Late in 2020, Davidoff announced a new offering under its Zino brand known as the Zino Platinum Crown Series Limited Edition 2020. Zino is the brand that carries the namesake of Davidoff founder Zino Davidoff. It’s been positioned as a more contemporary premium brand in its portfolio. Throughout the history of the brand, it hasn’t been as busy as Davidoff, Camacho, and AVO brands, but at the same time, it is a brand that has its following. Up until the day prior to this review, there had not been a new regular release since 2011. During the past ten years, the focus of the Zino brand has been on limited editions, regional releases, and shop exclusives. Today we take a look at one of those limited-edition releases, the Zino Platinum Crown Series Limited Edition 2020.
Zino has always been one of the more interesting brands on the marketplace. It’s a brand not just known for its innovative packaging, but one that attempts to push the boundaries of what Davidoff does in terms of blends and even sizes. In the case of the Zino Platinum Crown Series Limited Edition 2020, this couldn’t be more true.
At this point, let’s explore the Zino Platinum Crown Series Limited Edition 2020 in much more detail and see what this cigar brings to the table.
Blend and Origin
Blend-wise, what is most innovative or out of the box for Zino is that this is a Honduran forward blend. Outside of Camacho, it is less common to see Honduran tobacco in a Davidoff portfolio offering. This blend uses Honduran Corojo and Honduran Criollo tobaccos. The cigar features and Ecuadorian Habano wrapper, Honduran binder, and a combination of Honduran and Dominican fillers. Production is handled at Davidoff’s O.K. Cigars Factory in the Dominican Republic.
Wrapper: Ecuadorian Habano
Filler: Honduran and Dominican San Vincente
Country of Origin: Dominican Republic
Factory: O.K. Cigars
Zino is also known for some non-traditional sizes. In this case, the Zino Platinum Crown Series Limited Edition 2020 is a 5 x 60 Gran Robusto. Outside of Camacho, the other brands from Davidoff have rarely had 60 ring gauge cigars. The cases where there have been 60 ring gauges have been usually been 6 x 60. The Zino Platinum Crown Series Limited Edition 2020 breaks the norm a bit with its 5 x 60 offering.
The Zino Platinum Crown Series Limited Edition 2020 is packaged in large 10-count tins. The specific production values have not been publicly disclosed.
The Ecuadorian Habano wrapper of the Zino Platinum Crown Series Limited Edition 2020 had a dark cinnamon hue to it. The wrapper had some subtle mottling and was slightly toothy. There wasn’t much oil on the surface of the wrapper. There were some visible veins, but there were not any visible wrapper seams.
There are two bands on the Zino Platinum Crown Series Limited Edition 2020. The primary band features a black and silver color scheme. The band is highlighted by a black shield with silver trim on it On the shield is a silver “Z” with a gold crown above it. Above the shield is the text “ZINO PLATINUM” in silver font sitting on a black ribbon-design background. Below the shield is the text “CROWN SERIES” – also in silver font sitting on a black ribbon-design background. The left and right sides of the shield have the text “HAND” and “MADE” respectively – each in silver font. The remainder of the band has silver striping and adornments.
The secondary band sits just below the primary band. This band has a mostly maroon background with gold swiping near the perimeter. On the center of the band is a gold crown surrounded with the text “LIMITED” and “EDITION” in white font on the left and right respectively. There is a black nameplate design protruding from the bottom of the band with the text “2020” on it.
Prior to lighting up the Zino Platinum Crown Series Limited Edition 2020, a straight cut was used to remove the cap. Once the cap was removed, it was on to the pre-light draw experience. The cold draw delivered a mix of cedar, earth, and hay. This wasn’t the most exciting pre-light draw, but the pre-light draw is not factored into the numerical score or value rating, so there was no loss of points here. At this point, it was time to light up the Zino Platinum Crown Series Limited Edition 2020 and see what the smoking experience would have in store.
The start of the Zino Platinum Crown Series Limited Edition 2020 started out with cedar, mixed pepper, and natural tobacco. Early on the natural tobacco and cedar moved into the forefront with the pepper settling in the background. There was a musty component to the natural tobacco notes. Meanwhile, the pepper and cedar were also prominent on the retro-hale.
During the second third of the Zino Platinum Crown Series Limited Edition 2020, both the natural tobacco and cedar remained. The difference was that the natural tobacco flavors had more in the way of sweetness than mustiness. Meanwhile, the pepper notes remained in the background.
The final third of the cigar saw the musty component of the natural tobacco return, displacing the sweetness that previously emerged. There was a slight increase in the pepper notes. At the same time, some bitterness and sourness emerged. This is the way the Zino Platinum Crown Series Limited Edition 2020 came to a close. The resulting nub was soft to the touch and cool in temperature.
The draw of the Zino Platinum Crown Series Limited Edition 2020 performed quite well. This was a cigar that maintained a relatively straight burn path and had a straight burn line. The resulting ash was skewed toward the firmer side. This was an ash that was light gray in color. As for the burn rate and burn temperature both were ideal.
The draw to the Zino Platinum Crown Series Limited Edition 2020 had a touch of resistance to it – which is something that I like. At the same time, this was a cigar that was a low maintenance cigar to derive flavor from.
Strength and Body
The Zino Platinum Crown Series Limited Edition 2020 delivered a medium strength, medium-bodied smoking experience from start to finish. There was a nominal increase in the intensity along the way, but in the end, the Zino Platinum Crown Series Limited Edition 2020 remained in the medium range.
In terms of strength versus body, both attributes balanced each other nicely with neither attribute overpowering the other.
Zino is a brand that I have long admired. I like the sleek, contemporary, luxury smoke that it has delivered over the years. Any time Davidoff releases a new Zino, I get excited. I was extremely happy to see the Limited Edition 2020 get announced – and I was excited to try it. While I like that Zino continues to venture into different things (5 x 60, Honduran tobacco), this cigar wasn’t quite what I expect from a Zino. The cigar was light in terms of complexity, and the last third had bitter and sour flavors which were disappointing. In the end, the Zino Platinum Crown Series Limited Edition 2020 is a cigar I’d recommend trying first.
Key Flavors: Natural Tobacco (Musty, Sweet Components), Cedar, Pepper
Complexity: Low to medium
Finish: Very Good
Value: Try a Sample
News: Zino Platinum Crown Series Limited Edition 2020 Announced
Brand Reference: Zino
Photo Credits: Cigar Coop, except where noted