It’s that time again. Time again for another cigar review! And once again, I’m about to introduce you to a cigar you probably haven’t heard of before. This time around we’re taking a look at the El Taino Vintage Connecticut Torpedo, which has been generously provided for me to review by Tex Cigars.
If you haven’t heard of them, you’re not alone. Before I opened up this eagerly anticipated shipment, I hadn’t heard of them either. After some time spent scouring the internet for information on these cigars, the most I could come up with is that they are made by Nino Vasquez and come with either Brazilian or Connecticut wrappers. Now you know what I know, let’s check this mysterious new cigar out!
Size: 6 1/2 x 52
Filler: Dominican Republic, Nicaragua
Smoking Time: 1 hour 45 minutes
Price: ~$3.60 (buy it now)
My first impression of the El Taino torpedo was that somebody really went all out with this cigar. Not only does it have a shiny, ornate band and a cedar tube, it has a second, equally shiny ornate band at the foot of the cedar tube. It’s clear the manufacturer wants to draw your eye, and the eyes of the people around you when you light it up. And you know what? Mission accomplished.
Before sliding off the considerable length of cedar, I tested its scent to for comparison. I’m glad I did. This was the nicest smelling cedar I’ve come across in a while. It had a sweet aroma that made me wonder if the cedar was infused with some botanicals. That really got me curious as to what I was in for. Is this an infused cigar? A sniff of the wrapper answered that question. The portion of the wrapper that wasn’t covered by cedar had a sweet almost buttery flavor, but no botanicals. The part that was under the cedar did pick up some of the sweet cedar aroma, but also had a light compost aroma.
As I do with most torpedos, I clipped the head on about a 45 degree angle (called a “Dickman cut”) to take a cold taste. Unfortunately in the cigar photographed for this review, the wrapper and binder split at the head making it very difficult to get a taste. I believe my less that razor sharp (and as always, flamboyantly-red) Xikar was to blame for this, but it’s hard to say. In previous cigars, I noted a sweet molasses flavor in the cold taste.
Overall, the burn was pretty good with this cigar. It burned evenly and produced respectable inch and a half long ashes. And the draw was good. Surprisingly, even the cigar with the head split was very smoke-able, with only a slightly less that optimal draw. (That is until it burned down to the split, then it was nothing but that pesky oxygen with a hit of smoke.)
Creaminess is the name of the game with this cigar. The cigar opens up with a great creamy coffee flavor throughout the first third makes minor flavor transitions between woodiness, mild bits of spice, and a light cherry sweetness. I have to say though, that for a while in the first third, the cigar was somewhat bland.
In the second third the cigar remains pretty light and creamy, but flavors like leather, some dark chocolate and a more distinct cedar begin to appear.
In the final third the flavor became fuller in body. And I a vegetal flavor was added to the leather and dark chocolate flavors that appeared in the previous third. At times this vegetal flavor got to be a bit harsh, making me suspect there might be a slight bit of tar building up. But this harshness didn’t last, and I didn’t notice any build up.
At around $3.60 a stick, I’d say this qualifies as a budget smoke. Considering that the torpedo vitola is a more challenging shape to roll, and given the bonus aromatic cedar sleeve, I’d say you’re getting some decent value for your money.
I enjoyed this cigar. Even the one with the annoying split was a good smoke. The cigar is a solid, well-priced smoke with a good flavor profile. It starts a bit mild at the beginning but the flavors improve significantly during the second third. I’d say this is a great cigar to accompany your morning coffee if you’re a seasoned smoker, and probably one mild cigar smokers will find rather enjoyable.
I’d like to thank Tex Cigars again for supplying me with the cigars for this review. If you’re interested in trying one out, I encourage you to head on over to the Tex Cigar website to buy them. Jarrod is a great guy, and he’ll take good care of you!
Liked It: Yes
Buy It Again: Likely
Recommend It: It’s definitely worth trying.
If you enjoyed this review, be sure to check out my Cigar Review Index.