|La Flor Dominicana 1994 Rumba|
In 2014, La Flor Dominicana company founders Litto And Ines Gomez celebrated twenty years in the cigar business. To commemorate the occasion, La Flor Dominicana released a new cigar line for that occasion – the La Flor Dominicana 1994. The original company founded by the Litto and Ines was called Los Libertadores. It was two years later when the company was rebranded La Flor Dominicana. The company became a vertically integrated company as they own their own factory (Tabacalera La Flor) and farms (La Canela). As we will discuss, the 1994 marks a change of pace cigar from much of what La Flor has released in recent years. The 1994 has also garnered a lot of attention as was recently nominated for the Cigar Media Association’s 2014 Cigar of the Year. Recently I had an opportunity to smoke the La Flor Dominicana 1994 in the Rumba (Toro size). Overall I found this a solid blend with a very different flavor profile from what I’ve had from La Flor Dominica.
Jonathan Carney Vice President of Sales for La Flor Dominicana was a guest on the 12/18/14 edition of our Stogie Geeks program and explained a little about the change of pace for this cigar:
“A little bit of a departure from what we normally make. We’re known for very full-bodied cigars nowadays. So we wanted to make something that was a little more approachable for every palate.”
The 1994 is a regular production cigar by La Flor Dominicana. It features a San Andres Natural wrapper. There is a second component to this line due to hit retailers in early 2015. This features a San Andres Maduro in a toro size that will be packaged in a limited edition beer stein. The beer stein features brand owner Litto Gomez’s signature hat.
|Beer Stein for special limited edition
La Flor Dominicana 1994 Rumba
Without further ado, let’s take a closer look at the regular production La Flor Dominicana 1994 Rumba and see what this cigar brings to the table.
As mentioned the La Flor Dominicana 1994 features a San Andres Natural wrapper. The Dominican tobaccos will come from the company’s La Canela farms.
Wrapper San Andres Mexican – Natural
Country of Origin: Dominican Republic (Tabacalera La Flor)
The Beer Stein cigar will feature a San Andres Mexican maduro wrapper.
Wrapper San Andres Mexican – Maduro
Country of Origin: Dominican Republic (Tabacalera La Flor)
The La Flor Dominicana 1994 will come in four regular production sizes packaged in boxes of 20. The LFD Beer Stein will also contain 20 cigars.
Conga: 5 x 52
Aldaba: 6 x 58
Rumba: 6 1/2 x 52
Mambo: 7 x 54
The Beer Stein Maduro cigar will come in a 6 x 54 with 20 cigars in the stein.
The La Flor Dominicana 1994 Rumba has a dark cinnamon colored wrapper. Upon closer examination some darker marbling can be seen. While many San Andres wrappers have a rugged look, the 1994 has a smoother complexion. There is a light coating of oil on the wrapper. The veins have a minimal presence on the surface while most of the wrapper seams are thin and well-hidden.
The band is a new design for La Flor Dominicana. The band features a maroon colored background that has a darker gradient effect as you move away from the center. The center of the band features a flower with lavender pedals and green leaves. The flower sits on a black circular background surrounded by a multi-faceted gold design. Below the circular background is the text “La Flor Dominicana” in gold cursive font. Below that text is the text “1994” – also in gold font. To the left and right of the lower is the gold “LFD” gold wreath logo There is also gold trim going around the edges of the band.
Preparation for the Cigar Experience
Prior to lighting up my 1994 Rumba, I went with a straight cut. Once the cap was removed, I moved on to the pre-light draw. The dry draw yielded some unique flavors right out of the gate. I got notes of slightly-burnt cedar, cinnamon, cherry sweetness, and a slight cayenne pepper note. Overall I considered the pre-light draw of the La Flor Dominicana 1994 to be very good. At this point I was ready to light up the 1994 Rumba and see what the smoking experience would deliver.
The start to the La Flor Dominicana 1994 Rumba delivered some notes of cedar, bread and some cayenne pepper. The bread and cedar notes moved up to the forefront quickly. The cayenne pepper settled in the background, but was quite prominent on the retro-hale. By about the five percent mark, some burnt cherry sweetness surfaced in the forefront while a slight creamy note emerged in the background.
Throughout the first third the bread, cedar, and cherry notes continued in the forefront. By the second third, there was a slight dried meat flavor that also surfaced in the background joining the cayenne and cream notes. Around the midway point, I found a sweetness took over the primary flavor. The sweetness was derived from the cedar and cherry.
The last third the bready notes returned to the forefront. The sweetness, cayenne, and cream all were background flavors. The dried meat flavor was more distant. This is the way the 1994 Rumba came to a close. The spice slightly increased, but never overpowered toward the end of the cigar. The resulting nub was cool in temperature and soft to the touch.
Burn and Draw
Overall I found the La Flor Dominicana 1994 Rumba to be a cigar of excellent construction and this was reflected on both the burn and draw. The burn line remained straight from start to finish – requiring only occasional touch-ups. The resulting ash was white with some darker streaks mixed into it. The ash itself was on the firm side and the 1994 was not prone to any significant flaking. The burn rate and burn temperature were ideal.
|Burn of the La Flor Dominicana 1994 Rumba|
The draw to the 1994 Rumba performed very well. It was not too loose, nor was it too tight. This made for a very enjoyable cigar experience.
Strength and Body
This is probably the one area that will stand out when compared to most of the recent La Flor Dominicana releases. This is definitely a more dialed-back La Flor Dominicana and no doubt this contributes to attracting this cigar to a larger audience. Overall I found the 1994 Rumba to be a medium strength, medium-bodied cigar. The strength and body pretty much stayed in this area of the spectrum from start to finish. I found the strength and body to counter each other nicely with neither attribute overshadowing the other.
The one thing that stands out is the medium strength, medium-bodied profile is going to attract a large range of cigar enthusiasts. I will say, this is a very different flavor profile that I have not seen before. The flavors are not only unique, but they are actually quite pleasant. I’m not sure the flavors are going to appeal to everyone, yet I don’t know many cigars that do appeal to every palate, so this is worth a try. The 1994 is a cigar one can enjoy any time of the day. Personally while it does have some nice unique flavors, I felt this cigar was too dialed back strength and body-wise and it could have benefitted from a little more pop. This is a cigar I can recommend to either the novice or experienced cigar enthusiast. As for myself, it’s certainly a cigar I’d pick up again and I’d recommend a fiver.
Assessment: 3.0 – The Fiver