Long Robusto or Short Toro, 5.75” x 50 ring gauge / $9.75, Silo Cigars
Branded cigar lounges are becoming more and more popular these days it seems. Everyone knows about Casa Fuente in Vegas, and just about as many people know about Club Macanudo in New York and Casa de Montecristo in Chicago. Rocky Patel has Burn down in Naples, Florida; La Gloria Cubana lounges are popping up in a few places around the country. I can’t speak for all of the situations, but in some instances it is a way for a cigar shop to get a helping hand with the cost of remodeling as long as they remodel with all the advertising directed to the sponsoring company. Not a bad trade-off, in my opinion. Like I said...I don’t know that they all work that way. Recently Silo Cigars in Knoxville, Tennessee, has become one of the small club to be a “My Father Lounge” and with that honor comes the right to carry the Lounge Exclusive cigar by My Father (will other changes happen at the shop? You’ll have to ask them...I don’t want to spread rumors about what will or won’t happen or when...I’m just here to talk about this cigar!). The My Father Lounge Exclusive has been described as “Robusto-ish” but at 5.75 inches it almost meets the definition of a Toro...maybe with a couple extra ring gauge it would have been called that. The blend is unknown, but it is fairly safe to guess Nicaraguan for filler and binder...I honestly can’t remember any My Father creations off the top of my head that don’t use all Nicaraguan for filler and binder...I’m sure there are some...if you do happen to know what the filler and binder makeup of this cigar is, feel free to leave those details in the comments. The wrapper is said to be a Sungrown Ecuadorian Habano. This review sample in the second I’ve smoked...one of them was given to me and one was paid for.
I love the look of this cigar. They start with the classic My Father band and add a secondary “Lounge Exclusive” band that matches the diecut of the main band. It’s ornate, cool and classy. The cigar under those bands is pretty spectacular, too. When I was at Silo I could easily compare the Lounge edition to the regular My Fathers next to them and see that this was several shades of brown darker. It almost looked like a maduro, for that matter, and I had to ask to make sure it wasn’t. The wrapper was quite oily and slightly velvety to the touch and it had a couple medium sized veins. Feeling along the length, it was packed well enough that I had some early concerns about how the draw would be...but there’s no way to really know until it’s cut and lit. The wrapper had a rich aroma of earth and cocoa; the foot was more of a pungent manure earthiness, but some sweeter notes were there, too. Despite being very firm, there did not seem to be any issue with the draw once I clipped off the cap. The cold draw flavor was very nice...a rich semi-sweet chocolate with a little bit of pepper spice.
On lighting, I got a strong earthy flavor with a little black coffee and cocoa powder on the palate and a painful blast of red pepper on the nose. If you have forgotten what a My Father pepper blast is like, just retrohale one of these right after lighting and you won't be forgetful anymore. Wow! And to my surprise the spice didn't die down a lot after 10 minutes, either, like it does on so many cigars. As the first third burned through, I found lots of earthiness with just enough sweetness to provide some balance and a searingly peppery retrohale. The spice started to spread across my palate as the third burned on, too. In regard to body, I would call this cigar medium to full during the first third.
As I finished the first third and puffed on into the second, I noticed that construction was excellent, something we have been conditioned to expect from the My Father lines. The draw was perfect, the ash held on for over an inch, and the burn line was almost perfectly straight with no help from a lighter to touch it up. Flavor in the second third was still very earthy with lots of dark roast coffee in it and just a touch of the woody, cedary note that is so prevalent in the regular My Father line.
By the time the final third was underway, the spice had left the retrohale almost completely, leaving a nice roasted nuttiness. On the palate, I got more cedar and an increase of pepper spice along with the continued presence of dark, earthy flavor. I have to say I really enjoyed this smoke; I found it pleasing and complex from start to finish. This may be the best of the My Father lines. It did get to a point of full bodied by the end but never overwhelmingly so and the nicotine strength was never too much, either. Definitely not a cigar for beginners, but experienced cigar enthusiasts should order some of these and be prepared to enjoy themselves, especially if you like what the other My Father lines have to offer. I know for a fact that as I write this Silo Cigars in Knoxville has "a few" boxes on hand and I'm sure they would be happy to ship. I'm not sure that I'm ready to commit to a whole box myself (although Keith did...ask him how he likes them!) I'll certainly be picking a few up whenever I head up that way (and with a Trader Joe's opening in Knoxville this year sometime, that's sure to be more often).