Thanks for your reviews. I trust all of them, seeing how they match mine. Now, if only I can find that lancero.
Review: Viaje Exclusivo Atlantic Cigar Co. 15th Anniversary Lancero (Prerelease)
For those of you that don’t know…
There has been a growing trend in recent years for the makers of cigars to release the blends that they make for themselves to smoke as limited releases for the rest of us to enjoy. Much like Pete Johnson’s Black Label and Steve Saka’s Liga Privada No. 9, the Viaje Exclusivo blend is said to be Andre Farkas’ personal blend.
Over the past two years, there has actually been quite a few different releases in this particular blend, albeit all in very limited quantities. There were more vitolas released this year (Chiquito, Tower 45th & Short) and there are always rumors of even more.
As per Charlie’s news story:
The cigar is to be released on November 12, 2011 at an event taking place at Atlantic’s Elmsford, NY location (116 S Central Ave). Atlantic has a few more releases scheduled throughout the upcoming year to honor their anniversary, no details are available at this time. Unlike the Tower 45th, there is no secondary band on this cigar.
The Exclusivo Lancero is being released to commemorate the 15th Anniversary of Atlantic Cigar. There were only 150 boxes of 25 produced (3,750 total cigars) and sadly this is an event only release. So the only way you can get them is to walk into the store and buy them or get a friend to do it for you. There will be NO phone orders for this release.
The event is being held at Atlantic’s Retail store in NY:
The Cigar Republic
116 South Central Avenue
Elmsford, NY 10523
The Nine Exclusivo blends that have been released as of this moment are (left to right, in the order released):
- Exclusivo Robusto (Jar Release) — 4 7/8 x 50
- Exclusivo Robusto (Bundle Release) — 4 7/8 x 50
- Exclusivo Chiquito (2010) — Figurado — 4 3/4 x 51
- Exclusivo Double Edged Sword — Double Perfecto — 5 3/4 x 52
- Exclusivo Short — 4 1/4 x 42
- Exclusivo Chiquito (2011) — Figurado — 4 3/4 x 51
- Exclusivo Tower 45th — Box-Pressed Robusto —5 3/4 x 52
- Exclusivo Corona Gorda — (Event Only) — 5 5/8 x 46
- Exclusivo Atlantic Cigar Co. 15th Anniversary Lancero — 7 1/2 x 40
The boxes that the Viaje Exclusivo Lanceros come in look like this:
But enough of that, let’s get down to business, shall we?
- Cigar Reviewed: Viaje Exclusivo Atlantic Cigar Co. 15th Anniversary Lancero
- Country of Origin: Honduras
- Factory: Fábrica de Tabacos Raíces Cubanas S. de R.L. (Raíces Cubanas)
- Wrapper: Nicaraguan Criollo
- Binder: Nicaraguan
- Filler: Nicaraguan
- Size: 7 1/2 Inches
- Ring Gauge: 40
- Vitola: Lancero
- MSRP: $9.20 (Boxes of 25, $230.00)
- Date Released: November 12, 2011
- Number of Cigars Released: 150 Boxes of 25 Cigars (3,750 Total Cigars)
- Number of Cigars Smoked for Review: 3
The cigar itself is thicker than a Lancero and feels like it in your hands. Covered in a slightly mottled dark espresso brown wrapper, it is smooth to the touch and has a bit of oil present. It is perfect when squeezed, with a not too spongy feel. The wrapper smells like a combination of spices, peanuts, earth and coffee. It also has a pigtail, which looks great on the vitola.
The First Third starts with a nice amount of spice on the tongue and lips, along with notes of dark chocolate, earth, leather, coffee and a tiny amount of black pepper. The spice dies down almost totally by the middle of the First Third — still there, but WAY less. There is a noticeable sweetness that is also in the background, but it stays there for the entire third. Strength is fairly nonexistent at this point, say a strongish mild or Mild + if you prefer.
The Second Third shifts gears a bit and the sweetness comes to the forefront. It is a maple sugar sweetness with a bit of a bready note as well. (Think of putting some maple sugar on a piece of fresh baked bread and that is close.) There is some chocolate and dark coffee notes still in the profile, and while the spice is gone from the tongue, I am still getting a bit in the retrohale. The cigar is getting noticeably stronger by the end of this third as well.
The Final Third mellows out a bit with the sweetness not as strong. The flavors become a bit muddled, but I can still taste the core notes of dark chocolate, espresso, a strong leather and wood. Still some maple sweetness, but not near as much as the Second Third. However, the strength of the cigar has continued to increase until and by the end it is a solid full cigar. Was able to nub it easily.
- The Exclusivo Lancero is the first limited edition that Viaje has released in the Lancero vitola, although he does offer them in the Platino Lancero.
- However, it most likely will not be the last, as there are rumors of a release called the Trifecta, which would include 10 cigars of 3 different blends in the same box, one of the blends is supposedly this same Exclusivo Lancero.
- As mentioned above, this is an event only release, so the only way you can get them is to walk into the store and buy them.
- The Exclusivo line is a fairly strong blend in general and this vitola is no exception, but It kind of surprised me how quickly it ramped up in the Final Third given it did not really get going until the end of the Second Third.
- The construction left absolutely nothing to be desired, both the burn and draw were spot on in all three of my samples.
- While most of Andre’s cigars seem to range from soaking wet to kind of wet, these did not seem that way at all. I had heard that the cigars in this specific release have been sitting a while, and I would not be surprised if that was the case.
- The smoke is extremely plentiful, billowy and white, and the ash is a very dark gray color.
- This is a very slow burner, and it took me just over 2 Hours to finish off all of my samples.
The Bottom Line: The first thing I wanted to know when I smoked the Lancero was: Is it as good or better than the other vitolas in the line? The answer is: sort of. While it is a better cigar (both flavor and construction wise) than the Chiquito, Short and Double Edge Sword, (and I enjoyed it about the same as the OR Robusto), it is not as good (nor as complex) as the Corona Gorda or the Tower 45th. Construction was excellent and it was a joy to smoke. While this is a very good edition to the Exclusivo lineup, it is not the best in the line, and if given a choice, I would honestly rather smoke a Tower 45th.
Final Score: 89