Perla Del Mar Maduro

Hand holding a Perla Del Mar Maduro cigar ashed at the end

J.C. Newman Cigar Co. recently refreshed the branding on their Perla Del Mar brand of cigars. The cigars, iconic for their unique box press and value, received a change to the cigar box art as well as the cigar blend. Perla Del Mar was originally a brand owned by the Perfecto Garcia & Bros. Cigar Company, a Tampa-based manufacturer and neighbor to J.C. Newman Cigar Co. Perfecto Garcia manufactured cigars until their Tampa factory closed in 1981. Honoring the legacy of the brand’s Tampa roots, J.C. Newman Cigar Co. released the new Perla Del Mar in a “Tampa-style” box press. The Tampa-style gives the cigars a more rectangular appearance. The filler blend for the new Perla Del Mar underwent additional aging and changed to include more viso leaves.

The new Perla Del Mar Maduro features a Connecticut Broadleaf Maduro wrapper over Nicaraguan binder and filler. With all honesty, the new Perla Del Mar Maduro is better than it has ever been. The new blend brings notes of acidity and spice which balance the rich, dark flavor of the broadleaf Maduro wrapper. The result is a phenomenal everyday Maduro with a unique shape from the Tampa-style box press.

The Perla Del Mar Maduro Corona Gorda is one of the best sizes offered by J.C. Newman Cigar Co. At 5.5’x46, the smaller ring gauge of the corona gorda accentuates the flavor of the aged broadleaf maduro wrapper. With this size, the wrapper’s tasting notes of black coffee and mole sauce are at the forefront of the cigar’s profile.

At a glance, the cigar bears a beautiful dark brown wrapper with an oily sheen. The cigar is aromatic and pleasing, bearing floral notes with some pepper. The cigar lights easily and evenly, maintaining a consistent burn rate throughout the smoking experience. With tasting notes of dark roasted coffee and cocoa nibs, the broadleaf Maduro is a delight and a constant companion. The long filler of the cigar adds in secondary tasting notes of molasses, leather, pepper, orange peel, and cinnamon. The strength of the cigar builds with each third but never overwhelms, instead providing a nice boost to the flavor profile. The retrohale of the cigar proves a bit sharp, but generally enjoyable. The cigar takes about forty-five minutes to smoke and its ash holds together quite well. The Perla Del Mar Maduro is a fantastic everyday Maduro, providing rich flavors and incredible value. At $143.75 for a box of twenty-five, the Perla Del Mar Maduro Corona Gorda is a fine addition to anyone’s humidor. With the new blend and the “Tampa-style” box press, the Perla Del Mar represents a new and sensational smoking experience for everyone.

Havana Q Double Toro Review

Hand holding a Havana Q Double Toro cigar ashed at the end

The Havana Q is one of the latest Nicaraguan releases from J.C. Newman Cigar Co. and a line extension to the hugely successful and popular Quorum brand of value bundle cigars. The Havana Q represents excellent value and flavor, an awesome everyday smoke. One of the most appealing sizes of the Havana Q is the Havana Q Double Toro.

The primary concept behind the Havana Q was to offer the consumer bigger, bolder flavors at the same Quorum price point. The wrapper tobacco for the Havana Q comes from the alluvial soil of the Guayas Province in Ecuador, which imparts the tobacco with sapid and appetizing flavors. The rich profile of the Havana Q wrapper tobacco is reminiscent of “Old World” (Cuban) tobaccos, hence the name.

The Havana Q Double Toro features a chocolaty wrapper with remarkable consistency in quality and appeal. The cigar features an Ecuadorian Havana seed wrapper over Nicaraguan binder and mixed (“Cuban sandwich” style) Nicaraguan filler. J.C. Newman Cigar Co. makes this cigar at its PENSA factory in Esteli, Nicaragua. The aroma of the Havana Q is spicy with notes of pepper and cedar. The cold draw adds to this aroma tasting notes of cinnamon, fennel seed, raisins, and coffee beans. The Havana Q Double Toro is a 6’x54, representing a 90-minute smoking experience.

The Havana Q Double Toro is a remarkable cigar for its value, flavor, ash construction, and smoking quality. Mixed filler cigars sometimes struggle with uneven burning and draw issues, yet the Havana Q consistently lit evenly and drew smoothly. Additionally, the cigar’s construction held together two to three inches of ash before requiring an ashing. The flavor is incredible with tasting notes of coffee, hazelnuts, white pepper, and caramel which build throughout the smoking experience. In my opinion, the cigar becomes more enjoyable towards the final third. This is the type of cigar you never want to set down. For the price point and flavor (usually around $50 to $56 for a bag of 20 cigars), you should not hesitate to pick up a bag of the Havana Q at the next available opportunity.