The next cigar I will be smoking as part of my cigar challenge is from the Cuaba family, the Cuaba Exclusivos.
Length: 5 3/4″
Ring Gauge: 46
Strength: Medium to Full
Country of origin: Cuba
Cuaba is the name of the cigar brand produced in Cuba for Habanos SA, the Cuban state-owned tobacco company.
According to Wikipedia, the Cuaba was officially launched by Habanos president Francisco Linares in 1996, at Claridge’s Hotel in the heart of Mayfair, London, as an all-perfecto line of cigars. Which was a surprise, as I was expecting this cigar brand to be much older somehow.
The brand was launched in an attempt to revive figurados, which had initially been very popular in the early 20th century but had declined since about the 1950s.
I have no idea what a figurados cigar is… luckily we have Cigar Aficionado’s glossary which states it is ‘any cigar that isn’t straight sided. This group includes belicosos, torpedos, pyramids, perfectos and culebras. The other type of cigar group is a parejo.’
Confusing huh? Here’s a visual…
So just to recap, the Cuaba Exclusivos is a perfecto cigar in the shape of a figurado 👌
Update: I’ve since been informed that this cigar is in fact a double figurado because it is pointed at both ends. The perfecto has rounded cap.
The creator of the line was Carlos Izquierdo González. There doesn’t seem to be much info about him online, but he appears to have been a master cigar roller. He claimed that he styled the Cuaba blend after Montecristo, but most cigar connoisseurs believe the blend used is more similar in taste to Romeo y Julieta.
Interestingly according to tchcigars website, ‘Cuaba cigars are manufactured in the Briono Montoto (Romeo y Julieta factory)’.
I must say, I am not a big fan of the shape of this Cuaba Exclusivos cigar. It just looks odd. I assume there will be a mix of flavour notes towards the middle of this cigar as it increases in width, which intrigues me slightly.
The foot of this cigar reminds me of those King Edward Imperial cigars, that I used to smoke when I was in my teens (back in the day when I used to help myself to my friends dad’s cigar collection – yes I am a bit of a pikey).
Initially I had no idea how far down to cut the cap of the cigar. Once I found a decent place, I cut, I lit and started smoking. At first there was quite a hard draw.
As imagined the flavours got stronger, the wider the cigar. Using my cigarsense flavour wheel, I was able to identify some earthy flavour notes, with some wood and a bit of cedar. I was pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoyed this smoke. Check out the build up of ash too… for me this feels like the sign of a well made cigar.
It took me about 1 hour to smoke, and towards the last third of the cigar it definitely felt quite spicy.
If you want a more descriptive review of the Cuaba Exclusivos cigar, check out ‘Cigar Creed‘s review on YouTube…
My rating: 6 out 10
Pleasantly surprised and a nice smoke, but don’t think I would buy another, as I just don’t like the shape.
Next up… the Cuba Aliados!