Sunday, April 11, 2010

601 Blue Label Maduro

Time for another review! Stepping up to the plate is the EO 601 Blue Box Press
Stats are as follows:

Size: 5.25 x 52
Shape: Box Pressed Robusto
Origin: Nicaragua
Body: Medium-Full
Wrapper: Nicaragua Habano Maduro
Binder: Nicaragua
Filler: Nicaragua

I really enjoy the way a good box pressed cigar smokes. Because of the even burn and excellent flavor that this shape often provides, it’s my go-to shape after the robusto. This lovely and delicious offering, blended by master blender Don Pepin Garcia, is no exception.

When I slid this stick out of its cellophane, I gave and admiring, “Oooh.” The overall presentation is excellent: simple and elegant, bound by a single band displaying blue, red, and gold. Classy. However, I did have an issue with the band: it pulled off a small square of the wrapper with it when removed.

Despite the small missing patch, the wrapper was beautifully dark, shiny, and smooth to the touch, with scents of sweet earth and spice in the pre-light aroma. Testing the draw showed the construction of this cigar to be excellent; firm but wide open. Sweet and earthy notes were apparent and had me itching to put a flame to the foot of this stick.

Upon lighting, I tasted spicy sweetness with earth and leather notes in the background. The first quarter of this cigar was complex and interesting, billowing creamy smoke which filled my palate with earthy notes blended with hints of nut, spice, sweetness, and leather. By the end of the first quarter, the body had started to build up a bit and remained medium bodied for most of the cigar. A first class start!

From here on out, the creamy smoke remained very consistent with an earthy leathery sweetness. The spice remained a background presence, mostly notable when exhaled through the nose. The burn was remarkably even throughout and I only experienced a slight run once. No touch ups were ever necessary. I don’t know about you, but I certainly appreciate a low maintenance cigar, and this one fit the bill.

The finish was long and excellent, revving up to a full bodied and spicy smoke to finish off this delicious cigar.

I really enjoyed the 601 Blue Box Press and may buy another from time to time. For the price, I’d say you’re definitely getting what you paid for, but it’s not a poor man’s cigar. A poor man’s once-in-a-while treat, but if you’re operating on a budget, a box purchase may not be in your future. If your budget is a bit more flexible, I’d consider burning a few of these to see if a box of these and your humidor should meet. You may just find that they should.

Happy smoking!

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