This past weekend I went to the funeral of a friend of mine, James Miller. Obviously funerals are an unhappy occasion. But my friend was the kind of man who believed in enjoying life to the fullest and not being mired in the sad things, though of course he would never judge anyone for their grief. So naturally we planned a celebration of life as opposed to the more traditional funeral, and it was a great time. Of course it would have been much more fun if he were there to share it with us, but since he wasn’t, we chose to have a great party in his honour.
To mark the occasion I did as I always do when I go out of town; I brought cigars along for the trip. I think I’ve decided that for short weekend trips, barring lack of stock in my humidor or other preventing factors, I will be bringing along three cigars to smoke at various times; one light, one dark, and one infused or flavoured. So my infused selection was the Acid 1400 CC Toro. I had a special edition cigar I was saving for the actual funeral, and it was early in the day and not late (and therefore the maduro wasn’t yet suitable IMO) so that’s the one I started with as we headed out at 6 am for the Kootenays.
I was intrigued by the presentation. The 1400 CC is sold in a glass tube. It has a plug of tobacco at the bottom of the tube; I assume to prevent the foot from drying out. I initially thought it was a ragged foot and part of the cigar, so it surprised me a little. The Connecticut shade wrapper was cut a little long deliberately and it folded over the foot of the cigar. The wrapper itself was unremarkable in its appearance; neither shiny nor veiny; but its colour promised a light and flavourful smoke.
Provided, of course, that the infusion didn’t ruin it. Now if you’ve been following my reviews, you probably know that in general, I’ve been enjoying the Acids but not so much the Drew Estates; which is funny considering that Drew Estate makes them both.
At any rate, I found the texture of the 1400 CC to be absolutely perfect. I wish more manufacturers would spend the money and effort on glass tubes. They ship well and they maintain a beautiful humidity level and firm but yielding texture. The wrapper note was pleasant but unplaceable. Field of wildflowers, maybe?
I clipped the rounded double cap with the single guillotine cutter on my traveling leather cigar case. it cut at a slight angle I had to correct, but otherwise cut cleanly.
Erin lit the stick for me, since I was driving. It seemed to light easily. And the first couple of draws were pure magic! As I do the review now I read that the 1400 CC is made with a “premium Nicaraguan long filler with a secret blend of over 140 herbal and botanical essences.” I suppose that would explain the amazing complexity of this infused cigar. I have said before that one of the defining characteristics, for good or ill, of an infused cigar is the lack of complexity. This stick makes me a liar.
I thought the first third, which lasted about twenty-five minutes while I was driving, was primarily honey and floral, although there was also a faint greenish, herbal undertone that I rather liked. Sort of like chamomile really. And it also definitely had clove and cinnamon elements to it. I found that the mild body was pleasant and enjoyed enthusiastic puffing. Again, probably a good starter cigar, though a beginner would not be able to discern some of the subtleties i think. Then again maybe I’m wrong, because I had trouble putting my finger on all of it myself.
I purged the cigar at the start of the second third, and I was delighted to see that it was burning the straightest, cleanest, whitest ash I have seen on a hand-rolled cigar. In the “bitter” portion of the smoke I found more green herbal and a slight note of tea, while the floral diminished somewhat. The honey and the subtle hint of clove remained however. The draw was absolutely perfect! No trouble smoking it at any point.
Half an hour later I began the final third. Fifteen minutes into that it went out, so I relit and managed to finagle another enjoyable ten minutes out of it. The honey faded at this point but the floral returned, and the tea – bergamot maybe? – never left. At this point it was more clove than cinnamon also. Still, there was an indefinable sweetness.
I have to confess, I really enjoyed this one. I have no complaints and a lot of praise. I would seek it out. And that means I have to rate the 1400 CC: