Last month, Ashton announced an addition to its popular “La Aroma de Cuba” line.  This one is called the “Marquis”.  Actually this cigar has been around for a few years, but was discontinued.  In March of last year, Ashton Cigars brought back the Marquis as a promotional cigar for distribution at events.  The cigar proved to be popular, therefore Ashton has decided to add the cigar as a regular part of the La Aroma de Cuba brand.

There are two unique characteristics with this cigar – first up, it is packaged in the red and tan tube.  Secondly, it is the thinnest ring gauge of the La Aroma de Cuba line – this cigar only is available in a 5.5 x 48 vitola.

Let’s take a closer look at the composition of the blend:

Wrapper: Honduran
Binder: Honduran
Filler: Honduran/Nicaraguan

Normally I don’t get too “wrapped up” with cigar experience, but in this case, the wrapper on this cigar is beautiful.  It is smooth and silky and really makes this cigar a work of cigar art.   I also normally do put too much into a pre-light draw ritual, but was curious with this particular cigar.   The notes I got on this cigar’s pre-light draw were chocolate and coffee.

For this cigar experience, I punched a hole into the smooth cap and then toasted the foot.   The initial flavor notes I got were those of pepper and coffee.   The pepper was nowhere near “Pepin-like” in terms of a strong pepper blast.   It doesn’t take long for a pleasant cedar sweetness to emerge.   That cedar sweetness is mixed with some basic wood notes and it quickly overtakes the pepper/coffee from earlier on.  As the smoke progresses, the cedar sweetness and the wood notes seem to alternate in which flavor is dominant.   This was not an overly complex cigar, but an extremely smooth smoke.  It had a very good cool and firm finish to it that was not harsh.  Overall, not a strong cigar from a strength profile or flavor notes profile – I’d put strength and body each in the medium category.

Another reason why I was intrigued by the appearance is I wanted to see if the construction of this cigar held up to how it looked.   This cigar had an incredibly good burn – it burned razor sharp, not too fast, and not too hot.  The draw was equally as good.

While the flavor notes did not have me doing handstands, this wasn’t a bad cigar.   As for the La Aroma de Cuba line, I’d much prefer the more robust and complex La Aroma de Cuba Mi Amor.   This cigar was very smooth, and was extremely well-made.  The Marquis falls squarely into the value-priced range of $5.00 – $7.00, so it’s well priced.   I also think this is the perfect cigar to graduate a new smoker who is into mild cigars into something more in the medium range.  Overall, I assess it at the lower end of “Nice to Have”.

Burn: Excellent
Draw: Excellent
Complexity: Low
Strength: Medium
Body: Medium
Assessment: Nice to Have