Updated 11/19/12; see end of post
Video review HERE.
EL MEJOR is a house brand cigar from Cigars International. From their website they describe this cigar like this:
Boasting a dark, extra-fermented Cuban-seed Corojo wrapper that’s oily, toothy, and brimming with flavor, El Mejor was bred to deliver a rich, complex experience. Underneath this sultry leaf lies a robust blend of well-aged, Cuban-seed tobaccos harvested from Nicaragua’s most fertile growing regions. This combination promotes a densely flavorful, medium to full-bodied smoke that’s layered with notes of earth, richness, hints of coffee, and a sweet, spicy finish.
The cigar is well made with no veins. It has a nice density and feels weighty in the hand.
The test draw after cutting the cap was a just a tad firm. At light up the initial flavors were a lot of sweet notes. There were notes of orange citrus, which could change to cedar at some point as there are hints of cedar. There is also some richness in the citrus, coffee notes, and a decent amount of pepper, which I would rate at a 6 or 7. There are hints of cream or vanilla also but at light up it's hard to pick out every flavor so I let it sit for a minute to settle down.
About 3/4 inch in the flavors have settled down. The orange citrus shows more signs of changing over to cedar. There are coffee, leather, and roasted nut flavors. The pepper remains very good. The finish has cream, roasted nuts, and lingering pepper. The cigar is medium bodied at this point. I am optimistic about this cigar at this point as the flavors described could make this a very good cigar.
About 1 1/2 inch in the flavors have remained about the same as previously described. The flavors in descending order are orange citrus and cedar with some nice richness, closely followed by leather, coffee, and subtle roasted nuts. The finish has pretty much gone to one of cream. The ash on this cigar is very tight. As you can see in the above picture the ash is tight and without splintering.
At the band the cigar has made some changes. The orange citrus/cedar combination has changed to one of cedar. Closely following the cedar, which is sweet and rich, the leather notes have really come forward. Coffee backs up the leather and then you have the roasted nuts. The pepper remains good. The finish is primarily cream and you still will get some hints of roasted nuts from time to time. The big point in this segment is how the leather has really become much more prominent.
At the end of the cigar the ash remained very tight. It has dropped only once before the end. Very impressive. The sweet, rich cedar and leather are the main flavors. Coffee remained as well as the roasted nuts. The cigar ended up medium bodied. The pepper remained very good on the front end and finish. The finish remained one of mostly cream with some subtle roasted nuts. This cigar was a nice surprise to me. Since this was the only sample I had I will pick up a 5 pack to see if I still think as much of it as I do now. This cigar has a great price point at about $3 apiece. This cigar impressed me. I would suggest you try them as it was a very good cigar with a great price point.
These appear to be for real. I purchased a 5 pack of the toro size and they were quite nice. I absolutely hate the term "yard cigar" but since these are priced so low you can easily enjoy several of these while working around the house, as I do every Saturday. You won't break the bank and you'll get a pretty tasty cigar. It's a win-win. I concur with my original scoring of the robusto. The ultimate test will be to sample the churchill size to see if they stack up.