La Musa Melte by Emilio Cigars

The La Musa Melete is the second release in Emilio Cigars’ La Musa line.  At the beginning of the year, Emilio Cigars’ brand developer Gary Griffith announced he would be rebranding the highly acclaimed Grimalkin cigar to La Musa.  As a part of that rebranding, there would be additional blends added to the La Musa line.  The Grimalkin (our #9 Cigar of the Year for 2011) itself was renamed to the La Musa Mousa.  It would remain the same cigar made at the same factory, but now it would have a Greek theme instead of a Scottish theme.   The new blends were announced to be La Musa Melete, La Musa Aoide, and La Musa Mneme – all named after the three original plutarchian muses.  The Melete is about to become the first of these new blends to be released – joining the La Musa Mousa.  I recently have had an opportunity to sample the Melete.   This cigar is going to be another stellar addition to the Emilio Cigars portfolio.

For those unfamiliar with Greek mythology, a muse is a goddesses inspired by literature literature, science and the arts.  The Melete is the muse of thought and meditation.  Melete’s sisters were Aoide (muse of song) and Mneme (muse of memory).  For the La Musa Mousa, Mousa refers to a type of goddess of poetry and art.

Let’s take a closer look at the La Musa Melete in this pre-release assessment and see what this cigar brings to the table.  Since this is a pre-release sample, we will default to a pre-review.  This will allow us to provide some thoughts and perspectives around the cigar.  When the cigar is generally available through retailers, we will revisit this cigar and provide a formal assessment rating and score.

Blend Profile

At the time of this write-up, there has been no official information on the blend.  I find this makes things fun not going guessing the country of origin, but trying to guess the leaf.  At the time of this pre-release assessment, we will list the components as “Not disclosed”. 

Wrapper: Not disclosed
Binder: Not disclosed
Filler: Not disclosed 

Vitolas Available

At this time, the specific frontmarks and their corresponding dimensions have not been disclosed for the La Musa Melete.  The pre-release samples that we smoked were a classic robusto size with the approximate dimensions of 5 x 50.


The La Musa Melete robust is a visually stunning looking cigar. The wrapper has a rich chocolate color to it.  The wrapper has a smooth texture with some oil to it.   The dark color of the wrapper helps to hide the wrapper seams, but there are some visible veins.

The band has a white background with purple for most of the text and design.  There is a Greek-styled wreath design on the front of the band.  At the top of the band it says “LA MUSA”.  In the middle is the Greek text “Μελέτη” which translates to “Melete” in English.  On the left of the band it says “Nicaragua” in black font.  On the right side it says “Emilio Cigars” also in black font.

Preparation for Cigar Experience

For my smoking experience of the La Musa Melete, I went with my usual straight cut into the cap of the cigar.  Once the cap was removed, I proceeded with the pre-light draw.   The pre-light draw treated me to some notes of leather and citrus with a touch of spice.  While it wasn’t the most exciting pre-light draw I’ve had on a cigar, I’d still classify this as a satisfactory pre-light draw.  At this point, it was time to toast the foot of the Melete and see what the smoking experience would have in store.

Flavor Profile

The Grimalkin was a kind of cigar that led me down a lot of twists and turns in terms of flavor transitions.  The Melete was not the kind of cigar that did this, but what I did find is that this cigar delivered a lot of flavor nuances as you smoked it.  What was interesting is that with each draw it seemed to deliver something different.  It was a real interesting smoking experience.

The start of the cigar continued with the notes of leather, citrus, and spice to start.  The spice was real interesting.  The Grimalkin/Mousa had more of a traditional pepper and cedar spice to it.  The Melete had more of an exotic spice component.  It’s not something I could draw an analogy to.  I found the spice to the Melete to play more of a complementary role throughout the smoking experience.

It didn’t take long before some chocolate notes entered the equation joining the leather, citrus, and spice components.   Throughout the smoking experience these various notes took turns in terms of being a primary flavor.  There were times it was more than one of these flavors as primary.  This helped contribute to the unique flavor nuances this cigar had to offer.  While the primary notes varied, I don’t think there was a time where any of the flavors overpowered the others.

The Melete also produced a wonderful retro-hale.  The chocolate notes tended to come out on the retro-hale helping to enhance the flavor profile.    The Melete finished smooth and resulted in a firm, cool nub.

Burn and Draw

The Emilio brand has established themselves by working with several different factories.  No matter what factory, one thing is for certain – there are never shortcuts in terms of the quality of the construction of the cigar.  This quality construction applies to the Melete and is reflected in terms of the its burn and draw.  The burn to Melete is outstanding.  The burn line was sharp from start to finish requiring minimal touch-ups.  The resulting ash was a tight one with a nice white color.  The burn rate and burn temperature were ideal.

Burn of the La Musa Melete

As for the draw, this was outstanding as well.  Emilio Cigars’ have had some good draws and this one ranks right up there with their best.

Strength and Body

From a nicotine profile, I did not find the La Musa Melete to be an overpowering cigar.  It’s strength falls right into the medium range of the strength spectrum.   As for the flavors, there was some nice depth to them.   The flavors of the Melete start out as medium to full-bodied.  By the time the cigar reached the second half, these flavors progressed to full-bodied.  When balancing strength and body, I gave the edge to the body.  If you are looking for a cigar emphasizing flavor over strength, this is the one.

Final Thoughts

The most obvious question is how does the La Musa Melete compare to what was the Grimalkin (La Musa Mousa).  I’ve smoked a lot more Grimalkins than Meletes, so it’s too early to make a decision.  What I can say the Melete is another home run by Emilio Cigars. 

Griffith had categorized the Melete as being a fuller smoke – and I tend to agree with that.  I found the Melete is a great any time of the day cigar.  I also think it is one of those cigars where you just want to kick back and absorb a lot of what it brings to the table.   Novice cigar enthusiasts who are looking for something a little more  fuller in flavor will want to check out this cigar.  Experienced cigar enthusiasts should appreciate the flavor and nuances in the flavor profile.  As for myself, this was a wonderful cigar experience and is a cigar I smoke again and consider a box purchase for.


Burn: Excellent
Draw: Excellent
Complexity: Medium
Strength: Medium
Body Medium to Full (1st Half), Full (2nd Half)
Finish: Excellent

Source: The cigar for this assessment were provided by Emilio Cigars .  These samples were initiated by Emilio Cigars in order to provide feedback.  Cigar Coop is appreciative for the sample, but in no way does this influence this review.