CAO OSA Lot 54 (6x54)
Wrapper: Olancho San Agustin (proprietary 2008 crop)
Binder: Connecticut Broadleaf
Filler: Honduran and Nicaraguan
This is the first CAO cigar since General Cigar took over the CAO production. It was debuted at this year's IPCPR in Las Vegas. Rick Rodriguez, who is in charge of CAO new product development, got together with select in-house experts to blend the OSA. The started the process with the Olancho San Agustin (OSA) wrapper from the proprietary 2008 crop. This wrapper is cultivated in Honduras’ celebrated Olancho, San Agustin valley. Ideal climatic conditions in 2008 led to the expression of essential oils on the leaf. These cigars are available starting in September, 2011.
The Lot 54 sells for $6.25 per cigar, or $156.25 per box. There are 2 other sizes of this cigar available; the Lot 50, which measures 5x50 and sells for $5.75 per cigar, or $143.75 per box, and the Lot 58, which measures 6 1/2x58, and sells for $6.75 per cigar, or $168.75 per box. All of the above are suggested retail prices.
Video review HERE.
The cigar is a nice medium brown color. The wrapper was not very oily. The cigar appeared to be nicely packed.
The test draw was effortless. Initially there were sweet citrus notes and pepper along with some richness. There were also almonds noted.
After about 1/2 inch the cigar settled down into sweet grapefruit citrus that tastes very much like a fresh cut grapefruit with sugar sprinkled on it. The cigar even has the slight bitterness of a real grapefruit. There are also semi-rich roasted almonds on the back end of the citrus. The finish at this point is rather mediocre with light raw almonds. The pepper is nice on both ends; the draw and the finish and it lingers. The burn was very even.
About an inch in and I have confirmation of my initial flavor profile. The ash was very tight. The cigar is medium bodied at this point. The grapefruit notes are unmistakable on the draw. The are quite nice.
At the midpoint the almonds are richer. The grapefruit remains the same. The almonds are close to even with the grapefruit. There is some richness on the finish also. The cigar is very good at this point.
At the point I had to remove the band the cigar was fuller bodied. You could feel it as you smoke. The grapefruit and almond notes are now even in taste. The pepper is still quite good. The finish is about the same as before.
At the end of the cigar the almond notes have become secondary again. The grapefruit is once again king. The pepper has not changed much at all. General Cigar and CAO can be very happy with this cigar. It somewhat reminds me of the LX2 but not quite as good. I enjoyed this cigar very much and will buy them when they are in the shops.