Chinchalero Picadillos (NC)

(Size 4″ x 52 — Time: 45)

The Plymouth Jazz and Blues Festival! Now a few weeks past, but an excellent event lasting nine days around the historic Barbican area of town. Lots of stages, lots of quality acts, great views across the harbour. What more could you want? Well, a cigar, perhaps? And so it was that I settled down one afternoon for a drink, a live jazz performance and a Chinchalero Picadillo cigar. The Chinchalero range of cigars is one of a limited (though ever expanding) selection of non-Cubans which are available in the UK.

Appearance /15

Not a bad looking cigar (apologies for the lack of a picture this time). A good even shade of colour, nice firm feel and well applied cap. The cigar’s band is bright blue and quite sleek. Just a small number of small veins detract from the Picadillo‘s look. 14

Smoking Characteristics /25

On lighting I needed to do a little bit of touching up to get the burn nice and even. Also at the start I had to suffer a loose draw, which didn’t produce a lot of smoke. Thankfully this rectified itself quite quickly and the draw firmed up to an ideal level of resistence and the smoke became more voluminous than before. After the slight issues with the very start of the Picadillo it started to smoke very well in general: a very crisp and even burnline throughout, good draw, nice smoke and a nice, solid ash. A very minor observation would be a small amount of coning around the half-way point, but generally excellent! 23

Flavour /25

The early draws of the Picadillo had grassy notes which developed towards a reasonably strong liquorice flavour early in the cigar. I should state for objectivity’s sake (or semi-objectivity at any rate) that liquorice is a flavour which is not exactly at the top of my favourites list… In fact, pretty much anything aniseedy is not my cup of tea. The liquorice soon faded away and the grassiness came back as the predominant flavour. By around half-way, however, the pungent grasiness subsided and a more general ‘green’ earthiness set in. So, the early half was a well flavoured cigar if grass and liquorice are your bag, meanwhile the second half didn’t have so much character but was less likely to offend the palate… 18

Overall Impression /35

Overall this was a decent, good value cigar. Whilst not to my taste at times it did offer a little, if not a lot, of variation throughout the smoking experience. The burn was good after a post-lighting touch-up and the ash was solid. Despite a poor draw in the early going it tightened up nicely within minutes of lighting. There’s not a lot about this cigar which will set the world on fire, but not much to offend either. 29

Grand total… 84/100

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