Joya De Nicaragua – Joya Black
In 2014, Joya De Nicaragua released their first cigar under their Joya line, the Joya Red. The cigar faired well here at Casas Fumando landing the #6 spot on Tony’s Top 10 List of 2014 having this to say:
Joya de Nicaragua has always been known for its strong Nicaraguan roots, and absolutely solid cigars. The Joya Red falls right into this category. While it remains a medium strength cigar the Red offers some great bold flavors, with an extremely easy experience making it the perfect “anytime of the day” cigar. Joya de Nicaragua kept the costs very low on this blend while making production high resulting in tons of availability at a great price
The Joya line was expanded in 2016 with the rebranding and relaunch of the Cabinetta and the new Joya Black. Showcased at the 2016 IPCPR Trade Show in Las Vegas, Joya Black is manufactured in Esteli, Nicaragua in four vitolas: Nocturno (6 1/4 by 46), Robusto (5 1/4 by 50), Toro (6 by 52), and Doble Robusto (5 by 56). Some background on the cigar was found over at Joya De Nicaragua’s website:
This is Joya de Nicaragua’s first cigar to feature a Mexican San Andres Negro wrapper. We have had these wrappers available for some time and we wanted to create a blend with rich Nicaraguan tobacco, yet without the overpowering strength. The result is a balanced, rich and pleasant smoking experience – the type of experience the new JOYA brand is known for as demonstrated by the release of Joya Red” said, Mario Perez, Factory Manager.
Joya Black is packaged in boxes of 20 and range in price from $5.50 to $8.00 per stick.
Size: 6 1/4 by 46
Wrapper: Mexican San Andres Negro
Smoke Time: 1 hour and 30 Minutes
An oily, almost black Mexican San Andres wrapper is draped on the Joya Black that is loaded with small and mediums veins. There is one larger vein that is near the cap that is actually causing the band to sit a bit raised. There are no soft spots found on the cigar, however, there are a few indentations.
Bringing the wrapper to my nose, there are notes of chocolate and manure, while chocolate, nuttiness, raisin, and graham cracker are on the nose. The same flavors that were on the foot come across on the dry draw that is easy plus some rich cooking spices.
A chewy smoke delivers a yeasty, meaty profile with a decent dose of pepper. After a couple minutes in a faint pencil-shavings flavor shows up. Once the pepper spice calms, an unsweetened cocoa comes across on the finish. The thin burn-line started nearly perfect, but now near one inch in it is a bit crazy. The heat near the burn line is bringing out tons oils onto surface of the wrapper leaf and a salt and pepper ash is being left behind.
Entering into the second third without much hope of the burn improving, it is time to bust out the lighter. The flavors remain dark as the earlier flavors hold strong with an added layer of coffee, earth and a touch of hazelnut. Passing the smoke through my nose, the pepper is front and center, but not sharp or overwhelming. For a couple of puffs a raisin flavor jumps in with some sweetness but quickly exits. My palate feels a bit dry after each few puffs requiring a drink or two of water to refresh.
Volumes of smoke flow out of the Joya Black as it rests in the ashtray and each draw brings forth a mouth-filling amount. The rich hazelnut is pulling forth, but not yet on par with the other flavors. The mouth fill of the smoke has evolved to a more creamy texture. After the touch in the middle third, the Joya Black has been burning like a champ. As I near the final few minutes, a long awaited sweetness has joined the mix.
Joya De Nicaragua’s Joya Black delivers medium/full flavors paired up with a medium strength profile. The thick, creamy smoke showcased consistent dark flavors throughout with both sweetness and richness building as the cigar burned down. While the sweetness made an appearance, it never picked up to the level of the other flavors, making the cigar seem a bit unbalanced. The other sample smoked for review introduced the richness and sweetness earlier in the cigar and provided a more rounded profile. Other than the one necessary touch-up, the performance was solid with a mostly even burn and a long-holding ash. The Nocturno 6 1/4 by 46 vitola is a great size and, for a price point under $7.00, this is a solid smoke, just not overly complex.