HVC Serie A Famous Exclusivo
Trying to get at least one more review in while the weather is still manageable and before the holiday craze. This week I take a look at the HVC Serie A Famous Exclusivo paired with a can of The Veil/Half Acre Soaked in Shadow Imperial Stout aged in apple brandy barrels.
The Good Stuff:
The HVC Serie A Famous Exclusivo is the latest addition to Famous Smoke Shop’s Exclusivo cigar series. The HVC Serie A Famous Exclusivo is based on the same successful blend as when it was originally released only in a special 6 1/2 x 50 format only available at Famous Smoke Shop. “Serie A” represents the cigar’s blend which only utilizes grade A tobacco grown at the Arganorsa farms in Nicaragua. Blended by Reinier Lorenzo, the found of HVC Cigar, at the Tabacos Valle de Jalapa S.A. factory in Nicaragua the blend starts out with a Nicaraguan Corojo ’99 wrapper over Nicaraguan binder and filler. Packaged in boxes of 10 each cigar runs $10 each with only a very small amount of 300 boxes total being released. Big thanks to our friends at Famous Smoke Shop for hooking us up with a few samples for review. You can view more information and purchase yours here.
- Size: 6 1/2 x 50
- Wrapper: Nicaraguan Corona ’99
- Binder: Nicaraguan
- Filler: Nicaraguan
- Body: Medium/Full
- Strength: Medium
- Price: $9.50
- Pairing: Veil / Half Acre Soak in Shadow (Imperial Stout 13% ABV)
The HVC Serie A Famous Exclusivo is a beautiful looking cigar. Starting with it’s very rustic looking wrapper which sports inconsistent blotches of light and medium shades of brown with orangish areas scattered throughout. The wrapper’s texture carries some light grainy tooth with a ton of oils coating it. The wrapper itself is a bit thin, but very hard while the cigar as a whole is incredibly heavy and tightly packed. There are quite a few minor veins and natural tobacco webbing in the leaf as the wrapper is laid seamlessly over itself leading up to the cigar’s round, triple-wrapped cap. The cigar is then polished off with the same HVC Serie A orange, white, black and gold band found on the blend but an added gold and black foot band with the words “Famous Smoke Shop Exclusivo” embossed across the front signifying the cigar’s addition to the Exclusivo Series portfolio.
The wrapper on the HVC Serie A Famous Exclusivo gives off light cashew and natural tobacco notes while the foot of the cigar is much more pungent with loads of moss, cedar, and natural tobacco aromas. The cap cut clean and easily allowing the cigar release loads of cashew, honey, and earthy flavors on the cold draw.
The HVC Serie A Famous Exclusivo starts out with a very mild black pepper punch with almost immediately faded allowing the cigar to showcase a really bold mixture of honey, cashew, and citrus over cedar, vanilla, musk and earthy notes. Despite being packed so tightly the draw is absolutely perfect as each and every puff kicks out a whole mess of thick, white smoke which hangs around for a considerable amount of time before dissipating while the cigar releases a ton of stationary smoke while it rests in my ashtray. The burn line is dead even and decently thin leaving behind a trail of tightly compacted white ash which held on for an inch before falling into my ashtray.
Into the second third of the HVC Serie A Famous Exclusivo and this is where the cigar really begins to shine. The musk and cedar are now leading the charge backed by bolder vanilla and cinnamon over lighter cashew, honey and earthy notes. I am really enjoying the flavor profile here. The retrohale brings out a great spice and I find myself doing it quite often. I close out the second third with nothing in terms of a nicotine hit.
Into the final third of the HVC Serie A Famous Exclusivo and the flavor is just pouring on now. The musk and cedar are still the dominant notes with loads of cinnamon and vanilla over maple, honey, and citrus. It took me a little over 2 hours to smoke this down to the nub. It burned very slow and that’s totally ok with me. I experienced no harshness nor any extended heat. I never once had to reach for my torch to touchup or relight the cigar. I close out with only a very minor nicotine kick.
I am quite the HVC fan and a shop exclusive which uses one of my favorite cigars from them immediately got my attention. The HVC Serie A Famous Exclusivo represents the blend very well. The flavors were rich and complex, the smoking experience was flawless and the price point is very affordable considering the experience, especially for the length of time it takes to smoke this cigar. All in all, wins all around. I just wish it wasn’t so limited, but that just means I’ll need to pick some up before they are gone.
Soaked in Shadow is an imperial stout brewed with milk sugar aged in apple brandy barrels. Brewed in collaboration with The Veil and Half Acre the 13% ABV beer leads with a ton of sweetness, apple, grape, chocolate, roasted malt, and creaminess with a very heavy/sticky mouthfeel before finishing with much more apple brandy sweetness, chocolate, cinnamon and a lasting boozy aftertaste. While the HVC Serie A Famous Exclusivo itself was fantastic, I thought adding something with a little sweetness could add another level of complexity to the experience, and this pairing did just that.