Look & Feel
Wrapper quality, smell from the wrapper, smell from the foot, box presentation, and color of wrapper.
Burn quality, draw quality, heat on the draw, quality of the wrapper, and cap construction.
Flavor & Balance
Overall flavor of the cigar, balance of flavors, strength to body balance, and complexity.
Value taking the quality vs. the market vs. the market price
Taking all aspects into consideration we rate based on the quality of the cigar and the quality of the experience.
70-80 Points - Poor to Fair 81-90 Points - Fair to Good 91-96 - Excellent 97-100 - Epic
Isabela is a newer maker of cigars started in 1997. Cuban Master Vicente Ortiz met the founder Johnny Piette in 1997 and started a small boutique cigar manufacturer. Based out of Old Little Havana in Miami, this cigar maker focuses on quality rolling using the oldest Cuban techniques. One thing is for sure, if you find there cigars, they will provide a quality experience.
Review By: Matt
Isabela Serpintine - 6.0 X 54
I have not had a cigar from this brand before so it is always fun to test out a new maker. This is a limited edition cigar from Isabela and I hope to have a good experience. The cigar is a mix of Ecuadorian and Nicaraguan tobacco which should provide an interesting blend. The brand offers blends and techniques that are more of a traditional Cuban process. Thank you to Isabela Cigar Company for providing these cigars for review.
Look and Feel:
The cigar looks great with a nice barber pole wrap using an Ecuadorian Connecticut and a Ecuadorian Habano maduro leaf. The seams are fairly tight with minimal veins throughout. The wrapper has a nice waxy sheen to it and the cigar is packed pretty tight. (Just a slight give to it) The aroma provides a musty fungal mixed with a light barnyard which is very nice. The prelight draw gives you a nice is a sweet hay and tobacco...the tip seems to be very sweet like a sugar tip.
First light you get a nice charred wood with a sweet tobacco and a vegital bitterness like a mixed green salad. (very interesting) The finish offers sweet spices with nutmeg and cinnamon being a moderate length finish but very clean. Some honey and hay with a natural sweetness are throughout with earth as a binding flavor. The finish remains about the same the entire first third. The construction is great and the burn is very straight. Through the nose I get a little white pepper and the sugary sweetness. The body is medium to medium full but the strength is mild.
The second third gives you an earth and a distinct hay flavor with leather notes with a little tang to it. The retrohale is a nice white pepper and the finish is a nice white pepper, black pepper, and a mix of sweet spices. The finish is clean and the blend is very enjoyable. The body is medium and the strength is still mild. The sweetness is dying down during this third. The complexity of the first third is missing in this third. Construction is good overall but I did have minor coning at one point. Over all things are going well!
This section becomes more of an earth, natural tobacco, and hints of that hay from time to time. The sweetness pops up from time to time but nothing like the first third The flavors are kicked back a little and the finish became a little grubby at one point during this third. The construction was good and the draw remained good all the way through the cigar. The retrohale became spicier as a strong white pepper and the notes of kale and mixed greens popped in a bit. Overall a nice relaxing smoke
I enjoyed this cigar in general although I did want the complexity of the first third to show more throughout the second and last thirds. Flavors of mixed greens, kale, natural and sugary sweetness, earth, honey, and hay. The finish provided sweet spices with hints of black pepper from time to time. Through the nose it was typically a white pepper and vegital sweetness and was clean and pleasant. If you are looking for a unique and enjoyable medium bodied cigar with sweet notes check it out. Nice job Isabela!!
Look & Feel:
Flavor & Balance:
Comprehensive Cigar Reviews
Review By: Matt