An Espinosa Habano Cigar Is a Mystery that Grows from Medium to Full StrengthThe Espinosa Habano cigar was a 2012 release by Erik Espinosa’s young company. Before starting his own brand, Erik was known for EO Brands, where he was partnered with Eddie Ortega. After their amicable split, Erik took the Murcielago, 601 and Mi Barrio lines with him. While switching over to his new company, Erik bought a factory in Esteli, Nicaragua that he named “La Zona.” This stick is one of the first new blends to come out of La Zona, and aficionados will be relieved to know that Erik still knows how to put an excellent blend together.

The origin of the wrapper, binder and blend are all a closely guarded secret, which is par for the course with Erik. The Espinosa Habano cigar is available in four vitolas, including Robusto (5 x 50), Toro (6 x 52), Belicoso (5 1/2 x 52) and Trabuco (6 x 60). This stogie has a medium brown wrapper with an unusually smooth look. It has an oily sheen, and there are only a few small veins present. It comes with two bands.  The first is blue, white, red and gold, and it features the brand name in all capitals. The band is larger than most and is heavily ornamented. The second band is smaller and has “Hecho en La Zona” in all capitals. Both bands are pinstriped and feature lettering with black and red trim.

The first third of the Espinosa Habano cigar bursts with several flavors. Most reviewers picked up chocolate, pepper, floral and dried fruit notes initially. The floral taste is the only one that was primarily secondary, as the rest took their turn as the dominant flavor. The pepper, while strong, is even more apparent on the retrohale.

The second third is about the pepper. The chocolate taste takes a step back, while the dried fruit and floral layers are just barely present. The pepper is strong in this part of the Espinosa Habano cigar, and it can be a little punchy compared to most sticks. This collection of flavors remains constant until the end of the stogie, which finishes with a punch of spice that is powerful but not harsh. The nub is soft and is cool enough to handle.

Erik puts a lot of effort into the construction of his products, and this one is no exception. Reviewers liked both the burn and draw, and the burn line only requires a few touchups. The ash is salt and pepper and doesn’t flake much. The burn temperature is ideal and the stogie doesn’t flame out too quickly.

Most aficionados consider the Espinosa Habano cigar to start off medium in strength. It climbs steadily throughout the smoke, and by the end it is nearly full. It is a medium to full-bodied stick in flavor as well, though it may still be a little tough for novices to handle, given the intensity of the pepper in spots. Some aficionados found the Robusto to have more depth in terms of flavor than the Toro, but this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. For less experienced smokers who want to try something a little more advanced, the Toro may be more appropriate.

POSTED ON Oct 14, 2017


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