Alonso Menendez No10 (NC)

(Size: 6 1/2″ x 42  —  Time: 1hr 25mins)

There was a brief break in the clouds yesterday, so I decided to take a late opportunity for a cigar by the water (I say that as I look out at clear blue skies…) I grabbed an Alonso Menendez No10, the brand’s Lonsdale offering, and made my way to the pub. Grabbing a pint of Tinners Ale (very nice by the way), I sat down and lit up my first Brazilian puro:

Appearance /15

The No10 has a fairly agricultural looking maduro wrapper. There are a few veins around the place, some rough seams and a cap which isn’t all that neatly applied. However, the pig-tail on the cap is a nice little touch, and the wonderous lustre of the oily wrapper more than compensates for it’s general unsightliness. The oil makes it great to feel, and it is firm to the touch, but not hard. 12

Smoking Characteristics /25

In a word? Perfect. This cigar lit perfectly first time; burned as evenly as any cigar I’ve smoked, with a really crisp burn line (all the way from the head to the nub); and had one of the best and most consistent draws I’ve experienced. The ash was fairly light and pretty solid. There really was not a single thing wrong with this cigars construction – even the aroma of the smoke was pretty pleasant. 25

Flavours /25

Early draws were full of smooth, milk chocolate flavours. Soon there was a creamy nuttiness which joined in. After around ten minutes, the flavour of note became fennel. It was very mild, with a clean, fresh and aniseedy flavour. Then citrus came through, with orange and lime flavours at the back end of the draw. Soon after, a little bit of chocolate came back, but the orange remained, providing the cigar equivalent of a Terry’s Chocolate Orange… A sip of the Tinners Ale, I noted, really brought out the citrus after-taste. Around the half-way stage, a herbiness started to dominate the flavours, but there was still just an element of chocolate at the back of the draw. Then the fennel returned, this time slightly stronger, but still palatable – not my favourite of flavours, but I won’t hold it against the cigar… As the cigar neared its close, some ‘green’ cocoa started to become noticeable, along with a good earthiness. Finally, hints of herbaceous flavours and a touch of pepperiness brought it to a close. 22

Overall Impression /35

I thought that the Alonso Menendez No10 is an astonishing cigar for the price (around £3 in the UK – where you can find them). It lasts the best part of one and a half hours, and it is smooth throughout (if not especially flavourful); then there’s the absolutely faultless construction. The flavours were fine and smooth, but always very mild, which suited this cigars light body very well. My friend Ellison, who I gave one today was also a fan of this cigar, citing its smooth characteristics. For all its significant good though, there was just a little something missing – the ‘x-factor’ if you will (NOT a reference to the shoddy, embarassing, cheap TV programme). It’s not exciting enough to get top marks, but good enough to keep it in the 90s overall. 32

Grand total… 91/100

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