Review By: Matt

Liga Privada Unico Serie Dirty Rat - 5.0 X 44



As someone who smokes the Unico Serie on a fairly regular basis I am familiar with the Dirty Rat.  That said, we always review the cigar based on our experience during the review.  Known as the "every day Liga", the Dirty Rat tends to be a well blended good performer with less spice than its brethren.  The Dirty Rat has the same wrapper as the T52, it is a stalk cut Connecticut Habano seed wrapper helping to give this cigar its dark flavor profile.  Time to light up this bad boy! 


Look and Feel: 

The Dirty Rat has a nice dark chocolate colored wrapper finished with a fan tail.  The seams are tight and has mild veins with a little tooth to the texture.  The aroma is a slight cocoa and earth note.  The pack seems to be even with a little give to it.  The draw is slightly open and provides a sweet spice, cocoa, and earth.  Time to actually smoke this thing. 


Foot Third:

First impression, lots of smoke!  The draw flavors offer a dark earth with cocoa and sweet paprika.  Hints of black pepper are there but subtle.  The finish to start is a sweet earth and slight black pepper.  The draw closed a little and now is the perfect resistance.  Fairly consistent throughout this third with a good burn and full smooth smoke.  The draw moves to a mix of black coffee, earth, and cocoa with white pepper and cinnamon on the retrohale.  The finish seems to get longer as you move through this third.  Great start!!  


Body Third:

Very similar to the first third with an added hint of cream and nutmeg mixed with those sweet spices.  The earth and black coffee remains the minding flavors with those spices blended in well.  Burn great, draw great, and nice smelling smoke like a sweet cedar and cocoa powder.  Towards the end of this third the black coffee has stepped back and the black pepper has started to pick up during the finish towards the end of this third. 


Head Third:
The last third provides another slight shift in flavors.  The black coffee moves more towards a true espresso mixed with dark earth.  Occasional hints of cream do pop up now and then offering a slight break in the dark flavors.  Through the nose you get a nice change, mixed herbs and white pepper with a finish with cinnamon.  You get a distinct different set of flavors through the nose versus the draw versus the finish.  At times the white pepper can be a little sharp.  I do find myself wanting more of that cocoa that was in the first two thirds.  At times the end of the draw and finish can be a little gritty with coffee grounds and black pepper.

Summary:

It is hard not to like this cigar which performs well and does so all the time.  The cigar also burn fairly slowly (the slow side of normal) so you get your monies worth.  The cigar is a medium-full cigar in body throughout and the nicotine strength is medium-mild.  This means you can enjoy the dark flavors and good balance any time smoke, morning, noon, or night.  One thing to note is that a cigar like this is best done not in a shop as the extra smoke in the air may disturb the well blended flavors.  (if you want to pick them out)  Great performer, kudos to Drew Estate once again!  Pick it up you won't be disappointed if you like darker flavor profiles.


Look & Feel:
94


Construction:
93

Flavor & Balance:

94

Value:
90

Overall Rating:

93


 

Look & Feel
Wrapper quality, smell from the wrapper, smell from the foot, box presentation, and color of wrapper.

 

Construction
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
Value taking the quality vs. the market vs. the market price


Overall Rating
Taking all aspects into consideration we rate based on the quality of the cigar and the quality of the experience. 




This series made by Drew Estate is powerful full of ligero tobacco and full of flavor.  If you are not up to a stronger cigar some from this series are not for you.  The Ratzilla from this series, which is one of my favorites, is medium in strength but full body in flavor.  The lineup had fuller cigars too, L40s, Flying Feral Pigs, etc...Go find yours!

70-80 Points - Poor to Fair          81-90 Points - Fair to Good          91-96 - Excellent          97-100 - Epic

Liga Privada Unico Serie L40 - 7.0 X 40



I admit it, am a fan of this cigar and have had it many times.  That said, I will review this cigar based on its own performance.  The L40 is part of the Unico Series and is on the full side for its taste profile.  Can’t wait to get this one started!


Look and Feel: 

This is a nice looking cigar with a waxy look to the wrapper with a little lumpiness to it.  (Hand rolled look to it)  The veins are moderate and the seams are tight but visible.  A nice sweet woody and leather aroma to the wrapper with earth notes off of the foot.  The pack of the cigar does seem consistent and fairly full.  The prelit draw is very light in flavor but the perfect resistance. 


Foot Third:

Starting off, nice mixed pepper with black pepper flavors as leather becomes the binding flavor.  Very thick smoke and through the nose, white pepper, leather, and maple syrup.  (Yup, that is what I said!)  Slight notes of cocoa and coffee to pop in from time to time mixed with a creamy leather and a finish that becomes black pepper mixed with soil/earth notes.  Ash is nice and white but only holds for about ½ an inch.  (Not uncommon for a lancero vitola) 

The flavors become a spicy coffee note with leather flavors in the background.  Hints of earth on the finish with the black pepper and some salt dominating this longer finish. 


Body Third:

Performing great with a well-blended earthy flavors being the binding flavor with a nice tang to it.  Hints of cream and cocoa are throughout.  The flavors of sweet spices, cinnamon, nutmeg, mixed with a little black pepper show on the draw and more so on the finish.  Some notes of espresso show up adding a little darkness.  Hints of cream pop in and out on the draw and through the nose.  The retrohale provides sweet floral flavors with a hint of sweet spices.  The finish is fairly long but fairly clean even with the earth binding flavors.

Full body at this point but the strength is medium so far and is savory in profile.  This cigar is very complex keeping your mind on the cigar.


Head Third:
This tends to be my favorite part of the cigar which is rare the end is my favorite part.  This cigar gives you a flavor very uncommon and I love it, STEAK!  Yes, steak!  The draw flavors give you steak with some salt and black pepper.  Maybe that is why I prefer to drink red wine with this cigar?  The finish moves to an earthy note with salt and pepper with the sweet spices are in the background.  Through the nose, a very sharp white pepper so I don’t do it much.  The flavor is full and the strength is medium full.  Great ending!!

Summary:

I love this cigar as it has three transitions, is very well blended, provides flavors of leather, black pepper, earth, cocoa, sweet spices, salt, floral sweetness, some hints of cream and finishes with steak!  Providing full flavors and medium full in strength, this is not a cigar for a lightweight.  That said, it is a very rewarding savory cigar offering unique flavors and plenty of complexity.  Pick one up at your local shop and let us know what you think!


Look & Feel:
95


Construction:
93

Flavor & Balance:

98

Value:
92

Overall Rating:

96


 

Review By: Matt

Review By: Matt

Liga Privada Unico Serie Papas Fritas - 4.5 X 40



The Papas Fritas is a petit corona and is known for being pretty powerful for a small cigar.  Most Liga Privada cigars tend to be on the full side.  This one is cheaper than the others but due to its size the burn time is fairly short, say 40 minutes.  This is a cigar that many consider more of an everyday Liga due to them being more reasonable in price.


Look and Feel: 

A very toothy dark brown wrapper has nearly zero veins and the seams are invisible.  The aroma is a barnyard and cedar with a strong tobacco note.  A Woody dried fruit note is on the pre-lit draw which is slightly to the right side of standard.  The pig tail end give you a nice traditional look to the cigar.


Foot Third:

At first light I get a very rich earthy flavor with a bit of bitter coffee and tobacco.  The retrohale provides a bitter coffee and slight black pepper but doesn't past a standard finish.  The smoke is plentiful and moderate thickness.  Half way down of the foot third you get a herbal flavor with a hint of aged tobacco.  The finish moves to a sweet spice mixture with hints of red pepper at the back of your throat. Burn is perfect and the ash is tight. So far this is a medium full cigar and has performed well for such a small cigar.


Body Third:

Black tea and a slight aged tobacco are on the draw with a mix os sweet spices and black pepper on the finish with that slight hint of heat on the back of your throat.  At times cream adds to the black tea and the finish is becoming stronger.  Towards the end of this third the rich earth flavor comes back to the foreground.  Draw, ash, and burn is all very good!


Head Third:
The earth and with black tea notes are the main flavor with earth adding to the finish. The strength and body is at the full level now and impressive for such a small cigar.  Tiny hints of aged tobacco come and go.  The burn is getting hotter than I would like fairly early in this third.  As you get through the remainder of this third the flavors are the same and the burn does get too hot.  This is something Cuban cigars of this size tend not to do so that was a little bit of a let down. 

Summary:

I was interested to review this cigar as it was not a size I would typically buy.  (I prefer coronas vs. petite coronas)  I have heard mixed feeling about this cigar and I would say my experience was more positive than anything else.  This cigar does have minor transitions and for such a small cigar, that is impressive.  The construction of the last third was not ideal creating a hot draw.  The burn was perfect throughout and the draw resistance was perfect as well.  The cigar did sit in my humidor for some time which should have fix hot draw issues.  All in all this is a good cigar with moderate complexity and performed well until the middle of the last third.  Given the price for the size, I can recommend it but I don't know if I would buy a box due to my personal preferences.


Look & Feel:
95


Construction:
92

Flavor & Balance:

92

Value:
89

Overall Rating:

92


 

Review By: Matt

Review By: Matt

Review By: Matt

Liga Privada Unico Serie Ratzilla - 6 1/4 X 46



I was gifted my first Ratzilla and I can say I was given a very nice gift.  This Liga Privada Ratzilla did not disappoint and surprised me for its balance and flavor.  So this cigar isn't cheap but even at store prices of 16 or so it is worth it!


Look and Feel: 

Wrapper is a dark and a bit toothy.  It has a sweet wood, cocoa and dried fruit smell to it.  The cigar is medium packed cigar which made me wonder if the draw would be too loose. Tight seams with veins that are noticeable but not distracting at all.  Prelight draw gives you some dried fruit and sweet cedar flavors.


Foot Third:

First impressions after the light-nice draw, not too open.  Lots of smoke, wood earth at first with a pepper finish. (Long finish too)  About 4 minutes in your finish changes to mint followed by pepper...interesting combo and I loved it!  About 4 minutes after that (half way through the first third) the earth goes away and you get a strong vanilla cherry fruit flavor and cedar. 


End of 1st third-love the draw flavors, finish flavors, and minor changes. The pepper is nice and not over done. The body is full and the strength is medium at most.  Nice ash, smoke, you simply just want more.


Body Third:

Strong flavors settled into the vanilla cherry and cedar with a nice pepper finish.  A little cream with that cherry making this cigar something you want to take a bite of.  The mint on the finish is gone early in the second third which is perfectly fine.  It was nice to have it for a bit but I like that it steps back.  I do get a little herb before the pepper on the finish towards the end of this third.  (What a sweet spot on this cigar)


Head Third:
Flavors step back a bit to a medium body and the strength stays at medium.  Cherry and cedar are still the main flavors with a touch of herb on the draw.  The finish turns into a cherry pepper.  Burn and ash are still good and the draw did not get hot till the very end.  I like that the stick pulls back a little allowing you to savor it and not try to push you over the top and become harsh. I would like a little more cedar to end the stick but the cherry and pepper is so good I can't complain.

Summary:

I have to say this is one of the better non-Cuban cigars I have had. Draw flavors were distinctly different than the finish and they changed slightly throughout the cigar. (Nothing drastic but the flavors are so good you don't want a big change!)  This cigar is blended so well and the balance is perfect.  Thank you Drew Estate!


Look & Feel:
94


Construction:
98

Flavor & Balance:

97

Value:
92

Overall Rating:

96


 

Comprehensive Cigar Reviews

Review By: Matt

Review By: Matt

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Liga Privada by Drew Estate