April 27, 2014

Ezra Zion Eminence Belicoso Gran Toro (5 x 58)

Video review HERE.

Ezra Zion EMINENCE is the company’s first foray into non-Nicaraguan tobacco. The EMINENCE features an aged San Andres maduro wrapper that coats a luscious blend of Nicaraguan binder and filler.

Grade AA Nicaraguan Tobaccos Aged 5 to 7 Years
Mexican San Andres Maduro
Binder #1 & 2:
Cuban Seed Nicaraguan

Available in these sizes:
Belicoso Gran Toro 58x5 (reviewed today)
Belicoso 54x7 Box Press
Exquisito 52x6.25 Box Press
Churchill 48x7 Box Press
Corona 46x6
Gran Robusto 50x5.25

The cigar is short and fat! This should prove to be a fairly long burning cigar. With the wrapper being a Mexican maduro I am curious as to how that will affect the flavors. As you may remember, I recently reviewed the Ezra Zion Tantrum, which was a fantastic cigar and achieved a rating of 93.

Since this is a belicoso I cut just the end of the cap. The test draw was great and the cigar does not have the feel of a 58 ring in your mouth.

The initial flavors were molasses, sweet orange citrus, coffee notes, and dry wood notes. I let the cigar settle down for a minute or two.

About 3/4 inch in there is a little burn issue that i believe will self correct. The orange citrus has already changed over to a nutmeg. The other flavors are still there. The coffee is very strong and very close to an espresso. The pepper is black and rated at a 7.5. The finish is one of a sweet cream with roasted nuts and lingering black pepper. It tingles on the palate. The cigar is coming across as medium to full bodied probably due to the heavy coffee notes. The burn issue appears to be correcting on it's own.

About 1 1/4 inch in the burn issue is self correcting and hopefully it will stay true. The molasses notes are now more of an unsweetened dark chocolate. These go hand in hand with the heavy coffee, which I will now call espresso. The nutmeg has some sweetness. The dry wood notes are now lost in the chocolate and espresso notes. The finish is unchanged and the cigar is still medium to full bodied.

Close to the midpoint and there is another burn issue. You can see the area that is not burning properly in the picture. To get a better picture you can view the video. This area will need to be touched up. The wrapper is thick and this particular area will not burn properly. There are now charred oak notes on the front end. The nutmeg notes are struggling to be noticed at this point. The dark chocolate and espresso are quite prominent and the addition of the charred oak notes give it another dark flavor.

With only about 1 1/4 inch remaining there are light cocoa notes on the front end. The nutmeg notes have a little more sweetness now. The other dark notes are still there. The cigar has made several subtle changes, most of them in the dark note category.

The cigar continued to change all the way to the end. There are now charred cedar notes. The cocoa seemed to come and go quickly. The front end still has lots of dark notes; dark chocolate, espresso, dry cedar, and the nutmeg was faint at the end. The pepper remained good and the finish remained consistent. The charred cedar seemed to give the cigar some sweetness. As you can see from the picture the cigar took quite awhile to smoke. If you are a lover of lots of dark notes in your cigar you may like this cigar. It is full of various dark notes. 

The burn issues were a negative and may not happen in your case. Don't let that scare you away. Look for these in shops now.

Score: 89

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