When you say Kentucky Fire Cured tobacco in the USA, most people will tell you Drew Estate. However, if you cross the ocean the answer is very different especially in Italy. Italy is the home to the one of the oldest cigar companies in the world, Toscano. They opened there doors in 1815, and today it is the number one selling cigar in the country. Today, we review a cigar that is totally outside our comfort zone in the 1492. The name pays homage to when Christopher Columbus discovered the Americas and was introduced to “tobaco.”
Cigar Review: Toscano 1492
Ring Gauge: 38
The Look: Packed in two count boxes or sleeves of 10 two-packs, the Toscano 1492 has an appearance that is far different from what we consider a premium cigar. The wrapper is very rustic, and the fillers are from the top part of a tobacco plant known as the ligero leaves. According to Toscano, the filler gives the cigar an assertive character. It’s tapered with the wider end at the top which is already cut, and the end you light is narrower. You can also cut the cigar in half and create two smoking experiences, create a Clint Eastwood look. Looking at the cigar, it’s something American cigar smokers would run away from but as we know from experience looks can be deceiving.
The Notes: We won’t break this one down into thirds, but the cold draw of the cigar is very much what you would expect from Kentucky Fire Cured tobacco. It’s dark and smokey, much like pipe tobacco. The aroma coming off the unlit stick is reminiscent of licorice.
Once the cigar is lit the fire cured note is less extreme than the cold draw. One item of note is that it took much longer to light the cigar and get the burn going. It wasn’t due to the draw, but rather the nature of the tobacco. Moving into the cigar I am very surprised by the sweetness. Sure it has the fired cured taste, but there is also a honey like sweetness mixed in with hints of licorice.
Halfway through the cigar I paired it with some espresso and I was impressed by how well the two paired. It was like adding a touch of sambuca which is Italian colorless liqueur that has a distinct anise flavor to the small cup of coffee.
The Finish: I am not a fan of Fire-Cured Tobacco by any stretch of the imagination but I was extremely surprised by the cigar and the complexity it offered. This is by far the best Kentucky Fire-Cured tobacco on the market today, so much so that I would easily smoke it again. When I started the review my plan for a score was “subjective.” However, I honestly felt that wasn’t fair. You need to take into consideration the tobacco but simply put I thoroughly enjoyed this smoke.
Price: $10.99 (2 Pack) / $94.99 (10, 2 Packs/ 20 Cigars)