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The Groucho Experiment

TexasTraveler

I'm kind of a big deal
Joined
Mar 12, 2020
Messages
4,759
I have been giving the opportunity to review some amazing sticks by @groucho898 I will post the collection of these reviews here in a single thread to make it easy to research and follow along. I know that I am going to enjoy the smoking part of this experiment, but I hope to give some insight on what the aging process has done for these cigars along the way. Please feel free to interact here and give your thoughts and experiences about the reviews and the cigars. Well without further ado I give you the contents of this series.
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“If you're not having fun, you're doing something wrong.”
― Groucho Marx
 
Gispert Habanero #2

Box code 11/1987

Dry boxed for two days

First couple of puffs is very pleasant with a sweet herbal note. As I smoke through the first third, I realize the cigar was very buttery, like a good unsalted creamy butter. By the end of the first the butter had turned more earthy and a hint of cedar. As I go into the second third the cigar starts to transition to a sweet hay and light cedar on the retro, very nice. The sweet hay and cedar continue through the second. I thought that the cigar was going to transition again as I entered the final third, as I started to pick up on some earthy notes again, but the sweet hay and light cedar came back immediately. As I worked my way through the final third, I started to get some tar build up, giving some bitterness to the smoke, so I recut and bam sweet hay returned with a delicious, browned butter taste. As a I nubbed this down to millimeters I got one final surprise of oak wood for the last couple of puffs. This cigar was a great little smoke, and I am glad I picked this one to start with. Although the notes are not exactly the same, it reminded me of a nicely aged PLPC. I would smoke this with my morning latte, in the afternoon after lunch, or for a pre-dinner snack. It had a perfect draw and had no need for any touch ups or relights.

“While money can't buy happiness, it certainly lets you choose your own form of misery.”
― Groucho Marx
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Hoyo De Monterrey Epicure no. 2

Box code APG JUN 2018

Dry boxed for five days

First third i am getting a light woody note, with a slight sweetness, possibly molasses with a white pepper on the retro, The notes are all subtle but easily recognizable. As I get into the second third the cigar is transitioning from the woody note to more of a leather with what seems to be a more nutty floral note on the retro. The second is bringing more of a little sweetness like honey on the tongue, with some cinnamon and almond on the retro. Starting to get another transition moving into the third with cream and baking spices. Now that I am into the third definitely picking up on cream and toasted nuts, but the retro is leaning more towards a cedar note. As I make my way through the third I am getting earth, leather, baking spices. What started as a pretty mild cigar has started to bump up to more of a medium profile with more of a black pepper on the retro. I was already enjoying this cigar, but then in the last inch or so, it went to another level. Cream with a hint of vanilla, baking spices, floral cedar and hint of white pepper on retro. Just fantastic! Draw and burn were phenomenal. The 4-5 years of aging on this cigar have been very kind to it, and if you have a HdM Epicure no. 2 with a few years on it, go smoke one now, you will not be disappointed. Just a silky smooth, complex, fantastic cigar!

“Those are my principles, and if you don't like them...well I have others.”
― Groucho Marx
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Aaron, we all know I am not a CC guy, but this is interesting reading and I am happy you have the opportunity. Really amazed at the age on most of these and will be looking forward to more of your notes as you go through them.
 
Great thread!

Those Gisperts I bought the box in 1998 and they already had 10 years on them. I've never smoked one. It's using the box code cryptography that was before NIVEL ACUSO.

One of the guys on CA Forum "The Bear" had a friend who had a bunch of boxes and offered them to me. I took one. They were wrapped in celophane but I unwrapped them after about 6 or 8 years, for some unknown reason.

The HdM 50 cab I purchased this past summer from a H & F distributor who somehow had 2018s in stock. The cigars look, smell and burned great but the one I tried was a bit ho hum, needing some age maybe as it was a little lacking in flavor. I used to love Epicure #2, especially in the 50 cab back in the late 90s. Maybe after time has passed (me getting older)I need a much stronger smoke?

I think I need to get my tastebuds to the shop as soon as possible.

Thanks TT for taking this on and note I've got about 8-10 more that didn't make it into this first batch, including that Montie #2.
 
Ramon Allones Specially Selected - RASS

Box code SOC MAY 2001

Dry boxed for 5 days

Stick feels a little hard to the touch and the wrapper has a few dings, dry draw seems a little tight, but not bad enough to do anything. Time to light it up and see where this goes. Right off the bat I am getting some sweet hay and just a small hint of cedar. Working my way through the first third, I start to pick up on something on the retro that I will describe as honeysuckle. In the second the sweet hay is still present, but it is joined by a light expresso flavor and lemon zest. The wrapper is starting to have issues with cracking. By the end of the second I am getting a more nutty profile maybe cashew, and the espresso has turned to a milk chocolate profile, retro is definitely dried fruit and baking spices. Wrapper issues are getting worse as I enter the final third, basically the cigar is unraveling at this point, but the flavors are still there. Profile hasn't changed since the second, but the flavors have gotten more pronounced, still nutty chocolate, baking spices, and dried fruit. If it wasn't for the wrapper issues, which I think came from the cigar being rolled a little to tight, and the wrapper not being able to hold up to the pressures of the expanding inner filler and binder. this would have been another great smoke. Not an overly complex cigar, but an enjoyable one as it pertained to the flavor profile.

“From the moment I picked up your book until I put it down, I was convulsed with laughter. Some day I intend reading it.”
Groucho Marx
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Partagas Serie D No. 4 aka PSD4

Box code MUL DIC 2013 :oops:

First puff is very pleasant with cocoa and cream with orange zest on the retro. The cocoa continues but I am starting to get a toasted note that paired with the cream almost comes across as toasted meringue, delicious. Not even to the second yet and starting to taste the flavors we all think of when we think Partagas, woody cedar and oak notes are starting to build, with a hint of baking spices on the retro. Into the second the wood notes are prominent along with some nutty sweetness still in the background. I am also picking up something that is similar to ginger spice. As I enter the third I am greeted with leather and a light peppery note along with the wood notes. Halfway through the third cigar started to get a little bitter, but not in an off putting way, more like a British tea type of bitterness, but with less than an inch left, what had been a great smoke to this point the bitterness has taking over and has made it unpleasant to smoke. There was no tar build up on the cigar, but I went ahead and clipped it to see if it may help and to my disappointment it did not. I could have continued to smoke this one, but did not want the last inch to ruin what was a very nice smoke up until that point. No nubbing this one. The burn and construction on the PSD4 was perfect with zero issues.

“I'm not crazy about reality, but it's still the only place to get a decent meal.”
― Groucho Marx
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Partagas Serie D No. 4 aka PSD4

Box code MUL DIC 2013

First puff is very pleasant with cocoa and cream with orange zest on the retro. The cocoa continues but I am starting to get a toasted note that paired with the cream almost comes across as toasted meringue, delicious. Not even to the second yet and starting to taste the flavors we all think of when we think Partagas, woody cedar and oak notes are starting to build, with a hint of baking spices on the retro. Into the second the wood notes are prominent along with some nutty sweetness still in the background. I am also picking up something that is similar to ginger spice. As I enter the third I am greeted with leather and a light peppery note along with the wood notes. Halfway through the third cigar started to get a little bitter, but not in an off putting way, more like a British tea type of bitterness, but with less than an inch left, what had been a great smoke to this point the bitterness has taking over and has made it unpleasant to smoke. There was no tar build up on the cigar, but I went ahead and clipped it to see if it may help and to my disappointment it did not. I could have continued to smoke this one, but did not want the last inch to ruin what was a very nice smoke up until that point. No nubbing this one. The burn and construction on the PSD4 was perfect with zero issues.

“I'm not crazy about reality, but it's still the only place to get a decent meal.”
― Groucho Marx
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great review. It does not surprise me that PSD4 aged so well. Great and powerful cigar to start with = better and more refined cigar with age 👍
 
Some great takes on some great smokes Aaron! If I may make a request, can you add the smoke durations? People drastically underestimate just how important smoking time is. I see dudes at lounges all the time just plowing through their cigars. Makes me wonder how the hell they taste anything.

Especially as the liquor keeps flowing.. which I've been guilty of countless times. Thanks for the consideration and I can't wait to read the rest! 👍
 
Some great takes on some great smokes Aaron! If I may make a request, can you add the smoke durations? People drastically underestimate just how important smoking time is. I see dudes at lounges all the time just plowing through their cigars. Makes me wonder how the hell they taste anything.

Especially as the liquor keeps flowing.. which I've been guilty of countless times. Thanks for the consideration and I can't wait to read the rest! 👍
I am a notoriously slow smoker. Yesterdays robusto was about 1hr 10 minutes and that’s me staying completely focused on reviewing the cigar. 👍🏻
 
A robusto will usually take about 1 hour and 30 minutes on average for me...
Me too... I tend to smoke a little faster if I am reviewing a cigar, instead of just relaxing. I was at 1hr10min with just under an inch left if it wouldn't have gotten bitter on me, so I probably would have been closer to 1hr30+ mark and that was focused smoking for review.
 
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RYJ Belicosos

Box code ARA MAR 2001

Very mild flavors initially, slight hints of grass, cherry and honey. Working through the first getting some wood notes. As I get to the second, starting to get some fruity notes along with the woody notes and what I think Jeff best describes as grandmas attic. As the second continues getting a little chocolate and cinnamon, reminding me of a Chai Tea Latte. As Second ends earthy notes are prominent with wood and a hint of chocolate. Third is bringing a little more chocolate along with cedar and earth. This cigar smoked perfect with no touch ups, the notes were subtle but present, which would be expected for a cigar with 20+ years on it.

Smoke time 1hr 50 min

The secret of life is honesty and fair dealing. If you can fake that, you've got it made. - Groucho Marx
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RYJ Belicosos

Box code ARA MAR 2001

Very mild flavors initially, slight hints of grass, cherry and honey. Working through the first getting some wood notes. As I get to the second, starting to get some fruity notes along with the woody notes and what I think Bill best describes as grandmas attic. As the second continues getting a little chocolate and cinnamon, reminding me of a Chai Tea Latte. As Second ends earthy notes are prominent with wood and a hint of chocolate. Third is bringing a little more chocolate along with cedar and earth. This cigar smoked perfect with no touch ups, the notes were subtle but present, which would be expected for a cigar with 20+ years on it.

Smoke time 1hr 50 min

The secret of life is honesty and fair dealing. If you can fake that, you've got it made. - Groucho Marx
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Fixed it for you
Great cigar and review...
:)
 
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