Since 2012 one of the staples of the Tobacconist Association of America (TAA) Exclusive Release series has been La Flor Dominicana. With 2018 being the 50th anniversary of the TAA, it was no surprise that La Flor Dominicana would be invited to the party. If you look at the history of La Flor Dominicana’s participation in the TAA Exclusive Series, they have tried to bring some innovation into each release (despite the challenges of the FDA Deeming Regulations). For the 50th Anniversary, the company presented the La Flor Dominicana TAA 2018 – The Golden “Oro” Anniversary. The innovative characteristic about this cigar is the incorporation of Dominican Criollo ’99 tobacco into the filler. While it’s branded as an extension of the La Flor Dominicana Oro line, it features a different blend. Today, we take a closer look the La Flor Dominicana TAA 2018 – The Golden “Oro” Anniversary.
The TAA Exclusive Series consists of cigars made by leading manufacturers that are exclusively sold at TAA member retailers. The TAA is a small group of retailers. At press time the number of retailers is approximately 80. The TAA has defined itself as:
The Tobacconists’ Association of America, Ltd. is a trade organization established in 1968 by visionary retail tobacconists. By providing education, communication, research, advocacy, and member discount programs, The TAA works with our members and the industry they support to offer the tools and relationship building opportunities needed to maximize professionalism and success.
Since 2018 was the 50th anniversary of the Tobacconist Association of America, there were a large number of releases as part of the 2018 TAA Exclusive Series:
- CAO Estelí by General Cigar Company
- Crowned Heads The Angel’s Anvil 2018
- EIROA First 20 Years Diadema by C.L.E. Cigar Company
- My Father Flor de Antillas Lancero
- Joya de Nicaragua Antaño Gran Reserva Presidente TAA Exclusive
- Fuente Fuente OpusX ForbiddenX
- Padrón Black No. 89 Maduro
- Padrón Black No. 89 Natural
- E.P. Carrillo TAA Exclusive
- La Palina Blue Label TAA Exclusive
- Gurkha Heritage Rosado Toro
- La Flor Dominicana TAA 2018 – The Golden “Oro” Anniversary
- Montecristo Artisan Series Batch 1 by Altadis USA
- Tatuaje TAA 50th
The following have been the La Flor Dominicana TAA Exclusive Series offerings:
- 2012 La Flor Dominicana TAA 2012 Air Bender Maduro Torpedo
- 2013 La Flor Dominicana Double Press Maduro (TAA Edition)
- 2014 La Flor Dominicana 2014 TAA Exclusive – The 707
- 2015 La Flor Dominicana TAA 47
- 2016 La Flor Dominicana TAA 48 and La Flor Dominicana TAA 48 Celebration Limited Edition Maduro (Event Only)
- 2017 La Flor Dominicana TAA (2017)
- 2018 La Flor Dominicana TAA 2018 – The Golden Anniversary
- 2019 La Flor Dominicana TAA 50th Segunda Edición (Natural and Maduro)
Without further ado, let’s break down the La Flor Dominicana TAA 2018 Golden Anniversary and see what this cigar brings to the table.
Blend and Origin
The La Flor Dominicana TAA 2018 Golden Anniversary consists of a Nicaraguan wrapper over Dominican tobaccos for the binder and filler. The filler includes the Dominican Criollo ’99 tobacco.
Country of Origin: Dominican Republic
Factory: Tabacalera La Flor
The La Flor Dominicana TAA 2018 Golden Anniversary was produced in one size – a 6 1/2 x 54 box-pressed torpedo. The cigars are presented in 20-count boxes.
For 2019, the blend for the La Flor Dominicana TAA 50th Segunda Edición Natural is the same as the La Flor Dominicana TAA 2018 Golden Anniversary. The difference is that the Segunda Edición is a 6 1/2 x 54 box-pressed Toro.
La Flor Dominicana TAA 2018 Golden Anniversary: 6 1/2 x 54 (Box Pressed Torpedo)
La Flor Dominicana TAA 50th Segunda Edición Natural: 6 1/2 x 54 (Box Pressed Toro)
The Nicaraguan wrapper of the La Flor Dominicana TAA 2018 Golden Anniversary had a medium brown color to it. There was some oil on the surface of this wrapper. This was a relatively smooth wrapper that had some thin visible veins and some thin visible wrapper seams. The cigar itself had a trunk-style press. The torpedo tip had a relatively sharp taper to it.
There are two bands on the La Flor Dominicana TAA 2018 Golden Anniversary. The primary band is basically a gold-colored version of a basic La Flor Dominicana background. It features “LFD” in gold scripted font surrounded by gold adornments on a gold foil background. Below the LFD logo, it says “La Flor Dominicana” in white script. Below the white script, it says “Oro” in white font. The remainder of the band has black and gold design elements.
The secondary band has a gold foil background with black trim. On the secondary band is the 50th anniversary logo for the TAA.
To commence the cigar experience of the La Flor Dominicana TAA 2018 Golden Anniversary, a straight cut was used to remove the tip. A Credo Special T cutter with the 36 ring gauge hole was used to get a smaller ring gauge cut and taking advantage of the tapering of this cigar. Once the tip was cut, it was on to the pre-light draw stage. The dry draw delivered a mix of nut, natural tobacco, cedar, and earth. This was a very good pre-light draw. At this point, it was time to light up the La Flor Dominicana TAA 2018 Golden Anniversary and see what the smoking phase would have in store.
The start of the La Flor Dominicana TAA 2018 Golden Anniversary cigar kicked off with notes of nut, natural tobacco, cedar, hay, and earth. As the cigar experience progressed through the first half, the nut and natural tobacco notes moved to the forefront. Later in the first third, the nut notes had a slight edge. Meanwhile, the cedar, hay, and earth notes settled in the background. Meanwhile, there was an additional layer of black pepper on the retro-hale with a slight amount of hay mixed in.
At the start of the second third of the La Flor Dominicana TAA 2018 Golden Anniversary, the nut and natural tobacco notes were close to being on even ground in the forefront. The cedar and earth notes began to pop up from time to time in the forefront. Meanwhile, some black pepper surfaced on the tongue and began to slowly increase in intensity.
By the midway point, the cedar, earth, and natural tobacco pushed the nut flavors into the background. The pepper notes continued to increase in intensity while the nut flavors decreased in intensity. By the final third, the pepper notes were close to the cedar, earth and natural tobacco in the forefront. There still were notes of earth and hay in the background, and the nut flavors had pretty much dissipated. This is the way the smoking experience of the of the La Flor Dominicana TAA 2018 Golden Anniversary came to a close. The resulting nub was soft to the touch and cool in temperature.
In terms of the burn, I did find the La Flor Dominicana TAA 2018 Golden Anniversary had a jagged burn line. While it did maintain a relatively straight burn path, this was a burn that required a slightly above average amount of touch-ups to keep it on the straight path. The resulting ash was mostly light gray in color with some darker spots. This wasn’t an overly firm ash, but it wasn’t a loose nor flakey one either. As for the burn rate and burn temperature, both were ideal.
The draw performed extremely well. The La Flor Dominicana TAA 2018 Golden Anniversary had a touch of resistance to it – which is something that I like. At the same time, this was a low maintenance cigar to derive flavor from.
Strength and Body
In terms of strength, the La Flor Dominicana TAA 2018 Golden Anniversary started out dead-center medium in terms of strength. By the midway point, there was a slight spike in strength pushing the cigar into medium to full territory in the second half. As for the body, the Golden Anniversary started out medium and progressed to medium to full in the second half.
When it came to strength versus body, I still gave the body the edge throughout the smoking experience.
As I have reviewed each release of the 2018 TAA Exclusive Series, I cannot help to think how this series fell short as a whole for the organization’s 50th anniversary. At the same time, there have been some bright spots, and the La Flor Dominicana TAA 2018 Golden Anniversary is one of them. I found this to be an enjoyable cigar scoring nicely in the most important category – flavor. The Golden Anniversary is one of those cigars that, while individually the flavors might not seem exciting, when they all come together, this cigar shines. This is a cigar I’d recommend to a seasoned cigar enthusiast or a novice looking for something in the “medium plus” range. As for myself, it’s a cigar I would smoke again. While it’s a little pricey ($24.00/cigar), it is still one worthy of having multiples in the humidor.
Key Flavors: Nut, Cedar, Natural Tobacco, Hay, Wood, Pepper
Burn: Very Good
Complexity: Medium Plus
Strength: Medium (1st Half), Medium to Full (2nd Half)
Body: Medium (1st Half), Medium to Full (2nd Half)
Finish: Very Good
Value: Buy Multiples
Photo Credits: Cigar Coop