“2014 is proving to be a very strong year for excellent maduro releases and the Warhead II is among the best of them.”
Coming in at #12 is the 601 La Bomba Warhead II by Espinosa Cigars. This marks the second consecutive year that Espinosa Cigars makes the Countdown. Last year, Espinosa Cigars qualified for the Countdown with its initial Warhead release, the 601 La Bomba Maduro Warhead by Espinosa Cigars. That cigar finished #16 on on 2013 Countdown. This year, the Warhead returns with a new size and a modified blend.
The Warhead series started in 2013 when a Connecticut Broadleaf wrapper (the 2nd Connecticut Broadleaf cigar on this year’s Countdown) was put on the Nicaraguan binder and filler of the original 601 La Bomba blend – and then box-pressed in a 6 1/4 x 54 toro. This year, Espinosa Cigars announced the Warhead would return in a limited production and now will be an annual release. Each year the size, blend, and packaging would change.
For Warhead II, the vitola changed to a 5 1/2 x 56 size – slightly shorter and slightly thicker from the 2013 edition. According to company President Erik Espinosa, “Warhead II will have the same strength and flavor profile as the original, the blend was tweaked a bit due to the scarcity of tobacco used in this special release.”
The Warhead II delivers notes of mocha, earth, and black pepper. The retro-hale not only had spice, but a nice coffee note that smoothed out the pepper that was present on the finish and retro-hale. The pepper switches to more of a red pepper in the second half. Like its predecessor, the Warhead II is full strength and full bodied. The construction is excellent.The Warhead II keeps to the flavor profile of the Warhead I, but with one big difference – it delivers a much smoother cigar experience. This made the Warhead II an even better smoke in my book.
Click here for our detailed assessment of the 601 La Bomba Warhead II by Espinosa Cigars.
Wrapper: Connecticut Broadleaf
Country of Origin: Nicaragua (La Zona)
The cigar was released in one size – a 5 1/2 x 56 Gran Robusto
Recommended Vitola: Gran Robusto (5 1/2 x 56)
Assessment Rating: 4.0 – Box Worthy
Score: 93 (8/27/14)
For more information on our vision and criteria for the 2014 Cigar of the Year countdown, see our December 2014 Editor’s Corner.
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