|The Widow’s Son Grand Robusto by Battleground Cigars|
The Widow’s Son is a cigar that is a part of the Battleground Cigars line. The cigar is actually the result of a private collaboration done by Battleground Cigars, Connecticut Valley Tobacconist, and a small number of freemasons who visit the shop. Battleground Cigars is a company that has made their reputation as a result of their American Civil War themed cigars and The Widow’s Son is no exception – as it pays tribute to General Lewis Armistead. Recently I’ve had an opportunity to sample these cigars. Overall I found this to be not only a cigar that has an interesting story, but I found this to be a pretty nice cigar as well.
Lewis Armistead was a Confederate Brigadier General in the American Civil War, who was wounded during Pickett’s Charge at the Battle of Gettysburg in 1863. He was then treated at a Union Field Hospital, only to die two days later. The web-site for The Widow’s Son sheds a little more light on the events on Armistead’s death:
A little research reveals many myths about Armistead and the events surrounding his fatal wounding at Gettysburg, including stories of Armistead giving a Masonic sign of distress and another where he gives a Masonic bible to a Union officer. Many of these stories fail when reviewed in the light of the copious historical references and post-war memoirs available. In truth, the only event from that day which seems to be historically substantiated is Armistead being referred to as “a widow’s son.”
As for the cigar, let’s take a closer look at The Widow’s Son and see what this cigar brings to the table:
Not much was disclosed on the blend other than the cigar features a high priming, graded #1 Connecticut Broadleaf wrapper grown in Ellington, Connecticut. The wrapper was sent to the Dominican Republic (back in February 2012) where it was triple fermented over a six month period.
Wrapper: Connecticut Broadleaf
The Widow’s Son is available in four sizes:
Widow Maker: 5 x 52
Grand Torpedo: 6 1/4 x 50
Grand Robusto: 5 1/2 x 54
Grand Toro: 6 1/2 x 54
For this cigar experience, I smoked the Grand Robusto. The wrapper has a roasted espresso bean color. Upon close examination, some dark marbling can be seen on the surface of the wrapper. The Widow’s Son Grand Robusto definitely had an oily complexion on the surface. There are some visible veins, but the wrapper seams are decently hidden.
There are two bands on The Widow’s Son. The primary band has a portrait of General Armstead with a maroon/black gradient styled background. A wreath surrounds the portrait. Above the portrait it says “Battleground” in classic white font. Below the portrait it says “Armstead” in classic white font. Diamond shaped gold trim surrounds the portrait. On the right side going landscape is the text “Battleground” in classic white font. There is a image of a handshake in gold on the back of the band. Gold trim surrounds the band as a whole.
The secondary band is black with gold trim and gold font. It says “150th” (referring to the 150th anniversary of the Battle of Gettysberg) surrounded by a gold wreath. To the left of the wreath it says “Victory” and to the right it says “Selection”.
Preparation for the Cigar Experience
To start things off, I went with a straight cut to remove the cap of The Widow’s Son. I then moved on to the pre-light draw experience. The cold draw provided a mix of coffee, earth, and a slight floral spice note. Overall, I considered the pre-light draw experience of The Widow’s Son to be satisfactory. At this point I was ready to light up this cigar and see what the smoking phase would have in store.
The start to the The Widow’s Son provided a considerable amount of white pepper to start. The pepper was also prominent on the retro-hale early on and remained that way for most of the cigar experience. Some notes of coffee and chocolate soon emerged as a background note.
By the middle of the first third, the coffee and chocolate notes were on par with the pepper notes. It was around this time where I also picked up a hay note in the background. By the midpoint of the cigar, the hay notes pulled even with chocolate, coffee, and pepper notes.
As The Widow’s Son moved into the second half, the hay and pepper notes became primary and the chocolate notes receded to a secondary note. In the last third, I found the pepper took a slight edge. The end of the cigar had some spice with a slight amount of harshness. The resulting nub was cool in temperature and soft to the touch.
Burn and Draw
Overall I found The Widow’s Son to be a well constructed cigar and this was reflected in the burn and draw. The Widow’s Son provided a low maintenance burn as it did not require many touch-ups to keep a straight burn line The resulting ash was firm. The ash had a white color with some gray streaks in it. The burn rate and burn temperature were ideal.
|Burn of The Widow’s Son|
The draw was also low maintenance. Three was an ample amount of smoke produced from this cigar, but overall the draw was not too loose and not too tight. It was very easy to derive flavors from this cigar.
Strength and Body
From a strength perspective, I found The Widow’s Son to have just enough kick to fall into the medium to full strength range. Meanwhile the flavors to The Widow’s Son start out medium to full-bodied. For the most part, I found the body increased slowly. By the last third, the flavors weighed enough on the pallet to qualify as full-bodied in my book. Overall I would say The Widow’s Son has a slight edge of body over strength.
For the most part, I found The Widow’s Son to deliver a good cigar experience. I did prefer more of the chocolate and coffee notes in the first half and I thought to some extent in the second half the flavors became a little less interesting to me. One thing that was impressive to me is the price point. The Grand Robusto sells in boxes for $6.45 per cigars if purchased by box – with some additional savings if a bundle is purchased. Overall I found some nice value. While we don’t factor price into our numerical score, we do consider it for our assessment rating. This is a cigar I would steer more toward an experienced cigar enthusiast, but certainly would not discourage a novice from trying. As for myself, this is a cigar I would smoke again. The value of this cigar makes it worth a fiver.
Strength: Medium to Full
Body: Medium to Full, Full (Last Third)
Assessment: 3.0 – The Fiver
Source: Samples Provided (*)
Stogie Geeks Podcast: Stogie Geeks Episode 85
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* The cigars for this assessment were given to Cigar Coop by a representative of the Widow’s Son cigar. Cigar Coop is appreciative for the sample, but this does not influence the review.