Cigar Reviews

Drew Estate Liga Privada JD#4

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Anyone who reads this blog knows of my love for Drew Estate’s Liga Privada lines. When word started getting out that there was an unreleased blend out there, I was all over it, and lucky for me our good friend Jonathan Drew and Drew Estate were kind enough to shoot a few of these unreleased sticks our way. Needless to say, this review, as well as any reviews on our site and completely unbiased. If a cigar rocks, it rocks, but if this new Liga Privada blows, believe me, I’ll be the first to wave red flags.

Liga Privada JD4 1

The Good Stuff: The newest, un-released blend is called the Liga Privada JD#4. The Liga Privada line was originally created for the sole purpose of Steve Saka’s (Drew Estate’s President) personal enjoyment. After massive amounts of pressure from Drew Estate’s sale staff, Saka was forced to release his personal blend, the Liga Privada No.9 to the public. The Connecticut Broadleaf used on the Liga Privada No.9 is so limited, and the No.9 was in such high demand that Drew Estate was forced to come out with yet another Liga Privada blend that they could produce year round. Hence where the Stalk Cut Habano wrapped Liga Privada T52 comes into play.

Liga Privada JD4 2

I can only assume that the success of each of these blends had caused Drew Estate’s Production Director and Saka’s partner in crime Jonathan Drew to create a Liga Privada blend of his very own. Alas, the Liga Privada JD#4 was born. I’m not entirely sure where the “#4” comes from, but I can only assume it was similar to the “No.9” and is the actually blend number assigned during tasting.

Liga Privada JD4 3

The specifics of this blend are still extremely fuzzy. The only details I have is that the blend has been around for about 2 years, and Jonathan Drew has been smoking them religiously and the release date, if it ever does get released won’t but until at least sometime next year. The blend carries the same Havana Seed Connecticut grown stalk-cut wrapper as the T52 but has a completely different core with an even more ramped up body. The samples sent to me are toros, and look to be 6 x 52/54 The ring gauge seems bigger than 52 but not quite 54.

Liga Privada JD4 4

Prelight: The Liga Privada JD#4 is hefty, toro sized cigar. The wrapper is very toothy, with a consistent dark chocolaty brown mixed with a few lighter orange shades. The JD#4 is pretty much identical in it’s physical appearance as the Liga Privada T52, with what I can assume is the same stalk-cut Habano wrapper that the T52 carries.  Topped off with a nicely round double cap, the JD#4 has only one noticeable vein that I don’t foresee pestering the experience.  The wrapper feels much like a softer sand-paper with no soft spots at all or any signs of mis-construction.  The wrapper of the JD#4 gives off a massive cedar scent with hints of cinnamon, cocoa, and a very, very interesting almost cologne scent that I have never picked up from a Liga Privada cigar before. Whatever it is, it smells damn good. The foot gives off a totally different scent, one more composed of natural tobacco, and earth tones. In this case, the wrapper is the more dominant player. The cap clipped off with ease using my double bladed Liga Privada cutter. The cold draw producing a surprising organic, earthy, and musky flavor. Totally different than the cedar-heavy Liga Privada blends I am used to.

Liga Privada JD4 5

First Smoke: The Liga Privada JD#4 started out with the same power punch of pepper as I have grown to expect from the Liga Privada lines. Caught off guard yet again is the fact that the most prominent flavor is actually the cedar that I didn’t think came through much in the cold draw. Other strong notes are organic tobacco and cocoa mixed in with hints of spice, cinnamon,  and even a tiny bit of citrus off the aftertaste. The JD#4 is really starting off with a bang, if the body stays as strong as it is right now this cigar just might knock me on my ass. The draw is effortless and pumps out a massive amount of extremely thick, dark brown, cedar scented smoke as well as a crap load of stationary smoke. You can actually see the oils burning off the wrapper. I really don’t think the scent of the smoke will bother anyone that doesn’t smoke cigars, but the amount of smoke just might. The burnline is perfect, sharp, and even and the ash left behind is a medium grey, and tightly packed with only slight flakes. The ash held on for a little over an inch before tumbling into my ashtray.

Liga Privada JD4 6

Halfway There: Wow, the strength of this cigar is already starting to hit me. The best part about it though, is its very balance with the flavor, smoothness, and creamy experience of this cigar. I think there are a lot of blends out right now that are just boasting power but lack in the flavor department, luckily up till now the JD#4 isn’t a casualty of this trend. The dominant flavor is still cedar but I am starting to get a sharp raisin, cocoa and coffee mixture in there as well as strong tobacco. The retrohale primed my nasal passage with a very enjoyable bold cedar. The burnline is still rockin’ sharp and perfectly even.

Liga Privada JD4 7

Finish: Well into the final third of this Liga Privada JD#4 and the flavors had an interesting switch up. The cedar began to fade just slightly enough to product a very creamy mocha flavor backed up by raisin, leather, tobacco, and even a slight return of spice. Then, within the last inch the cedar ramped the hell up and came on full force. Usually I’m not one for the final inch of a cigar. But the JD#4 kicked ass with a completely smooth experience with no harsh build up. Well into the last inch and my fingers didn’t even get warm which I didn’t expect with a cigar with such a huge draw. The strength? Dead on. I would compare it to something like the Oliva Serie V just without all the harsh Ligero. I’m sure there is some in here, but it takes the backburner to the flavor.  After all was said and done, the JD#4 took about 2 hours to smoke.

Liga Privada JD4 8

Overview: The Liga Privada JD#4 is something quite different than the T52 and the No. 9 but still holds true to the rest of the Liga Privada line. As if the other twp blends didn’t already have enough strength the JD#4 comes in with a perfectly balanced powerhoused flavor bomb. This isn’t a beginner’s cigar. The body is too ramped up for a novice, or even an experienced medium bodied smoker. But I think it goes without saying that Drew Estate has another winner on it’s hands. I still think the No.9 trumps both the JD#4 and the T52, but the JD#4 is right up there with the T52. From what I have seen the reviews are torn between which one is favorited, and I am sure that the JD#4 will be adding another strong contender to the competition.

Liga Privada JD4 9

Pairing: I decided to pair this cigar with a cup of sweet tea. See the picture? That’s cause I didn’t post one. We all know what tea looks like. Not to mention I really don’t want to do the dishes so I drank out of a plastic cup that wasn’t very photogenic. Sweet tea is probably one of my absolute favorite pairings for a cigar. The brisk tea notes really help pick apart the tobacco while the sugar helps calm the nicotine kick produced by stronger cigars. The Liga Privada JD#4 would pair perfect with any strong whiskey or scotch, port, stout, porter, or coffee.

Tony Casas is a 32 year old Creative Managing/Webdesigning/Craft Beer Drinking Cigar smoker from El Paso, Texas. When he isn't loving his wife he is either sleepy, hungry, or suffering from a headache.

19 Comments

  1. Dalamscius

    August 12, 2010 at 9:50 am

    Nice Review Tony! If this cigar can knock you on yourass I’m afraid of what it would do to me! lol

    The flavors sounds really interesting and to be able to nub such a strong cigar really speaks to it’s quality and balanced flavor. Usually full sticks like this just turn nasty at the nub, not the case here it seems.
    I hope this stick hits the market eventually, DE has a good thing going with the Liga line and expanding it seems like a great idea to me.

    Now what’s up with the sweet tea paired with this cigar? It’s like a massive muscle builder walking a toy poodle with a pink leash? hahahaha j/k

  2. Tony Casas

    August 12, 2010 at 10:01 am

    Dear Daniel,

    Although I appreciate all you have done here at Casas Fumando I regret to inform you that your position, as of now, is no longer available. Please leave your nametag, uniform, and cigars at the front office. A final check will not be mailed to you, however this check will be cashed, by me, and used to wash my car, repeatedly, in the rain.

    Kidding of course man. That was my thoughts exactly and I’m glad you caught it. It’s not everyday that you can smoke such a strong cigar and not finish off harsh, of overpowered, especially with the larger vitola. It’s a damn good stick man. Maybe you can man up and try one sometime. 🙂

  3. Albert

    August 12, 2010 at 10:06 am

    Damn! That cigar looks tasty despite you saying it’s not for the average smoker. I think I’ll take a risk and try one out. Just hope I don’t over due it. ha,ha.

  4. Tony Casas

    August 12, 2010 at 10:08 am

    Albert with the win, where you at Victor!

    haha, its a great cigar man, and I am greatful to have been able to try it out. I really do hope these hit production but you never know with Drew Estate. They are ALWAYS up to something!

  5. Jared

    August 12, 2010 at 10:10 am

    First off, I hate you. I do. This is the straw that just broke tis camels back! Second, Great review. You still have the knack for doing reviews that are not long and boring they are to the point and absolutely nail what it is a cigar smoker is looking to know about any particular cigar. I can’t wait to be able to get any of the upcoming DE stogies. Lastly, did you really have to mention your uber cool LP cutter? C’mon man that’s just mean!

    Keep it up man.

  6. Tony Casas

    August 12, 2010 at 10:14 am

    Jared,

    haha sorry man 🙁 but I am glad to hear from you and I hope all is well out there! We’re proud of ya man. The cutter is actually in one or two of the images 🙂

    I try to keep it direct and straight to the point. With so many other review sites out there I wouldnt want to make my readers waste there time reading a bunch of mumbo jumbo!

    Thanks for the comment man, be safe!

  7. Albert

    August 12, 2010 at 10:15 am

    no kidding!

    Tony / Daniel, Thanks guys for making my “work time” a hell of alot more fun and interesting with your
    reviews, since I recieve all emails at work.
    Always looking forward to the next one.

  8. Victor

    August 12, 2010 at 10:23 am

    Nice review Tony. The Liga Privada #9 is an excelent cigar, and this ine sounds like it is excelent as well but with a much stronger kick. Reading the review made me want to smoke one right now. Too bad I have to wait until after work.

    I hope you enjoy the cigars, they’re not the best you’ll have but they’re pretty enjoyable to smoke.

    See, I beat Albert on the comment

    • Tony Casas

      August 12, 2010 at 10:35 am

      I will totally enjoy them Victor!

      *point ups, Albert got ya!

  9. Matthew

    August 12, 2010 at 10:34 am

    Well done Tony – I got a nicotine buzz just reading your review.

  10. Tony Casas

    August 12, 2010 at 10:36 am

    Ha ha thanks Matthew, hopefully it was an “enjoyable” one!

  11. CigarCraig

    August 12, 2010 at 11:06 am

    Great read, thanks! The Ligas are just about the ideal cigar in flavor and construction. It’s no wonder Saka can survive on a steady diet of these as they are so smooth and satisfying!

  12. Tony Casas

    August 12, 2010 at 11:56 am

    Craig, I personally could survive on them as well! Thanks for the read man!

  13. Keith1911

    August 12, 2010 at 2:21 pm

    Great review Tony! It sounds like something I’d like to try. Maybe I might be able to score one. We’ll see.

  14. Tony Casas

    August 12, 2010 at 7:55 pm

    Thanks Keith! I really do hope these hit production, and soon. I think a whole lot of people are going to like it!

  15. Hooligan600

    August 29, 2010 at 5:11 pm

    I just finished smoking one of these today and you are right on with your review Tony. This stick is fantastic! I too am a huge fan of the Liga Privada line and these will be a great addition. Those guys at Drew Estate are really changing the game.

    • Tony Casas

      August 29, 2010 at 8:39 pm

      Thanks Hooligan. I think it’s different enough not to clash with the T52 and No9, but similar enough to pair up for a perfect trio. Thanks for the read!

  16. DownInFlames

    August 30, 2010 at 12:09 pm

    My personal fav is the No. 9, so I’m eager to get my hands on a few of these. I haven’t seen them offered anywhere. I’ll keep looking and hopefully there will be some out if the Houston are soon!

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