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HC Series takes Habano leaf even higher.
It seemed like only a matter time before HC Series became a crowd favorite. So far, HC Series' foray into the cigar industry has gone fairly well. HC Series earned '91' and '92' ratings from Cigar Aficionado and earned Top 25 Best Cigar accolades for 2008 and '09. Not a bad start, huh?
While the original HC Series Habano set the table for the burgeoning cigar line, their expansion to the Habano2 is what propelled them to stardom. Handcrafted in Estelí, Nicaragua, the blend features Sumatran, Nicaraguan, and Honduran long-fillers that make a smooth, but not soft, smoking experience. A medium to full-bodied blend with some beef in the broth, it's the oily Habano 2000 wrapper that deserves the spotlight of this stunner. When applied over the savory long-leaf beneath, the end result is a richly complex, rewarding cigar. Nutty nuances ebb and flow, enabling an underscore of cayenne & cocoa with a luxurious leathery finish.
I had seen the Xikar HC Series cigars in catalogs & on websites, but had not tried any of the blends for fear of them being an afterthought for a company that hawks cutters & lighters. They certainly look nice & folks were saying good things about them, yet I resisted. Then I got an opportunity to try Habano2, as a part of a sampler featuring AJ Fernandez full bodied blends. The God-like blending master has something to do with the making of habano2? Good enough for me. Now I have to say, Habano2 is in no way, full bodied. Medium/full at best. But it is darn tasty! Well-constructed, heavy in the hand & gently box pressed, it is a lovely example of medium bodied, woody, cedary, toasty, leathery, mildly spicy & lightly peppery goodness, that remains fairly affordable. A hint of strawberries on the retro-hale adds a depth to the overall experience, which takes this non-aggressive, but quite complex blend over the top. Well done! A good midafternoon vitola or a complementary morning offering with espresso. Just bold enough to keep a true fullhead like myself interested from beginning to finger staining end. Mildheads might find it a good interloper between the pale & lackluster Macanudoey Connecticut blends they are used to & the full scale assault on the senses spleefs like Spectre, Diesel Wicked & Joyo de Nicaragua Antano, that prove too much for their gentle sensitivities. I look forward to trying a few of the other blends soon, with Habano Colorado 1st on that list. Habano2 Toro earns an 89 rating. Which is darn good, since I don't like the recent tendency to fork over 90+ ratings to every Tom, Dick & Harry joint that stays lit!
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