Illusione Pactum – Smoke Inn Exclusive
Hello beautiful spring-like weather, hello Illusione Pactum.
The Good Stuff:
The Illusione Pactum is the ninth installment of Smoke Inn’s Microblend Series. If you’re unfamiliar with the Microblend Series it basically consists of exclusive blends made in collaboration between Smoke Inn and some of the biggest names in the cigar industry. Before the Illusione Pactum the list is as follows:
- Tatuaje Anarchy
- Padron 1964 Anniversary SI 15
- My Father El Hijo
- Aturo Fuente Solaris
- Tatuaje Apocalypse
- Room 101 Big Delicious
- Quesada Oktoberfest Dunkel
- 601 La Bomba Bunker Buster
For the Pactum, Abe Dababneh (Smoke Inn’s owner) teamed up with Dion Giolito of Illusione cigars to create a cigars experience that is as bold as Abe himself. The result was the Pactum, or partnership. The Pactum features a bold Mexican San Andreas Capa Fino Maduro wrapper along with a Nicaraguan binder and Nicaraguan Fillers. A total of 400 boxes of 15 cigars each will be released in a single 5.5 x 56 box-pressed format running $8.95 per stick. This is a limited run which you can only get at Smoke Inn so stock up here.
Size: 5.5 x 56 Box Press
Wrapper: Mexican San Andreas Capa Fino Maduro
Pairing: Dogfish Head Bitches Brew (Imperial Stout – 9.00% ABV)
The Illusione Pactum is an absolutely gorgeous looking cigar (It’s actually supposed to represent Abe, so yeah), rustic, meaty, and flawless construction. The cigar starts off with a very heavy toothed, thick, dark brown wrapper. The wrapper showcases some slight oils and a natural appearance through it’s dark brown exterior and medium/darker webbing throughout the tobacco leaf. There are a few medium sized veins as the wrapper leaf is seamlessness folded over itself. The format sports a beautiful soft box press with a very firm fill leading up to a round double cap. The Illusione Pactum is finished off with a standard styled Illusione band which showcases a royal blue print with the words “Cigares Prive” embossed in the front. “Cigares Prive” translates to “Private Cigars” which is a series that Illusione produces for exclusive accounts across the nation.
The wrapper on the Illusione Pactum gives off only a slight cocoa aroma while the foot of the cigar really smells like an interesting mixture of black licorice and tobacco. We’ll see if that translates into the smoking experience. The cap cut clean and buttery using my double bladed Palio cutter. The black licorice really comes through on the cold draw and I really hope to see it in the actual smoking experience. Other flavors included some soft spice and cocoa.
The Illusione Pactum starts off with very little pepper which quickly drops off leaving behind some tartness, sweetness, cedar, cocoa, tobacco, and yes, the black licorice. The draw on this cigar is incredible. Each little puff kicks out a ton of thick, white smoke. The format on this cigar is very comfortable both in hand and mouth. The burn line started a bit screwy but quickly corrected itself and is now burning even, and razor thin leaving behind a brilliant trail of tightly compacted, white, and light gray ash which held on for about an inch before falling into my ashtray with a thud.
The spice and black licorice have really taken over into the second third of the Illusione Pactum. The backing flavors are still lots of natural tobacco, cedar, spice, sweetness, and some great cocoa. It’s a pretty bold experience so far and I’m really enjoying it. The retrohale is very stout coating my nasal passage with some strong pepper and spice. The burn line is still perfectly even and I’m already feeling a nice little nicotine kick as I close out the second third.
The last third of the Illusione Pactum showcases a much creamier flavor profile leading with the spice, cocoa, and a bit of honey sneaking in backed by a bit of coffee, leather and earthiness with a pinch of black licorice. The draw and burn line have been absolutely perfect every step of the way. This cigar burns very slow and actually took me two hours to take down to the nub. No harshness, no bitterness, no heat, just an awesome smoking experience an a nice little nicotine kick.
As described, the Illusione Pactum packed a punch. It’s a strong cigar that delivers a bold experience and probably isn’t recommended for those new to smoking. This is another great addition to the Microblend series and I jumped all over Illusione being inducted into the series as they are probably one of, if not my favorite cigar company out right now. The Pactum, to me, seemed liked an Ultra/Gigantes hybrid, and that’s not a bad thing. It’s a great cigar, at a great price, with a great experience. While it’s not my favorite cigar in Dion’s portfolio, it’s one that will have a place in my regular rotation for as long as it’s around.
Dogfish Head’s Miles Davis’ Bitches Brew was released in 2013 and took the beer community by storm. Featuring artwork from Mile Davis’ Bitches Brew album this beer was made in collaboration with the 40th anniversary of the release and was so popular they brought it back for another run. Bitches Brew is a Imperial Stout brewed at the Dogfish Head’s brewery in Delaware coming in at 9% ABV. Bitches brew is three threads imperial stout, and one thread honey beer with gesho root. The honey is really evident leading the brew with some great sweetness as it leads off with lots of spice, black licorice, and caramel with a heavy mouthfeel before finishing smooth with lots of malt, cocoa and even more black licorice. Its easy to see why I decided to pair this beer with this smoke. The cocoa, spice, sweetness, and black licorice made an ideal pairing with the resident flavors in the Illusione Pactum. The only pairing I could think that would be as good would be a nice glass of heavily spiced tawny port.