|Aged Selects Maduro Toro Grande|
Aged Selects is a brand of Nicaraguan made cigars that provide cigar enthusiasts with a premium long filler cigar at a low price. To accomplish this, Aged Selects sends buyers to the factories of major manufacturers to secure cigars that have been aging for some time. Once the cigars are acquired they are inspected and tested for quality before being packaged up and made available. The cigars sold by Aged Selects have been aging a minimum of five years. Over the past few months, we have had an opportunity to smoke these cigars and have found they live up as advertised. Today we take a look at one of the cigars available from the brand, the Aged Selects Maduro in the Toro Grande format. Overall, I found this to be an excellent cigar experience and one that won’t break the bank.
Aged Selects is offering their cigars through at Original Cigarmart in Sugar Land, Texas as well as online through Cigar Frontier. The line is made up of all Nicaraguan puros and currently the brand offers a a total of ten facings. Within those ten facings are five wrapper options: Nicaraguan Habano, Nicaraguan Habano Colorado, Nicaragua Habano Oscuro, Nicaraguan Habano Rosado, and Nicaraguan Maduro.
Without further ado, let’s take a closer look at the Aged Selects Maduro and see what this cigar brings to the table.
As mentioned the selections offered by Aged Selects are Nicaraguan puros. The Aged Selection Maduro features a Nicaraguan Maduro. According to Aged Selects this cigar was rolled back in 2009.
Wrapper: Nicaraguan Maduro
Filler: Nicaraguan Long Filler
There are two vitolas available with the Nicaraguan Maduro wrapper
Toro Grande: 6 x 54
Figuardo: 7 x 58 (Perfecto)
The Toro Grande is available in a 20 count bundle while the Figuardo is available in a ten count bundle.
The Aged Selects Maduro Toro Grande’s Nicaraguan Maduro wrapper has a rich espresso color. Upon closer examination, there is some darker marbling on the surface. The wrapper itself has an oily sheen to it. There are some visible veins and some visible wrapper seams.
For a value-priced cigar, the bands are actually quite nice. The Aged Selects Maduro has a red background. On the center of the band is a shield like design. The shield has a pale yellow color surrounded by black trim. The text “AGED SELECTS” is in red font on the shield. The lower part of the shield has the text “PREMIUM CIGARS” in thin black font. The top of the shield is finished with a red and gold pinstripe pattern. The shield also contains some black and gold adornments. On the left side is the text “HAND MADE” in white font sitting on the red background. On the right side is the text “MADE IN NICARAGUA” – also in white font sitting on the red background. The band is finished with gold and red trim on the top and bottom edge.
Preparation for the Cigar Experience
Prior to lighting up the Aged Selects Maduro Toro Grande, I went with a straight cut to remove the cap. After the cap was removed, I moved on to the pre-light draw experience. The dry draw delivered some classic Nicaraguan flavors of espresso and earth. I didn’t pick up much in the way of spice on the pre-light. At the same time, I still considered this pre-light to be satisfying. At this point I was ready to light up the Aged Selects Maduro and see what the smoking phase would have in store.
The start to the Aged Selects Maduro Toro Grande picked up where the pre-light draw left off – namely with notes of espresso and earth. The espresso notes had some sweetness, but didn’t have the heavy syrupy quality (a positive) that many maduros deliver. I also picked up a subtle pepper spice in the background. This subtle pepper spice was also present on the retro-hale.
As the cigar moved into the later part of the first third, I found the espresso lost some its sweetness and became more of a classic black coffee flavor. The black coffee notes were joined by earth notes in the forefront. Meanwhile the background had a slight pepper spice and a distant cream note. This flavor profile continued through the second third. The retro-hale still didn’t deliver a lot of spice
By the last third of the Aged Selects Maduro Toro Grande, the sweetness had now dissipated. The flavor profile maintained the notes of earth and black coffee. There was a slight increase in spice. The resulting nub was slightly soft, but cool in temperature.
Burn and Draw
The one thing that has impressed me with Aged Selects is the consistency of this cigar. Many times with a low priced bundle cigar, one expects some of the cigars in the bundle to have inferior construction. This has not been the case with the Aged Selects as I have these to have excellent construction and have not found a “lemon” in the bundles I have had.
The burn line of the Aged Selects Maduro Toro Grande remained on a straight path. The burn line itself was slightly jagged, but at no point was this cigar in danger of canoeing or tunneling. The resulting ash was a salt and pepper color. The ash itself was on the firm side with only some minor flaking. The ash came off the cigar in nice clean chunks. The burn rate and burn temperature were both ideal.
|Burn of the Aged Selects Maduro Toro Grande|
The draw was excellent. It had a little bit of resistance – which is something I like. This made the Aged Selects Maduro an enjoyable smoke from start to finish.
Strength and Body
I found the Aged Selects Maduro Toro Grande to not be an overpowering cigar in terms of strength and body. Overall I assessed this cigar as being a medium strength, medium-bodied cigar from start to finish. In terms of strength versus body, I found both attributes to counter each other nicely with neither overshadowing the other. In most cases, I will admit I like a little more strength and body on my maduro smokes, but with the Aged Selects Maduro, I found the medium profile worked well.
The Aged Selects Maduro Toro Grande proved to be an excellent cigar. I wouldn’t look at this as a “bundle cigar” but something that isn’t a “name brand cigar”. The fact that these cigars average out to $2.50 a cigar should not deter you. This is a cigar that outperformed many cigars that were priced four times higher. This cigar not only delivered excellent flavor and have excellent construction, but the consistency most impressed me. This is a cigar I’d recommend to either a novice or experienced cigar enthusiast. Not only does this score well on merit, but price point makes this very easy to pick up a bundle – and in my book it’s certainly worth it.
Assessment: 4.0 – Box Worthy
* Aged Selects are a sponsor of Cigar Coop and Stogie Geeks. To purchase Aged Selects products, click here.