|Hoyo de Monterrey Epicure Especial|
Hoyo de Monterrey is not a common brand I smoke. Don’t get me wrong, I love the vitola’s in the lineup, but it is just not a common smoke for me. I love the Hoyo Double Corona but when I am going to put that amount of time into a smoke I want something more along the lines of Partagas, Punch or my Ramon Allones DC’s. Though the cigars are very flavorful they are bit too mild for my taste and I find that these are great cigar for the morning time with a nice cappuccino. The only problem with that is that I don’t have time in the morning for a cappuccino and cigar that often. I would smoke a cigar most mornings if I had the time but I find myself working out and rushing into my workday or busy weekend. The Epicure Especial is a very popular vitola in the lineup and has really grown in status since its initial release in 2008. Originally released with the H. Upmann Magnum 50 the cigar probably found itself struggling to keep up with the big and bold H. Upmann. After some years though the cigar grew and grew and lo and behold it is now loved by some of the finest of cigar smokers. I am not sure what I mean when I say “finest of cigar smokers,” but it sounds good.
The cigar measures 5 ½” with a 50 ring gauge and has a beautiful triple cap. The wrapper is very light and silky, similar to a Connecticut Shade and has wonderful aromas of caramel, honey and leather. I am picking up a slight bit of cinnamon in the aroma but it is a mild spice. I have seen this cigar with a darker wrapper and much oilier but it is not uncommon to see variance in color shades on Cuban cigars. A lot of my friends out of the US who smoke Cubans prefer certain cigars with different colored wrappers because of the variance in flavors they can have. I am not sure if the cigar falls into the robusto extra family or corona gorda, but I really believe that if the ring gauge is above 49 you can’t put the word corona in the title or vitola size so I am going to refer to it as a robusto extra.
The cigar begins by showing a lot of the notes from the aroma but with a nice wood and cream presence as well. The cigar is very mild in body but burning very evenly. I would say there is some spice present but not very noticeable. As the cigar progresses into the second third there in an emergence of floral notes with leather, but I am also still picking up the honey and cream that was present in the first third. I haven’t had any relights or burn problems with the cigar so far and the amount of smoke the cigar is producing is very nice. When I get into the final third the cigar becomes much more rich then I expected with wonderful notes of chocolate and cinnamon, but it still shows mostly wood and floral flavors to it. I would say the cigar ends medium in body but the first two thirds are definitely mild.
I would give this cigar a 90 rating for its flavors but overall I was not that impressed with the smoke. I think there are other vitola’s in the line which are better, being more complex and flavorful, but I know some love this cigar. If you are a fan of mild Cuban cigars with wonderful flavors and cigars measuring in this area, then this is your cigar. I think the Hoyo de Monterrey line is quite enjoyable but I would prefer the robusto or double corona format over it. The cigars are just a little too mild for my taste and lacking the strength that I look for. I prefer cigars that have more complex flavors that you can get with stronger tobacco. With that being said these are incredibly flavorful mild cigars and a treat to those who prefer something soft.