Archive for the ‘esplendido’ Category

Isabela Miami – Esplendido

Wednesday, July 15th, 2009

Many thanks to Ricardo Ortiz of the Isabela Miami cigar company for sending me some samples for this review. I’m sure the first thing you’ll notice is the band. It looks much like a Cohiba. Before you start screaming “RIP OFF!” read on…

Isabelalogo Rewind to Vincent Ortiz, a Cuban born man who rolled and blended cigars for most of the Cuban elite, as well as Fidel’s bodyguards. Eventually, some of his cigars found their was into Fidel’s hands. Vincent eventually became Fidel’s personal cigar blender. When Fidel decided to make a brand out of his favorite cigars, he tabbed Vincent for the blend, as well as Vincent’s idea to model the representation after Fidel’s favorite city. They chose the New York taxi logo which became the legendary Cohiba brand. This accounts for the similarities between the brands.

As for the tobacco, they are aged for a minimum of one year. Isabela cigars are rolled in Miami by Vincent Ortiz, and are produced in very small batches for limited production. Without further delay, I grabbed a glass of water and reviews the Isabela.


Wrapper, Binder & Filler: Sumatra, Nicaraguan, Honduran, Dominican

Size: Esplendido  7 1/4 x 54

Price: Around $5.00


Pre-smoke & Construction:

The wrapper had small veins, and overall looked nice. Squeezing the entire cigar, I found it was consistent and bounced back when pinched. The wrapper and foot had virtually no smell, so I’m stretching to say it had slight woody notes. The pre-light draw was free, and had a sweet taste. Obviously the sweetness came from sugar cane, which is used to sweeten the cap.

The burn required no corrections, and I felt confident in the ash until it got to around an inch.




The first third was very mild. The most obvious flavor came from the sweet cap. It was very mellow and combined with mild earthy notes and grassy notes. Overall just a very mellow experience.


The second third didn’t change a whole lot. Most notably was a reduction in the sweet sugar flavor. This was due to the sugar cane applied to the cap, which started to wear off from me taking draws. Mild earthy notes remained and had a grassy tinge to it. Really not a lot of change from the first third.


The sweetness applied to the cap was gone during the last third. I hated to see it go, since I enjoy sweet flavors in a cigar. This left me with the earthy/grassy flavors I mentioned before. The smoke feel became thicker, and slight woody notes were noticed when passing through the sinus.




First lets get to the bad… It was very one dimensional, and I found myself getting bored towards the last third with this particular size. 7 1/4 x 54 was overkill. The good… Thankfully I was sent a verity of sizes, and I enjoyed the Robusto (5×52) the most. For such a simple flavor profile, the robusto offered the right amount of smoking time for such a simple flavor profile. Based on its own merits, this was an easy, simple, and dare I say good mild cigar. I won’t be scouring the Internet or local shops to find more, but it certainly is worth a try if you are into mild cigars. The price isn’t bad either.

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