Cigar Details: Foundation Olmec Claro Double Corona
- Vitola: Double Corona
- Length: 7″
- Ring Gauge: 54
- Country of Origin: Nicaragua
- Wrapper: Mexican San Andrés Claro
- Binder: Nicaragua
- Filler: Nicaragua
- Factory: Tabacalera AJ Fernandez
- Blender: Nicholas Melillo
- Price: $16.00
- Release Date: September 2022
- Source: Developing Palates via Blue Smoke of Dallas
Aaron: The wrapper on the Foundation Olmec Claro Double Corona is a dull medium brown with well pressed veins and a fine toothiness. The seams are slightly raised and the caps are well applied. The band is orangish-yellow, black, white and gold and denotes the line name and city and country of manufacture. The aroma from the wrapper is a light mix of wood and earth while the foot brings cedar and stone fruit sweetness. The pre-light draw brings a light and airy cedar.
Seth: Toothy cigar with a nice silky texture. Soft Natural coloring on the wrapper of the Foundation Olmec Claro Double Corona. Small veins throughout. Firm and large cigar. Sun faded brown. Aromas of dry earth, wood, spices and tobacco.
John: The Foundation Olmec Claro Double Corona does not come in cellophane, and has a single band of orange and black with white writing and gold accents. For a claro, the wrapper is still a dark colorado brown, and has an artisanal complication of being box pressed. The wrapper was giving off aromas of fresh cut wood, and sweet hay. From the foot, I was getting hay and bread, but the aroma was extremely mild.
Jiunn: The Foundation Olmec Claro Double Corona has Colorado coloring and fine grit sandpaper like feel to the wrapper. Veins are well pressed, seams tight, bunch and roll even and head is nicely wrapped and capped. Aromas from the wrapper tell cedar and black pepper spice. Aromas from the foot give rich black pepper and mixed nuts. Cold draw is the same as the wrapper smell.
Aaron: The cigar begins with toasted cedar, black pepper and light earth. At a quarter inch in, the earth increases. The retrohale is toasted cedar, earth and mild black pepper. At an inch in, a light creaminess joins the profile. At an inch and a half in, the toasted cedar and earth are even up front, with black pepper in the middle and light creaminess in the background. As the third wraps up, the toasted cedar and earth remain even up front with the black pepper a little behind the middle and very light creaminess in the background. The strength was slightly above medium.
Seth: The first third starts out with a lot of spices that are paired with some dry wood, oak and cedar, and earth notes. Dry earth qualities showing some mineral notes. Red pepper on the finish. Full in strength and body.
John: The first third kicked off with faint, sweet wood and a delayed light black pepper through the post draw. Chocolate and leather team up to finish the draw as the first third settles in. Dry wood comes through at the end of the draw, not long after. Some creamy baking spices are present on the retrohale as it progresses. Moving towards the halfway mark, bread and wood combine on the retrohale as dry wood and spices combine through the finish.
Jiunn: The first third is very earthy. A slight dirtiness to rich soil, mixed nuts and leather. Retrohaling gives relief to the overt earthiness by giving some good dried red pepper spice, but it also further highlights leather. The finish is where that dirt earthiness is most realized, as it’s incredibly lengthy and sticks to the palate. Strength and body is medium.
Aaron: As the second third begins, the black pepper is now pretty mellow and the creaminess has departed. At three quarters of an inch in, the black pepper picks back up a bit. The retrohale remains toasted cedar, earth and mild black pepper. As the third comes to a close, the earth has a slight lead over the toasted cedar with black pepper in the middle of the profile. The strength remains at slightly above medium.
Seth: The second third is in line with the first. Lots of peppery spice qualities that are paired with some wood, tobacco and leather. Full in strength and body.
John: Sweet, mild baking spices lead off, with dry wood taking over through the post draw. Mild earth combines with the wood on the post draw as the second third settles in. As it continues towards the halfway point, some time later, dry wood is defining the center of the profile. In the bottom half, earth is finishing the draw.
Jiunn: The second third is pretty similar to the first third. Still all about that earth, but there’s now a stale and dull cedar coming through. Strength ramps to medium-full, while body remains medium.
Aaron: As the final third begins, the toasted cedar and earth are back to even up front. At a half inch in, a light wood bitterness joins the profile. The retrohale is now just toasted cedar and earth. At an inch and a quarter, the wood bitterness picks up a bit. As the cigar wraps up, the toasted cedar and earth are even up front with the black pepper and wood bitterness a fair bit behind. The strength remained at slightly above medium.
Seth: Like the second third. Getting a little tired. Still full in strength and body. Lots of pepper and dry wood on the end.
John: The last third gives me initial flavor impressions of sweet wood and baking spices, with a combination of earth and spices on the finish. Earth defines the post draw after just a few puffs. Creamy wood and earth combine as the last third progresses. By the halfway point, some earth has become the primary flavor driver, along with some espresso bitter qualities.
Jiunn: The final third shows no changes to the second third. Highly earthy with rich soil, mixed nuts, stale cedar and leather. Strength and body finishes medium-full and medium, respectively.
Aaron: The burn was a bit wavy throughout and the cigar went out once, requiring a re-light. The ash held on in inch and a quarter increments.
Seth: Great burn throughout.
John: The burn was straight through the first third, uneven in the second third, eventually requiring a touch-up. The burn became offset by the halfway point, eventually requiring another touch-up in the last third. I could feel the burn stalling on me in the last third, but it did not go out.
Jiunn: The burn performance was great. Overall even burn, cool burning temperature and good smoke production.
Aaron: The draw was perfect, with just the right amount of resistance that I prefer.
Seth: Perfect draw.
John: The draw was at most 1/2 notch towards the resistant spectrum, putting it right in the ideal range for a perfect draw.
Jiunn: The draw was perfect, giving the ideal air flow and resistance.
Aaron: The cigar began with toasted cedar, black pepper and light earth. Some light creaminess joined a bit later. The second third saw the creaminess depart and the final third saw a wood bitterness join in. The Foundation Olmec Claro Double Corona had a fairly average flavor profile throughout, focused around toasted cedar, earth and black pepper. Some slight transitions at times, but nothing that really grabbed my attention. Not a cigar I’d see myself really coming back to, but we’ll see how the Maduro version fares in a later review.
Seth: I would’nt smoke the Foundation Olmec Claro Double Corona again, but I would come back to the smaller vitola offerings. Strong cigar. Dry profile as well. Not overly complex, but a solid base for the strength and pepper spice throughout. This might be too strong for me though in a smaller size.
John: My experience reviewing the Foundation Olmec Claro Double Corona was an overall average flavor experience, with the most complex and engaging combinations coming in the first third. The second and last thirds were too light and not at all engaging. The burn suffered a bit with two touch-ups and a stalling burn in the last third, but the draw was perfect. I felt as if I smoked the wrong size for this blend, and although I can’t see myself returning to the Double Corona, I’ll be giving this a shot in a different vitola. Total smoking time was 2 hours and 11 minutes.
Jiunn: I’m always excited for Foundation’s new releases. Reason being, I find Nick Melillo to be one of the few that knows his tobacco and has good blending capabilities. But in the case of the Foundation Olmec Claro Double Corona, it fell short due to the heavy handed earthiness in soil and leather components. While the finish is substantial and lasting, the highly earth driven characters just didn’t do it for me. As such, this is a pass for me.
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