Agile Cigar Reviews replace what we termed “Assessment Updates”. The concept is the same, but the name is different. Agile Cigar Reviews use a lightweight, shorter format. These will never take the place of our comprehensive reviews. They are only used on blends we have previously assessed. This might be a blend we are re-scoring or providing a score for a first time. It might be a blend we are looking at in a different size. Today we look at the RoMa Craft Tobac Neanderthal in the HN size. This is a cigar we did a pre-release assessment back in May, 2015.
Wrapper: Mexican San Andres Maduro
Binder: U.S. Connecticut Broadleaf Maduro
Filler: U.S. Pennsylvania Double Ligero (GR-S1), Nicaraguan (Conega, Jalapa, Pueblo Nuevo, Esteli), Dominican Republic (Olor)
Country or Origin: Nicaragua (Nica Sueno)
HN: 5 x 52/58 (Figurado)
The Neanderthal is the fifth regular production line by RoMa Craft Tobac. The goal of the Neanderthal was to deliver a powerhouse cigar in terms of strength, yet maintain flavor and complexity.
The key to Neanderthal’s power is the incorporation of a Pennsylvania Double Ligero leaf in the filler known as Green River Valley Sucker One (GR-S1). This is a regrowth leaf from Pennsylvania broadleaf that has a natural higher nicotine level (between 9% to 13% – significant higher than the 5% – 6% found in Esteli, Ligero). The remainder of the filler consists of Nicaraguan tobacco from Condega, Jalapa, Pueblo Nuevo, and Esteli) as well as Olor from the Dominican Republic. A U.S. Connecticut Broadleaf binder is also used and the cigar is finished with a San Andres Maduro wrapper.
Neanderthal is currently available in one regular production size which is the HN . This is a 5 x 52/58 figurado. There are also two limited production sizes – the the Neanderthal SGP – a 4 1/2 x 52 short robusto that has been released to two retailers. The other size is the Neanderthal HoxD – . a 4 x 46 petite corona available as a part of the El Catador de las Petite Coronas sampler. Today we take a another look at the Neanderthal HN.
The pre-release was smoked with ten months of time in my humidor. This post production cigar had three months of age on it.
The flavor profile on the pre-release I smoked was outstanding, and I didn’t find the post production one to deviate from what I got last time. This cigar delivers notes of coffee, dark chocolate, red pepper, and baker’s spice. In particular, I loved how the dark chocolate and red pepper came together delivering that “Mexican Hot Chocolate” note. The spice seemed a little more prominent on this one than the pre-release, but it still made for an enjoyable experience.
There was no surprise that this cigar delivered a full strength and full-bodied smoking experience. Despite having plenty of strength, it does not overpower the flavors on this cigar. Back when I smoked the pre-release, I had smoked a sample ten months old and was amazed how that cigar held its power. The three month sample I smoked for this review was pretty much at the some level for both strength and body.
Overall, this is a home run by RoMa Craft Tobac. This cigar succeeds at delivering a powerhouse cigar with a lot of flavor. This is not for the beginner, and it’s not for someone who can’t handle a strong cigar. However, it showcases RoMa Craft Tobac at it’s best. The HN comes in 50 count boxes, but I would still consider this worthy of a box purchase if I was looking for a 50 count box.
Assessment: 4-Box Worthy
Original Assessment: RoMa Craft Tobac Neanderthal HN (Pre-Release)
News: RoMa Craft Tobac Showcases Neanderthal Line at 2015 IPCPR
Stogie Geeks Podcast: Episode 92, Episode 140, Episode 148, Episode 158
Stogie Feed: RoMa Craft Tobac Neanderthal HN (Pre-Release), RoMa Craft Tobac Neanderthal HN (Paul), RoMa Craft Tobac Neanderthal HN (Will)