George Rico V.I.P. Maduro – Cigar Review

This week’s group cigar review is of the George A. Rico V.I.P. cigar.  The maduro wrapper is very dark and oily and the cigar smells great!  After lighting it, we were met with some really good flavor right off the bat.  It was sweet and chocolatey with spice on the finish.  Really delicious!  The construction was decent, but mine required some work on the draw.  The V.I.P. ended just as good as it started, lots of excellent flavor with medium bodied smoke.  At roughly $2.50 a cigar, these are a steal!  These are definitely something we are considering purchasing a box of.  Give them a try!

StraightUpCigars: Rating:
Flavor and Taste: 18/20
Construction: 8/10
Wrapper: 4/5
Price Point: 10/10
Would I buy a Box: 5/5
Total: 45/50

IamDarren: Rating:
Flavor and Taste: 18/20
Construction: 9/10
Wrapper: 4/5
Price Point: 10/10
Would I buy a Box: 5/5
Total: 46/50

Terry1: Rating:
Flavor and Taste: 18/20
Construction: 9/10
Wrapper: 4/5
Price Point: 10/10
Would I buy a Box: 5/5
Total: 46/50

7:37 PM
StraightUpCigars: The VIP has a nice sweet, musty smell to it. A little chocolatey too. Smells good! The cap is coming loose in a couple of spots, but the wrapper as a whole is very nice.

7:38 PM
IamDarren: construction is great on mine. Nice dark tight wrapper. After the cut the draw is a tad tight but not too bad. Hint of butter and molasses on the cold draw, very intersting.

7:39 PM
Terry1: Nice dark oily maduro wrapper. I’m getting a musty barnyard taste on the cold draw. Construction on mine looks perfect. Lighting up.

7:41 PM
StraightUpCigars: My draw is REALLY tight, hoping that improves in a minute

7:42 PM
IamDarren: oh yeah, i’m liking the flavor on this one. Chocolate mixed with a nuttiness. Buttery texture, not much spice or pepper on the finish.

7:42 PM
IamDarren: ok, getting some spice on the retrohale.

7:42 PM
Terry1: Lots of thick rich smoke. Starts off with a sweet chocolatey and slight spicey flavor. The finish has a sour citrus note. I’m liking it.

7:44 PM
StraightUpCigars: I’m getting chocolate and cream flavor, I agree on the citrus too. No spice for me yet. Very good.

7:45 PM
IamDarren: already the flavors are transitioning a bit. Still chocolatey up front but the finish is getting dryer (less buttery) and I am now getting some pepper.

7:46 PM
IamDarren: i’m loving this stick, especially the retrohale.

7:49 PM
StraightUpCigars: Mine is surprisingly mellow and mild bodied, but has very good flavor.

7:50 PM
IamDarren: agreed, it has all the flavor of a powerhouse cigar but without the strength. Infact the pepper note is coming in and out on mine. Mostly chocolate with some nuts and spice. I think there is something else on the finsih but i can’t pick it out.

7:52 PM
IamDarren: beware of the ash, mine just dropped off at a half inch.

7:52 PM
Terry1: I agree. There is something in this smoke that’s really good but something I can’t quite identify. I still get the sweetness and a little spice. Burn is a little uneven but not needing correction yet.

7:54 PM
IamDarren: its almost like a blend of spices. they are mellow but different than most cigars. I’m thinking maybe calling it baking spice or something similar. The texture of the smoke makes me think of eating bread.

7:55 PM
StraightUpCigars: Agreed on the bread. For me there is a flavor that reminds me of spiced rum. Fairly even burn and the draw is opening up a bit.

7:57 PM
IamDarren: just wondering the price point on these and if the Maduro is the only blend?

7:57 PM
Terry1: Spiced rum is a good description. Doesn’t have the sweetness of the rum but the mix of spice is there.

7:59 PM
IamDarren: almost to the halfway point and the strength seems to be creeping up a bit.

8:00 PM
Terry1: The VIP is made by George Rico of Gran Habano for the budget friendly market. Price point is 2.50 to 4.00 depending on size. We are smoking the robusto and I paid 2.60. It comes in three wrapper choices, Connecticut, Habano and Maduro.

8:02 PM
StraightUpCigars: What a deal for $2.60! Wow good snag. Did you get tham at a B&M?

8:02 PM
IamDarren: nice! Most of the GH cigars seem to be a good “bang for your buck” The Vintage 02s are still one of my favorites.

8:03 PM
Terry1: I got them online from a B&M store. I couldn’t find them locally.

8:04 PM
Terry1: Lots of flavor for a low priced cigar. I don’t know how they do it but GH does seem to know how to get the most out of the tobacco they use.

8:05 PM
StraightUpCigars: And they did not skimp on this one, very tightly packed!

8:06 PM
IamDarren: agreed, my draw has opened up a bit but not much. It is not getting spongy like some do after you heat them up.

8:07 PM
Terry1: I agree with whoever said the ash was loose. It likes to fall off in quarter inch chunks.

8:08 PM
IamDarren: yeah mine was really bad at first but this ash has held for almost an inch so mine is improving.

8:09 PM
StraightUpCigars: My ash holds on great on this little guy. It has been at higher humidity, though. Humis have not stabilized with change in weather. Stored at 68%.

8:10 PM
IamDarren: I keep most of mine at 70% because i like to age them. The downfall is about 1/4 of the cigars don’t smoke great at that rh so i have to dry box some.

8:10 PM
Terry1: I’m to the point where I need to remove the bands. The VIP band was loose and slid right off. The secondary band with Maduro writen on it, I can’t get off.

8:11 PM
IamDarren: yeah i had to pick at that band awhile to get it loose

8:12 PM
StraightUpCigars: I used to store at 70% but had a mold scare and have backed off to 66% or so.

8:13 PM
Terry1: I’m the same. I keep them at 65-67%.

8:14 PM
IamDarren: Since I started using humi beads (more than required) I have had no trouble. I just make sure to not soak them too much so they can absorb humidity if they need to. After a wet spell the humi in my basement goes over 80 so i have to be careful.

8:15 PM
Terry1: Living in Utah that’s one thing I don’t have to worry about, high humidity. I usually have to add moisture to mine most of the year.

8:17 PM
StraightUpCigars: More on the mold scare, I had busted out a cedar lined cigar a couple of years ago and found it had light mold underneath. After review of all the cigars, some of the cedar lined ones got very slightly moldy. Watct out for the cedar wrapped ones!

8:19 PM
IamDarren: i was actually thinking about making some special cedar trays that could allow you to stack the cigars upright with a little space between each one. I find that cigars that have been stacked tend to sometimes burn unevenly on one side. Its just a theory but I think the cigars need to get air around the whole cigar.

8:20 PM
StraightUpCigars: Good idea. You could totally sell something like that. Stackable singles trays

8:21 PM
Terry1: Pepper is really starting to build as I approach the last third. Getting a little strength too. Interesting transition.

8:22 PM
StraightUpCigars: Yeah, I am finally getting a little pepper and spice for the first time. Good transition, the cigar continues to impress. Medium bodied right now.

8:23 PM
Terry1: I should qualify my last statement. This is not a pepper bomb by any means but compared to how it started I’m getting more pepper spice now.

8:24 PM
IamDarren: the strength on mine has been slowly building since the halfway point. Im almost at the last third and the chocolate has faded some. Now the Spice is probably the dominant flavor. Its still mellow enough though that i would agree with medium bodied.

8:35 PM
Terry1: Well I’m impressed with the VIP Maduro. For a cigar that costs less than three bucks, I found it had lots of nice flavors, great construction and enough going on to keep me interested for the entire smoking time.

8:36 PM
IamDarren: defenitely

8:36 PM
IamDarren: i like it alot, and it doesn’t seem to be getting much stronger as I near the nub.

8:37 PM
StraightUpCigars: Since I have to find something to criticize, the construction on mine could have been a bit better. All in all this is an excellent cigar, and I would have guess a retail price of $8 on it.

8:39 PM
IamDarren: my construction was near perfect, draw was a bit tight to start but opened up in the first third. My only criticism is that the band has a little too much glue.

8:39 PM
Terry1: Agree with the band.

8:43 PM
IamDarren: just laid mine to rest in the tray. Very good cigar!

8:45 PM
StraightUpCigars: Mine is about there too.

8:45 PM
Terry1: Finished mine and I’m ready for another. Good cigar. Now I’m curious about the other two wrappers.

8:46 PM
StraightUpCigars: Yeah I bet the one with the connie wrapper is real good!

8:47 PM
IamDarren: I’m guessing the chocolate flavor mostly was from the wrapper. When it mixed with the spice i loved it.

8:47 PM
IamDarren: But i would definitely be up from trying the others.

8:49 PM
Terry1: Looks like a winner!

8:49 PM
StraightUpCigars: Ooooh, I came in on the low end this time. Definitely a big winner!

8:49 PM
IamDarren: you know its good when you still like the taste in your mouth several minutes after you finish.

8:51 PM
StraightUpCigars: That’s what she said.

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