Joya De Nicaragua Antano 1970 Consul
This has been a heck of a week, and due to this I fell a day behind. But alas, I’m back at the blogging seat this time reporting back on the Joya De Nicaragua Antano 1970 Consul.
I have actually never smoked a Joya De Nicaragua before, so this is my first. I have heard nothing but great things about this cigar, and I stumble across it just about everywhere I go. So I finally decided to give it a shot.
The Good Stuff: Joya De Nicaragua’s Antano 1970 is a lasting tribute to the comapany’s stability. Joya De Nicaragua’s cigars were first released back in the mid 1960’s where it was one of the first cigars ever produced in Nicaragua. In 1970, the cigar gained mass acceptance in the U.S. and actually became the tradition cigar of the White House. Shortly after, Nicaragua became fairly unstable, and all of Joya De Nicaragua’s production came to a standstill. After more than 30 years, Joya De Nicaragua came back into play in 2002 with the Antano, to celebrate the company’s hard work.
Size: 4.5 x 52 – Wrapper: Nicaraguan Habano – Binder/Filler: Nicaraguan – Strength: Full
Prelight: I’ve read a review or two on the Antano so I know better than to let it’s small stature fool me. This cigar is supposed to pack a mean punch. The Wrapper is a very dark habano, almost maduro looking leaf. The cigar itself is very chunky, and has a pretty good weight to it. The wrapper smells of light earth tones with hints of almond. The foot of the cigar has a strong woodsy smell, with a touch of pine. There were a few soft spots close to the foot of the cigar. We will blame these on the handling, and I don’t forsee any problems with them. I should be able to burn right through them. The band is very bright, and inviting. There is a great use of metallic gold ink, with greens and reds spread out across the ring making the Antano stand out amongst most other cigars in any humidor. I used a double-bladed cutter, and a cheapy little 3 torch flame (my lighter is being repaired) to smoke this cigar.
Cold Draw: The pine taste didn’t come through with the cold draw, I must have picked that out of the air somewhere. The Antano’s cold draw had a very woodsy/leathery taste to it, with touches of spice and almond. The cold draw was pretty tight, and I am hoping this doesn’t transcend into the rest of the smoke.
First Smoke: The Antano lit up right away, and took literally just a few seconds to light completely under my 3 flame torch set to low. The first couple of puffs were very tight. I’m not a big fan of tight draws, so it was very welcomed when out of the blue the draw unleashed with huge clouds of thick smoke about 4 or 5 puffs in. Despite the massive draw, the smoke itself wasn’t all that bad smelling. If it wasn’t for the huge clouds of smoke I would recommend smoking this around other people. The taste pallete was very soft and invited. Peppery, spice was the dominant flavor backed by a bit of pine, cedar, and hints of almond.
The burn line is nothing less of stellar at this point, and the Antano is producing very thick, almost white ash. The pepper taste is matching up well as this cigar is paired with an Avery Hog Heaven barley-wine style ale. Astonishingly enough, I got almost 2 whole inches of ash (keep in mind how short this cigar is) before finally giving way. I really couldn’t predict when it was actually going to give out.
Halfway there: I know this is a strong cigar, but at this point I have yet to feel it. The smoke is smooth, and incredibly creamy. The pepper taste has mellowed out some, and now its become more “bready”. I’m not sure if “bready” is the term, or even a word for that matter, but it was the best way I could describe it. The draw hasn’t let up at all, it’s still as big as ever.
The Antano’s burn line has taken a small turn for the worse as it became pretty wavy on one portion of the cigar. I’m not sure if this one will actually correct itself. The Antano is getting pretty warm. I usually smoke pretty fast, however this one is burning a lot warmer than most other cigars I’ve had as of late.
Finish: After standing up, and walking around my back yard A bit I was pretty surprised to find that I have felt no light-headedness, nor any signs of nicotine. Towards the end of the smoke the pepper taste came back, but it wasn’t nearly as strong as the beginning of the smoke. The questionable burn line actually did in fact correct itself, and the warmth of the draw only increased. I was really surprised how the taste of the Antano was so consistent throughout the entire smoke. The only addition were soft hints of sweetness I picked up towards the very end.
Overview: I would have to give this cigar 4.5 stars out of 5 (I am working on a custom rating system, no worries.). Outside of the small stature, the hot burn, and the fact that I don’t have more of these in my humidor, I can’t think of anything bad to say about this smoke. It was extremely smooth, and well balanced with soft kicks just where you would expect them. I WILL be getting more of these, and I recommend anyone who enjoys cigars to do the same.
The Joya De Nicaragua Antano 1970 Consul was paired with Avery’s Hog Heaven Barely Wine Style Ale.