|Flor de las Antillas by My Father Cigars|
For almost the past year, there has been a lot of buzz about the La Duena line of cigars that is forthcoming by My Father Cigars. La Duena is getting a lot of attention because this is the “Janny Garcia” cigar that was blended by Tatuaje’s Pete Johnson. However, about a month ago, My Father Cigars announced another line called the “Flor de las Antillas”. The blend was created by Jaime Garcia. I recently had an opportunity to sample a pre-release of this new blend. Not only does it fill a niche in the My Father Cigars’ line, but it delivers an outstanding smoking experience. It is a cigar that is also worthy of getting a lot of attention as it makes its way to the retailer shelves.
Translated to English, Flor de las Antillas means “Flower of the Antilles”. It references the Greater Antilles islands. Technically, Cuba is the largest island in the Greater Antilles, so it does pay homage to the Garcia Family’s heritage.
At this time, the Flor de las Antillas is being shipped to some retailers in unbanded bundles. The plans are later this year for the Flor de las Antillas to be featured in boxes with banding.
Let’s break down the Flor de las Antillas and see what this cigar delivers. Since I smoked pre-release samples, a pre-review will be done now to share the initial experiences with the cigar. Following the release, an official assessment rating and score will be given.
I asked Don Pepin Garcia himself about the wrapper. He told me that the wrapper is a Sun-Grown wrapper. The cigars are rolled at the My Father Cigar factory in Esteli, Nicaragua.
Wrapper: Nicaraguan Sun-Grown
The plan is for four sizes of the Flor de las Antillas. The cigars are done in a box-press style.
Belicoso: 5 1/2 x 52
Robusto: 5 x 50
Toro: 6 x 52
Toro Gordo: 6 1/2 x 56
For this pre-review, I sampled the Robusto vitola of the Flor de las Antillas. The cigar has a medium-brown wrapper on it. The wrapper is not oily, but is quite smooth. Veins from the wrapper leaves are visible. The box-press is well-packed with no soft-spots. The foot has a farm-like aroma that can be detected. As I mentioned, this pre-release sample was an unbanded sample.
Preparation for the Cigar Experience
For my Flor de las Antillas Robusto, I placed a straight cut into the cap and immediately commenced with the pre-light draw. The dry draw notes provided a mix of wood, caramel, and pepper flavors. Overall, the pre-light draw to the Flor de las Antillas was outstanding. At this point, I was excited to fire up the Flor de las Antillas and see what the smoking experience would bring to the table.
The initial draw of the Flor de las Antillas provided a short spurt of pepper to start. It wasn’t as pronounced as other Garcia pepper blasts, but it still provided a nice shot of pepper. The pepper dialed back and notes of coffee and natural tobacco sweetness emerged. There were still some pepper notes remaining, and no particular flavor note stood out once the initial pepper shot subsided.
By the end of the first third, the natural tobacco sweetness took over as the primary flavor. The pepper notes were significantly in the background and the coffee notes had dissipated. The natural tobacco sweetness would be the story for most of this cigar.
Toward the end of the cigar, the pepper picked up in strength. These spice notes closed the gap with the natural sweetness. However, the cigar remained smooth to the end – producing a nub that was cool in temperature and firm to the touch. In other words, the finish was outstanding.
Burn and Draw
The samples of the Flor de las Antillas might have been pre-released, but they were ready for prime time. This new blend had perfect scores with these construction attributes. The Flor de las Antillas delivered a razor-sharp burn from start to finish. The burn rate and burn temperature were ideal. The draw was flawless – making the Flor de las Antillas a joy to smoke.
Strength and Body
Up front, I mentioned that the Flor de las Antillas fills a niche in the My Father Cigars’ portfolio. I felt that the line could benefit from more smokes that are medium in strength and medium in body. The Flor de las Antillas helps strengthen the My Father line with a true “medium-medium” cigar. The strength is not going to overpower you, and while the flavors are not in the full-bodied range, they are still very effective. Toward the end there was a slight boost in strength. Overall, the strength and body of the Flor de las Antillas balance each other very nice – helping to enhance the cigar experience.
There isn’t much more I can add at this time. The only thing I wish this cigar had was more in the way of flavor complexity, but the flavors it did deliver were very good. The Flor de las Antillas provides an outstanding cigar experience. Not only does it boost the My Father Cigars’ line with a medium/medium cigar, but it delivers one of the better medium/medium cigars for 2012. This is the perfect cigar for the novice enthusiast looking for a flavorful, well-balanced cigar. Experienced cigar enthusiasts should appreciate the flavors that the the Flor de las Antillas delivers. As for myself, not only would I smoke this cigar again, but I would consider it worthy for a box purchase.
Source: The cigar(s) for this assessment were given to me by Don Pepin Garcia himself at his factory in Esteli, Nicaragua. Cigar Coop is appreciative for the sample, but in no way does this influence this review.