Agile Cigar Reviews are cigar assessments where we 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 rescoring or giving a score for the first time. It might be a blend we are looking at in a different size. In this case, it’s a little different as we explore a cigar called Absolution created by Oveja Negra Brands for Caribbean Cigars in Miami, Florida. The cigar piqued my interest enough that I decided to review.
Wrapper: Mexican San Andres
Filler: Dominican, Nicaraguan
Country of Origin: Nicaragua
Factory: Fabrica Oveja Negra
Toro: 6 x 50
Over the past five years, Fabrica Oveja Negra has been one of the more rapidly developing factories in Nicaragua. The factory is known for producing four brands distributed by Oveja Negra Brands: Black Label Trading Company, Black Works Studio, Emilio Cigars, and Dissident Cigars. At the same time, the factory is quietly getting a reputation for establishing many shop exclusive and private label brands. One brand that has caught my attention coming out of that factory is Absolution. It’s a cigar made for Carribbean Cigars in Miami, Florida. Over the years, Carribbean Cigars has had a strong relationship with the Oveja Negra Brands, thus it makes sense for them to take the next step with the Absolution brand.
Blender James Brown at Fabrica Oveja Negra has garnered a solid reputation for producing maduro brands, and with the Absolution he utilizes a San Andres Mexican maduro wrapper over a Habano binder and a combination of Nicaragua and Dominican Fillers. The Absolution comes in one size – a 6 x 50 Toro and is sold in ten-count craft paper bundles.
The Absolution started out with notes of mocha, black cherry, and red pepper. The mocha notes were a classic fusion of dark chocolate and coffee. Early on the mocha and cherry notes were primary with the pepper notes in the not too distant background. Later in the first third, some earthy notes emerged in the background. The earthy notes slowly increased in intensity. By the end of the second third, the earth had displaced the mocha and cherry notes. As the cigar moved through the final third, the pepper notes continued to be close secondary notes, and the mocha and cherry notes were more distant.
In terms of strength and body, Absolution is quite a bold cigar. This is a cigar that started out medium to full in strength and medium to full in body. By the second half, the flavors had progressed into full-bodied territory while the strength remained medium to full.
If you have smoked a James Brown maduro, there are certain foundational elements – bold chocolate notes, sweet fruit, and black pepper. Absolution has this, but it also brings an intangible category – a little extra “bite” to the spice note. The strength and body are definitely on the bold side, but I found these factors meshed very nicely with the flavor profile being delivered. While not an overly complex cigar, the flavors do really shine here.
Given this is a bolder cigar, I’d recommend this to a more seasoned cigar enthusiast. As for myself, I found this cigar quite enjoyable. Many know I am sour on many single store exclusives and private labels. This is a very good one and reaches the Cigar Coop Standard of Excellence. It’s priced very well and it garners box (bundle) worthy consideration.
Key Flavors: Mocha, Earth, Black Cherry, Black Pepper
Complexity: Medium Minus
Strength: Medium to Full
Body: Medium to Full (1st Half), Full (Remainder)
Finish: Very Good
Value: Box Worthy Consideration
*Cigar Coop Standard of Excellence*
Price: $89.50 (Ten-Pack); $8.95 (Cigar)
Source: Caribbean Cigars
Brand Reference: Oveja Negra Brands
Photo Credits: Cigar Coop