Viaje Oro Reserva #5
Look who’s on time again. I’ll tell you who wont be next week. Daniel. Slacker is getting some much needed R&R fishing time in. Must be nice! While he is prepping the good ol’ finishing pole, I was firing up another cigar that has been burning a hole through my humidor. Viaje’s Oro Reserva #5. (notice how I was still a day late? Yeah, thank a crazy day at work for that. I totally forgot to schedule the post).
The Good Stuff: For those of you who don’t know, Viaje is a new badass brand. Badass cause their cigars rock. Not so badass that they are all exclusive. Seeing as they haven’t been around as long as most I can only hope that changes as time progresses. The Oro Reserva is no exception to the rule. There wasn’t many of these cigars made. They are a double-bindered, box pressed, Nicaraguan Puro, that run roughly $11 a stick. That is, if you can find them. It’s impossible to get them here in El Paso. Luckily I have some awesome BOTL’s that like to help a brother in need out. This cigar really got a lot of buzz when it was listed as Cigar Aficionado’s #2 cigar of the year. Does it deserve the spot? Let’s find out.
Size: 5.5 x 52 – Wrapper: Nicaraguan Corojo ’99 – Binder/Filler: Nicaraguan – Body: Medium/Full
Prelight: Much like Viaje’s Platino I reviewed a while back, the Oro Reserva has a really nice, medium to dark brown wrapper with spots of orange throughout. The body of the cigar really doesn’t have any noticeable veins running the entire length of the box-pressed body before leading up to a nice, round triple cap. The cigar doesn’t have a lot of weight to it, and actually has more give than most cigars when I compress it, leading me to believe it’s probably going to have a looser draw. The wrapper feels pretty durable for the most part, and gives off a real nice shine as the sunlight bounces off all the oils that surround it. The band on the Oro Reserva, is almost identical to the silverish edition band you saw on my recent Platino review, only with gold trim and a nice secondary back and gold “Reserva” band. I Really like this brand’s logo.
The wrapper on this Oro Reserva doesn’t gives off a very sweet, floral aroma with some nice spice mixed in, while the foot has almost the same sweet, aroma only with much more spice. The cap clipped off very easy using my double bladed Palio cuter. Usually I am skeptical cutting box-pressed cigars as the always seem to tear, or squish when I cut them. The cold draw feels slightly loose give out this really neat, tobacco, sugar cookie flavor.
First Smoke: The first couple of draws from this Oro Reserva seemed really loose, but once the foot was completely toasted it tightened up just right kicking out a very nice, thick, and easy draw. The flavors started out with this really light, pepper touch which transcended into all the sweet sugar, and floral aromas and flavors I picked up during the prelight mixed with a nice bite of strong tobacco, and sweet earth flavors. This thing is a flavor bomb right off the bat. The burnline on the Oro Reserva is thick, and even for the most part, only containing a few smaller waves. This cigar gives off a ton of stationary smoke that smells almost as good as this cigar tastes! The ash was a very tightly compacted, white and light grey which held on for about an inch before giving way.
Halfway There: Viaje’s Oro Reserva really started to mellow out into the second third. Not in a bad way. The flavors became much more smooth as the strong tobacco taste was replaced with a nice, rich cedar taste along with the floral, sugar, and even some honey backing up the cedar. The retrohale is really sharp at first, but after a few times your nasal passaged get coated with a very nice cedar. But I still don’t find myself retro haling too often with this cigar. I am feeling some nicotine from this cigar. Enough to call this cigar Full, but it’s not an ass-kicker. At least, not yet.
Finish: The flavors began to ramp up again in the final third. The cedar is just rocking hard and established it’s leading place in the flavor race. The main contenders in the final third outside of the cedar was still floral, still the sugar, and even some nice grape flavors that snuck in. The body didn’t increase much, which is a good thing cause I really didn’t want the body to overpower this cigar. There was absolutely no harshness even into the final inch. In total this cigar took about two hours to smoke. Really, and I smoke pretty fast. This is a very slow burning cigar. Seriously, this is a hell of a cigar.
Overview: Nothing but good things have came from Viaje, and or course, the Oro Reserve is naturally no exception. That being said I really hope Viaje comes out with more, and higher volume produced cigars. I hate all the limited editions, but sometimes, its worth it to just really reach out and spend the extra time, and coin to chase them down. The Oro Reserve started out with a bang, and ended on nothing but pleasant notes. This cigar is really worth the price, box worthy, and will hold a strong place in the premium cigar rotation of any cigar lover.
Pairing: Making up for my “water” pairings, I paired this cigar with another great beer, Uerige’s Doppelsticke. This beer is a strong altbeir (German top-fermenting brew) creeping up with 8.5% ABV brewed at the Uerige Obergärige Hausbrauerei GmbH / Zum Uerig brewery in the Beerfamous Dusseldorf, Germany. That being said, I would assume this is another beer that follows the Germany Purity act of 1516 stating that any beers brewed in certain parts of Germany only be composed of 3 ingredients; water, barley, and hops. It’s amazing the flavors one can create with such limited resources. Uerige’s Doppelsticke tastes much like a strong brown ale, with tons of bitter, citrus, fruity flavors over a caramel malt base. This cigar went extremely well with the sweet, woodsy notes in the Oro Reserva. Other great pairings would be a nice tawny port, some creamed coffee, any strong or brown ale, or if you really want to go big pair it with a nice Barley-wine style ale. Just make sure you had something to eat first.
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.