The Evil Dr. Moki's Group Blind Taste Test #1

Brickhouse

J.C. Newman owes me royalties.
I fully intended to review cigar #6 tonight and get ahead of the game a bit. But I had about 14 beers and figured it was a bad idea due to what happened last time. So I had a Tat Regios instead. :)
 

moki

el Presidente
Cigar #5, non-Cuban Ashton ESG Robusto, 2007 (5 1/4" x 52) - super-premium


Image courtesy of enerjay

bfreebern said: Prelight was spicy, slightly box pressed. Lots of smoke, with cedar/bread/spice coming through. Ash was dark gray.

bfreebern guessed: Origin: Nicaraguan - Price: Everyday - Age: 1 year - Marca: ?? unknown - Rating: 6/10

BlindedByScience said: #5 is alive - !! Looking very nice; dark brown, almost veinless wrapper. Wrapper and foot smell very spicy to the nose. Prelight draw very open, almost unrestricted, and with a touch of earthyness coming through. A slight box press is evident. Average diameter is almost exactly ¾”, or a 48 ring ( ~19mm). Sans cap, this smoke is about 5 1/8” (~130mm) long.

Wow, what a nice smoke. Was I just in the mood for a great smoke? Was it The Who doing “Baba O’Riely” on the radio? Not sure but I really enjoyed this one..!! Started out with a bang; nice very floral tastes with rich, dense smoke that was very fragrant and pleasant. Burned like a champ. At about the 2/3 point, the floral flavors gave way to a very grassy profile, which by the back third had turned back to an earthy, darker flavor. Some tiny hints of some ammonia, some bitterness were definitely discernable but that didn’t keep me away from nubbing this nice smoke. Outstanding…!!

BlindedByScience guessed: Origin: Cuban - Price: Premium - Age: 5 years - Marca: Ramon Allones Specially Selected - Rating: 8/10

Brickhouse said: Loved it, absolutely loved it. An hour of full bodied, smooth, and rich goodness. Subtle changes throughout, but the overall was very consistent from beginning to end. There was subtle spice in the beginning that seemed to fade about halfway through. The amount of smoke with the perfect draw created a smoking experience that was like some sort of cigar nirvana. As I sit here writing the review I'm still a bit woozy. Fabulous cigar in every regard. It was an absolute pleasure.

Brickhouse guessed: Origin: Dominican - Price: Super Premium - Age: 5 years - Marca: Fuente (Don Carlos 30th Anni) - Rating: 9/10

enerjay said: Moki really stacked the deck with this cigar. First 1/4 of the cigar was ruff, strong earth wood tones and pepper at the 1/2 way point the cigar started to settal down a little. Still earth, with hints of hony.
3/4 to the end the strong earth tones came in ballance with the hony (sweet) notes for a nice cigar. My guess is it had a Connecticut Broadleaf Wrapper, Nicaraguan and Honduran bleand

enerjay guessed: Origin: Honduran - Price: premium - Age: 5 years - Marca: Don Pepin - Rating: 8/10

insight said: Tasting Notes: This cigar started off very bitter and burning very quickly. I tasted a little bit of cocoa but the flavors were predominately earthy, with a lot of pepper mixed in later on. The onset of the pepper reminded me a bit of some LFDs and even in a sense some Opus I have had, but without the complexity I would typically associate with those two lines. My initial reaction was really that this was a lower end cigar. Although it did pick up towards the end with the pepper flavor and the bitterness receding, I still found it to have more in common with Nicaraguan dailies of yesteryear than more high end smokes.

insight guessed: Origin: Nicaragua - Price: Everyday - Age: 2 years - Marca: Don Pepin - Rating: 4/10

grateful1 said: It started out very acidc. It burned well with a flaky ash. About 2 inches into it, it became smokable. fruity and a little spice. A nice flavor of earhy tobacco.

grateful1 guessed: Origin: Nicaraguan - Price: Everyday - Age: 1 year - Marca: Tatuaje - Rating: 5/10

NorCalCigarLover said: 5 1/4 inch, 54 ring. Smoth, silky wrapper with brown slightly reddish wrapper. Spicy from the get go with tinge of sweetness at the beginning but was quickly overpowerd by the spice. Strong, bold full tobacco flavor with woody, cedar, tastes. Consistant all the way through with the full woody flavors and spice. The ending was just too much for me.

NorCalCigarLover guessed: Origin: Honduran - Price: Premium - Age: 7 years - Marca: Punch Rare Corojo - Rating: 5/10

sinnyc said: This cigar seems to be fairly well constructed. The body has a uniform look but there are both soft and hard spots. The lightly veined wrapper is not at all uniform in color but rather mottled. It is primarily a cocoa brown but with splashes and splotches of very dark brown to black all over. Pre-light draw is very good and my initial impressions once lit are of an above medium strength cigar with nutty, toasty tobacco notes, no spice to speak of, and a somewhat dry mouth of smoke. As the cigar gets going the flavors are still present but that initial burst is now much-muted. The burn is a bit uneven and the ash is a slightly flakey light to medium grey.

Some bean flavors now, mostly vanilla but although I am still getting a good volume of smoke the flavors are still fairly muted – almost as if they are being held back somehow – and the finish is almost non-existent. Just as the flavors have been turned down, the strength also seems to have pulled back into a lighter medium range. I am having a hard time identifying this one. Not much specific in the taste since, again, all of the flavors seem to be hiding. It wasn’t an unpleasant smoke but I found it to be a bit frustrating – like trying to carry on a conversation in a loud bar with somebody that I couldn’t hear very well at all and I had to keep asking them to repeat things.

The ash held on for well over 2 inches until I finally had to touch up the burn which had gotten a bit out of hand on one side. No change in taste from the above paragraph. A large tunnel revealed itself halfway in and would account for the poor burn. I now have to work to keep it lit.

This is a difficult cigar for me to pin down as it didn’t reveal too much of itself. I am not getting much “Cuban” at all. It also seems to lack the Nicaraguan “base note” that seems prevalent in cigars from that country although there is something here that seems to be Nicaraguan. I don’t think it is Honduran either nor do I think it is from the DR. So, I am guessing this is a blended cigar with tobacco from Nicaragua and, somewhere else - for lack of a better guess, the DR although that is only a hunch.

Not Cuban but beyond that I really don’t know. To pick one I will say a blended cigar rolled in Nicaragua.

It was OK and I’d give it a straight 4.5 due to the burn issues – likely a 5 otherwise. I would smoke another but wouldn’t buy one unless they were inexpensive.

sinnyc guessed: Origin: Nicaraguan - Price: Everyday - Age: 2 years - Marca: CAO - Rating: 4.5/10

Smokyballs said: Spicy, well aged. Floral with all kinds of pepper. Smooth and Strong from start to finish

Smokyballs guessed: Origin: Dominican - Price: everyday - Age: 5 years - Marca: Montesino Toro Sungrown - Rating: 8/10

tone-ny said: This cigar had a dark wrapper its ash was medium to dark grey in appearance. Burn was even and consistent throughout..

Initial light produced a harshness and strong spice throughout. This cigar reminded me of the recent batch of certain Bolivar Royal Corona recent vintage. This cigar was of newer vintage whatever it was. The nose was strong throughout the whole cigar. If it is a BRC, which I smoke on a regular basis this version need to rest. Had a slight box press and was slightly longer than a BRC, so I am at a loss to determine what it is for certain.

This one threw me for a loop. Can't tell what it is!

tone-ny guessed: Origin: Cuba - Price: Everyday - Age: 1 year - Marca: Bolivar Royal Corona - Rating: 7/10

.....

Results Summary

Origin: 2 Cuban, 8 non-Cuban

Price: 0 budget, 6 everyday, 3 premium, 1 super-premium

Age: High: 7 years, Low: 1 year, Average: 3.4 years

Marca: Don Pepin: 2, Tatuaje: 1, Ramon Allones: 1, Bolivar: 1, Punch: 1, CAO: 1, Montesino: 1, Fuente: 1, Unknown: 1

Rating: High: 9/10, Low: 4/10, Average: 6.45/10

Cigar #5 was actually a: non-Cuban Ashton ESG Robusto, 2007 (5 1/4" x 52) - super-premium

Who nailed it: No one, really... Brickhouse came the closest, though

....

Commentary

So this is an interesting one. This is one of the more expensive cigars in the taste testing, but the ratings of all of the cigars have been pretty constant regardless of price. In every review thus far, some people have loved the cigar, some people have hated the cigar, and some are in the middle giving mediocre ratings. It's instructive that each review is "all over the map" in terms of the ratings, and none thus far have been universally loved or universally hated.

I've long been hoping that these Ashton ESGs will turn out to be as nice as the VSG ERs from 2002... the ingredients are there, but the cigars perhaps need a few more years to achieve VSG ER status (if ever).

Interestingly, most people thought this cigar was Nicaraguan or Honduran in origin. Only Brickhouse got that it had an Opus X Rosado wrapper on it, and thus was Dominican (though Smokyballs got part of that too). As surprising as the Nicaraguan/Honduran guesses are, the guesses of Cuban for the origin for this cigar are perhaps more surprising.

Again, reading the reviews of this cigar from various people may make you wonder if they are smoking the same cigar. Taste is one crazy and "fuzzy" sense indeed! Note once again how some people said the cigar was very strong, and other said it was very subtle/muted?

Still waiting for that dog rocket, tone-ny? :)
 

tone-ny

I smoke therefore I am!
Yes I am.

I had a feeling it was an Ashton, but the strength threw me off along with the box press. Guess I better stop looking at the cigar and just smoke it :laugh:
 

insight

Making friends everywhere!
It all makes sense now! I knew I detected some opus flavor but lacking something. I am not a fan of ESG's thus far and this was no exception. The rest of the ones I have are down for a long nap.
 

Brickhouse

J.C. Newman owes me royalties.
Well I was really glad to hear that Opus X Rosado wrapper bit, because I was absolutey torn between an Opus X and the DC 30th. I wasn't aware of the make up of the ESG, so that never crossed my mind.

Again, I thought this was the best cigar I've had thus far in this Blind Taste Test.....outstanding.


Ugg....planned again on smoking #6 tonight but instead had about 10 Coors Lights and 6 7and7s. So it'll have to wait yet again.
 

indyrob

You smell like my sausage!
What really threw me for a loop was B-Rad thought it was a Montesino SG...if that's the case I need to pick a couple up and check them out. I've always passed on them before but if my buddy B can smoke an ESG and say that it's a montesino, I need to pick one up for myself.

I'm not kidding either!
 

moki

el Presidente
What really threw me for a loop was B-Rad thought it was a Montesino SG...if that's the case I need to pick a couple up and check them out. I've always passed on them before but if my buddy B can smoke an ESG and say that it's a montesino, I need to pick one up for myself.

I'm not kidding either!
Montesinos and Cuesta Reys are actually quite good cigars.
 

Wurm

Bratwurst and Beer
What really threw me for a loop was B-Rad thought it was a Montesino SG...if that's the case I need to pick a couple up and check them out. I've always passed on them before but if my buddy B can smoke an ESG and say that it's a montesino, I need to pick one up for myself.

I'm not kidding either!
Montesinos and Cuesta Reys are actually quite good cigars.
That they are indeed, the first "really good" cigar I ever smoked was a Cuesta Rey.
 

grateful1

Oh My!
Nice one.

That was my first ESG....it will be sometime before I have another.
The initial 'bite' the cigar had does remind me of some opus (at the start).

As far as a Nicaraguan weed.....that was a guess!
As far as size....that seemed like a BIG robusto...although it's Moki's 'robusto'!

Funny, after basing my last on on 'looks' and trying not to do that this time....I had to almost convince myself this was a 'Tat'. I didn't comment on it, but hte wrapper looked really nice! :)
 

Smokyballs

The nap master
Sungrown Montesinos are awesome! I thought that Andrew had gotten a hold of a box of a size that wasn't production made. ESG makes since! Similar profiles.
 

BlindedByScience

Proud Father of a brave U.S. Marine
Nice one.

That was my first ESG....
I'd never had one either. Got to say, though I "mis-diagnosed" this one, it was a really wonderful smoke..... :love:

So, even though I can't guess the smoke worths a darn, I've sure enjoyed smoking them and seeing what my CP friends thought of them as well.... :cool:

Thanks again, Andrew - on to #6 - B.B.S.
 

Brickhouse

J.C. Newman owes me royalties.
I seriously thought this was one of the best smokes I've had in months. I was happy to see that it was an ESG because I didn't think much of the Churchill, glad to know the robusto is kick ass.
 
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