|Monte Pascoal Minutos|
Back in June, I had an opportunity to sample a cigar that isn’t your typical profile for a premium cigar. The Monte Pascoal has a distinguishing factor as being one of the few cigars that is a Brazilian puro – meaning that the wrapper, binder, and filler all come from Brazil. Brazilian tobaccos are no strangers to the world of premium cigars. There are many cigars that incorporate parts of Brazilian tobacco into the blend. However, as far as making the whole blend Brazilian – this is not a common thing. Monte Pascoal is a cigar blend that is an all-Brazilian puro. When I sampled the Monte Pascoal Robusto it was truly was a memorable cigar smoking experience. Therefore, when the folks at Monte Pascoal asked me to try another size, I was more than excited to do so.
Monte Pascoal cigars are distributed by Tabacos Mata Fina. The company itself is a business unit of a company called Orsi Family Group which is in the wine, steel, and real estate business. It was established in 2007 with the mission to promote the Brazilian tobacco industry. The cigars themselves are made in Crus sas Almas – Bahia, Brazil. Bahia is one of Brazil’s 26 states and is located on the East Coast of Brazil.
Let’s take a closer look at the Monte Pascoal Cigar:
As mentioned this is an all-Brazilian puro, meaning wrapper, binder, and filler all come from Brazil. Here is a breakfown of the specific tobaccos:
Wrapper: Brazilian Mata Fina
Binder: Brazilian Mata Fina
Filler: Brazilian Mata Fina and Brazilian Mata Norte
Brazilian Mata Fina tobacco is well-known to many. Mata Fina has been used as wrapper (ex. Gurkha Para La Gente, 7-20-4), Binder (Liga Privada No. 9, Liga Privada Dirty Rat), and Filler (Macanudo 1997 Vintage, Macanudo Cru Royale, Joya de Nicaragua’s My Uzi Weighs a Ton). I admit I was not as familiar with Mata Norte tobacco. From the Monte Pascoal web-site, they say this tobacco is what provided a more body to the smoke.
The Monte Pascoal blend is available in six vitolas:
Minutos: 4 3/8 x 42
Petit Robusto: 4 x 50
Robusto: 4 7/8 x 50
Corona: 5 5/8 x 42
Belicoso: 5 1/2 x 52
Double Corona: 7 5/8 x 49
The web-site for Monte Pascoal makes an important point on the vitolas, and this was one reason why I really wanted to smoke another vitola. It says “All of the cigars in the Monte Pascoal line are blended with these two tobaccos, in different proportions, allowing each smoking experience to be completely unique from one vitola (size) to another.” I believe this is true with most cigar blends, but based on my first experience with the Monte Pascoal Robusto, I was anxious to try another size.
Preparation for the Cigar Experience
As mentioned, this assessment is going to focus on the Minutos vitola. Given this is a thin ring gauge cigar, I opted to use a straight cut. When I assessed the Robusto, I used a punch cut. Normally, I like to use the same cut across vitolas whenever possible, but given this was a thinner ring gauge, I did not do this.
The pre-light draw gave me notes of cedar and caramel. It was very similar to the pre-light experience of the Monte Pascoal Robusto. While it wasn’t the most exciting pre-light draw, it still was satisfactory. I then went to fire up my Monte Pascoal Minutos and that is where things would change.
The Minutos started similar to the robusto vitola with notes of caramel and leather. The flavor notes definitely had more body and strength to start than the Robusto vitola. I also picked up some more spice on the Minutos than I had originally sampled on the Robusto. The spice seemed to fit a cedar profile and it was definitely more pronounced through the nostrils as opposed to the tongue. I wouldn’t call this a spice-blast to start the smoking experience of the Minutos, but it wasn’t a faint spice either.
As the smoking experience continues, the main flavor notes transition to more of a cocoa and coffee flavor as the Minutes reach the mid-point. Toward the last third of the smoking experience, the cocoa and coffee transitioned to more of a classic coffee flavor. I also detected a return of the cedar spice in the last third. Consistent with the rest of the cigar experience, the spice was more pronounced in the nostrils as opposed to the tongue.
Burn and Draw
When I sampled the Robusto, I was blown away how good the burn and draw were. With the Minutos, these attributes maintain the high standards that were set by the Robusto. The burn was razor-sharp for the cigar experience.. There were no significant touch-ups needed on this. It burned at the right rate and right temperature. Like the Robusto, the Minutos provided a very tight and white ash. The draw was outstanding from start to finish.
Here is the burn and ash of the Minutos:
|Monte Pascoal Minutos – burn and ash|
Strength and Body
Up front, I mentioned there was a little more body and strength to start out with the Minutos as opposed to the Robusto. From a nicotine standpoint, the Minutos falls squarely into the “medium” area of the strength spectrum. While there is more body on the start, the depth of the flavor notes does level down as the cigar moves past the early stages. I would say it has just enough body to qualify for “medium to full”smoke.
If you have referenced my assessment of the Monte Pascoal Robusto, you will definitely notice I had a different smoking experience than the Minutos. This is not a negative on the Minutos as this was a very good smoke. While I’m not a fan of petit coronas, the Minutos provided a very good smoking experience. This cigar is a wonderful, quick smoke for anytime of the day. I would not hesitate recommending this to either experienced or novice cigar enthusiasts. I definitely look forward to seeing more great things from Monte Pascoal.
Body: Medium to Full
Assessment: Nice to Have
Source: This cigar was provided to myself from Monte Pascoal cigars The request was initiated by Monte Pascoal to myself (Cigar Coop) to provide an assessment. In no way does this have any impact on this cigar’s assessment.