Cigar Review: La Aroma de Cuba Pasión Marveloso

Late last year, I had the chance to smoke the La Aroma de Cuba Pasión for a an episode of Cigars & Coffee. I remembered being impressed with it and decided that it needed the full review treatment. I’ll be honest, when I first smoked this back in December, I did not have high hopes. La Aroma de Cuba cigars have, for me, always been a bit on the strong side. That isn’t to say that they don’t make a great product. Quite the opposite. In fact, I enjoy their cigars but have found that they are usually better on a full stomach. Perhaps I was just pleasantly surprised that I didn’t need to lie down after smoking it? This review was done to find out find if the La Aroma de Cuba Pasión was as good as I remembered.

The Pasión is a Nicaraguan puro and is blended by the father and son duo of José ‘Pepin’ and Jaime Garcia. According to their website, the Pasión’s wrapper is a shade grown tobacco and was grown in the Namanji fields east of Estelí. I’m more intrigued that this a Garcia family collaboration than anything else. 

OVERVIEW

VITOLA:   Toro
SIZE:   6″ x 52

ORIGIN:   Nicaragua
FACTORY:   My Father Cigars S.A.

WRAPPER:   Nicaragua
BINDER:   Nicaragua
FILLER:   Nicaragua

STRENGTH:   Medium-Full

SOURCE:   
La Aroma de Cuba

ENVIRONMENT

WHERE:   
Inside the warmth of my garage

WHEN:   
February 23, @1:00pm

DRINKS:   
Janus Coffee Roasters Dark Roast and Ice Mountain bottled water

WEATHER:   
14° outside, but 65° in the garage. 72% humidity

HOW MANY CIGARS SMOKED:   
3

PRODUCTION

RELEASE TYPE  Regular Production

ORIGINALLY RELEASE DATE  September, 2021

TOTAL PRODUCTION
Typical Box Size:     Boxes of 25
Production Totals:  Unknown

VITOLA BREAKDOWN
o  Marveloso  (6″ x 52)
Robusto  (5-1/2″ x 50)
Corona Gorda  (5-5/8″ x 46)
Encanto  (6″ x 60)
Box-Pressed Torpedo (6-1/8″ x 54)
Churchill (7″ x 49)

BAND DESIGN

The band is ornate and gorgeous. All of the La Aroma de Cuba bands have an “old world” feel to them and look similar to the Pasión band. The difference comes down to color. The “sea foam” green, or at least that’s what I think it looks like, makes the yellow and gold accents really pop. The detail on the band is ornate and screams “old world.” The Pasión is double banded, with the second band naming the cigar.

PRE-LIGHT OBSERVATIONS

CONSTRUCTION

The shade grown Nicaraguan wrapper is a dark shade of caramel brown. The wrapper is smooth to the touch and has a bit of tooth to it. There are several veins visible on the surface of the cigar that add to its character. The seam is quite visible, too. The cap is expertly applied and the cigar is beautiful looking.

AROMA

The wrapper has me searching for any kind of aroma…there is almost nothing. Just the faintest hint of barnyard and cedar come through. The foot, however, easily gives up its secrets. Floral and honey notes are accompanied by baking spices and a hint of chocolate.

COLD DRAW

The cold draw tries to keep its secrets, too. Citrus, floral, and a honey like sweetness eventually emerge. A touch of chocolate lingers on my palate. 
 

SMOKING EXPERIENCE

LIGHT & DRAW
Cut: Les Fines Lames LE PETITE cigar knife
Fire: ST Dupont Hooked

I get graham cracker and nuts on the initial light. There is nothing harsh or off putting from the light. Black pepper rules the retrohale, while chocolate lingers on my palate. The Pasión actually starts to ramp up a bit, losing the sweetness that started off the cigar. Baking spices begin to linger on the palate. The burn is uneven, but not too concerning. 
 

SMOKE

With each draw the Pasión gives up copious amounts of smoke. The smoke is creamy and extremely satisfying.

FIRST THIRD
>> Honey, Baking Spices, Chocolate

After the initial light calms down, an herbal note becomes dominant. It isn’t bad, but is a bit unexpected. It’s followed by a honey sweetness, baking spices, and a touch of chocolate. The herbal note stands up to the black pepper on the retrohale. It reminds me of sweetened tea. The kind of sweet tea you get in the South. Toasted bread comes forward and adds some depth to the Pasión. The burn line is razor sharp, but burning unevenly. The ash is compact and looks like stacked nickels. There is a black line following a vein in the cigar. I am mesmerized. There’s a slight woodiness that begins to come through. The sweetness comes and goes.; wrapping itself around the woody and herbal notes. A hint of fig newton brightens this first third up, as a nice caramel note begins to morph from the honey and wood notes.

SECOND THIRD
>> Caramel, Avocado Oil, Coffee

Caramel, avocado oil, and coffee begin the second third. Notes of charred wood begin to come through, and it blends well with the coffee. White pepper on the retrohale. The smoke is creamy and coats my palate. The burn is still wonky and more than disappointing. The ash though, is impressive. It’s compact and holds on like a champ. Black pepper now rules the retrohale as the second third begins to wane. Baking spices linger on the finish, as does a faint floral note. 

FINAL THIRD
>> Dark Chocolate, Campfire, Black Pepper

Dark chocolate, a hint of honey, avocado oil and a strong herbal note begin the final third. The burn line is still uneven, but at least it’s consistent. The ash has been absolutely amazing. I have ashed once so far, but I dare not press my luck.  Floral and black pepper on the retrohale. Espresso, roasted nuts, and butter on the finish. Campfire joins the chorus. Black pepper on the retrohale. The burn is getting progressively worse as this third goes on. The ash is a bit more flakey than previously, but not anything egregious. The final third is just as smooth and tasty as the the rest of the Pasión. 

RATING & FINAL THOUGHTS

FLAVOR PROGRESSION

The flavor progression is straightforward if, perhaps, a bit boring. The first third had the most complexity, and the herbal note came and went throughout the Pasión. That was followed by bits of chocolate, honey, and nuts. The flavors always made sense and built off of each other. My complaint is that the Pasión wasn’t as complex as I’d like. There were a few instances where it seemed like it wanted to be more complex, only to fall just a little bit short.

BURN EXPERIENCE

The burn progression for the Pasión was consistent…consistently uneven. There were no touch-ups or relights required, but the Pasión burned uneven on all three of the cigars smoked for this review. Now, would an uneven burn have any impact on your enjoyment? Probably not. It’s mildly annoying at best; however, it does go to the construction and overall burn of the cigar. 

RATING BREAKDOWN
0.78 / 0.80 … Craft & Aesthetic
0.50 / 0.50 … Pre-Light Characteristics
0.45 / 0.50 … Lighting Process
6.80 / 7.70 … Smoking Experience
0.48 / 0.50 … Personal Enjoyment

COMPLIMENTS & CRITIQUES

THE PASIÓN SHINES THROUGH.

The father and son collaboration between José and Jaime Garcia is pretty damn good. It hits all the right notes for me and is firmly in the medium to medium-full area. It’s full of flavor that kept me interested throughout. The Pasión’s flavor progression was solid. Would I have liked some more nuanced flavors? Absolutely. Do I wish that the burn would have been even and the ash less flakey? Absolutely. However, the Pasión is a solid release that I’ll be adding to my regular smoking rotation.

SIMPLY STOGIES RATING:  9.01 / 10.0

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