Video review HERE.
The Cunning is the second cigar that Joya de Nicaragua made for Famous Smoke Shop. I previously reviewed the Merciless robusto which received a score of 93.
(from the Cigar Coop website)
“This cigar offers what I consider to be the best of both worlds,” Famous Smoke Shop editor and cigar reviewer John Pullo remarks on the Cunning. “The immense flavor that pours off this cigar is unbelievable, and the wrapper is perhaps one of the biggest players in this blend. When mixed in with an all Nicaraguan core, and you have the perfect recipe for a relaxing yet not overpowering smoke. So in essence, what you have is a cigar that borrows the smoothness of a Connecticut wrapper grown in the fertile soils of Ecuador for beefed up flavor, along with a complexity courtesy of Nicaragua which grows tobaccos similar to that found in Cuba for an overall and undeniable flavor bomb. It certainly gets two thumbs up.”
The Cunning definitely has the look of a Connecticut with a light brown wrapper color. The cigar is well made and has a nice feel in the hand.
Wrapper: Ecuadorian Connecticut Shade
Country of Origin: Nicaragua (Joya de Nicaragua SA)
Robusto: 5 x 50 (REVIEWED TODAY)
Toro: 6 x 50
Magnum: 6 x 60
Churchill: 7 x 50
The test draw after cutting the cap was very good with just a touch of firmness. The initial flavors were orange citrus, boysenberry, sweet cream, and a lot of white pepper rated at an 8. The finish is a thick toasted cream which reminds me of a tapioca pudding. There is also a lot of lingering white pepper. The cigar is medium bodied at this early stage.
1 1/2 inch in the burn is almost perfect, just as the Merciless had. There is some coffee at the base and a touch of butter on the cream. The front end flavors combine to give a caramel-like flavor. The boysenberry notes are lighter but still detectable. The citrus notes and buttery cream is very nice. The pepper remains very good. It is up to an 8 1/2 now. The cigar is still medium bodied.
At the midpoint the buttery cream is now tasting like a buttery toffee. That's the only change on the front end but it really impacts the overall flavor profile. The finish is unchanged. The cigar is moving to medium to full bodied.
The cigar ended with more of a sweet cedar rather than a citrus. The toffee has a toasted flavor attached to it. The pepper has dropped down a tad but not enough to hurt the cigar. The finish is still a toasted cream with a slight toffee flavor. The lingering pepper remained very good. The cigar reached medium to full bodied. This has been a very good cigar. For a Connecticut shade cigar it had some power and very nice flavors. Of the two, I prefer the Merciless over this cigar but it was very good and well worth a try for those times when you want a lighter cigar with ample power and great flavors. To try the Cunning in a 5 pack or box go HERE.