Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Nick's Sticks Sun Grown Robusto

Size: 5 X 52
Shape: Robusto
Origin: Nicaragua
Body: Medium
Wrapper: Sun Grown Nicaraguan
Binder: Nicaraguan
Filler: Nicaraguan
Smoke Clock: 45 mins

Having ended the season at CRT, I spent last week with friends. We worked in their garden, and when they went to their day jobs, I participated in one of my favorite past times. That’s right, you guessed it: smoking.

On this particular day, clouds covered the sky, leaving the day cool and calm. I sauntered out onto the porch to enjoy the pick of the day, a Nick’s Stick by Perdomo.

Now, I didn’t know a thing about this cigar when I lit up, but I can tell you this: when I discovered it was blended by Perdomo, I wasn’t at all surprised. First light was pepper, spice, and cashew euphoria; those pure flavors pouring over my pallet let me know right off the bat that this was going to be a dynamite smoke.

Sliding into the first quarter, Nick’s Stick maintained those pepper and nut flavors but the profile began to expand, showcasing some serious depth. Complex compost notes crept in here as support for the pepper and nut flavors.

Side note: One of my favorite things about a good blend that features compost notes is the way that this complex array of flavors can ebb and flow in the background to give dominance to one flavor or another as the smoke evolves. Sometimes, aspects of the compost notes will elicit a sweet note which makes the blend sing momentarily while the next moment dark earthen notes may slip in to ground the overall experience.

This was the case in this blend. With the compost notes sliding in and out (coughs) to provide fascinating yet subtle fluctuations in the blend, the cashew and pepper notes continued to float on top into the second quarter of this smoke.

Pleasantly puffing away and enjoying the mild weather of the day, I noticed a slight coffee note emerge at this juncture, with some sweet caramel supporting this new player in the profile.

As the third quarter began, deep dark earthen notes crept in, transitioning beautifully from the coffee notes that I experienced in the previous quarter of Nick’s Stick. At this point, some of the spice came back, but only through the nose. Because of its long absence, the spice note was a welcome return to the profile.

Finally setting this stick to rest, I reflected on how delicious this smoke was. The body was relatively mild-medium for me, but that didn’t stop the flavors from satisfying this smoker. The compost provided support all the way through, allowing Nick’s Stick to take me on a journey. In short, this is another dynamite Perdomo blend, which should not be missed.

Presentation: 8/10 – Although not particularly classy, the band on this stick has a certain character to it that I appreciate. It makes me think brick and mortar and I like that.

Appearance: 8/10 – The color of this wrapper is a lovely medium brown and is consistent all over. The wrapper is also oily and toothy and, at the right angle, seems to be nearly seamless. Nice job.

Construction: 32/35 – Nick’s Stick is packed firmly and consistently. Prelight draw felt a bit tight, but didn’t present any problems at all during the smoke. The burn was nice and even until the third quarter when it began to get wavy and then run a bit.

Flavor: 43/45 – The journey that this cigar took me on was comforting and delectable. The compost provided complexity and support throughout the smoke as pepper, cashew, coffee, and earth took their turns at the front.

Overall: 91/100 – A well deserved high rating goes to this medium bodied stick. I really enjoyed the complete experience with this cigar, from the prelight examination all the way down to the nub, Nick’s Sticks delivers the good.

A note on Nick’s Sticks by Perdomo:
The current Nick’s Sticks is a re-release of Nick Perdomo’s debut blend rolled in his original factory in Miami, Florida in the ‘90s. Originally available only in Florida, this re-release is more available and, as you may have guessed, Rocky’s has ‘em.

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