So, the other day, I happened to be at my local cigar shop, A-1 Tobaccos of Hawaii, at their new flagship location on South Beretania, and I spotted these. I've smoked the My Father Jaime Garcia line before, and greatly enjoyed it; recently, they've produced a stronger blend exclusively for the Hawaiian market. These can only be found at Hawaiian retailers, and if you're smart, you'll go to ToH on Beretania. They're hands-down the best shop on the island.
Now, I've smoke Jaime Garcias before, but I have yet to actually sit down and review one. I can tell you they're quite spicy, so if these are a beefed-up version of the regulars, this out to be a real fireworks display. I'm quite excited to give it a try!
Cigar: Jaime Garcia Hawaii Exclusive
Price: ~$90/box (of 10)
Wrapper: Connecticut Broadleaf
Rating (out of 10): 9.4
Let's take a look at the box, first. The Hawaii-exclusive JGs feature a unique red-and-gold color scheme, chosen for those colors' association with good luck in the Asia-Pacific countries (there is a very large Asian population in Hawaii). Each box contains ten cigars, and these sticks are absolutely gorgeous.
They're definitely “rugged,” to say the least. Veiny, knobby, and quite toothy. They're absolutely gleaming with oil, and almost sparkle in the light. The wrapper is a dark, cocoa-brown, and the cap is a tight, perfect fan-cap (pictured below, for those of you scratching your head as to what a “fan-cap” is). The band is a classic Jaime Garcia band, in its stylish blue and brown color scheme against a soft, off-white background.
The construction is exactly what I'd expect from a My Father line of cigars; absolutely perfect. No soft spots or tears, definitely veinier and knobbier than most cigars, but it visually coveys the extra strength I'm expecting from this thing.
The barrel gives off a strong leather-and-barnyard aroma, which is balanced by a rich, sweet chocolate aroma on the foot.
Got a nice, perfect cut with the scissor cutter, which presented a nice, open cold draw tasting of chocolate and leather. There's a bit of a zing on the lips after the cold draw, which suggests that there's going to be a fair amount of that iconic Garcia spice to come.
On lighting, the flavor was powerfully chocolatey, and featured a strong spicy zinger on the finish, kind of a red-hot cinnamon spice. It kicks like a horse!
The burn is the tiniest bit uneven, with a medium-grey ash column, which is pretty solid, but I accidentally knocked the ash off when I let the cigar slip out of my fingers and dropped it back onto the ash tray as I went to pick it up for another draw. Clumsy, clumsy me.
Moving into the second third, the burn is a bit wavy, but mostly even. The spice has mellowed out somewhat, still present on the aftertaste, but allowing more a of a chocolate and leather sweetness to come through on the draw.
As we reach the final third, the burn is slightly less even, and requires a quick touchup. The flavor is a bit woodier in the last third, with the sweet chocolate and leather still at the forefront. The spice lingers on the aftertaste, rounding everything out quite nicely.
I wound up smoking this one almost to the very end, and the spice definitely came roaring back in the last half-inch or so, a nice finale to the firework display.
I greatly enjoyed this one, despite not generally being a fan of spicier cigars. But this one is sweet and explosive, and there's something exciting about its exclusivity, as well. I'm glad I went ahead and bought a box, instead of just one stick. It's quite a treat on this lazy Saturday afternoon!