This week’s group cigar review is of the Juan Lopez. This Nicaraguan Puro cigar shares a name with an old Cuban cigar manufacturer. The cigar is rustic looking with a lumpy and uneven roll. We tasted chocolate and spice on the cold draw. Once lit up, we were met with a very chocolatey flavor along with earthy and sweet with a little pepper on the finish. It tastes delicious! As we smoked the pepper faded and the sweetness kept increasing. In the final third a slightly bitter coffee flavor was added to the mix and the sweetness faded a bit. Overall, this cigar was great, we loved the sweet chocolate flavor. The cigar lacks a little in complexity, but it makes up for it with good construction and excellent flavor. The fairly low price makes this cigar a no brainer, you’ve got to try one!
Flavor and Taste: 18/20
Price Point: 9/10
Would I buy a Box: 5/5
Flavor and Taste: 16/20
Price Point: 9/10
Would I buy a Box: 4/5
StraightUpCigars: This Juan Lopez has a veiny wrapper and lumpy roll to it, but the draw sure is good after cutting. I get an enticing chocolate and spice flavor on the cold draw. Looking forward to this one.
Terry1: You’re right about the chocolate on the cold draw. Very nice. Good draw. The cigar does looks a little rustic. Ready to light up and see what we get.
StraightUpCigars: Great, lighting up!
Terry1: Interesting start. Some sweetness in the first puffs, then a blast of pepper. Some earth mixed in. Lots of smoke.
StraightUpCigars: Wow, delicious first few puffs. Tastes like a nice aged bourbon to me – earthy with some spice and some sweetness. Very bold flavor. Interesting is the right word for it.
StraightUpCigars: I don’t know much about this cigar, going to look it up now.
StraightUpCigars: This is a Nicaraguan puro and according to the description we were spot on with tasting chocolate.
StraightUpCigars: It looks like this is an old Cuban brand. Fivers are $27 on CI. Altadis sent us this one.
Terry1: Here’s another band that irks me. Nice looking ornate band but the name is in tiny type. When I first got this one I wasn’t sure what it was. From a marketing perspective it’s a miss for me. Gotta have your name big enough to read without magnification.
Terry1: Yeah I’ve started to see these advertised. Good price if the cigar holds up.
StraightUpCigars: I agree, the name really blends in with the label design. I guess their only excuse is if they copied the original Cuban brand, but they should have improved on it.
StraightUpCigars: My stick is not burning evenly and the ash is weak, but man that flavor is amazing. I’d call it medium bodied right now and that chocolate sweetness is ramped up.
Terry1: The pepper on mine has really faded. Mostly that sweetness and earth now. The burn on mine is about perfect. Took a couple of taps to get the ash off. We need Darren to break the tie.
StraightUpCigars: True story.
Terry1: Given the time of year he’s probably busy with the calves tonight.
StraightUpCigars: I think you’re right. I’d have dollar signs rolling across my eyes as those things popped out
StraightUpCigars: No correction needed, looks like my burn fixed itself for now.
StraightUpCigars: Whenever my burn is uneven and I set the cigar down, I put the non-burning side up. What’s your strategy?
Terry1: Complain and pull out the lighter.
StraightUpCigars: I just spit some beer! Lol!
StraightUpCigars: I just got a big blast of sweet. Almost nothing besides chocolate on those puffs. Loving it.
Terry1: I’m liking too. I’m noticing the base flavor of sweet and earth are pretty consistent then I get a spice blast every few puffs. I’m trying to decide if it’s tied with the rate I’m smoking.
StraightUpCigars: I think you’re right, I had gone inside to grab a beer and came back to those sweet puffs.
Terry1: Yeah the sweetness seems to comes through more when you smoke slower.
StraightUpCigars: I am happy to say we are enjoying this delicious cigar while Darren has his hands inside a huge cow placenta. I shouldn’
StraightUpCigars: t get pleasure out of that, but it’s a haha moment.
Terry1: That’s an image I didn’t need but it is funny!
StraightUpCigars: Lol, yeah I have a disturbed mind. Farming is pretty foreign to me, so I have weird mental images of what it entails.
Terry1: I’ve had some experience with crops but not with any animals. He lives in a different world than I do.
StraightUpCigars: Did you work on a farm for a bit?
Terry1: Yeah, my grandfather had a farm and I’d work the summer there. He grew mostly alfalfa and wheat.
StraightUpCigars: I bet that was ball-busting work when you’re not used to it.
Terry1: Oh yeah. And I didn’t realize at the time how little I was paid.
Terry1: Made college look a lot more promising.
Terry1: I’m liking the sweetness I’m getting. Smoking slower is paying off. I’m about halfway. Burn is still behaving.
StraightUpCigars: I agree, the sweetness is incredible. I have slowed down, but I’m still nearing that final third.
StraightUpCigars: Does anyone in your family still farm?
Terry1: Nope. The farm was swallowed up by urban sprawl. It’s all houses now. A church sits where the barn was.
StraightUpCigars: Wow. There were several small farms in the county where I grew up, they are all houses now too.
StraightUpCigars: Your college remark made me think how much things change, you almost need a college degree now to farm with the technology and GPS concepts behind it.
Terry1: No kidding. I wouldn’t even know how to start the tractor now.
Terry1: I’m liking the sweetness but I do wish there was more to it. The pepper has all but gone for me. I do get a black coffee bitterness on the finish now.
Terry1: Band came off easily. No glue on the wrapper.
StraightUpCigars: Mine came off easy too. Burn is straight. It has the same blcack coffee bitterness you described.
StraightUpCigars: Super easy to puff on this one, draw is perfect and lots of smoke.
Terry1: I agree, construction has been great. Easy to smoke.
StraightUpCigars: Good smoke time too, I still have an inch of smokeable left.
StraightUpCigars: I underestimated the cold tonight, either that or it got colder!
StraightUpCigars: How has the shed been this winter?
Terry1: I was noticing the cold in your area this week. Glad I’m on the west side of the Rocky’s. We are about 10 to 15 degrees above normal. Except for December which was really cold. I’ve had a pleasant winter for smoking outside.
StraightUpCigars: That’s good. We need to get you guys some rain (or snow)
Terry1: We’ve had a bunch of storms this month but it’s been so warm it’s raining in the valley and snowing in the mountains. Everybody is happy this year.
StraightUpCigars: Very good! I guess the drought is further west than you. They keep talking about it on the news. Speaking of news, I hope you didn’t tell you clients to invest in bitcoins
Terry1: Luckily I don’t have to make those kind of decisions. Mutual funds only. I let the managers decide where to put the money. So far they are doing a fantastic job. My company was number 5 in returns last year out of 70.
StraightUpCigars: Wow! That’s awesome. Is your mutual fund publicly traded, or only held by your clients?
Terry1: No we’re a public company. The stock has done really well.
StraightUpCigars: That’s great news! Glad it was good year.
Terry1: I’m getting close to the end. Good flavors but I will admit I was getting kind of bored with the cigar in the last third.
StraightUpCigars: Looking it now.
StraightUpCigars: I have to say, I liked the final third as much as the first two. This one the body increased to medium/full and I was getting more bitter coffee flavor with balanced well with the sweet chocolate. I wouldn’t consider this one complex, but it was delicious!
StraightUpCigars: Mine’s about finished up. Great ending to a great cigar.
StraightUpCigars: Rating now.
Terry1: It did have a nice flavor profile, consistent. I liked it but I missed the spice I was getting earlier on. I think being a Nicaraguan puro had me expecting more spice.
Terry1: Scored well. I’d recommend it.
StraightUpCigars: I agree that this lacks
StraightUpCigars: some complexity but it makes up for it with unique flavor. I’ve never had a Nicaraguan Habano wrapped cigar that tastes anywhere near this sweet!
Terry1: Yeah. It was unique. Didn’t expect that much sweetness.