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My UZI Weighs a Ton +11 — solo

Punch is out-of-town working his magic, so I thought I’d review a cigar I picked up on a whim at Churchhill’s at Topeka. It’s an UZI, and it weighs a ton: a joint venture from Drew Estate Tobacco’s Subculture Studio and Joya De Nicaragua.

As spring is setting-on in Kansas, so too are opportunities to gather with chums and chew the fat and sip the margaritas after work. An outing last week brought me again to Los Charros next door to Churchhill’s, and I swung inside before heading home.

It was tough to miss the huge ammo crate dominating the counter, or the bricks of C‑4, oh wait, those are cigars! My UZI Weighs a Ton are marketed with a cliche’ military style, but this is a fresh look among elaborate family crests lining the walk-in humidor. I admit, I felt like pulling the pin out of a mazo with my teeth, then lobbing it into the lounge for effect. However, better judgement compelled me to at least pay for my purchases first, if not give a cigar a complete review before inflicting it upon anyone else.

I would guess by it’s dark oily copper appearance that the wrapper is a Colorado, but I’d be wrong. It’s a beautiful San Andreas Mexican maduro. It has a wonderfully rich aroma suggesting chocolate, brandy…no, amaretto, and — I’m going to say it’s the smell of tiramisu. The stick would seem well humidified — I can squeeze the middle-foot end and see the binder and fillers bunch-up. However, near the head is another story.

The cap and head cracked and feathered when I punched it, and the first time I put it to my lips, the cap remained behind like a scab. The wrapper is unraveling from the head, and it has cracked through to the binder. I’m not sure what kind of smoking experience this will yield, but I know I’m leaving the band on this one as long as possible.

Pre-light draw was on the loose side. There are no great flavors coming through besides straw or hay; even after toasting slightly, it is simply toasted hay or grilled chicken. I’m already tired of messing with the damaged wrapper and have stripped it to the binders where my mouth meets it.

Initial flavor take? Strong! I’m having trouble identifying flavors, but the attack is bold, and the middle follows it. The finish is missing, so far as it lets you taste everything of the attack and middle. But I still cannot identify what I’m tasting. I pulled a Boulevard Unfiltered Wheat from a spring assortment (I was hoping for a Bully! Porter). I know my taster is working: the Unfiltered wheat is a lightly flavored, easy drinking brew with a bready-wheat flavor and a hint of citrus. But it’s not doing anything to clarify the taste of the cigar… Except maybe steak tartar?

Maybe it would help to describe what it is not: it’s not spicy. It’s not baked beans. Not bubble gum or potting soil. Oh, but it has subtle jalapeno pepper. Yeah, that helped: there’s almost a dried mango or papaya flavor in the middle. Maybe an oatmeal finish? …that may be just me stretching to get a description. I’ll keep working on it.

The draw has tightened up a bit, and the initial strength has waned a bit as well. I think the body remains in the stronger part of medium… we’ll see how it goes. It is a prodigious smoker, from both ends, around the draw, but it appears to idle quietly. After a rest of more than five minutes, it only took a couple of tokes to have it back in prime order.

Hanging it from my lip as I type this, I have to say I like the smell of this smoke. It has the tiramisu scent that I identified as part of the wrapper. I’m still unable to identify flavors in the attack, but as I’m nearing the second third, the finish is steak tartar — iron, and cream-kinda.

I’ve burned down to the band, and upon removing it the wrapper is trying to escape. Despite this construction flaw, the burn line has stayed pretty consistent — minor variances but self correcting. The ash holds on for about an inch, even in today’s high winds, but the ash is somewhat flaky and disintegrates on landing. The flavor at this point is really… suede.

I’m overall disappointed in this smoke, so far, in terms of not just simple, but boring flavor. Coupled with the wrapper issues, I am really ready to put it down for good. I’ve been checking out other reviews, such as those at Cigar Geeks and Cigars International, and I’m gratified in my reviewing prowess but sorry for the cigar. An excellent write-up at Casas Fumando tells the story of how MUWAT got its name — definitely worth a read — and perhaps that author’s favor for the cigar is it being a 6 x 60.

At a little less than two inches to go, I’ve removed the wrapper altogether, and I’m definitely tasting tropical fruit with the jalapeno. Because there’s nothing to keep the head in a taper, it is very difficult to control the physical heat coming to my lips. I’m only smoking it further so you can read about the experience.

At about one inch, after just over an hour, the mob of fibers is hard to manage, and I just burned my thumb — a first! I am so done with this.

Burn it or spurn it?

I’ll qualify my answer that this is my first MUWAT, and its a robusto and not the larger size that launched the line. Having said that, this is the first cigar I’ve reviewed here where I can flat out say “spurn it”. Because I respect the other reviewers who had a favorable response, I may try a 6x60 at some point. But in general, this UZI leaves me feeling like a slo-mo victim of a drive-by shooting, my blood spilling away like so much smoke.

I’m glad I didn’t waste the Bully! Porter on it.

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