Nomad Vagabond Guest Review
Here at Casas Fumando we are always open to guest reviews, and this most recent guest review has come to use from Jeff Oda in Seattle. Jeff has been a long time reader and probably the most active reader/commenter on our site for some time. Over the last few years Jeremy and I have had contact contact with the guy, traded sticks, and even pulled off a few beer trades. Recently he popped up in a guest review of the cigar that I created when I was in Nicaragua at the Drew Estate Cigar Safari last year. Please show him some love! – Tony
The Nomad Cigar Company was founded by Fred Rewey and introduced itself in 2012 with the release of a single cigar, the Limited Edition Fugitive Perfecto. While that particular cigar is no longer made, the line has expanded with the addition of six other sizes: Fugitive II Perfecto (6×51), Vagabond Perfecto (4-5/8×54), Rambler (5×50), Renegade (5-1/4×54), Navigator Torpedo (6×52), and Drifter (6×60). 2013 saw the release of the Nicaraguan lines Esteli Lot 1386 (very limited and now difficult to find) and S-307, while the Connecticut Fuerte came onto the market this year. Here is Fred’s philosophy on the creation of Nomad which can also be view of their website here:
Understanding my thought process behind the Nomad Cigar Company can really be boiled down to the same three things that make a great smoke…
1. Great Tobacco
2. Great Blending
3. Great Construction
Some companies, big and small, cut corners. They think you can have two out of three and hit a home run among smokers.
I don’t believe that for a minute.
Your favorite cigar, your mainstay go-to cigar, is just that. It is a blend that you like and always an enjoyable smoke.
I wanted the quality of Nomad Cigars to “run with the big dogs.” Not just as a solid stick of tobacco, but across the entire line of offerings.
If you are looking for a quality $2.00 cigar…keep looking. It can’t be done without sacrificing pretty much all of the three things I mentioned above.
But you can make a incredible cigar at a fair price…
I wanted Nomad Cigar Company to be as close as you could get to create your own cigar – an elite club indeed. It is also no secret that I modeled the business side of my cigar companies after some of the world’s best – but with my own twist, passion, and influence.
I truly hope you enjoy Nomad cigars, tell friends, and join me* on this incredible journey.
Fred “GodFadr” Rewey
Founder, Nomad Cigar Company, Inc
PS> *When I say “join me,” I mean it. I respond to every email (although it takes me awhile sometimes). I also like Twitter. Send me a tweet, tell me about your latest smoke, or better yet, tell me where you are enjoying a Nomad Cigar (I may just show up and join you). Twitter: @Godfadr
I had the opportunity to meet Fred a couple of weeks ago at an informal “meet and greet” at one of my local cigar shops, J & J Cigars in Seattle, and had a great time chatting with him and listening in on some other very informative conversations. Having previously had a couple of the classic line robusto sized Ramblers, I decided to pick up a few of the short perfecto Vagabonds while I was there. Nomad’s cigars are created at Tabacalera L & V in Tamboril in Dominican Republic.
Size: 4-5/8×54 perfecto
Wrapper: Ecuadorian Habano
Price: ~$7.75 (I can’t remember exactly, but I’m sure I paid more than that due to Washington state’s stupidly high tobacco taxes.)
Pairing: Fremont The Brother Imperial IPA (Imperial IPA 8.5% ABV)
Pre-light: The Nomad Vagabond sports a faintly yellowish, medium brown wrapper with a few splotches of darker brown. There is a fine tooth to it with a few very minor veins. The cigar appears to be very well constructed with a firm, almost seamless, roll, although the foot is just a bit squishy. It wears a band that appears to pay homage to Fred’s love of motorcycles, with a winged Maltese Cross in shades of red, brown, and black, with silver accents, and Fred’s “@GodFadr” Twitter handle in small print on the side. The wrapper exudes a faint fruity sweetness accented by tobacco, while the foot aroma is of tobacco and a slightly mossy earth. An easy clip reveals an ideal draw featuring sweet spice notes and a light woodiness.
First half: (Due to the short stature of this cigar, I will divide this review into halves, rather than thirds.) The Vagabond lights up very easily to show sweet cedar, earth, and leather with some spice in the background. Pepper is evident on the retrohale. Soon, a rich musty/musky tobacco joins in the fray. The burn line is sharp, but a bit uneven, as it is pretty breezy out today. The first ash fell onto my lap at about an inch, which I also attribute to the wind; my two previous experiences with this stick had the ash lasting a good two inches. A sweet and tangy citrus component comes in next, while the pepper has backed off. As the cigar nears the halfway point, the smoke texture is smooth both in the mouth and on the retrohale.
Second half: As the Vagabond begins its descent down its narrowing taper, it continues to be smooth and cedary, with some musty tobacco, light earth, and that citrus note in the background. The pepper has transitioned into more of a smooth white pepper without the pepper bite, if that makes any sense. The burn line has completely self-corrected and is still burning razor sharp. Coming down the final stretch, outside of the addition of a bit of a savory flavor creeping in, the core flavors are pretty much the same, but have intensified while remaining smooth to the nub. I felt just a little bit of a nicotine hit by the end of this 55 minute smoke, or perhaps it was the beer doing its thing.
Final thoughts: First off, I have to point out that this was my third go around with the Vagabond, and the smoke time on this one was quite a bit shorter than the previous two, which lasted in the 70-80 minute range. I have to attribute that to the effect to the wind present today, causing a quicker burn and perhaps making me subconsciously smoke a little faster than normal. The Nomad Vagabond is a truly enjoyable and nearly perfectly constructed stick. While it doesn’t have a ton of different flavors, the ones it does have are great and the shape allows transitions in the way they show themselves, and I never had to even think about pulling out my lighter to do a correction or re-light. In my mind this is easily a must try cigar, and I certainly will be buying more.
Pairing: The Brother by Seattle’s Fremont Brewing Company is an Imperial IPA carrying an ABV of 8.5%. With flavors of citrus and other fruits (apricot, perhaps?) and malty sweetness with a good hoppy finish, it paired very nicely with the Nomad Vagabond.