Altadis U.S.A. recently added another great company to their collaboration list and this time it was Jon Huber and the folks over at Crowned Heads. The Montecristo Ciudad de Musica, Spanish for City of Music, makes perfect sense for the Nashville based company. This cigar is being produced by Ernesto Perez-Carrillo Jr at the Tabacalera La Alianza S.A, which is one of the factories that already produces Crowned Heads cigars regularly.
“The challenge for us was in taking such an iconic brand as Montecristo and putting our fingerprints on it all the while respecting the tradition and legacy that’s existed in the Montecristo brand since 1935,” said Jon Huber, in a press release.
Available in 4 sizes:
Corona Gorda (5 5/8 x 46)
Robusto (5 x 50)
Sublime (6 x 54)
Piramide (6 1/8 x 52)
The Piramide size will be exclusive to Casa de Montecristo lounges. Prices are $11.95 – $16 per cigar.
When I first heard about this project, I was anxious to give them a try. Fortunately for me, I have a Casa de Montecristo about an hour away from me and I was able to pick up the Piramide size. Without further ado, let’s fire this one up and see what we get shall we?
Wrapper: Ecuadorian Habano
Filler: Nicaraguan, Dominican
Country of Origin: Dominican Republic
Appearance: The wrapper has a medium brown color with medium veins and very tight seams. The wrapper has an almost reddish copper tint in the sunlight. The large black and copper band contains 3 logos. The Montecristo Fleur de Lis, the Crowned Heads “CH” logo, and the Ciudad de Musica logo all encased in circles. The cigar has a really nice oily sheen and the band really gives it an elegant vibe.
Pre-light: I pick up notes of hay, earth, barnyard, and cedar from the barrel. The foot offers more of the same with notes of cedar wood, earth, hay, and slight pepper. The cigar feels light in the hand but no soft spots anywhere. The piramide shape has been one of my favorite sizes for a long time. I used a straight cutter to open things up and the cold draw presents an open draw with slight resistance. I pick up notes of straw, cedar and earth. I get the foot good and toasted and away we go.
1st Third: I pick up spice and a very woodsy profile right from the jump. I get some pepper on the retrohale. I start to get notes of sweet cedar and pepper in the background. About 1/4 inch in I get a touch of mocha/espresso notes. This is a very complex blend and I start to pick up notes of roasted coffee beans. This is a really unique blend with a lot of subtle flavors going on. The draw is open, I am getting tons of smoke, the burn is slightly wavy, the strength is medium. This blend really works well together to form a nice flavor profile that is smooth and complex.
2nd Third: The transition brings some earth, mocha, nuttiness, sweet cedar and spice. About the halfway mark a sweet, subtle caramel note makes an appearance and adds to the complexity. The performance is the same. Good draw, wavy burn line, lots of smoke and medium strength. Not a ton of changes in flavors just a good, complex blend that is creamy and easy to smoke.
Final Third: As I move into the final third, the blend changes slightly and I pick up notes of earth, sweet cedar, wood, leather, and a slight grassy note. I still get faint notes of mocha and espresso. Everything else remains the same. I smoke this one down to about a half inch without it burning hot or being bitter. Total smoke time was around 1 hour 45 minutes.
Final Thoughts: The Ciudad de Musica was an enjoyable symphony of flavors that blend together like music from your favorite band. The blend really comes together nicely and provides a nice, smooth, medium strength, complex smoke that is enjoyable from start to finish. I really enjoyed the piramide size and I would like to try it in another size to compare. I think this cigar would appeal to seasoned cigar smokers more than newcomers. The complexity of the blend, in my opinion, would be best appreciated by an advanced palate. I am also curious to see what happens to this cigar as it ages a bit more. There were a couple of cigars I tried last year that just got better and better each time I smoked them. I can see this being one of those. The first cigar I ever tried was the Montecristo White Label. I really had no idea of what I was tasting at the time. Having revisited it after I had been smoking for awhile, I learned to appreciate what I enjoyed about my first Montecristo. Being a fan of Crowned Heads and hearing about this project I knew it would be interesting, and I was not disappointed. This is a great collaboration and overall a very good cigar. If you get the opportunity to try this one, pick it up and let me know what you think about it.
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