This is not the first release of Year of the Rat, but this is the first that I have tried. I was very excited to get into this one since I am a huge fan of the Liga Privada series. I literally carved out a good amount of time to sit and enjoy this alone.
Wrapper: Connecticut Broadleaf
Shape: Corona Gorda
Length: 5 1/2 inches
Filler: Honduras and Nicaragua
Pricing: (Box of 10) - $159.99
(per stick) - $15.99
I immediately noticed the care and detail put into the appearance of this cigar. The band is in typical Liga Privada fashion with a footboard stating 2020 limited edition. To finish off this amazing presentation the cigar is wrapped between the bands in golden foil. Everything about this cigar pre-smoke screams top notch.
I wanted to do something special with this one. This is something I picked up from a long time cigar smoker. It is a way to grab the cold draw then feel and taste it going into a regular draw. I toasted then end of the cigar before cutting then blew on it as if starting a campfire. Once it settled I repeated the process two more times. I then made my cut with a Colibri 1928 v-cutter and took my draw. I experienced a very creamy sweet draw with a lot of Earth. As soon as the transition happened to the regular draw I immediately tasted pepper and notes of nuttiness.
Lighting, Draw, and Burn:
This cigar lights like a champ. After my pre-smoke ritual the cut was make and I was off to the races. The draw started out a bit tight, but comfortable. It quickly became perfect and stayed that way. A flawless burn line kept true throughout this cigar as well. Lots of pleasant smoke surrounded me and it stayed lit effortlessly.
The first third of this cigar is filled my mouth with subtle sweet smoke. I immediately tasted black pepper along with Earthy tones and notes of nuttiness. There was a creamy feel to it that really put the entire flavor profile together. As we moved into the second third the pepper took itself down a few notches, but there was enough to cause a pleasant tingle on the tongue. The Earthy flavor was very much still there and running a little higher. The sweetness has died down to almost nothing, but there was still that creamy flavor to it. The best way I could describe it was hazelnut milk perhaps. As I moved into the final third the pepper was building up again. The creaminess was there and pleasant throughout. I began to pick up a wood flavor which fit into the picture perfectly. I also had hints of leather so subtle that it was barely noticeable. Although if it was removed I would have noticed immediately. From start to finish there was tons of perfectly mixed flavors which seemed to swap in and out flawlessly.
I was fortunate enough to get this ready to burn. I did put ii in the humidor for about a week though just because. I went with the Colibri 1928 v-cutter on this one. To light it up I used a classic Zippo with a duel flame butane insert.
I had extremely high expectations for this particular cigar. I was overly excited to smoke it. As luck would have it, my expectations were met and exceeded. Drew Estate hit a grand slam with this cigar. If you have the opportunity to get your hands on one of these jump on it. I also recommend waiting until you can spend an hour and change with it. You just can not rush it. This is one that was meant to be enjoyed to the fullest.