I received the press release about this one just before IPCPR and was very interested in this project. Not to go back and recap the entire thing but this project was a very special one for Robert and Sharon Holt
CEDRUS – THE HOGAN, the origin of the name:
1. Faith: The Latin name is Cedrus libani or Lebanese Cedar trees were highly sought after for ancient woodworking. The woods high quality, pleasant scent and firmness made it a popular building material for Holy temples, palaces and sailing vessels. Cedars popularity endures today as it is the most utilized wood in the premium cigar industry and the image of the CEDRUS tree serves as the biblical inspiration for our brand art.
2. Flora: Western Red Cedar known as “the Hogan”, native to the Pacific United States, growing to 200’ tall and living up to 1,000+ years, this tree demonstrates the firm, reliable and beautiful characteristics of cedar. Our bridge to an ancient symbol and a wood that has proven valuable through the ages.
3. People: We offer tribute to Phil and Shelly Hogan, a relationship that began in 1996, a friendship turned “closer than family”. Their love and support of Southern Draw Cigars began in 2014 when they rallied family and friends to support our mission even in the face of uncertain risk. Their contributions have been as steadfast and enduring as the cedar tree even as they have humbly remained in the shadows of our early successes. Phil, U.S. Navy Retired, is the most honorable and accountable guy we know and someone who we could only aspire to be like and Shelly, has been a tireless supporter of all things we do, a helping hand of 20 years that has quietly contributed much to SDC’s early success. The gracious and generous Hogan’s will now be celebrated with their own incomparable hand crafted cigar. We offer you an opportunity to get to know them during IPCPR 2018, they will be available to share their stories of military service, international travel and a limited amount of their new cigar.
I was gifted the opportunity to try this one out so without delaying this anymore, let’s get to what you came here for.
Cedrus “The Hogan” Belicoso Fino
Country of Origin: Nicaragua
Factory: AJ Fernandez Cigar Co.
Wrapper: Besuki TBN – Sumatra, Indonesia
Binder: Habano 2000- Esteli, Nicaragua
Viso: Piloto Cubano – Dominican Republic
Criollo 98 – Esteli, Nicaragua
Seco: Habana 92 – Quilali, Nicaragua
Ligero: Corojo 99 – Jalapa, Nicaragua
Size – Belicoso Fino 5.5 x 52 (box pressed)
Number of Cigars – 5,000 total 10 count, numbered boxes, 1,000 total 10 count refill bundles (60,000 cigars 2018)
Price – $11.99 each MSRP, $118.99 10 count box
Appearance: This is a really nice looking cigar with a medium to dark brown wrapper with reddish hue in the sunlight. The wrapper has small veins and really tight seams. The tapered, pyramid shape comes to a nice box press. The Olive green and gold dual bands really make for a nice presentation. The artwork and bands really work well on this cigar.
Pre-Light: The cigar feel firm with no soft spots. Construction is very well done. I pick up notes of barnyard, wet hay, a touch of sweetness and a faint hint of pepper. From the foot I get more of the same and some wood notes. I use a straight cut and the cold draw is good. Open with some resistance but not tight at all. I get mostly earth, hay and a hint of wood notes.
1st Third: After I toast the foot, the first draw reveals a little pepper up front, cedar, straw, and earth. The draw is good, burn is great, and nice smoke output. As I move a little further in, I start to pick up some smoky charred wood notes, tobacco, and cedar. There is a touch of sweetness that might be dried fruit like dark cherries but I can’t pinpoint it exactly. Performance is on cruise control. The blend works well with a very earthy profile with notes of cedar throughout. Strength is medium for me.
2nd Third: As we move into the second third everything pretty much stays consistent. Subtle changes here and there as I move through the halfway point. I pick up some pepper, cedar, earth and a faint hint of a grassy/floral note. Not cut grass but not clove. It doesn’t hang around very long and is gone. The draw is perfect, great smoke production, the burn is a touch wavy. Strength is still holding at medium.
Last 3rd: Not much in the form of change. Consistency is very much in play here. A good earthy, woodsy profile that has not really switched up from the start. Because it has been so consistent, I decided to veer from my norm and try pairing some Witherspoon’s Texas Bourbon Whiskey (I had to go with something else from Texas, anything else seemed wrong) with it to see how it fairs. The combination works very well together is about all I am going to say about it. I am far from a bourbon expert and have not honed my skills on bourbon notes but I can tell you that the bourbon compliments the cigar and vice versa very nicely. As I get down to the nub on this one, performance has not been an issue. Slightly wavy burn but no touch ups needed. Strength towards the end is maybe medium plus.
Final Thoughts: Overall a very enjoyable smoke from start to finish. I would have liked to have had a few more changes in the profile along the way to keep me on my toes a bit but that’s my personal preference. If you like consistency, you will find that here for sure. It is a good blend that is earthy and woodsy. Performance was spot on the entire time. Very well constructed, easy to smoke and enjoy and stayed a solid medium strength until the very end. It’s a great project and I am very glad I had the opportunity to spend some time with it.
So there you have it. My opinion of the Southern Draw release Cedrus “The Hogan”. I hope that you enjoyed it. Please feel free to share it, leave comments, questions, suggestions here as well. Don’t forget to follow us on social media and join the fun in the Cigar Hawk Group on Facebook.
Until next time #LongAshesFullGalsses friends. See ya.