Team Cigar Review: E.P. Carrillo Encore Black

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Cigar Details: E.P. Carrillo Encore Black

  • Vitola: Robusto
  • Length: 5.38″
  • Ring Gauge: 52
  • Country of Origin: Dominican Republic
  • Wrapper: Connecticut Broadleaf
  • Binder: Mexican San Andrés
  • Filler: Nicaragua
  • Factory: Casa Carrillo
  • Blender: Ernesto Perez-Carrillo
  • Price: $17.00
  • Release Date: March 2024
  • 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: About 75% of the E.P. Carrillo Encore Black is covered as there are two bands and then a sleeve that runs from the secondary band down to the foot. They all are in a black copper and white color combination, with the primary denoting the brand, secondary denoting the line and the sleeve denoting the brand. After sliding off the sleeve, the oval pressed cigar has a dark reddish brown wrapper with some marbling. There are some lightly raised veins and fine tooth. The seams are smooth and the caps decently applied. The aroma from the wrapper is dark earth, cocoa and spice, while the foot brings a light mix of cedar and earth. The pre-light draw brings a slight sweet and smoky oak.
Seth: Finished with a wrapper that has a very dark marbling, the E.P. Carrillo Encore Black is between Colorado Maduro and Maduro in coloring. Antique tobacco brown coloring. Rough with fine grit texture. Medium sized veins throughout with a nice firmness. Tight aromas. Dark chocolate and rich earth notes. Some spices with sharp and focused wood.
John: The E.P. Carrillo Encore Black comes in cellophane and has a retailer UPC sticker that tears in half when opened. The cigar is double banded, along with a long paper wrap that covers roughly half of the cigar. The primary band indicates Perez Carrillo, while the secondary band indicates Encore Black. Additionally, the cigar has an artisanal complication of a box press shape. Examining the cigar, the cap seems to be messily applied. I weighed the cigar at 13.2 grams and the humidity was measured with the HumidiMeter Pro at 60.9%. Aromas from the wrapper included faint tobacco and wood. From the foot, I was getting only hay.
Jiunn: The E.P. Carrillo Encore Black has a mixture of maduro and Colorado red to the wrapper. The veins are well pressed, seams tight, bunch and roll lumpy at parts and the wrapper application is sloppy, having numerous overlays. Pre-light aromas consist primarily of cedar and cardboard.

E.P. Carrillo Encore Black

E.P. Carrillo Encore Black

First Third

Aaron: The cigar begins with toasted oak and light amounts of black pepper and earth. At a half inch in, the black pepper becomes very light. The retrohale is toasted oak with a bit of earth. At an inch in, the earth picks up a bit and a light creaminess joins the profile. As the third comes to a close, the toasted oak is up front, with the earth just behind the middle with light amounts of black pepper and cream in the background. The strength was slightly below medium.
Seth: The Encore Black begins with a flavor profile of toasted oak, rich earth, pepper spices, tobacco and minerals. I would classify the cigar as medium-full in strength and body.
John: My initial flavor impressions are wood and tobacco. Earth joins the center of the retrohale after a few puffs and lingers well into the post draw. As the first third settles in, some sweetness rounds out the flavor combinations. Medium strength baking spices join the retrohale by the halfway point.
Jiunn: The first third has a medium-full viscosity (body) with flavors that are on the darker side. Charred (“Starbucks”) coffee, dark chocolate, cedar and a nice chalky texture. Retrohaling introduces spice into the mix (black/red variant). The finish is on the shorter end with soft charred oak. Strength is medium-full.

E.P. Carrillo Encore Black

E.P. Carrillo Encore Black

Second Third

Aaron: As the second third begins, the black pepper increases to become even with the earth near the middle of the profile. At a half inch in, the earth moves up in between the oak and pepper. The retrohale is now toasted oak and earth with lightly zingy black pepper. As the third comes to a close, the toasted oak is up front, with the earth a bit behind and the black pepper just behind the middle and slightly dull. There is still a light creaminess in the background. The strength bumped up to medium.
Seth: The second third is fairly in line with the first. Earthier qualities in this third. More mineral, but also some richness as well. Just an overall increase of earth. Pepper spices with toasted oak as well. Tobacco on the finish. Medium-full in strength and body.
John: Creamy baking spices start the second third, as wood and earth team up on the finish with the earth moving up to medium as it lingers on the post draw. Tannins joins the post draw wood as the second third settles in. As the cigar moves towards the halfway point, tobacco sweetness joins the retrohale.
Jiunn: The second third becomes too Starbucks over roasted charred coffee. This lathers the palate in a thick and heavy manner. It also does a good job of not letting the other flavors shine. Strength and body remains medium-full.

E.P. Carrillo Encore Black

E.P. Carrillo Encore Black

Final Third

Aaron: As the final third begins, the black pepper mellows a fair amount. At a quarter inch in, the earth is now right behind the toasted oak. At three quarters of an inch in, the black pepper is barely holding on. The retrohale is now toasted oak and light earth. As the cigar wraps up, the toasted oak is just ahead of the earth, with the black pepper picking back up and being a bit sharp and is just behind the middle of the profile. The strength remained at medium.
Seth: The final third is in line with the second, but still showing that earthy increase. More mineral notes with black and red pepper in this third. Tobacco and toasted oak as well. Some richness, but not as much as before. Medium-full in strength and body.
John: Out of the gate, I’m tasting creamy wood and a dry, tannic wood to follow and carry into the post draw. Tobacco sweetness returns to the retrohale as the final third establishes itself. The profile remains consistent for the remainder of the review.
Jiunn: The final third continues to be heavy on over roasted charred coffee. It’s a shame that the first’s flavor profile is no longer available and so short lived. Strength and body finish the same medium-full.

E.P. Carrillo Encore Black

E.P. Carrillo Encore Black

Burn

Aaron: The burn was straight throughout, and the ash held on in inch and a half increments.
Seth: Burn was average throughout. Not great, but not bad.
John: The cigar started straight, with minor waviness in the first third. The burn remained mostly straight for the remainder of the review.
Jiunn: Burn performance was nearly perfect. The only downside was flowery ashes that flaked off quite a bit.

E.P. Carrillo Encore Black

E.P. Carrillo Encore Black

Draw

Aaron: The draw was perfect, with just the right amount of resistance that I prefer.
Seth: Solid draw from beginning to end.
John: The cigar was at most a half notch towards the resistant spectrum, putting it well inside the range for an ideal draw.
Jiunn: The draw was perfect, providing the ideal air flow and resistance.

Overall

Aaron: The cigar began with toasted oak and light amounts of black pepper and earth. A light creaminess joined in a bit later. The second third saw the pepper and earth both increase. The final third saw the pepper mellow significantly and the earth moved up to right behind the oak. The construction was perfect. The E.P. Carrillo Encore Black had a nice start with a good balance of flavors, but the profile took a step down from the second third on as the earth steadily increased and the pepper fluctuated in fullness. Overall, not a cigar I’d really see myself coming back to as the profile wasn’t all that intriguing.
Seth: It has been a while since I smoked the original Encore, but this is definitely stronger than the original blend. Richer as well. I remember the original Encore being dryer and more wood and tobacco focused. I do feel the E.P. Carrillo Encore Black is slightly one dimensional and average overall. Lack of complexity. This lack of Dominican tobacco use in the filler blend seems to be changing E.P. Carrillo blends in my opinion as well. This cigar came off as muddled, and lacking those older refined qualities that you would get with an E.P. Carrillo.
John: The E.P. Carrillo Encore Black had pleasant flavor combinations at various points, but I didn’t find them coming together in a dynamic or particularly engaging fashion. Overall, I’d describe the profile as linear throughout. Both the burn and the draw were perfect. Overall, the E.P. Carrillo Encore Black isn’t something I’d be interested in returning to, especially when you factor in a premium price point. There are a long list of other E.P. Carrillo releases I would see myself reaching for first. Total smoking time was a bit on the quick side at 1 hour and 26 minutes.
Jiunn: There isn’t much to love from the appearance of the E.P. Carrillo Encore Black, given its sloppy roll and wrapper application and oddly painted wrapper look. But I’m not about to judge a book by its cover. It’s the smoking experience that counts the most. The first third went quite well, giving proper viscosity and depth for Connecticut Broadleaf. But for the majority of the experience, was plagued by heaviness in over roasted charred coffee. Not a looker and taster so I’ll pass on this.

Aaron
Seth
John
Jiunn
GoodPre
Light
AveragePre
Light
GoodPre
Light
Average
GoodFirst
Third
AverageFirst
Third
AverageFirst
Third
Good
AverageSecond
Third
AverageSecond
Third
AverageSecond
Third
Average
AverageFinal
Third
AverageFinal
Third
AverageFinal
Third
Average
AmazingBurnAverageBurnAmazingBurnVery Good
AmazingDrawGoodDrawAmazingDrawAmazing
AverageOverallAverageOverallAverageOverallAverage

Aaron Loomis

SCORE

6.10

Cost/Point

$2.79

Scoring System

Seth Geise

SCORE

5.15

Cost/Point

$3.30

Scoring System

John McTavish

SCORE

5.75

Cost/Point

$2.96

Scoring System

Jiunn Liu

SCORE

6.00

Cost/Point

$2.83

Scoring System

Team Cigar Review: E.P. Carrillo Encore Black

Aaron LoomisTeam Cigar Review: E.P. Carrillo Encore Black

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