In my last review, I explored the El Triunfador blend by smoking the El Triunfador No. 6. El Triunfador is a line of cigars that is a line of cigars from Tatuaje. El Triunfador was the name of an old Cuban line of cigars. The brand name was resurrected by Tatuaje head Pete Johnson. This line of cigars is an alliance between Johnson and the legendary Don Pepin Garcia. The El Triunfador No. 6 is the lancero vitola from this line. It consists of an Ecuadorian Habano wrapper with Nicaraguan binder and filler. This blend was not the original version of Tatuaje’s El Triunfador. The original version was only available as a lancero, but consisted of a Connecticut Broadleaf wrapper. Therefore, I thought it would be appropriate to explore this original blend in a little more detail and see how it stacks up against its Ecuadorian Habano sibling. Like the Habano version, the Original Blend is another outstanding release.
The Habano and Connecticut Broadleaf versions produced two very different cigar experiences. Without further adieu, let’s look at an assessment of the original blend.
Like the Habano, the Original Blend features Nicaraguan binder and filler. As mentioned, the differentiating factor is the Connecticut Broadleaf wrapper.
Wrapper: Connecticut Broadleaf
The Original Blend was released well before the Habano line. It is only available as a 7 1/2 x 38 lancero vitola.
Preparation for the Cigar Experience
Because I wanted to try to simulate similar smoking experiences to the No.6 version, I opted to also use a punch cut for this cigar experience. I had done this on the specific cigar I assessed for the No. 6, so I wanted to do the same thing here. The prelight draw on the Original Blend immediately yielded notes of coffee and pepper. This dry draw was a very nice start. I then toasted my lancero and prepared for the smoking experience.
The coffee notes that I detected on the prelight draw continued on the initial draw once I lit up this cigar. I also noticed notes of chocolate that made for an interesting mocha-like start to the cigar experience of the Original Blend. While I say “mocha” to start, the coffee notes definitely migrate to more of an espresso flavor within the first 5% of the cigar experience. It is around that 5% mark where I noticed pepper creep into the flavor profile – similar to what I had on the prelight draw. The pepper wasn’t overbearing, but just perfect enough to add some spice on top of the espresso.
Around the midway point of this smoke, a sweetness emerged. I still have trouble placing my finger on this, but it had some cherry-like tones. The pepper spices also seemed to settle more into the cedar spice category. At the same time the espresso notes continue to be in the forefront. As the smoke progressed into the last third, the sweetness seems to marry nicely with the espresso and morphed to more of a hazelnut taste. My nub was soft and cool on this experience. The finish was not harsh and it was very flavorful.
Burn and Draw
The El Triunfador line with the Habano wrapper has excellent burn and draw. The quality can be traced back to this original blend as the burn and draw are excellent here as well. Pete Johnson and Don Pepin sure now how to make a cigar that has great construction and the Original Blend reflects this as well.
Strength and Body
While this Connecticut Broadleaf cigar looks stronger than its Habano sibling, it is similar from a strength profile – namely its a solid medium. The El Triunfador Original Blend is not going to overwhelm you with nicotine. Also similar to the No. 6, this cigar starts out as a medium to full bodied smoke, and then progresses to full body as the cigar experience continues. Like the No. 6 the Original Blend is a great example of a cigar with deep flavor notes and not overwhelming in terms of strength.
One thing about the No. 6 is that I felt this wasn’t an overly complex cigar. The Original Blend definitely has more in the area of complexity. As far as the flavor notes go, the No. 6 and the Original Blend flavor profiles are very different. Like the El Triunfador No. 6, I felt the lancero vitola worked very well with this blend. It is still hard to determine what whether the No. 6 or the Original Blend is the better cigar – I think it comes down to what flavor profile you are in the mood for (The No. 6 had a wonderful raisin-like sweetness while the Original Blend has a terrific espresso overtone). If I were forced to choose, I’d probably give a slight edge to the Original Blend because of the additional complexity. The Original Blend is something I would not hesitate to buy again or recommend to others.
Body: Full (Medium to Full at Start)
Assessment: Nice to Have
Disclaimer: The cigar experience described in this assessment was purchased at Cigar Vault in Staten Island, New York.