Size: 7 x 48 (Classic)
Binder and Filler: Dominican
Strength: Medium – Full
Price: Just under $7.00 a stick
The cigar came to me by one of the few people in this world that actually make me nervous, my soon to be father in law! Cigars became one (minor) obsession that we both are involved with which became a great way for me to break the ice, and do a little sucking up at the same time- haha. He has had the luxury of going to a few different countries and visiting the actual tobacco fields and has been a great asset to my knowledge. It seems that almost every time we meet up one of us will give the other a cigar – it has become our little ritual of sorts. None the less, this cigar was gifted to me from him near Christmas time with the remark that this was his favorite non-Cuban smoke and he wanted to see what my take would be on it. I had never had an Arturo Fuente anything, yet alone their Hemingway edition.
As a bit of background on the cigar itself, the Hemingway was the first limited edition cigar to be produced by the Fuentes and got its name from the well known writer and novelist Ernest Hemingway – although I was unable to locate any documentation that explains exactly why or how the cigar got its name since by practice, he was not a regular cigar smoker (he did enjoy one from time to time though). When this cigar was created, it initially was set to be sold as three different sizes; Classic, Signature and Short Story while in this review I will focus on the Classic. As I was researching this stick, I noticed that the Maduro is a much more sought after smoke, perhaps due to the sweeter tasting wrapper, stronger punch or due to the even higher level of rarity that the Maduro offers. I am looking forward to giving that one a try as well, considering if I am even able to locate them!
Can you say beautiful cigar?! When I first looked at this cigar (being the first figurado I ever saw in person) I was initially taken back simply due to the overall construction required. I have heard about the figurado and how hard they are to roll and how the shape itself (wrapper vs binder/filler ratio changing during the stick) plays a huge factor in the complexity but also shows the skill in craftsmanship. Evenly packed from head to foot (even with the gauge changes) coated by a wrapper that showed almost no veins at all this cigar truly screams to be smoked. The band did stick a little and was destroyed although with all the issues, the wrapper itself was not damaged.
Since my future father-in-law gave me this cigar and noted it was ‘one of his favorites’ I felt the need to sit back and really pay attention to this bad boy, and it sure did pay off. Due to the small foot the wrapper to binder/filler ratio is much larger, allowing the Cameroon wrappers natural sweet and mildly bitter earth to seep through the tobacco flavor starting this one off smooth, even with a good bit of complexity to the beginning. Once I progressed to the first portion of the ‘fat part’ of the cigar, the sweetness was still apparent but the richness to the earthy flavor stepped up followed by a slowly increasing (but never unpleasant) spicy finish. Lastly, once the cigar was in the final portions of its life the sweetness decided to leave while the earth melted with a new flavor profile, that of wood. The wood, earth and mild spice held on till the very end – Highly enjoyable experience.
Even with the high level of rarity, the price and quality really make this cigar a winner. Not only is this one of my soon to be father-in-law’s favorite cigars – but it has quickly moved up the list into my top 5 without a doubt. I don’t know if I would go out and purchase of box of these though, although they were a very good smoke they just didn’t hit me in such a way where I would be dropping 175+ on a box. With that being said though – I have already purchased a 5 pack and plan on keeping a few in the humidor at all times. The cigar is very complex, has been created by some of the best rollers in the world, manufactured by a great company and delivers consistently – really, what more could you as for?