Cigar: Espinosa Laranja Reserva Caixa
Size: 6 ½ x 48
Country of Origin: Nicaraugua
Factory: La Zona Cigar Factory
Production: Regular Production
Retail Price: $11.50
Cigars Smoked For Review: 2
Reviewer: Jeff Kay
Continuing to do our best at 2 Cigar Guys and a Humidor in diversifying our portfolio of reviews; I have chosen to review a different vitola of a blend that we have previously reviewed. The Toro Laranja Reserva has already received a ranking of #13 cigar in the world (Cigar Aficionado) for 2015. Erik Espinosa’s latest line of cigars, Laranja, which was released at the 2014 IPCPR, has continued through 2015 and into 2016 to be a proven winner.
I was lucky enough to get to meet Erik at a recent event at my local cigar shop, Havana House in Niles, Ohio. Erik is a true gentlemen, taking the time to walk me through the line of Laranja vitolas, as well as the other couple of lines he brought and was showcasing that evening. I was personally interested in the Laranja, having heard about it but never trying it. I bought a few and he threw one in for free, which I of course proceeded to light up. It was this first one that convinced me to review this particular vitola, the Reserva Caixa Box-Press Churchill.
The pre-light draw of the Laranja had a nice draw with hints of citrus, straw and spice. Beautiful construction! I have become a fan of 46-52 ring gauges, so this being a 48 is right in my wheel house. After making that razor sharp cut on the cap with my trusty Xikar Multi-tool cutter, the initial light provided a good even burn, average smoke and a flavor profile of sweet spice, floral notes, white pepper and leather.
At the 10 minute point, there is a nice solid white ash. The first retrohale is a little strong here, with the spice, citrus and pepper profile all there. Very tasty cigar, I am enjoying this second one, about two weeks after smoking the first one at the Espinosa event. Nice medium draw and impeccable construction at this point. A few minutes later I try my second retrohale which is not as harsh and leaves me tasting some cedar now, mixed with the floral notes and some spice. The ash did not fall until the 22nd minute mark.
I smoked the first of three cigars for this review at Havana House one afternoon, and the second one on my back porch on a beautiful warm late fall afternoon and had to leave it only smoked halfway through. I picked it up the following day and it lit up and smoked like it had only been out for 5 minutes. The final cigar for this review was again smoked indoors only a few days ago. Flawless construction…….
I added some medium sweet cream in my coffee to go with this cigar, along with a glass of water to clean the palate when needed. There is an increase in the sweetness of the Laranja with the coffee, which is a nice compliment for me personally. I am smoking this cigar after an early sandwich for lunch, as compared to the first one after dinner and chasing it with a nice Pale Ale. So, this is really an any time of day cigar.
The construction and burn remain perfect and we have some good residual smoke during the middle. Consistent cedar, floral notes and soft white pepper are the strength of this wonderful cigar. Really enjoying the consistency of the flavor, construction and burn at the 45 minute mark. Look at that ash!
I am forced to drop the ash during the final third, in order to remove the bands. An incredible tight ash throughout to say the least. I start to feel the nicotine at this point, a little over an hour into it. Still holding a steady flavor profile of cedar, floral notes, citrus and leather and even a hint of cinnamon. The draw is perfect like the burn.
The burn slows down a bit here, continuing to provide a wonderful amount of flavor and smoke. Great cigar, no change to draw or burn, and no burn to your fingers, as I get down to about an inch before I feel any increase in heat as I smoke it down.
This is an excellent cigar that certainly lives up to what reviewers have said about the Laranja line since shortly after the 2014 IPCPR. What I enjoyed was its consistency with construction, burn and draw. I really enjoy the flavor, as there was nothing that over powered me throughout the cigar, and to me there was nothing lacking. Two vitolas smoked a couple weeks apart from each other, both leaving me with a very enjoyable experience. If you have never tried one of the Erik Espinosa Laranja line of cigars, this is a must to try! I have been recommending this vitola to many friends and they have all tried it with the same outstanding results. Go out and buy a couple Laranja’s!!