AVO Syncro South America Ritmo
I’ve been on a bit of a roll now. This week I take some time out of a busy weekend to take a look at AVO’s Syncro South America Ritmo paired with a bottle of Alesmith’s Grand Cru.
The Good Stuff:
To say that Davidoff has really stepped their game up the last few years is an understatement. They have been kicking out fantastic new cigars left and right with little signs of slowing down. An extension to the AVO Syncro series called the AVO Syncro South America Ritmo is one of the newest offerings the brand has shipped to retailers. The goal of the Ritmo was to utilize tobacco from seven different countries to reach the highest, most intense flavor offered within the AVO portfolio. The cigar features an Ecuadorian wrapper, Mexican Binder and fillers from Brazil, Dominican Republic, Honduras, Peru, and Nicaragua. The cigar is offered in four size: Robusto (5 x 50), Toro (6 x 54), Special Toro (6 x 60), and the Torpedo Largo (7 x 54). Each size comes packaged in boxes of 20 and runs between $10.90 to $13.90 a stick. I purchased mine over from our friends at Ford on Fifth.
Size: 5 x 54
Filler: Brazilian / Dominican / Honduran / Peruvian / Nicaraguan
Pairing: Alesmith Grand Cru (Belgian Strong Dark Ale 10% ABV)
The AVO Syncro South America Ritmo starts out with a gorgeous, dark brow and orangish brown wrapper. The cigar is covered in rustic looking inconsistencies in color along with some areas of very dark brown splotches scattered through the wrapper leaf. You can see some nice dark natural webbing in the leaf as well as a few mild veins running through the course of the cigar’s body. The wrapper feels very thin a brittle but carries an incredible amount of both grainy tooth and oils. The cigar features a soft-box press format with a nice round double cap. The cigar is polished off with a gorgeous teal, orange, white and black wrapper that carries the standard AVO crest as well as the words “South America” on it. There is also a secondary team band that simply states “RITMO” across the front. The cigar feels very heavy and extremely tightly packed which I hope doesn’t result in any plugging.
The wrapper on The AVO Syncro South America Ritmo gives off a lot of earthy, mossy, natural tobacco aromas while the foot of the cigar carries a bit more spice and oak over mostly the same earthy, natural tobacco aromas. The cap cut clean and like butter using my Palio XO double bladed cutter. The cold draw produces a ton of sweet spice, honey, earthiness and a great mixture of naked woods.
The AVO Syncro South America Ritmo starts out with vanilla, oak, honey, sweet spice, a bit of tartness of my lips and tongue as well as a little bit of black licorice. While I was expecting the draw to be tight, it was as fluid as it could get. Each tiny puff kicked out massive clouds of thick, white smoke which quickly dissipated as it reached my ceiling fan while the cigar itself released a standard amount of stationary smoke as it rests in my ashtray. The burn line is pretty even, and razor sharp leaving behind a tightly compacted trail of light and medium gray ash which held on for an inch before falling into my ashtray.
Into the second third of The AVO Syncro South America Ritmo and the tartness has started to overtake the cigar, but not in a good way. I just hope it doesn’t last too long as I really enjoyed the flavors that developed early on. Underneath the tartness is still some oak, vanilla, and spice, but anything else is pretty much lost at this point. I really hope that the flavors can come back in this thing cause I was really digging how this cigar started. The retrohale helps though as it coats my nasal passage with the sweetness and spice I picked up early on. The cigar is still burning beautifully as I close out the second third with a tiny little nicotine kick.
As I wished for the tartness to fade out in The AVO Syncro South America Ritmo it just kept pouring it on and it has now completely took over the experience. I still get a bit of vanilla and a bit of oak, but that’s just about it. It took me an hour and a half to smoke this cigar down to the nub and quite frankly I thought about putting it down about 20 minutes ago. I just wanted to hold out just to make sure I wasn’t missing something.
I really wanted to like The AVO Syncro South America Ritmo. I have been on a huge AVO kick lately but this one just didn’t perform on par with some of the previous Syncro releases. The flavors started out incredible, but quickly took a turn for the worse when the overwhelming tartness took over the flavor profile. It almost seems like the tartness was the outcome of faulty blending but I smoked 3 of these cigars, all of which ended up the same. I can’t say I’d really recommend these cigars, but what I will do is stash a few away and see if aging them a bit helps the tartness fade out.
I decided to pair The AVO Syncro South America Ritmo with a beer that is heavy on the sweetness and very bold body in an attempt to help the cigar out. Alesmith’s Grand Cru is an 10% ABV Belgian style strong dark ale brewed at the Alesmith brewery in San Diego, California. The beer leads with a ton of sweetness, cajeta, caramel, malt, a bit of hop, slight bitterness, and some rich apple flavors with a very light mouthfeel before finishing crisp with more apple and sweetness, spice, and malt. This is such a good beer and it did in fact help lend a hand to the The AVO Syncro South America Ritmo experience but in the end it just wasn’t enough.