January 13, 2013

CLE Corojo Robusto (5 x 50)


Video review HERE.

(from Cigar Aficionado website)
Christian Eiroa, the longtime president of Camacho Cigars, has returned to the cigar business with the formation of CLE Cigar Co. His long-term plan calls for several cigar brands made in various countries.

CLE stands for Eiroa’s initials (his middle name is Luís) and the first cigar to come from his new venture will be the CLE. A small-production brand, CLE will be rolled in a familiar spot for Eiroa, the Tabacos Ranchos Jamastran factory in Honduras where Camacho cigars are made. (Eiroa owned the factory with his father before selling Camacho to the Davidoff group in 2008.)

CLE will come in two varieties: CLE Cuarenta, made with Habano-seed wrapper, and CLE Corojo, made with Corojo wrapper. The Cuarenta is named in honor of Eiroa’s upcoming 40th birthday, which takes place in July.

Eiroa’s cigars will be vintage dated. “Tobacco changes every year, just like wine changes every year. I’m going to use the same varieties, but the cigars could vary, because it’s a different batch.” The dates, he said, will refer to the date of production, not necessarily the year of the harvest.

The cigar has a few bumps and ridges but that's ok. The fact that this is from Christian and it's a corojo are all I need to know to get me excited.  The cigar feels dense in the  hand and you can see from the foot it is very dense.

After cutting the cap the test draw was effortless. The initial flavors were earth, cedar and cinnamon mix, underlying cream, and pepper at about a 6 rating.

At about 1/4 inch the flavors are consistent. There is a toasted nut flavor on the finish along with some sweet cream. There is very little lingering pepper at this point.

About 3/4 inch in there is some richness coming in. There are also some wood notes. The earth notes are subdued now. The main flavors are the sweet, rich cedar and cinnamon combination. The pepper seems to be intensifying as it burns. The richness is at a 6 out of 10 rating. The cigar is medium bodied.



1 1/2 inches in the flavors continue to change. Now the primary flavors are rich cedar with butterscotch notes and wood. The richness is building. There are buttery notes that are very nice. The finish is now a sweet cream with a nice amount of lingering pepper. The cigar is making some nice changes.

The ash was very tight. Here I'm close to the midpoint and the ash has not fallen yet! The pepper is up to a 7. There are still buttery cedar notes.

At the midpoint the ash remains intact! Amazing. And, there are still flavor changes taking place. At this point the cedar now has black cherry notes mixed with it. There are still buttery notes but they are not butterscotch anymore.

Just before I got to the band the ash fell off. The flavors are about the same as previously but you could add in coffee notes. The earth notes have totally gone away and you notice the coffee notes more now. The finish remains the same. The cigar is still medium bodied.

The cigar ended up with sweet cedar and black cherry flavors but not as rich as before, coffee, and wood. The pepper remained at a 7. The finish remained a sweet cream with lingering pepper. It ended medium bodied. This is a great first cigar from Christian but that should not come as a surprise to anyone. The cigar made numerous changes that were all positive. I enjoyed this cigar quite a bit and urge you to look for them on shelves now.

Score: 92


Todd said...

Tim, I don't know where you are getting all of these flavor impressions. I find this cigar to lack any kind of complexity at all. I smoked a handful of both these and the Cuarenta and was thoroughly underwhelmed. Although I enjoyed the Corojo more than the Cuarenta, I would have expected far more from Christian on his new endeavors. He is capable of SO much more. I was looking for a cigar on par with the early Liberties or perhaps the LE's that used to be found only in the Camacho suitcases. Even the regular Camacho Corojo line offers more bang than this cigar. Very disappointing! Cigars this year worthy of a 92 or higher? Oliva Serie V Melanio. Four Kicks. My Father LE 2012. Davidoff Colorado Claro. La Flor Limitado V. La Duena. Debonaire. THESE are good cigars!

Tim Rollins said...

Well, I know everyone has different tastes. My first question would be is this the first time you've disagreed with my reviews? Do we see eye to eye on most everything else? The cigars you list are all full bodied. This one is not. You might also be comparing these to the "old" Camachos that were, for the most part, very full bodied. I stand by my review as I had one of these previously and had the same flavor notes. One thing that may bring out more of the flavors I described is to smoke the cigar s-l-o-w-l-y! Any time I speed up a cigar it loses just about all it's flavor. Just an idea. Thanks for your comments.

Anonymous said...

I agree with Tim...This cigar is filled with complex flavors and is not full bodied, nor was it intended to be...too many people are fixed on the full bodied cigar to prove who has the bigger set of testicles...I smoke in this range all the time and this cigar was very impressive to me, not to mention the price is better than good.

Todd said...

I am not a full-bodied smoker at all. I enjoy an occasional full-bodied cigar after dinner, but for the most part I prefer medium to mild. I am a cigar wussy. My list was comprised of new cigars this year that I thought were much better cigars than the CLE, regardless of any kind of strength profile. Most of what I listed falls in the medium category, with the Davidoff Colorado Claro pushing into full. Only the La Flor and the Debonaire are truly full. The beauty of the Four Kicks, the La Duena, the My Father LE and the Oliva V Melanio is that there is SO much flavor and balance to be found in these cigars without having to kick the strength up to a ridiculous level. I can enjoy one in the shop while I am working without the cigar dragging me down. I was looking for that kind of complexity and flavor in the CLE because I know Christian is capable of it. I stand firm on my comments too, my redneck brotha of anotha motha! He missed the mark here - it's a lackluster shadow of a cigar that does nothing for his name. The CLE brand is going nowhere and unless he kicks it up the quality, CLE will be GONE in two years tops. Mark my words!

Sonny Simpson said...

Great review Tim! This cigar is one of my favorites.

Anonymous said...

I thought your review was spot on. This cigar is excellent. I've already bought two boxes. I think these cigars will only get better with age. Their is such a complex flavor profile to this smoke.

It's almost like two cigars in one. The back half of the cigar is another world when compared to the front half. It reminds me a lot of the cubans I used to smoke in London in the early 1990's.

In my opinion this is a very special cigar.

Anonymous said...

Your NOT a full bodied cigar smoker & you list LF, My Father LE's & Four Kicks as your preffered smokes.....I'm sorry sir but you lost cred. on that statement those are very strong cigars indeed!

Tim Rollins said...

I don't think I listed those as my preffered smokes. They are very good cigars and I enjoy full bodied cigars many times but not every day. I'm not sure what you are referring to.