Villiger Colorado double robusto

This week, the Nubbit Brothers smoke a Villiger Colorado Double Robusto, drink Kirkland Handcrafted Ale, and discuss the novel Lucifer’s Hammer and computer game Bioshock Infinite

Punch: A few weeks ago I attended an event at Big Sticks in Mesa, AZ. It featured two reps from Villiger, introducing their two new lines, the Colorado and the Talanga. I picked up several on a “buy-5-get-2-free” deal. So today we are giving the Colorado a try.

The component tobacco, all Nicaraguan, has already been aged, to a degree. It has a Jalapa Colorado wrapper — harvested in 2007, Esteli Habano and Ometepe Habano binders – from 2008 – and the filler is Jamastan, Esteli Corojo, Esteli Corojo, Esteli Criollo, and Ometepe – all from 2009.

The double robusto is ½ inch longer and 4 ring gauges larger than a standard robusto.

Draw: Being a new acquisition, this Villiger Colorado has a little give, as I would expect for a fresher, properly cared-for cigar, and not the brittle sticks some of ours have been due to poor humidification. The scent is a wonderful barnyard, or elephant pen scent. Hey, to each their own, eh?

P: Of its two labels, I peeled off the thin label and a bit of tobacco wrapper veneer peeled up with it. Upon further examination, the wrapper has some flaking in various places which I’m concerned may lift off or start splitting when it get’s warmer from smoking. We shall see. On its general construction, I would grade a C. Not bad, but a few mark downs from an A: the wrapper looks flakey, the cap has irregularities, and there are areas of small white dots in various places, reminding me of the mites you sometimes see on the leaves of garden plants.

D: Very prominent veins on this wrapper; more so than other cigars we’ve reviewed. This is otherwise a beautiful golden-brown color. The cap seems well applied, but the wrapper near the cap is crumpled-appearing. This is probably not a construction problem as much as it is with the leaf — however, choice of leaf for the wrapper is a point of construction. (note: this can be seen at about 51 seconds into Damon Pettit’s Villiger on his show #132. PG-13)

I’ve used my quarter-inch punch, and it punched well. Draw is pretty easy, with an immediate impression of sea salt, or shrimp… maybe dried squid. This is a mild sweetness, and not an unpleasant taste — just not expected. it could also be the Cool Ranch Doritos I just finished before starting this session.

P: I’m getting hot chocolate on my cold draw – creamy, and sweet. Lets heat it up.

D: My toasted draw continues my previous experience. I’m now tasting grilled shrimp.

P: <chuckling> Upon lighting mine I’m still getting the hot chocolate, with nuttiness – very nice. No real pepper or spice to speak of.

D: The smoke has a solid flavor, one altogether satisfactory. I’m having trouble placing it, but I am not indecisive about taking that next draw. The salty-sweetness is the dominant flavor still, with more of a cherry or almond tone coming through for me.

P: So what’s your take on the first part?

D: I’m intrigued. It has a lighter flavor than other’s we’ve been smoking lately. I want to say it lacks flavor, but I’m willing to admit that I may have become desensitized. It tastes fine enough for me to want to see it through… to see what my palate can take away from it.

I picked up my Colorado at Churchill’s at Topeka, while taking a brief escape from a dinner outing at Los Charros next door. After purchasing the Colorado and a few Villager Exports, I decided to try a maduro Export and my first lounge experience. After asking about the lounge rules (no pot; no cigarettes), I sunk into a cozy recliner next to another patron. Soon, I was prattling on about events as he questioned me politely. I realize now that etiquette suggests I probably should have asked more questions of him — I don’t even know what he was smoking. As I finished up and was hastening back to the restaurant before being missed, a couple of city notables entered. I may have to try and make Thursday lounge visits more frequent.

Coming into the second third — I just lost my ash due to the wind — I’m not sure if the flavor is changing or if I’m simply becoming more sensitive to the flavor. I notice it’s not much of a smoker, keeping quite to itself when not being puffed.

P: I may have previously told you that I have been listening to an audio book. Well, after listening to it on my 20 minute daily commute for two months, I just finished it. It is Lucifer’s Hammer by Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle. Even though it was first published in 1977 — there were few older-technology references that give that away — the story was well written and was still a very relevant social commentary on the disaster scenario it revolves around.

The first third introduces you to the many characters who’s lives will eventually intersect. This wasn’t a laborious “necessary evil”, but was an interesting and entertaining part of the ride toward the finish. There were a lot of characters to keep track of, and so I began recording the names and brief description of the characters as they were introduced in a small notebook I kept beside me in the car (safely at a stop lights, of course). This really paid off later on. I adopted this practice after remembering how I gave up reading The Hobbit in high school because I just got swamped by character names in the beginning.

It was very enjoyable despite its 24-hours recording length, and I never felt like “when will this ever end”. In fact, I’d often sit for a few minutes in the parking lot or driveway each day, not quite ready to turn it off. It gets my highest recommendation. If you want to check it out, follow this link and get it. You can sign up for an Audible subscription if you don’t have one, or just purchase the book a-la-carte without subscribing.

I’m starting to get pepper, but even after taking a drink of water, the hot chocolate is lingering nicely.

D: I agree with that assessment. I think I am becoming more sensitive to its subtlety. The saltiness is fading for a little more pepper, and the almond is moving to more cocoa. At least, I think I sense that.

P: This week I picked up a case of Kirkland Handcrafted Ale at Costco. It is a variety case consisting of amber ale, German-style lager, India pale ale, and pale ale. Mmnn, I don’t recommend an amber ale with this. I just cracked one open, and it’s too dominant. Maybe if I let it vent a bit? Don’t get me wrong: I like it, but it just has the potential to overpower this cigar

I’m starting to see some splitting in the inch near the cherry. It could have dried out while I’ve been sitting out here in the gentle breeze. Arizona can do that, I suppose. But otherwise, I thought I’d been keeping my collection well humidified.

D: Mine has not shown any splitting of the wrapper body, but I am observing some cracking around the punch in the cap. No flaking, but some deep cracks spreading out from the hole. Here, just past midway, there is stronger spice overall, mostly ginger. A quaft of cool Batch 19 helps bring both the flavor of the Villiger Colorado and the barley in the beer forward.

P: The spice has become much more dominant here near the middle… some cedar, now.

I have been immersed in Bioshock Infinite this week. I really like the expansive worlds of the Bioshock label. The world of Infinite is diametrically opposite of the previous two titles: those being underwater. This one is in a city floating in the air. Quite novel. But the gameplay is similar to the others. Playing the others is not a prerequisite, as the story line of Infinite stands alone. I pre-ordered this one based on how well I liked the previous ones. I’m only a little way in, but I am not disappointed so far.

D: I enjoyed playing the previous Bioshocks. It captured nostalgia in its artistry while still presenting modern game play. Also, its less-defined story allows the player to define his (or her) role and deal with the consequences of that definition, even if the exploration remains somewhat linear.

P: After 3–4 hours of playing I did start over, though. I’m pretty experienced at these types of games, and playing on normal didn’t seem like much of a challenge to me, so I started over on hard. You would probably enjoy it on normal, or even easy. Not that you are no good at these types of computer games, but I’ve heard from others who are farther along than I am, that even a non-gamer would really enjoy getting pulled along with the story and plot twists, without having to worry about getting stuck fighting tough baddies… reportedly it is THAT good. I’ll keep you updated as I progress.

D: I’m in my last third, and the wind just pulled my cherry out with the ash. I toasted the wrapper a bit and it relit easily. I enjoy seeing the heat of the cherry bring the oils out on the wrapper. The wrapper takes on a beautiful copper tone as it warms. Burn has been fairly consistent for me, no touch ups needed.

The flavor here is much more peppery, which I expected, but the mellow sweetness is still very available. I find that I’m enjoying this stronger blend of flavors even more than the first third – again, though, this may be due to the deadening of my palate from the Doritos. My lips are starting to tingle on the pull, too.

P: I needed to touch up a peninsula at about the halfway point. Here in the last third — hang on, the burn has become irregular again — there, all better. I’m still getting the nice hot chocolate, with spice. Woah! I just did the ash droppin’ boogie!

As I reach the one-inch point I have another peninsula, so I’m going to let it burn out.

D: I’m down to moustache-dangerous length, less than 3/4ths of an inch. While pepper from the adjacent heat is dominating the flavor, I’m finding that the original cherry or almond notes from the beginning are coming in very strongly. I am waffling whether the taste at this point is worth the extra pepper intensity: I think I’ll call no-joy on smoking it down further.

Burn it or spurn it?

Punch:  A criticism I have is that the glue from both of the labels got onto the cigar making damage to this delicate wrapper unavoidable when removing the labels. Otherwise, I really liked this smoke. It is a real good fit for my palate — the first cigar I’ve had of which I would strongly consider getting a box, in spite of the irregular burn I have experienced with this particular stick. On the other hand, my enthusiasm for getting a box is severely dampened by the cost – for my budget, the Villiger Colorado is premium priced at approximately $9.50 a pop. Not that they aren’t worth it, I just don’t think I could justify spending that much for a cigar very often.

Draw: I must withhold a strong opinion. It was a pleasant enough cigar, but I admit my tastes may not be fully open to all this cigar offers. I am certainly open to revisiting this, and other lighter cigars.

April 23, 2014

Draw: I’ve just enjoyed another Villiger Colorado while sitting on the deck editing the Web site — no Doritos this time. I think we both captured the flavors very well in our original review. I would say this is a medium-flavored cigar, with a little raspy edge to the flavor, at least in the last half. Pepper, and creamy sweet, I have to say I enjoyed this cigar, again. I’m also feeling it this evening, even after Chinese buffet a few hours ago, so I’d say medium-to-full strength. I must also affirm the quality of construction: I am sitting outdoors, in Kansas, in the ever-persistent wind, and the ash consistently clings for an inch-and-a-half. The technique of purge-fusillade that I’ve been employing of late really helps keep the flavor sweet and munge-free as I work it to the nub. This cigar has been resting in my Tupper-dor for 242 days.

Note: I also edited some typography, and improved the SEO.

The short URL of the present article is: http://gar-talk.info/HdiAP

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *