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Old 04-12-2005, 05:40 PM   #1
havanaphile
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Join Date: Oct 2001
Posts: 1,196
Trinidad Robusto Extra VS. Trinidad Farmhouse Robusto A

I first reviewed the Trinidad Robusto Extra, as to lower my expectations for the Robusto “A”. After hearing all of the negative press for these, my expectations are not altogether all that high.

Trinidad Robusto Extra

Vitola: Dobles

6 1/8” x 50

Visual

The cigar had a decent appearance to it. While I do not care for the new Trinidad bands, the new band does not eviscerate the overall aesthetic appearance of the cigar. The pig-tail was a bit larger in size and thicker than its counterparts on other habanos. It had a very smart double cap to it. The wrapper had a universal color to it, and was without any sort of color variations. Nevertheless, the Colorado wrapper had sizeable veins present in it. No veins present in the binder bulged through however. The wrapper had slight traces of stretching to it in various areas, particularly present around the regions which included prominent veins. The wrapper was fairly dull in appearance, as not all that much oil was present on the leaf.

15/20

Pre-light

The cigar cut well, very evenly. No prominent veins or stems were present in the filler. The unlit cigar drew somewhat firmly, which I found surprising from a cigar from 2004, considering all of the “straws” that I have had, and have heard of. The cigar did not seem to have any hard spots present. It had the slightly salty pre-light flavor which I have found very typical of the Trinidad line.

Construction

Save for the visual flaws of this cigar, the cigar was constructed extremely well. I only had to ash the cigar after it burnt through 3 ½” of the cigar. The cigar did not exhibit the drastic “waves” in the filler, as extant in the “book-type” of rolling, which most cigars are rolled with. This cigar was rolled the old way, with the “entubar” method, and it held up well, as the cigar did not get hot to the touch until its last inch. I did not need to relight or touch up the cigar once, which I greatly appreciated. The combustion of the cigar was nearly perfect. Every time I took a puff, the red ring circled around the cigar at the border between the cigar and the ash. If one area started to burn a little fast, the cigar would promptly correct itself. Quite an amazing thing to see in a current production commercial cigar.

14/15

Flavor

I sat down on the porch out side, and put NPR’s “Pipe Dreams” on the radio, while I read chapter five of Klaus Mann’s “Mephisto.” I lit this cigar with a cedar spill, and was initially greeted with strong cedary flavors combined with significant sweetness. Surprisingly, this cigar was very flavorful. While not all that reminiscent of the Trinidad Funadores subtle nuances, the stock marzipan flavors were amply present. To be quite honest, the cigar was more in line and similar to the Trinidad Reyes than the Funadores. It was like the Trinidad Reyes on steroids. The cigar produced copious amounts of smoke, generally in line with what one would expect of 50 ring cigar, but as it smoked, I was disappointed with the amount of smoke it created. In all likelihood, “disappointed” is probably too strong of a word, but, I just did not feel that it created as much smoke as it should have. The aroma of the cigar, while not disruptive or overpowering, was “average,” it had the quintessential scent of a Cuban cigar. While the cigar did not change in flavor like the Funadores three or more times as I smoked it, it did have a character like two different cigars. The first half was more laid back in terms of strength, but the latter half was reminiscent of the power of a Partagas Serie D. No. 4, present with subtle hints of pepper. As the cigar approached the last inch, the flavor took on a slight ammoniac taste, which is to be expected of a fairly young cigar, but it did not overpower or destroy the overall flavor of the smoke. It gave it a bit of a bite, which I have never encountered in a Trinidad. This may just be due to the fact that it is far thicker than the rest of the Trinidads. The cigar had a somewhat peppery aftertaste reminiscent of a sweet red bell pepper, which complemented the cigar quite well.

59/65

Overall

88/100

Due to the prohibitive cost of these cigars, combined with their untested future performance, it is all too probable that it is too soon to pass definitive judgment on these cigars. Is it a good cigar? Yes. Did I enjoy it? Did I have similar qualms when I first tried out a Cohiba Siglo VI nearly two years ago? Yes. Is it a great cigar at this current point in time? No. Is it destined to be a classic? Maybe. The jury is still out.


Trinidad Robusto “A”

Vitola: Robustos Especíales/Ensueños (Siglo XXI Humidor classification)

7 ½” x 50
Visual

The cigar looked beautiful. The cigar’s wrapper had a fairly dark Colorado Rosado wrapper, and had a beautiful feel to it. It was very similar to the silky feel of the Vegas Robania custom rolled cigars. (It would not surprise me if it was grown on Robania’s farm.) The wrapper had a beautiful oily sheen on it. Veining on the cigar was very slight, and acceptable. It appears that the wrapper used on this cigar is the thin and delicate corojo. The pigtail on the cigar looked very good, and identical to the one found on the Robusto Extra. The elegant old-style gold Trinidad band looks wonderful on the cigar. If every cigar could look like this.

19/20

Pre-Light
The cigar cut well using my Xicar, and even unlit, had a good draw to it. It had a slightly sweet cinnamon-like flavor with a light salty cedary nuance to it.

Construction

The cigar was very full and firm to the touch. Again the cigar’s foot did not appear to have any prominent veins or stems in the foot. The tobacco appeared not to have been booked, giving rise to the possibility, that this cigar was rolled using the “entubar” method. As the cigar burnt down, it had a bit of a tendency to canoe, and burnt a little unevenly, however I will attribute a bit of this to the frequent gusts of wind that blew about my porch. As the ash had an initial very light color, but then blackened as it cooled, as I have seen on many cigars rolled with tobacco from the Robania farm, I will have to wager that this cigar utilized a wrapper from the Robania farm. I only had to remove the ash twice, both at intervals of about 3 ¼”. It was, nevertheless quite well made. The wrapper felt perfect to the touch, and the cigar felt great in the hand. The cigar had a pleasant elastic spring to as it was held.

13/15

Flavor

To put it simply, the flavor of this cigar was substantial. It had far more similarities to the Funadores than the Robusto Extra did. The flavors of the cigar changed not twice, but four different times. To have a fair comparison to the Robusto Extra, I lit this cigar with a cedar spill, which enhanced the initial cedar flavors greatly. The cigar started out almost exactly like the first part of the Funadore, slowly changing to rich flavors of marzipan and nutmeg. After the first inch, it boldly came into its own, creating rich flavors of cinnamon and Cuban tobacco. It produced the copious amounts of smoke which I wished to find in the Robusto Extra. The aroma was delectable. After the first half, the cigar began to exhibit marked flavors of chocolate, which I found to be as surprising as it was pleasing. After an inch or two, the chocolate flavors subsided leaving the ever increasing cinnamon flavors and a subtle orange flavor, with occasional hints of sweetened limes and sweet red bell peppers. As it headed into its final inch, its flavors grew and exhibited ever-so-slight hints of the trademark Cohiba grassiness with touches of ginger added in for good measure. In its last inch, the flavors blossomed into what it was before with the marked addition of a decided floral character. It left a truly complex finish, with marked tones of cedar, pepper, nutmeg, orange, and cinnamon. An amazing cigar. If I had more of these in my humidor, and I was down to my last dime, I would never part with these. This cigar is truly a keeper, and a wonderful way to spend two and a half hours.

64/65

Overall

96/100

Oh, if there were a true Trinidad “A”! This is the best cigar which I have had the pleasure of smoking in the past year. I doubt that I can say much more, outside of emphatically recommending it. It is all that the Trinidad Funadores is and much, much more. It would be most interesting to compare this to the Cohiba 30th Anniversary Robusto “A”, which was the first example of this production vitola for academic purposes.
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