Archive for the ‘criollo’ Category

Xikar HC Series Criollo Grande

Wednesday, November 17th, 2010

The fine folks at Xikar donated a few smokes for me to review. I reviewed this very same cigar before, but in a smaller size. They recently came out with the new Grande size for those who enjoy larger sized cigars. We all know that size sometimes does matter when it comes to the flavor of a cigar. So I was curious if that would be the case this time. As you know by now, I paired up with the standard glass of water, and here’s my thoughts…


Wrapper: Shade grown criollo – Nicaragua

Binder: Sun grown criollo – Nicaragua

Filler: Honduras, Nicaragua

Size: Grande 6 x 60

Price: $9.50


Pre-Smoke & Construction:

The light tan wrapper was smooth looking and had light to medium sized veins. The odor from the wrapper woody and sweet. The foot was similar but had some earthiness as well. Overall, the cigar was evenly packed, and bounced back when squeezed. The pre-light draw was free, and has notes of wood, earth sweetness.

The burn required quite a few corrections on this particular cigar. The other 3 I smoked didn’t have any issues. The ash held for almost 2 inches.



The first third started off with a simple, smooth, earthy tobacco taste. It didn’t take long for a mildly sweet peppery spice to enter the picture. The spice became thick feeling, and had a nice zing that wasn’t over the top. The smoke feel became sweet and creamy as this third came to a close.


The second third changed a little in terms of flavor. The earthiness was still present, but at times it would fall into the background. In it’s place was a sweetness that was somewhere in between mocha and caramel. It leaned more towards the caramel side. The spice didn’t change when exhaling smoke though the nose. The smoke left a nice sweet coating on the inside of the mouth and lips. Simple but nice.


The last third didn’t introduce any new flavors. It stayed pretty consistent with the second third. At times certain draws were sweet, while others were more earthy and crisp. Other then that, it was very consistent.



This was a very good medium to full bodied cigar. Thanks to Xikar for letting me try this cigar, since they are pretty hard to find here in St. Petersburg, FL. I didn’t mention, the smoke volume was plentiful and thick. You’d want to smoke this outside, or in a well ventilated room. This cigar makes a nice afternoon or after dinner smoke. There wasn’t any major differences in flavor of the Grande or Robusto. It basically boils down to your size preference. If you run across the HC Criollo’s in any size, I’d recommend pickup on a few.

Xikar HC Series Criollo

Wednesday, August 12th, 2009

Jerry and Andy from Xikar hooked me up with their new HC Series cigars to review. They were given the standard disclaimer – I’ll call it like I see it. They were up for the challenge and soon I found myself with two cigars from each blend.

First I tried the Habano Colorado and thought it was a hit. Next up is this review, the Criollo. This will replace the Defiance. As with the other Xikar blends, Jesus Fuego in conjunction with the folks at Xikar masterminded all 3 lines. The blends on the Defiance and Criollo are similar, but do have subtle differences (I think). With a clean palate and water, I bring to you my opinion of the Xikar Criollo.

HC Logo

Wrapper: Shade Grown Criollo – Nicaragua

Binder: Sun Grown Corojo – Nicaragua

Filler: Honduras, Nicaragua

Size: Robusto 5 x 50

Price: Around $8.00


Pre-smoke & Construction:

Overall, the cigar looked a little toothy (lumpy) with small to medium veins. The wrapper and foot had subtle odors of earth and wood. The pre-light draw was free, and had notes of earth, wood, and natural tobacco. When pinching the cigar, I found a couple soft spots that were minimal and not of concern.

The burn required quite a few corrections in the first two thirds, but evened out in the last third. the ash held for an inch.



The first third began with an overall rich taste. Peppery yet sweet notes were noticed when passing the smoke through the sinus. I started to pick up woody and earthy notes as I progressed further into this third. Like my experience with the Defiance, a sweet, rich, and “thick” flavor would appear and then go away. I never pinned it down accurately, but it was pleasant.


The second third began with the pepper calming down quite a bit. That thick sweetness became a little more consistent and was like caramel. When exhaling through the sinus, the sweetness was very noticeable and had some zing to it. The earthy flavors went away for the most part, but I did notice it from time to time. As things came to a close, the smoke feel became creamy. Overall this third was very enjoyable.


As the last third got underway, the smoke took on a cooling effect with an earthy tinge. The thick caramel remained, but it did thin out a little. As I progressed towards the end, the flavor profile seemed to taper down and simplify itself as if it was winding down.



It is always enjoyable and a little stressful when a company wants me to review their cigars. The more confident they are in their product, the more afraid I am that I will end up giving it a bad review. I had high expectations for this cigar, and it delivered. If I had to complain, I’d have to pick the burn corrections. But even that wasn’t to the point of getting on my nerves. This was a solid medium to full bodied cigar. I could easily smoke this at lunch time or dinner. It was just an easy, yet flavorful cigar. Thumbs up!

Perdomo 10th Anniversary Criollo

Tuesday, July 21st, 2009

Ed and I are back for our monthly visit to The Stogie Review. In this episode we critique the Perdomo 10th Anniversary Criollo. I reviewed this cigar by myself a while ago and had a slightly different experience. But overall, both times were enjoyable.

In this episode we give a shout out to The Cigar Nut, and mention a contest starting July 23rd here at Stay tuned!

This video runs a little long at 29 minutes, so set some time aside and see what we have to say about the Perdomo 10th Anniversary Criollo.

For MP3 audio, click here.

Perdomo 10th Anniversary Criollo

Monday, June 15th, 2009

First things first… Some companies think you and I are too stupid to notice if they increase their prices just as SCHIP takes effect. Not much we can do really… To add insult to injury, many cigar shops are tacking on yet more cost. They can just blame SCHIP and hope their customers won’t notice.

On to Perdomo… They are eating the SCHIP tax on over 70 percent of their portfolio. Some of their cigars will actually see a price REDUCTION. Nick Perdomo has the right idea. He knows his customers put him on the map, and he is going to help us out. You greedy bastards can learn something from this company.

Anyhow, I am pairing this cigar up with water, and a few sips of Glenfiddich 18 year scotch. My rant is over, lets get to the review!


Wrapper: Cuban seed Criollo

Binder: Nicaraguan

Filler: Cuban seed Nicaraguan

Size: Figurado 4.7 x 56

Price: Around $6.00

4Perdomo 10th Anniversary Criollo

Pre-smoke & Construction:

The wrapper looked oily and smooth, with minimal veins. Sniffing the wrapper and foot revealed a woody smell mixed with natural tobacco. When I squeezed the length of the cigar, I found out this thing was packed rock solid. I clipped and took a pre-light draw. It was pretty tight. I managed to loosen it up with careful grooming and a poker. The pre-light draw had a sweet, earthy, woody taste to it.



Right out of the gate, the first third greeted me with a nice flavor profile. Unique earthy notes stood out. They melded with an interesting flavor that was woody. What kind of wood I do not know.  As the first third came to a close, a pleasant sweet taste came about. It was almost caramel. Very nice…

1Perdomo 10th Anniversary Criollo

The second third kept that smooth, woody flavor. Those unique earthy tones started to become more traditional, which I don’t consider a bad thing. That sweet flavor I described as caramel started to become mocha, but not entirely.

2Perdomo 10th Anniversary Criollo

As I hit the last third, I encountered some bitterness. It wasn’t strong and went away quickly. The mocha flavors changed into an unidentifiable sweetness that was very nice. The flavor profile really seemed to simplify itself, but was very nice.

3Perdomo 10th Anniversary Criollo


As you probably noticed, I forgot to take a picture for the first third. I guess I just got tied up in enjoying this cigar. This was a very good medium to full bodied smoke. There isn’t much I can say except I enjoyed it a lot. I’d recommend you try it for sure.

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