|Quesada Q D’Etat Howitzer|
Late last year SAG Imports announced a new line to the Quesada Cigars line. This cigar is called the Quesada Q D’etat. There is a theme behind this line of cigars. It is intended to support the industry’s battle
against the government and anti-tobacco factions. There are three vitolas planned as a part of the line and they have been rolled out individually. Today we explore the second vitola of the series, the Q D’etat Howitzer. This is a 6 x 60 vitola and is a prime example of how good a 6 x 60 cigar can be with the right blend and the right construction. This cigar is a standout for the Q D’etat line.
The Howitzer follows the first vitola which was the Q D’etat Molotov. The Molotov was a unique cigar in that it was made in the shape of a Molotov cocktail. The Q D’etat follows the theme of weaponry here. For the Howitzer, this is take from the name of an artillery piece that is a part of the cannon family. It is
capable at firing at relatively high trajectories.
This line is intended to be a limited release – with 1000 boxes of 10
cigars for each vitola being made. To help aid in the battle against
the anti-tobacco, government, and FDA –
each box will contain a form to fill out to join Cigar Rights of
Let’s break down the Howitzer and see what this cigar brings to the table.
The Quesada Q D’etat blend is a Domincan puro.
As of the time of this article, only two of the vitolas for the Q D’etat series have been announced.
Molotov: 5 x 38/58/44
Howitzer: 6 x 60
Third Vitola: TBD
The wrapper to the Quesada Q D’etat Howitzer is a medium brown color wrapper. While it uses the same wrapper as the Molotov, the Molotov seemed to show more Colorado red tint than this wrapper does. Tobaccos can change from batch to batch in color, so this could be part of the reason (or it could be my eyes playing tricks on me). The cigar does have some visible wrapper seams and visible veins. The wrapper itself also has a bumpy feel to it.
There are two bands on the Quesada Q D’etat Howitzer. The first is the
what has become the defacto Quesada band – silver, black, and gold
highlighted with the Q-shaped leaf. There is a second band that is
black with silver striping on the top and bottom. In silver text it says “Q D’ETAT” with the text “HOWITZER” in smaller silver font below it. There are some artillery designs that surround the text to the left and right.
Preparation for the Cigar Experience
For my smoke of the Quesada Q D’etat Howitzer, I opted for a straight cut into the large cap of this cigar. When I commenced with the pre-light draw I was treated to notes of chocolate, earth, and sweet spice. There were some parallels to the dry draw of the Molotov but I wouldn’t say the Howitzer’s dry draw was identical. Overall, the Howitzer provided a satisfactory pre-light draw. It was now on to light the Howitzer and see what it the cigar experience would produce.
I found that the larger ring gauge of the Howitzer offered more in the way of flavor transitions and complexity than the unorthodox Molotov vitola did. The start to the Howitzer provided a mix of chocolate, earth, and grapefruit citrus to start. The grapefruit notes were also something I detected on the flavor profile of the Molotov. The grapefruit flavors had a slight edge at the very beginning, but quickly moved to the background allowing the chocolate and earth flavors to stand out in the forefront.
Around the 20 percent mark, I noticed the emergence of some hickory notes. I was a little surprised by these flavors as I did not detect them when smoking the Molotov. The hickory seemed to be more of a background note, and it seemed to come and go around this point each time I smoked the Howitzer.
Meanwhile the grapefruit notes continued to diminish and by the midway point they had practically dissipated. This allowed the chocolate and the earth notes to shine. The chocolate took the edge for most of the second third. When the Howitzer reached the last third, the earth notes took over. The finish to the Howitzer was rather smooth – not a lot of spice and no harshness. The resulting nub was cool in temperature, but softer to the touch.
Burn and Draw
Back when I smoked the Molotov, I felt the unorthodox shape did have an impact on the burn and draw. It was not a significant impact, but still an impact. With the case of the Howitzer, it provided very good scores in the area of burn and draw. The Howitzer burned sharply for the duration of the smoke – requiring a few touch-ups, but nothing too frequent. The burn rate and burn temperature were ideal. As for the draw, it was a very nice draw for a big ring gauge – making this 6 x 60 a pleasure to smoke.
Strength and Draw
Like the Molotov, when it came to strength from a nicotine perspective, I assessed the Howitzer to be medium strength. The bigger ring gauge did give this cigar a little more pop, but I still kept the strength assessment in the medium range. As for the depth of the flavor notes, I felt the Howitzer had an edge over the Molotov. I assessed the Howitzer to be a medium to full strength cigar. There was a nice balance between the strength and body attributes with neither component overshadowing the other.
The Howitzer proves two theories I have when it comes to cigars. First up, this is a case study for why I will take a classic parejo shape over a figuardo/perfecto any time. Not only will the classic parejo burn and draw better, but I also believe it will provide better flavor. Secondly, when a blend clicks with a 6 x 60, it really provides a great smoke. In the case of the Howtizer it clicked on all cylinders. I also felt the flavor profile was improved as it had less citrus and more chocolate notes. I mentioned with the Molotov that Dominican puros often aren’t my flavor profile, but I liked the Molotov. In the case of the Howitzer, I loved this cigar. I think it takes the Q D’etat blend up a notch. I found this to be a nice cigar for both
the novice and experienced cigar enthusiast. Many big ring gauge cigar enthusiasts that I know seemed to like what the Howitzer delivered, so I’d recommend it to them. As for myself, I’ll look forward to smoking this again.
Body: Medium to Full
Assessment: Nice to Have
Source: The cigars for this assessment were purchased from Outland Cigars in Charlotte, North Carolina.