At this year’s IPCPR Trade Show, Phil Zanghi’s Debonaire Cigars unveiled a limited edition line extension to its Debonaire Maduro line known as the Debonaire 33rd. The 33rd is the long-awaited 9 x 50 “A” size to the Debonaire brand. The 33rd refers to the highest rank of the free-masons. This is not a new concept to the Debonaire brand as 2014’s Debonaire First Degree is on the opposite end of the spectrum and meant to be the free-masons’ apprentice / entry point. Last year, we had the Debonaire Maduro ranked as one of our top cigars for 2014 finishing as the the #4 Cigar Coop Cigar of the Year. With the Debonaire 33rd Maduro, this takes this line to a whole new level and ranks as one of the standout cigars of 2015.
Zanghi introduced the Debonaire Maduro as his second line in 2014. The Debonaire Maduro takes the original Debonaire Habano blend and pretty much replaces the Habano wrapper with a Connecticut Broadleaf wrapper. Much like the Debonaire Habano Solomone was the unique limited edition for the Habano line, the Debonaire 33rd will be fulfilling the limited edition role for the Maduro line.
Without further ado, let’s take a look at the Debonaire 33rd Maduro and see what this cigar brings to the table.
In addition to the Connecticut Broadleaf maduro wrapper, the Debonaire Maduro uses a blend of tobaccos from Nicaragua and the Dominican Republic – similar to the Habano blend. Zanghi and his source tobacco Leo Reyes – one of the leading growers based in the Dominican Republic. The cigars are also made in the Dominican Republic.
Wrapper: Connecticut Broadleaf
Filler: Dominican, Nicaraguan
Country of Origin: Dominican Republic
The addition Debonaire 33rd becomes the sixth vitola to be released in the Debonaire Maduro line. The Debonaire 33d Maduro is packaged in ten count boxes with a total production of 500 boxes. The cigars are allocated to the top tier Debonaire accounts. In addition, the Debonaire 33rd becomes the longest cigar released to date in the Debonaire portfolio.
For completeness we list the six sizes below:
The Debonaire 33rd Maduro’s Connecticut Broadleaf wrapper is pretty much consistent with the rest of the line. The wrapper features a classic Connecticut Broadleaf mocha color. Upon closer examination some darker marbling can be seen on the surface. There is some oil on the wrapper. There are some visible veins and visible wrapper seams that give this the classic rugged look of Connecticut Broadleaf.
The band is the gold, brown, black, and white colored one seen on the original Debonaire line. There is a gold stagecoach that sits on a brown background. Above the stagecoach is a black oval with the text “ULTRA PREMIUM” in white font. Below the stagecoach is the text “DEBONAIRE” in large white font. In small black font below the Debonaire name is the text “DOMINICAN REPUBLIC” in small black font. The remainder of the band has black and gold adornments.
Preparation for the Cigar Experience
With an “A” size cigar, a straight cut is the way to go, therefore I went with my old standby. Once the cap was clipped I moved on to the pre-light draw. The cold draw provided a mix of sweet cocoa, earth, and a slight creamy note. Overall this was an excellent pre-light draw. At this point I was ready to light up the Debonaire 33rd Maduro and see what the cigar experience had in store.
The start to the Debonaire 33rd Maduro delivered notes of mocha, earth, cedar spice, and a creamy component. The mocha notes moved into the forefront early on and delivered a nice sweetness right out of the gate. The earth, cedar spice, and cream were secondary notes. Throughout the first third, there was an occasional time the earth notes floated into the forefront. Meanwhile the retro-hale provided a mix of cedar and white pepper.
During the second third, I found the earth notes joined the mocha sweetness in the forefront. The cedar and cream were now secondary notes. During this stage, I did find the cedar spice increased slowly. There were a few points I picked up a little of the signature Debonaire au-jus note, but this was more sporadic and didn’t play as key a role in this cigar as much as other Debonaire Maduro and Habano cigars.
Toward the later part of the second third, the mocha and earth notes took on more of a black classic coffee note. The cedar spice continued to move toward the forefront of the flavor profile. I still picked up a little chocolate sweetness in the background. The cream notes also diminished greatly.
During the last third of the Debonaire 33rd Maduro, the primary notes were the coffee and cedar spice. I still detected a touch of chocolate in the background. I found a lot less sweetness by this point of the cigar. This is the way the cigar experience came to a close. The resulting nub was slightly soft to the touch, but cool in temperature.
Burn and Draw
One important point is that the smoking time of this large 9 x 50 cigar averaged about 3 hours and 20 minutes. During this time, I found the burn of the Debonaire 33rd Maduro to perform excellent from start to finish. The burn took a relatively straight path from start to finish. The burn line also remained relatively straight. There were some touch-ups needed, but nothing that I considered to be an abnormal amount. The resulting ash was had silvery gray color with some dark spots.
The combustion of the 33rd Maduro was very impressive. The cigar had what I considered to be an ideal burn rate and ideal burn temperature. It was amazing how with 3+ hours that no harshness built up during the last stages of this cigar.
With a cigar measuring 9 inches in length, sometimes a draw can be problem-some. The Debonaire 33rd Maduro drew flawlessly from start to finish. It was not too tight, nor too loose. It was never an issue getting the flavor from this cigar.
Strength and Body
One thing that I noticed is that the 33rd Maduro was a little more dialed back compared to some of the other Debonaire Maduro vitolas I had smoked. I found that this cigar started out medium strength and medium-bodied. By the second half, I found both the strength and body progressed to medium to full for both attributes. I did find the strength and body continue to increase in the second half, but both attributes didn’t cross into full territory. In terms of strength versus body, I found this cigar maintained a nice balance between the two from start to finish.
There was a lot to like about this cigar. The flavors delivered were excellent, and they kept coming throughout the smoking experience. While the cigar lost some of its sweetness in the last third, it still delivered enough flavor to keep me satisfied. For a 3+ hour smoke, complexity is a key element and there were enough changeups and nuances to hold my interest for this duration. The construction was excellent as well.
“A’ size cigars are definitely a specialty size, and they can be hit or miss. This one is not only one of the best cigars I had in 2015, but it could be the best “A” size cigar I have ever smoked. I found this cigar to really shine and deliver one of the best Debonaire Cigars to date. It’s one I’d recommend to an experienced cigar enthusiast, but there is no reason why a novice couldn’t smoke it. We at Cigar Coop and Stogie Geeks define an Oasis level cigar as a cigar that one “Pursues relentlessly. Crawl Across a desert of broken glass to find and build a new humidor to store all the boxes”. This cigar earns this high assessment rating and joins this exclusive club.
Strength: Medium (1st Half), Medium to Full (2nd Half)
Body: Medium (1st Half), Medium to Full (2nd Half)
Assessment: 5.0-The Oasis
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