I’ve been a well known fan of the team at Ashton and San Cristobal Cigars for a long time now. They create some of the most well balanced, flavorful cigars in their price range. So when I chanced upon a few San Cristobal Quintessence cigars at Nat Sherman on 42nd st, I picked them up for this review.
Enough chit chat, let’s find out how this cigar performs.
- Wrapper: Ecuadorian Habano
- Binder: Nicaragua
- Filler: Nicaragua
- Size: 5.5″x 50 (Robusto)
Appearance and Construction
Like other San Cristobal cigars, the Quintessence is moderately soft to the touch. There are some veins apparent, as well as other minor imperfections. The wrapper is just a shade lighter than milk chocolate. The band features the beautiful artwork so typical of San Cristobal, with the parrot centered dramatically.
Flavor and Smoke Characteristics
First third kicks off plenty with of smoke. Notes include black pepper, wood, toasted bread, and a slightly sweet, creamy flavor. It’s apparent right away that this is a sipping cigar: one that has a delicate balance of flavors and shouldn’t be smoked too quickly or flavors degrade. By an inch in, the flavors have diversified. The pepper has drawn back and joining it are notes of cloves, vanilla, and grass.
By the halfway mark, the flavor has moved from medium to medium full. Whereas in the first third the pepper was dominant on the retrohale, in the second third the retrohale is a bit gentler. By halfway, construction has remained solid and smoke production is still high
Moving into the final third, notes include pepper, some salt, floral, and creamy sweetness. Body is solid medium.
I don’t know what the guys at Halfwheel were smoking when they gave this cigar an 82 rating (ok, theirs is the Bellicoso size). The San Cristobal Quintessence is a phenomenal cigar for the new or veteran Smoker. You can buy the San Cristobal Quintessence from Famous Smoke Shop, our recommended retail partner, here.
Final grade: A