The CAO Rabid Reindeer Cigar Review & InformationIn 2013, General Cigar Company prepared a few blends for the Christmas season and branded it with darker, more sinister marketing, and the CAO Rabid Reindeer cigar is the 2014 follow-up. Like the 2013 sticks, this stogie will use a modified La Traviata blend, a blend that aficionados everywhere respect. That’s probably why the 2013 blends were such a success, and why the company is going for it again. The blend is not the only notable thing about the stick, though, as it will feature an unusual aesthetic. 

The CAO Rabid Reindeer cigar has a Connecticut Broadleaf wrapper, a Brazilian binder and fillers from the Dominican Republic, Honduras, Peru, and Nicaragua. The stick is only available in a single vitola, a 6 1/2 x 52, and only 2,000 boxes of 14 smokes will be available. The wrapper is the color of dark chocolate and is both a little oily and soft. Most smokers will notice the band first, which shows off a nasty looking reindeer character, drawn with a rough comic book style. The band is huge and takes up half of the smoke. It’s certainly bold enough to draw attention. There’s also some boldness on the cold draw, which hits with barnyard, spice and what some reviewers described as rubber. 

The initial third of the stick begins with cedar, spice, and a little cocoa. After a few draws, some black pepper notes show up and take over the profile for a short time. Once it settles down, the stick goes to work and starts adding a number of additional flavors. According to aficionados, these include grass, hay, and leather notes to go along with the black pepper, cedar, spice, and cocoa. It’s a pretty complex banquet of flavors overall.

During the middle third of the CAO Rabid Reindeer cigar, cedar and spice control the profile, ushering the cocoa and black pepper into the background. The cedar and spice soon meld together and sweeten up while the black pepper takes on a savory flavor. This combination produces a nice balance that hangs around until the second-third is out. 

In the final third of the stick, the cedar drops back into a tertiary role and lets the spice and black pepper take center stage. In addition, some of the leather and cocoa remain in the profile, and they give the smoke an interesting mix of flavors that the smoke finishes off with.

Reviewers mostly considered it around a medium in strength even though it has additional ligeros compared to the original blend. It handles extremely well, with a burn and draw that perform throughout. In all, it is an enjoyable smoke, and not just because it has an angry reindeer giving out mean stares.

POSTED ON Oct 14, 2017


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