September 23, 2018

CAO Nicaragua Granada (6 x 50)

Video review HERE.

(Description taken from website)
While the CAO Nicaragua has a filler with tobaccos from the three main growing regions in Nicaragua (Estelí, Jalapa, and Condega), it is not a Nicaraguan puro. The CAO Nicaragua utilizes Honduran tobacco from the Jamastran Valley in Nicaragua.

Production for the cigar comes out of the STG Estelí factory in Estelí, Nicaragua. The cigars are available in three sizes: Tipitapa (4 7/8 x 50), Matagalpa (5 5/8 x 46), and Granada (6 x 50). Each size is presented in 20-count boxes. Pricing is set between $6.59 and $6.99 MSRP.

In a press release, CAO Master Blender Rick Rodriguez said, “Nicaragua’s rich volcanic soils and ideal humidity, temperature and sunlight create the perfect growing conditions for tobacco. For CAO Nicaragua, the team and I wanted to bring the essence of Nicaraguan tobacco to life in a way that only CAO can do. So we selected the blend starting with the filler, utilizing leaves representing three distinctive microclimates and three distinctive tastes.”

Blend Profile
Wrapper: Jamastran, Honduras
Bincer: Jamastram, Honduras
Filler: Nicaraguan (Condega, Estelí, Jalapa)
Country of Origin: Nicaragua (STG Estelí)

Vitolas Available
Tipitapa: 4 7/8 x 50 (SRP $6.79)
Matagalpa: 5 5/8 x 46 (SRP $6.59)
Granada: 6 x 50 (SRP $6.99) REVIEWED TODAY

The cigar has an average feel in the hand.

The test draw after cutting the cap was very firm. I decided to use the PerfecDraw tool to open up the draw. The initial flavors at light up were pink grapefruit with cream, a touch of brown sugar and cinnamon, nutmeg, leather, and earthy black coffee. There was black pepper rated at a 6 1/2 to 7. The cigar is not overly sweet but the pink grapefruit has a high pitched sweetness and the cream makes it very nice.

At the first third (26 minutes) the flavors are just like I described initially. The sweeter notes are a little more elevated and you notice them if you smoke the cigar slowly. The darker notes are in an appropriate amount at this point. The cigar is medium bodied. The finish is leather, nutmeg, and a very light amount of brown sugar, with some decent lingering black pepper. The cigar is not bad at this point but I would like a little more sweetness to go against the darker notes. I rated the first third at 89.

The second third (56 minutes) you still have the pink grapefruit but I'll admit it's getting a little tough to definitely call it pink grapefruit. That's because the nutmeg notes are elevated squashing some of the sweetness. You also still have the cream notes and a touch of brown sugar and cinnamon. The leather and earthy black coffee are still about like they were. The cigar is medium to full bodied now. The finish is unchanged. The sweeter notes are nice but they are a little light due to the elevated nutmeg. I rated the second third at 88.

The CAO Nicaragua Granada lasted 1 hour 25 minutes. It stayed on the same path with the nutmeg remaining elevated along with the leather and earthy black coffee. Now all the darker notes are quite elevated which held down the sweeter notes a lot. The finish was unchanged. The cigar is a high grade medium to full bodied now; very close to full bodied. With the elevated nutmeg, leather, and earthy black coffee notes and decreased sweetness I rated the final third at 86. These are available now and if would like to purchase them go HERE.

Overall Score: 88 (87.67)

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