secondary both carrying a green and gold color combination. The primary band is the newer company design, while the secondary denotes the line. There is a green ribbon at the foot. The aroma from the wrapper is a light mix of wood and earth while the foot brings a very musty cedar and light spice. The pre-light draw brings more of that very musty cedar along with a mild spiciness on my lips.
Seth: The E.P. Carrillo Allegiance Sidekick is a good looking cigar. Nice marbled coloring throughout, and it ranges from light Colorado to Colorado-Maduro. Medium to large in size veins throughout. Veins really pop against the wrapper and are noticeable in texture. Cigar is firm in hand, and there are are aromas of damp wood, earth, sweet spices and tobacco. Fruity qualities as well.
John: The E.P. Carrillo Allegiance Sidekick comes in cellophane and does not have a UPC sticker. The cigar is double banded along with a foot ribbon band. The ornate primary band indicates ‘Perez Carillo’ and the secondary band indicating ‘Allegiance’, with the foot band ribbon in green to match the overall color motif. Additionally, the cigar has an artisanal complication of being box pressed. For aromas, I could pick out sweet raisin and tobacco along with faint hay and wood. From the foot, there were notes of sweet tobacco and hay.
Jiunn: The E.P. Carrillo Allegiance Sidekick has an oily and velvety Colorado wrapper shade. Veins are well pressed, seams tight, bunch and roll is lumpy on the soft press and the head is well wrapped and capped. Aromas from the wrapper tell faint milk chocolate and aged cedar. Aromas from the foot tell assertive white pepper spice and stale dried nuts. Cold draws give cedar and stale nuts.

Team Cigar Review: E.P. Carrillo Allegiance Sidekick

Team Cigar Review: E.P. Carrillo Allegiance Sidekick

First Third

Aaron: The cigar begins with toasted cedar, mustiness and bold baking spice. At a quarter inch in, the baking spice transitions to black pepper. The retrohale is toasted cedar and lightly zingy black pepper. At an inch in, the black pepper has the lead in the profile. At an inch and a quarter, some light earth joins the profile. As the third comes to a close, the black pepper is just ahead of the toasted cedar, with the earth and mustiness a bit further behind. The strength was slightly above medium.
Seth: The first third starts out with some damp earth and tobacco qualities. Sweet spices are present as well with some fruity aspects and toasted nuts as well. Medium-full in strength and body.
John: The first third opens with a meaty tobacco, as wood and earth define the center and a mild red pepper flake finishing the draw. An earthy nutmeg develops in the center of the profile as the first third settles in. Some time later, creamy wood and that earthy nutmeg come through on the retrohale. Chocolate comes into the retrohale marching towards the transition to the second third.
Jiunn: The first third provides a slick mouthfeel with the most noticeable flavor being a red pepper spice that covers the entire palate from the tip of the tongue to the rear palate. There’s also some stale mixed nuts and cedar wood. Retrohaling brings the spice upfront, but tries to taper the deep spices with roasted nuts. The finish shows stale cedar and red pepper spice lasting forever on the tongue and rear palate. Strength is medium-full, and body is medium.

Team Cigar Review: E.P. Carrillo Allegiance Sidekick

Team Cigar Review: E.P. Carrillo Allegiance Sidekick

Second Third

Aaron: As the second third begins, the earth picks up and the toasted cedar, black pepper and earth are all even up front. At a half inch in, the back pepper is now slightly behind the toasted cedar and earth. The retrohale is now just toasted cedar and earth. At an inch in, the toasted cedar is fairly dry and brings an overall dryness to the profile while the black pepper has dropped back a bit more. As the third comes to a close, the profile is a dry mix of toasted cedar and earth up front, with black pepper in the middle and light mustiness in the background. The strength remained at slightly above medium.
Seth: The second third shows a continuation of the first third and I am picking up those damp tobacco, wood and earth qualities. Sweet spices are present as well, and the finish is fruity with some nutty and mineral aspects. Medium-full in strength and body.
John: The second third opens with creamy graham cracker and a mildly tannic wood into the post draw. The profile remains largely unchanged until the bottom half where it becomes primarily wood forward.
Jiunn: The second third tastes more cohesive. It’s not as spice dominant and does a much better job of melding the natural sweet and creamy roasted nuts and cedar together. Strength and body is unchanged at medium-full and medium, respectively.

Team Cigar Review: E.P. Carrillo Allegiance Sidekick

Team Cigar Review: E.P. Carrillo Allegiance Sidekick

Final Third

Aaron: The final third continues with how the second third finished, but a light wood bitterness has joined in. The retrohale is toasted cedar and earth with a zingy black pepper and wood bitterness combination. As the cigar wraps up, the profile is toasted cedar and earth up front with wood bitterness a bit behind and black pepper and mustiness in the background. The strength remained at slightly above medium.
Seth: The final third delivers a damp earth, wood and tobacco profile with some sweet spices, fruit and mineral aspects. Medium-full in strength and body.
John: Creamy earth leads off the last third as dry wood defines the center, and a wood and earth combination linger into the post draw. Some mixed mossy vegetal flavors add complexity to the center of the profile as the last third progresses. Once the last third has settled, earth is defining the post draw.
Jiunn: The final third took a turn for the worse. The profile becomes more stale in nature with the roasted nuts and cedar combination. The spice also picks up a burnt/char character. Strength and body finishes the same medium-full and medium.

Team Cigar Review: E.P. Carrillo Allegiance Sidekick

Team Cigar Review: E.P. Carrillo Allegiance Sidekick

Burn

Aaron: The burn line was a bit wavy at times, but never needed any assistance. The ash held on in inch and a half increments.
Seth: Nice burn throughout. Not perfect, but not bad. A little wavy.
John: The burn was flawless through the entire review.
Jiunn: Great burn performance. Even burn, ample smoke production and cool burning temperature.

Team Cigar Review: E.P. Carrillo Allegiance Sidekick

Team Cigar Review: E.P. Carrillo Allegiance Sidekick

Draw

Aaron: The draw was perfect, with just the right amount of resistance that I prefer.
Seth: Draw was sometimes a little tight.
John: The draw was only a minor amount towards the resistant spectrum, roughly one notch, which puts it in the ideal range for an amazing draw.
Jiunn: Great draw performance as well, giving the ideal air flow.

Overall

Aaron: The cigar began with toasted cedar, mustiness and bold baking spice. The baking spice transitioned to black pepper fairly quickly. Some earth joined a bit later. The second third saw the profile become a bit dry. The final third saw some wood bitterness join in and build up. The E.P. Carrillo Allegiance Sidekick had an average flavor profile through the first two thirds, focused around toasted cedar, black pepper and earth. The final third dropped a level as the wood bitterness joined and built up along the way. The profile was just too earthy and raw for me, especially when the black pepper had the lead. An interesting collaboration between EPC and Oliva, but not one I’d see myself coming back to.
Seth: There is this current trend of turning to these darker Ecuadorian Sumatra wrapper offerings, and it is not going well. The final product is these blends that are lacking complexity and enjoyable flavors. This E.P. Carrillo Allegiance Sidekick was an average cigar that really did nothing. I will say that the green bands started to irritate me with how lacking the cigar was in terms of flavors and complexity. Not enough going on with the cigar, and what was present was consistent from beginning to end.
John: The E.P. Carrillo Allegiance Sidekick started out with an interesting medley of flavors that kept me engaged and enjoying what would be served up next. By the second third, the profile had become largely uncomplicated and while still pleasant for the remainder of the review, didn’t do enough for me to make it stand out from other offerings. The draw and burn were both perfect. The E.P. Carrillo Allegiance Sidekick is priced at a reasonable level for the market, so if you enjoyed the flavor components described I think you should pick it up. I’ll be passing on the Allegiance Sidekick for one of E.P. Carrillo’s other great offerings. Total smoking time was 1 hour and 34 minutes.
Jiunn: This E.P. Carrillo Allegiance Sidekick didn’t quite do it for me. While the interplay of spice and roasted nuts gave it’s best look within the second third, for the most part, the profile weighed too heavy on spice. For me, a flavor profile needs more than that to layer into the fold. It’s a good baseline of flavors, just needs to build on it.

Aaron
Seth
John
Jiunn
GoodPre
Light
GoodPre
Light
Very GoodPre
Light
Good
AverageFirst
Third
AverageFirst
Third
GoodFirst
Third
Average
AverageSecond
Third
AverageSecond
Third
AverageSecond
Third
Good
SubparFinal
Third
AverageFinal
Third
AverageFinal
Third
Average
Very GoodBurnGoodBurnAmazingBurnAmazing
AmazingDrawGoodDrawAmazingDrawAmazing
AverageOverallAverageOverallAverageOverallAverage

Aaron Loomis

SCORE

5.30

Cost/Point

$2.26

Scoring System

Seth Geise

SCORE

5.25

Cost/Point

$2.29

Scoring System

John McTavish

SCORE

6.10

Cost/Point

$1.97

Scoring System

Jiunn Liu

SCORE

6.10

Cost/Point

$1.97

Scoring System

Team Cigar Review: E.P. Carrillo Allegiance Sidekick

Jiunn LiuTeam Cigar Review: E.P. Carrillo Allegiance Sidekick

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