Trinidad Esteli Toro by Plasencia Cigars
Shortly after Altadis U.S.A. took over the distribution of Boutique Blends in May 2017, Rafael Nodal was named Head of Product Capability for Tabacalera U.S.A. His role focuses “on the development of the company’s premium cigar lines, which include major brands for the U.S. market like the non-Cuban versions of H. Upmann, Romeo y Julieta and Montecristo”, according to Cigar Aficionado. Rafael would also see the development of Trinidad cigars, which has added the Trinidad Santiago, Trinidad Esteli (a Famous Smoke Shop Exclusive), and Trinidad Espiritu since he joined the company in 2017.
Cigar Advisor, a partner site of Famous Smoke Shop, has this to say of the Trinidad Esteli:
Made at the Plasencia Cigar Factory in Estelí, Nicaragua, Trinidad Esteli by Plasencia is a Nicaraguan puro blended with vintage Nicaraguan tobaccos spanning three years, 2008 to 2010. Most of the tobaccos were grown in the Jalapa Valley and come from the mid and lower primings of the plant.
The Trinidad Esteli comes in four sizes:
- Robusto – 5 x 50 – $5.86
- Toro – 6 x 50 – $6.00
- Belicoso – 6 1/2 x 52 – $6.16
- Churchill – 7 x 50 – $6.30
You can purchase the Trinidad Esteli from our good friend over at Famous Smoke Shop.
Size: 6 by 50
Wrapper: Nicaraguan Habano
Smoke Time: 1 Hour and 30 Minutes
The dark tan Nicaraguan Habano wrapper is coated with crisscrossing veins, bumps, and some color variations on the Trinidad Esteli. The cigar is a little soft near the foot of the cigar but firms up as I feel my way down the stick.
The aroma from the wrapper is a pleasant cedar and cedar, pepper, and damp earth comes across on the foot. A shallow cut of the cap causes it to begin unraveling, but I think it is under control. The free cold draw is light with some more of the cedar, a tropical fruit sweetness, and cinnamon.
After slowing toasting the foot of this 6 by 50 cigar, I am met with that tropical sweetness I picked up on in the cold draw. Damp earth and pepper follow after the sweetness but linger for some time between draws. At the one-inch mark, the sweetness begins to fade as a piney wood flavor moves in. Through the first third, the burn is near perfect as layered ash forms and holds to an inch.
The combination of damp earth and pine is creating a sour edge to the smoke. It is not harsh, but a little sharp on the palate. Retrohaling the smoke accentuates the pepper flavor, but there is hardly any associated spice. The flavors are between medium and full, while the texture of the smoke is light and fizzy in the mouth. The finish has become somewhat bitter.
Into the last two inches, I find no relief to the sour edge of the Trinidad Esteli and I find myself hoping for the sweetness to return. The smoke is drying the palate and the finish remains bitter.
First, I will start with the objective aspects of the Trinidad Esteli. The cigar is well constructed and performed exceptionally from start to finish with its even burn and well-holding ash. Each draw delivered a mouthful of smoke with ease. However, it’s the flavors that will bring me back to a cigar time and time again. And the Trinidad Esteli just didn’t work for me with the combination of pine and damp earth that resulted in a sour quality. The tropical sweetness was intriguing but did not stick around long enough to counter and balance the other flavors. The Trinidad Esteli is a cigar that I will pass on going forward, but I cannot wait to explore the other Trinidad cigars that Rafael Nodal has worked on.