Team Cigar Review: Saint Luis Rey 2016 Edición Regional Cuba Marquéz

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Cigar Details: Saint Luis Rey 2016 Edición Regional Cuba Marquéz

  • Vitola: Toro Extra
  • Length: 5.9″
  • Ring Gauge: 54
  • Country of Origin: Cuba
  • Wrapper: Cuba
  • Binder: Cuba
  • Filler: Cuba
  • Factory Code: SGA
  • Blender: Undisclosed
  • Price: N/A
  • Box Date: DIC 16
  • Source: Developing Palates

Aaron-Loomis

 Aaron Loomis

Seth Geise

 Seth Geise

 John McTavish

Jiunn-Liu

 Jiunn Liu

Pre-light Experience

The cigar is fairly lumpy with a wrinkled wrapper that carries some raised veins. It also feels a bit light for its size. The seams are hard to detect as they are smooth and well hidden with the other wrapper variations. The head is finished off with a well applied triple cap. There are two bands, with the first being the traditional design for the line and the secondary being the traditional design for a Cuban regional. The aroma from the wrapper is a funky barnyard while the foot brings a distinct cedar. The pre-light draw brings the full, distinct cedar that I detected from the foot aroma.

Pre-light Experience

The Saint Luis Rey 2016 Edición Regional Cuba Marquéz is solid in terms of appearance and it has a lovely applied triple cap. It is slightly firm throughout and has a nice dark Colorado coloring to the wrapper. There are few veins present and those present are small and thin throughout. There is a nice aroma of nuts, spices and chocolate on the wrapper, and the foot is delivering aromas of salted wood, hazelnuts, earth and spices.

Pre-light Experience

The Saint Luis Rey 2016 Edición Regional Cuba Marquéz is double banded, with the primary band as gold on red, and the secondary band indicating ‘Exclusivo Cuba’. The wrapper on the cigar is chocolate brown, and silky smooth. Nosing the wrapper, I smell aged wood, faint chocolate and sweetness, hay and barnyard. In the foot, the only flavor is sweet tobacco.

Pre-light Experience

The Saint Luis Rey 2016 Edición Regional Cuba Marquéz has a caramel Colorado Claro wrapper shade. The wrapper is very thin, fragile and parts of green unfermented tobacco. The construction is not the greatest as veins are roughly pressed, seams visible and most importantly it is very light weight and feels a bit under-filled. Aromas from the wrapper give cedar and chestnuts. Aromas from the foot tell a spicier cedar and some black pepper coming through. Cold draw flavors give namely airy cedar shavings.

First Third

The cigar begins with cedar, a light mustiness and mild levels of salt and black pepper. At a half inch in, the mustiness increases to become even with the cedar while the salt and pepper are still in the background. The profile is slightly drying. The retrohale has the black pepper up front with a slight zing and the musty cedar right behind it. At an inch and a quarter, the mustiness has dropped back a bit allowing the cedar to take front stage again and a slight nuttiness joins the profile. At an inch and a half, the cedar is now just a general wood note. As the third comes to a close, the mustiness becomes even with the wood while the salt and black pepper remain in the background. The strength in this third was slightly below medium.

First Third

The first third starts off by having the wrapper come apart but nonetheless, and to a major surprise, presented no problems with the construction and smoking experience. In terms of flavors, the first third begins by showing some sweet spices, soft cream, salted wood and a slight bit of stone fruit. It is medium in terms of strength and body, and a flavor focused first third.

First Third

My initial draws are sweet tobacco that finishes with light plus white pepper. The pepper lingers at the back of my tongue. There is a medium Cuban tobacco intensity with minerality around the edges. As the cigar progresses, some post draw light plus leather settles in, and then some honey sweetness a few minutes later. The retrohale is sweet, mineral, clover and light baking spices. Milk chocolate becomes the center of the profile as the cigar has settled in. The sweetness on the draw is easily two strength levels more intense on the retrohale. Halfway through the cigar, the pepper has faded to light, almost background levels. The sweetness still defines the retrohale. Both cigars I reviewed had very similar profiles, with some slight post draw hay and red pepper flake on the second cigar.

First Third

The first third creates a plethora of honey, toffee and light cedar. An inch into the cigar, some baking spice shows. Retrohaling gives deeper notes of honey and cedar as well as shows a hint of black pepper spice. The finish although short, is very clean with namely a lingering soft cedar. Strength and body is medium.

Second Third

As the second third begins, the wood gains some char as the mustiness is right behind. There is still some salt present as well as the black pepper and the pepper has a very long finish. At a half inch in, the char has increased and is the dominant note in the profile. At an inch in, the profile is just charred wood and mustiness. The retrohale carries the same profile. The profile is maintained through the end of the third. The strength bumped up to medium.

Second Third

When I get into the second third of the cigar, I find the cream and soft earth notes remaining and the stone fruit flavors take on a more prominent role. There are some hay qualities present as well and the finish has a nice barnyard profile. The cigar remains at a medium for strength and body, and as I said before, it is a flavor focused smoke.

Second Third

Hay is at the front of the profile, with sweetness in the middle. The finish is still defined by the light plus white pepper. As the second third settles in, the sweetness has pushed back to the front of the profile. Light nuttiness and minerality joins the flavor medley, with milk chocolate chasing. Both cigars exhibit some light char at the halfway point, that eventually gives way to cedar.

Second Third

The second third has more baking spice influence which allows the honey and toffee notes to take a back seat. Other than that, the finish is still very clean and the overall profile has a nice cedar to it. Strength and body remains medium.

Final Third

The final third continues on with the profile of charred wood and mustiness. At a quarter inch in, a vegetal note joins the profile. At an inch in, the vegetal note is now very light while the charred wood and mustiness are up front. The retrohale is musty wood. As the cigar comes to a close, it heats up a bit bringing a slight mintiness to the profile. The strength remained at medium.

Final Third

I am in the final third of the cigar and finding a nice transitioning in flavors. There are some herbal and cream qualities present in this third and with that is the enjoyable stone fruit, barnyard and soft spice notes on the back end. The cigar has increased from medium to medium-full in strength and body, and there is a great finish on this cigar.

Final Third

The cigar from the second third returns and carries the profile into the last third. Several long purges later, the char fades and is replaced by sweetness and nuttiness. Once the last third has settled in, vegetal joins the profile.

Final Third

The last third is very similar to the second third being more baking spice and cedar forward as compared to honey and toffee driven. There’s also a hint of youth to the cigar as well. Strength and body finishes medium.

Burn

The burn was a bit wavy throughout. There were two touch-ups and one re-light required in the second third. The ash held on in about inch and a quarter increments.

Burn

I know it may seem surprising that the cigar got such a high rating for burn, but despite the crack in the wrapper that emerged as the cigar got started, it smoked great from beginning to end. I was honestly surprised that the cigar smoked as well as it did. With that, the cigar produced a strong ash that held on well from start to finish. Job well done!

Burn

I rated the burn as average. The first cigar has three re-lights with multiple touch-ups. The second cigar had three touch-ups and no re-lights.

Burn

Burn performance was overall good. The negatives were a fairly major touch-up within the first third and a relatively quick smoking time of one hour and 15 minutes. Other than that, the burning temperature was cool, all tobacco leaves did a pretty good job of burning in unison (less the one major touch-up).

Draw

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

Overall

The cigar began with cedar, mustiness, some salt and black pepper. As it progressed, the cedar transitioned to a general wood note and the salt and black pepper faded out. Strength was right around medium the whole way and there were some burn issues. Overall, this was a very average Cuban cigar. It had some of the nice Cuban characteristics in the first third with the cedar and salt, but they didn’t last very long. If the profile from the first third carried on longer, we’d be talking about a different cigar, but for what it turned out to be, it would be a pass for me. I’d prefer to stick with the regular production offerings as this didn’t offer up anything special.

Draw

The draw was absolutely perfect from start to finish. This is what I look for in a cigar. No complaints on my end and the resistance allowed for a great bit of concentrated smoke and extended smoking time.

Overall

A clean finish and almost dessert like flavors centered around honey and toffee (with baking spices and cedar to accompany) are some of the key flagships of a good Cuban cigar. The Saint Luis Rey 2016 Edición Regional Cuba Marquéz had all those traits. But I am continuously disappointed in regional exclusives not fully delivering that wow and special factor as I feel like it should given their higher price points. In the rare chance you can obtain these in Cuba for the right price (highly doubt it now since it was 2016 release), this is no doubt worth it. But it is not worth the secondary pricing whatsoever.

Draw

I rated the draw as good, with the draw being 2-1/2 notches into resistant for the first cigar, and 2 notches into resistant in the second cigar.

Overall

The Saint Luis Rey 2016 Edición Regional Cuba Marquéz offered flavors of sweet tobacco, white pepper, minerals, clover, baking spices, milk chocolate, sweetness, leather and some vegetal. The first third was the high water mark for both cigars, coming in at a good rating. Unfortunately, the flavor profile was average on both cigars for both the second and final thirds. The first sample had significant construction issues that didn’t seem to be the case in the second cigar. Overall, I found the experience to be average, and although I’m always happy to get my hands on Exclusivo Cuba releases, I’ll likely be offloading what remaining inventory I have in the future.

Draw

The draw had zero issues. Perfect.

Overall

A clean finish and almost dessert like flavors centered around honey and toffee (with baking spices and cedar to accompany) are some of the key flagships of a good Cuban cigar. This cigar had all those traits. But I am continuously disappointed in regional exclusives not fully delivering that wow and special factor as I feel like it should given their higher price points. In the rare chance you can obtain these in Cuba for the right price (highly doubt it now since it was 2016 release), this is no doubt worth it. But it is not worth the secondary pricing whatsoever.

Aaron
Seth
John
Jiunn
SubparPre
Light
Very GoodPre
Light
GoodPre
Light
Average
GoodFirst
Third
GoodFirst
Third
GoodFirst
Third
Good
AverageSecond
Third
Very GoodSecond
Third
AverageSecond
Third
Good
SubparFinal
Third
Very GoodFinal
Third
AverageFinal
Third
Good
AverageBurnVery GoodBurnAverageBurnGood
Very GoodDrawAmazingDrawGoodDrawAmazing
AverageOverallVery GoodOverallAverageOverallGood

Aaron Loomis

SCORE

5.30

Cost/Point

N/A

Scoring System

Seth Geise

SCORE

8.13

Cost/Point

N/A

Scoring System

John McTavish

SCORE

5.50

Cost/Point

N/A

Scoring System

Jiunn Liu

SCORE

7.07

Cost/Point

N/A

Scoring System

Team Cigar Review: Saint Luis Rey 2016 Edición Regional Cuba Marquéz
Seth GeiseTeam Cigar Review: Saint Luis Rey 2016 Edición Regional Cuba Marquéz

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