H. Upmann Magnum 48 Edicion Limitada 2009 (Cuban)
So the site seems to be back up and running smoothly. For those of you who don’t know, we moved servers last week which caused quite a few days where the site was unbelievably slow, or not accessible at all. But we are back! If there is anything out of place don’t hesitate to let me know. It may take a bit before everything is working smoothly again. In the meantime, I found a few extra hours to sneak out back and enjoy a Cuban H. Upmann Magnum 48 2009 Edicion Limitada. That’s a mouthful.
The Good Stuff: The H. Upmann Magnum 48 is part of the 2009 H. Upmann Series released each year by Habanos S.A. I have smoked 2 of these little guys prior to this review and for the life of me I can’t remember where I got them from. That’s that tough part about aging cigars. Anyways, if you were responsible in any way for getting any of these in my hands, I thank you. The 2009 Edicion Limitada sports the same blend as the standard magnum line except the tobacco is aged for at least two years. That, and the format are really the only difference. Anyhow, outside of that and the blend info, that’s all I have. So let’s get this started!
Size: 4 ½ x 48
Pairing: Stone Ruination IPA (Imperial IPA 7.7% ABV)
Prelight: The wrapper on this cigar is crazy dark. In the past the few of these I have smoked didn’t look nearly as dark as this one so age my be the culprit here. Either way, it’s a damn good looking wrapper sporting tons of oil, a bit of tooth, and some smaller veins running through it’s short body. The H. Upmann 2009 Edicion Limitada is capped off with a stubby, little, Cuban style triple cap. The cigar is extremely firm which I find is very hard to come by in terms of Cuban cigars. Usually they feel very spongy with delicate wrappers, but this wrapper is as hard as a rock.
The H. Upmann Magnum 48 3009 Edicion Limitada gives off only a modest tobacco and sweet aroma from the wrapper while the foot of the cigar is almost aromaless. I could only pull off a very slight natural tobacco but that may have been coming from the wrapper. The cap cut clean and easy using my double bladed Palio cutter.
First Smoke: The H. Upmann Magnum 48 2009 Edicion Limitada starts off with a really soft spice, lots of cedar, lots of sweetness, a really nice natural tobacco, citrus, and some saltiness from the wrapper. It’s a common Cuban start off with lots more flavor that you’d initially expect. The draw on this cigar is remarkable. Seriously, one of the best draws I have had on a cigar in a long time. Each little puff kicks out sooooo much white, dense smoke. It’s good too cause I can take my time and really enjoy this cigar without having to worry about it burning too fast. Like most Cuban tobacco, the burn line is pretty wavy, but nothing too serious at this point. The ash is pretty flaky and very light grey. It held on for a little under and inch before falling off.
Halfway There: While the spice, cedar, sweetness and tobacco remained, much of the flavors in the H. Upmann have really dropped off. Sucks too cause it was making for a great experience. This happened in the other ones I smoked as well so I know it’s not an age thing. While the flavors have really taken a dip, the cigar remains very smooth and very creamy. I would have liked it to remain as flavorful, but you can’t have it all I guess. The retrohale is really great though coating my nasal passage with an awesome cedar and sweetness. I have yet to feel any nicotine at all from this smoke as I finish off the second third. The burnline is still pretty wavy but I haven’t had to relight or tough it up yet so I’m not complaining.
Finish: Much the same in the final third if this H. Upmann magnum 48 2009 Edicion Limitada. Smooth, creamy, sweet tobacco, cedar, and cedar. A really interesting zestiness came into play in the final third which added a bit of dimension to the experience. The burline is still pretty crappy. I ended up having to touch it up a few times near the end, but never had to relight so again, it really didn’t bother me at all. It took me about an hour to take this little cigar down to the nub and quite frankly, I was surprised that it took that long. I think the awesome draw had a lot to do with it. There was no real harshness leading into the final inch but the cigar did burn pretty hot.
Overview: This is a good example of a solid Cuban and what you’d expect going into most premium Cuban cigars. Smooth, creamy, one-dimensional with a crappy burn. The first third of this cigar really took off and I would have loved for the cigar to stay that way, but in Cuban nature it mellowed out. It’s not to say this cigar wasn’t good, heck it was great, I just wish there was a little more to it. I think the age on this stick actually brought out more of the flavor as the ones I smoked prior to this one didn’t have as much of that flavor kick at the start.
To Sum it up: It’s a good cigar. Solid, and burned as great as you can get with all Cuban tobacco. The cost is a bit high for me as we have grown to expect a much more well-rounded experience in that price range. I would probably smoke this cigar again if I stumbled across it, but I really don’t see myself going out of my way to find anymore.
Pairing: This H. Upmann 48 Magnum 2009 Edicion Limitada was paired with one of my go-to summer IPA’s, Stone’s Ruination. Ruination is an imperial IPA brewed at Stone’s brewery in California. The IPA comes in at 7.7% ABV and packs tons of flavor. That’s one of the main reasons I paired this beer with this cigar. I knew this cigar was good, but it lacked flavors at time so what I wanted to do was ramp up those dull moments with a powerful, bold beer. The sweetness and citrus went perfectly with the Magnum while the hoppyness, zest, and bitterness from the beer help fill the voids, and actually assist in ramping up the experience when needed. Thinking about a pairing for a cigar like this, you can take it one of two ways. Adding something extremely flavorful to ramp up the experience like I did, or pairing it with something more neutral like tea, or coffee to create a more subtle, creamy, and smooth experience. Either way you look at it the pairings for a cigar like this are endless.