Cigar Buying Guides

2018 CA REPORT: The Essential Cigar Advisor Guide to Liga Privada Cigars

CIGAR ADVISOR’S LIGA PRIVADA CIGARS TASTING GUIDE

The Liga Privada Cigars Back Story

2007 marks the year when the first 80,000 Liga Privada No.9’s shipped to retailers following a smashing debut at the IPCPR Trade Show. Blended by then-Drew Estate President Steve Saka, Liga Privada (which means “private blend”) was originally created as the Drew Estate staff’s personal smoke and not meant for sale. The “No.9” comes from the ninth blending, but the flavor and character of the cigars was so outstanding, they went with a small batch for retail and never looked back.

“The best part is, it happened organically,” said Jonathan Drew. “It wasn’t like a huge build-up with a big advertising campaign, either. It started with 52 stores who wanted to carry the damn thing, but Liga Privada No.9, is that iconic cigar that broke the mold for Drew Estate.”

It’s hard to follow such acts, but during a Broadleaf buying trip to Connecticut, they came across a farm that was also growing a unique-looking “stalk cut tobacco” strain.

“The farmer called the wrapper leaf ‘American Habano,’” says Jonathan. “After a few hours of inspection, we were impressed, as this beautiful leaf had the exact color and thickness qualities that we had been flying all over the damn world looking for.” Using this new wrapper, the resultant blend was the bolder, more complex Liga Privada T52 selection, which fell harmoniously into place beside its No.9 brothers.

The Liga Privada Unico Serie represents Drew Estate’s continuance of the Liga Privada line. Although hundreds of different blends are handcrafted at La Gran Fabrica Drew Estate annually, the cigars in the Unico Serie represent the “rare, select few that are deemed worthy.” Each vitola is different in size and blend, and handcrafted in very limited production.

The Liga Undercrown Series is credited to Drew Estate’s own torcedores who created it as their own alternative to the Liga Privadas they were smoking while working— far too many, apparently. Using many of the same tobaccos, but with different vintages and primings, they spawned a cigar that, like the Liga Privada No.9, was too good to keep only for themselves. Since then, the line has expanded to include the Undercrown Shade selection, blended by Drew Estate Master Blender Willy Herrera, who worked extensively with the Undercrown rolling team on this Connecticut-wrapped follow-up. Willy and his team then cobbled together a singular Undercrown Sun Grown blend that continues the Drew Estate “blended on the factory floor” legacy.

Liga Privada Cigars Guide - Liga Undercrown Sun Grown Cigars - Gary Korb
Willy Herrera’s most recent Undercrown addition, featuring a toothy Sumatra-seed wrapper grown in Ecuador.

Although the company’s popularity was established by its esteemed ACID cigars brand, the listings in this Liga Privada Guide represent Drew Estate’s capacity for creating “traditionally blended” cigars of uncompromising quality. Our Guide’s cigar reviews are organized into the same groupings as above – all made at the Drew Estate factory in Esteli, we start with a look at the Liga No.9 and the T52, move to reviews of the Liga Undercrown cigars, and finish with the array of Unico Serie cigars available online at Famous Smoke Shop (note some of the Unico selections are B&M exclusives or event-only cigars, and not available for purchase).

Time for our usual fine print: palates vary, and reviews are subjective; so will the subtleties between different shapes and sizes of the same cigar. So for our Liga Privada reviews, we gave each of these DE cigars a quick but fair shake so that you could get the basic “need-to-knows” – rather than making a big investment in a box, and finding out the hard way whether or not it’s your kind of cigar. After that, it’s up to you to try them and see for yourself…and let us know what you think, with a comment on your experience below.

 

Liga Privada No. 9 Cigar Review

Size: Corona Doble (7″ x 52)
Strength: Medium-plus (listed full)
Wrapper: U.S. Connecticut Broadleaf “#1 Darks”
Binder: Mata Fina (Brazil)
Filler: Honduras & Nicaragua (Cuban seed)

Shop Liga Privada No. 9 Cigars at Famous Smoke Shop

Construction: Thick, toothy and leathery-looking/feeling wrapper. Packed firm, feels heavy.
Draw: Excellent, slight resistance.
Pre-light flavor: Savory–sweet – tangy black cherry meets oil and coffee.
Toasting & Light: Pepper, coffee beans, nut.
Base flavors: Earth, coffee, wood, toast and “meatiness.”
Retrohale: Spice and semi-sweet chocolate.
Aroma: An excellent cross of wood and roasted coffee.
Burn & Ash Quality: White ash leaves a bit of flake behind; relatively sharp burn line.
Balance of flavors: Everything is intense.

Summary: As Jonathan Drew famously told us about the Liga Privada No. 9: “One of the most iconic cigars in the cigar industry. You know, you have cigars like OpusX, but for me, after OpusX in the cigar world is Liga Privada. It’s amazing. And anybody who says it ain’t is full of shit.” So, the bar has been set.

The Liga Privada legend goes as such: seven different tobaccos from seven different farms are assembled by Drew Estate’s most experienced rollers, to create their flagship smoke. Having reached cult status almost immediately up on its release (2006 – the LP9 has been around a lot longer than you realize), it is still chiseled on many a cigar smoker’s bucket list.

Liga Privada Cigars Guide Liga Privada No. 9 Cigar Review by John Pullo
The DE cult classic Liga Privada No. 9: the flagship of the line, and the first LP cigar to hit the market in ’07.

The Liga No. 9 opens with a huge wall of intense, powerful in-yer-face flavor…then quickly catches a sweet, almost nougat-y wave to balance all that headiness. Once that passes, we’re left with plenty of wood and coffee sensations. A ton of thick and chewy smoke pours off the cigar, even when it sits. Halfway, a savory-ness develops that I call “meaty”: big, fat and belly-filling. And about this time, the sweet taste gets toasty, maybe a little earthy. Loooooonng finish; the Liga #9 is very nubbable, staying cool to the end.

More from J-Dizzle, who called it one of the cigars that “made” his career, and made Drew Estate: “Liga Privada No. 9 is that cigar that…let people recognize Drew Estate as a cigar company, not just a flavored cigar company.”

Equal parts sweet and spicy, the Liga Privada No. 9 is a great pairing cigar – just about anything in the bourbon family will do nicely. But even flying solo, you’ll see that the flavors are a mile deep…so you’re not just going to burn this. It may look as tough as a $3 steak, but it smokes like a Morton’s center-cut filet – and at $15+ a pop, you give this cigar the attention it deserves.

– John Pullo

 

Liga Privada T52 Cigar Review

Size: Belicoso (6″ x 52 Figurado)
Strength: Full
Wrapper: Stalk Cut Connecticut Habano Oscuro
Binder: Brazil
Filler: Nicaragua & Honduras

Shop Liga Privada T52 Cigars at Famous Smoke Shop

Construction and Overall Appearance: Beautiful. Wrapper is thick and leathery with an oily sheen and an ebony-like hue, accented by black streaks. Cigar is firmly rolled and hefty in weight.
Draw: Very good.
Pre-light flavor (cold draw): (Cut with a V-cutter) Leathery.
First few puffs: Earthy and peppery with a pinch of cocoa.
Retrohale: Creamy with a nutty, almond-like finish.
Base flavors: Earth, wood, dark roast coffee, cocoa, sweet spice.
Aroma: Sharp and sweet.
Burn / Ash Quality: Burn was a little off track, but not a major issue. Ash is mostly grey and quite firm.
Balance of flavors: Very good.

Liga Privada Cigars Guide Liga Privada T52 cigar review by Gary Korb
Liga Privada T52 is an intense step up in power from the Liga No. 9.

Summary: The cigar starts with a fair amount of earth and pepper that lingers on the finish. The smoke is bold, very dense, and oozes freely from both ends. Mostly earthy in the first act, there’s also a whiff of chocolate off the wrapper. Further along, dark roast coffee is revealed with base notes of earth, wood, and remnants of cocoa, while a trace of sweet spices enter at the midpoint. This Belicoso has a unique complexity that can be missed if you’re not paying attention. This may be due to the density of the smoke. I found that taking lighter draws brings out more flavor nuances. Suffice it to say. . . the T52 is the Master’s Program for the Liga Privada No.9 graduate. Since this is a monster of a cigar, don’t smoke it on an empty stomach—you will feel it in your gut, even with food, so. . . experienced smokers preferred.

– Gary Korb

 

Liga Undercrown Cigar Review

Size: Robusto (5” x 54)
Strength: Medium
Wrapper: Otapan Negro Último Corte
Binder: Stalk Cut Connecticut Habano
Filler: Mata Fina (Brazil) and Nicaragua (Cuban seed)

Shop Liga Undercrown Maduro cigars at Famous Smoke Shop

Construction: Veiny, oily and very dark wrapper. Firm roll, heavy in the hand.
Draw: A bit tight.
Pre-light flavor: Pepper, fermented tobacco and nuts.
Toasting & Light: Wood, earth and tiny hint of sweet baked goods.
Base flavors: Wood and leather.
Retrohale: Ground coffee and wood (I think it’s oak) – plus a bit of pepper.
Aroma: Warm and cedary.
Burn & Ash Quality: Nice burn performance – ash is mostly white, holds well.
Balance of flavors: Favors flavor in the balance.

Summary: Long story short on Undercrown is that the Liga Privada rollers were smoking too much of what they made, so they created a blend that didn’t eat into the limited Liga production. That said, it’s very well-made for what is supposedly a factory burner…

This is no budget cigar, however. And if you’d rather skip the 300-level Spanish above, here’s the blend: San Andres (Mexico) Maduro wrapper; the binder is the same stalk-cut Habano grown in Connecticut that’s used on the renowned T52, over Brazilian and Nicaraguan long fillers.

Liga Privada Cigars Guide Liga Undercrown Maduro cigar review by John Pullo
Liga Undercrown: a good “first-time” smoke if you’re new to Liga Privada cigars.

Once it’s lit, this Undercrown Maduro adheres to “the Liga Way” – saturating your immediate surroundings with thick, aromatic smoke. There’s even more of it once the tight draw opens up, at about halfway. Wood and earth are the primary flavors; it takes a little bit for any pepper to appear, but doesn’t go crazy. After a bit, the wood taste takes on a campfire sensation, and adds leather. The pepper sticks it out in the retrohale. A little bit of sweetness eventually pokes through to counteract the charred wood, but the Undercrown stays pretty true to its core flavors and adds a faint something around the edges every so often to keep it interesting. I’ll drop it with an inch and a half to go.

What I like about the Undercrown is that it’s a good workday smoke that doesn’t overdo it on power, but does offer a flash of that Liga Privada flavor oomph. That’s why those who have already having developed a need for daily Drew will tell you that you can’t beat Undercrown with a stick. It’s a very affordable alternative for when the top shelf isn’t an option, so consider this a good intro into the DE and Liga mystique.

– John

 

Liga Undercrown Shade Cigar Review

Size: Gran Toro (6″ x 52)
Strength: Medium
Wrapper: Ecuador Connecticut
Binder: Sumatra
Filler: Dominican Republic (Criollo ’98) & Nicaragua (Corojo, Criollo)

Shop Liga Undercrown Shade cigars at Famous Smoke Shop

Construction: Silky, beautifully made cigar.
Draw: Excellent.
Pre-light flavor: Very woody.
First Few Puffs: Woody.
Base flavors: Wood, cream, nuts, citrus, honey.
Aroma: Very toasty.
Burn & Ash Quality: Perfect burn and ash.
Balance of flavors: Well-balanced with a number of definable flavors.

Summary: When Drew got Master Blender, Willy Herrera to tweak the Undercrown blend and then wrap it in a thick, silky Ecuadorian Connecticut leaf, a new star was born for the company. Drew was known for powerhouse Ligas and some scoffed at the idea of a mellower smoke, but that was until they tried it. Sometimes I need a break from “punch you in the palate” Nicaraguan bombers, and the Shade is a wonderful break, indeed.

Liga Privada Cigars Guide Liga Undercrown Shade cigar review by Tommy Zman
Liga Undercrown Shade: Undercrown flavor, but made for those who prefer a more mellow smoke.

Draped in a Connecticut-seed wrapper from Ecuador with a Sumatran binder that frames Dominican and Nicaraguan fillers, the Undercrown Shade distinguishes itself from most so-called, “Connecticut cigars” by its lush, ultra-smooth flavor profile, richer taste, and complexity.

There’s a nice complexity to this creamy smoke featuring notes that are woody and nutty with a smack of citrus and a dab of honey. And, as always in a Liga, the construction is flawless. I really love this offering and can smoke it any time of day with either a nice cup of coffee or a Pinot Noir with tangy fruit flavors. Love this cigar and I smoke them a lot.

– Tommy Zman

 

Liga Undercrown Sun Grown Cigar Review

Size: Robusto (5″ x 54)
Strength: Medium
Wrapper: Sun Grown Sumatra (Ecuador)
Binder: Stalk Cut Connecticut Habano
Filler: Nicaragua

Shop Liga Undercrown Sun Grown cigars at Famous Smoke Shop

Construction and Overall Appearance: Well-packed throughout and sealed with a triple cap. The wrapper has an attractive, coppery sheen with a soft, leathery texture.
Draw: Excellent.
Pre-light flavor (cold draw): Caramelly.
First few puffs: Creamy, sweet and cedary.
Retrohale: Peppery, but not overpowering.
Base flavors: Earth, cedar, sweet spice.
Aroma: Sweet.
Burn / Ash Quality: Excellent. No issues. Burn is mostly even with a thin carbon line. Ash is mostly grey and quite firm.
Balance of flavors: Very good.

Liga Privada Cigars Guide Liga Undercrown Sun Grown cigar review by Gary Korb
The Undercrown Sun Grown features a rare, Ecuadorian Sumatra-seed Sun Grown wrapper over a bold Nicaraguan core.

Summary: This wide-ring Robusto offer dense and creamy smoke with a medium to medium-plus body. The initial flavors are mostly earthy, woody, and laced with a ribbon of sweet spice that lingers on the finish. At the midsection, the sweetness fades as a mostly earthy-woody component remains. The retrohale is sharp and peppery, yet not overbearing. The cigar also has a long hangtime. This sample smoked for two hours with no issues or relights. However, at the nub, the smoke takes on an ashy taste, while some woodiness peeks through. (With such a long smoking time, that ashiness could’ve been the result of tars collecting near the head.) For the most part, this is a relaxing, well-balanced cigar that you can just simply enjoy and not have to think about.

– Gary

 

Liga Privada Unico Serie Papas Fritas Cigar Review

Size: Short Pyramid (4½” x 44 Figurado)
Strength: Full
Wrapper: Stalk Cut Connecticut Habano
Binder: Mata Fina (Brazil)
Filler: Nicaragua

 Shop Liga Privada Unico Papas Fritas cigars at Famous Smoke Shop

Construction and Overall Appearance: A pigtail at the head completes this little figurado rolled in a dark stalk-cut Connecticut wrapper with very little tooth. The body also has a nice, solid feel.
Draw: Perfect.
Pre-light flavor (cold draw): Mostly leathery with a little sweetness.
First few puffs: Earthy and peppery.
Retrohale: Creamy with black pepper.
Base flavors: Earth, oak, peppery spice, sweet tobacco.
Aroma: Burly.
Burn / Ash Quality: The burn is flat as it gets, exposing a nearly white ash with good staying power, but flaky when ashed.
Balance of flavors: Very good.

Liga Privada Cigars Guide Liga Privada Unico Papas Fritas cigar review by Gary Korb
Papas Fritas are a mixed filler blend of the trimmings from LP9 production – and named for French fries.

Summary: It’s amazing how the shape of a cigar makes a difference in flavor across the same blend. For the Papas Fritas you have a Short Pyramid as opposed to its sister cigar, the Unico Serie L40 Lancero. The smoke is dense and teems with earth and pepper to start, but quickly rounds-out to a mostly earthy-woody flavor profile. Laced with a restrained amount of black pepper, which lingers on a long finish, thick, creamy smoke oozes from both ends with every puff. Some sweetness enters in the last act making for a nice change-up and hangs-in to the nub. The Papas Fritas is definitely not a cigar for everyone. It’s more likely to be appreciated by a well-developed palate, but as full-bodied “short smokes” go, it’s a nice pick.

– Gary

 

Liga Privada Unico Serie Nasty Fritas Cigar Review

Size: Short Pyramid (4” x 52 Figurado)
Strength: Medium (listed Full)
Wrapper: Connecticut Broadleaf Oscuro
Binder: Mata Fina (Brazil)
Filler: Nicaragua/Honduras

Shop Liga Privada Unico Nasty Fritas Cigars at Famous Smoke Shop

Construction: Well, that’s an odd shape. Wrapper is dark, oily and streaked like a chestnut.
Draw: Very open, a surprise given the shape.
Pre-light flavor: Fermented tobacco and wood.
Toasting & Light: Coffee and spice cake.
Base flavors: Wood, mineral, salty, sweet.
Retrohale: Coffee bean, salt and sweet spice.
Aroma: Coffee and dried leaves.
Burn & Ash Quality: Closed foot leaves a flaky start; tap it, and the ash should shape up for you.
Balance of flavors: Very flavorful, not very strong.

Summary: At first glance, the Nasty Fritas makes me wonder if the Liga rollers wandered over to the side of the Drew Estate factory where the ACID Nasty was being rolled, and stole all their molds while the workers were at lunch. Just to mess with them.

Liga Privada Cigars Guide Liga Privada Unico Nasty Fritas cigar review by John Pullo
What I thought was going to be a gimmick, is actually a little kazoo of flavor.

There’s nothing nasty about this Fritas: made with scraps leftover from Liga Privada No. 9 and T52 rolling tables, it actually gets the mouth watering after a few puffs. A unique taste of warm, toasted grains runs underneath a flavor that’s slightly sweet, almost like bread or spice cake. After a while, that profile becomes more salty-sweet like currants. It’s so weird, but it’s actually very enticing. As time wears on, the Nasty Fritas gets meaty with a warm and buttery flavor.

The Nasty Fritas dishes out a steady stream of smoke because, well…it’s a Liga. That’s what they do.

Liga Privada Cigars Guide Liga Privada Unico Nasty Fritas cigar review smoking
The Nasty Fritas is made in extremely limited production runs – so it’s often hard to find.

Note: the pyramid/trumpet shape demands a proper cigar lighting technique, making sure that the whole of the foot be lit – otherwise, burn issues may ensue. Admittedly, that’s a bit tough with the semi-closed foot on this cigar. But one touch up should be all you need if the burn line strays.

The weirdo sibling to the Papas Fritas, this is Liga snack food. You might squeeze an hour out of it, maybe even more…that’s pretty good for a mixed-filler cigar. In sum, smoke it – even though you might draw some odd looks from your cigar pals, there is some excellent, rewarding flavor here. And they’ll be missing out.

– John

 

Liga Privada Unico Serie Dirty Rat Cigar Review

Size: Corona (5” x 44)
Strength: Full
Wrapper: Stalk Cut Connecticut Habano
Binder: Mata Fina (Brazil)
Filler: Honduras and Nicaragua

Shop Liga Privada Unico Serie Dirty Rate cigars at Famous Smoke Shop

Construction: Expertly rolled.
Draw: Buttery smooth.
Pre-light flavor: Coffee bean.
First Few Puffs: Spicy.
Base flavors: Dark chocolate, pepper, licorice, nuts and spice.
Aroma: Very woody.
Burn & Ash Quality: Just perfect.
Balance of flavors: Extremely well-balanced.

Summary: What we have here is another wickedly complex Rat – a dirty little one at that – which is not an easy task to pull off in this diminutive corona size. The Connecticut Habano (stalk-cut) Maduro colored wrapper leaf (the same used on the T52) is dripping with oils and is truly a thing of beauty. Inside you’ll find five diverse Esteli-grown leaves that make for one hell of a wallop on the taste buds.

Liga Privada Cigars Guide Liga Privada Unico Dirty Rat cigar review by Tommy Zman
Customer-rated a 98, The Dirty Rat combines five different types of Nicaraguan fillers under the same wrapper used for the T52.

I’m pretty much blown away at how the boys at Drew were able to pack so many nuances and so much flavor into this cigar: dark chocolate, nuts, pepper, the slight sweetness of black licorice, and spice. The smoke is dense and creamy and the bottom line is that you really won’t want this thing to end. I paired this with a thick, dark Cabernet as the fruit flavors married wonderfully with the cigar’s blend. So good… really.

– Zman

 

Liga Privada Unico Serie Velvet Rat Cigar Review

Size: Lonsdale (6 ¼” x 46)
Strength: Full
Wrapper: Connecticut Broadleaf
Binder: Mata Fina (Brazil)
Filler: Honduras & Nicaragua

Shop Liga Privada Unico Serie Velvet Rat cigars at Famous Smoke Shop

Construction: Dense, well-packed smoke.
Draw: Super smooth.
Pre-light flavor: Earthy and sweet.
First Few Puffs: Spicy.
Base Flavors: Spice, coffee, pepper, nuts, citrus.
Aroma: Dark wood.
Burn & Ash Quality: Burns well with a solid ash.
Balance of flavors: Very well-balanced.

Summary: This attractive and slender Velvet Rat version in the Unico Serie is an oily Lonsdale with a nice little pigtail cap. There’s a beautiful spicy sweet component here that is pretty much consistent all the way thru, but make no mistake, this is a very complex cigar with a whole lot going on inside. Notes of citrus, and graham cracker (which I don’t get in a lot of cigars) are evident along with a distinct nuttiness about half way through.

Liga Privada Cigars Guide Liga Privada Unico Velvet Rat cigar review by Tommy Zman
Liga Privada Velvet Rat: pair with whiskey. But not while you’re driving.

The smoke is thick and creamy and bellows from the foot, almost obstructing my view while driving around with this delicious stick. And there’s just no question how well this rollicking rodent pairs with your whiskey of choice. Okay, it’s not a cheapie by any means, but it is pure quality and very worth giving a try if you never have.

– Zman

 

Liga Privada Unico Serie Ratzilla Cigar Review

Size: Corona Gorda (6 ¼” x 46)
Strength: Medium-plus (listed Full)
Wrapper: Stalk Cut Connecticut Habano Oscuro
Binder: Mata Fina (Brazil)
Filler: Nicaragua & Honduras

Shop Liga Privada Unico Serie Ratzilla cigars at Famous Smoke Shop

Construction: Thick, leathery leaf with pronounced veins and big tooth.
Draw: Moderate resistance, very good.
Pre-light flavor: Oily, fermented tobacco, earth, salt.
Toasting & Light: Wood, pepper – heavily roasted, almost charred.
Base flavors: Wood, espresso and cream.
Retrohale: Floral, wood and eye-opening spice.
Aroma: Toast, and a scent almost like gingerbread.
Burn & Ash Quality: Nearly white ash holds well, without much flake.
Balance of flavors: Flavor and strength are pretty in tune throughout.

Summary: Interesting note: this cigar shares the same wrapper as the Liga Privada T52. The Connecticut tobacco’s rustic charm is front and center here, though the flavors within this Ratzilla belie its edgy appearance.

We start with the prelight, which has “that Liga taste” – it’s very earthy, with a fine line of spice and oily, heavily fermented tobacco. A couple of puffs in, Ratzilla is juuuust on the edge of turning sweet – but swerves and takes a creamy turn first. Matter of fact, it’s the smoothest of the Liga Privada cigars I’ve reviewed here: lush, with a nutty-sweet (think macadamia) taste and a hardy Nicaraguan coffee finish. As these flavors take over, the creaminess fades a bit – by the time it’s gone, the profile is straight cedar wood with a bit of pepper, plus a hint of espresso. If you’re a spice-monger, retrohale this cigar – you’ll appreciate how it hits you.

Plenty of smoke, as you’d expect by now – but less than the other Ligas.

Liga Privada Cigars Guide Liga Privada Unico Ratzilla cigar review by John Pullo
This Ratzilla is time well spent, as it smokes longer than you’d expect.

Here’s the thing about the Unico Serie…each blend was worked to fit the particular size in which it’s made – meaning the Ratzilla tastes a bit different than the Velvet Rat, which smokes differently than the Dirty Rat, and so on. It’s really an exercise in seeing how much little proportions of different tobaccos (and where they’re used in the cigar) can make a big difference in the final taste of the smoke.

For Drew fans, this one’s a no-brainer. But if you’re not well-versed in Liga, know this: if you like this size – this Corona Gorda format – and you like a creamy but full-flavored, slow burning blend that burns rich, leave room for at least a few Ratzillas in your humidor.

– John

 

Liga Privada Unico Serie L40 Cigar Review

Size: Lancero (7″ x 40)
Strength: Full
Wrapper: Stalk Cut Connecticut Habano
Binder: Mata Fina (Brazil)
Filler: Nicaragua

Shop Liga Privada Unico Serie L40 cigars at Famous Smoke Shop

Construction and Overall Appearance: Wrapper is even in color with an attractive oiliness. Some blotchiness appears in bright light, but this was not a negative for me. Overall, the cigar is well crafted with no soft spots.
Draw: Perfect.
Pre-light flavor (cold draw): Salty and leathery.
First few puffs: Creamy, earthy, salty and peppery.
Retrohale: Mostly ashy with some pepper.
Base flavors: Earth, saltiness, white pepper, burnt cedar, sweet spice.
Aroma: Sharp.
Burn / Ash Quality:  Burn is even with a barely visible carbon line. Ash is almost solid grey, and shapes nicely with a firm appearance, but it yields easily to gravity.
Balance of flavors: Very good. 

Liga Privada Cigars Guide Liga Privada Unico L40 cigar review by Gary Korb
Take your time with the L40 and you’re rewarded with excellent complexity.

Summary: The cigar draws well with some saltiness in the pre-light. After lighting the smoke is dense, flowing easily through the head with distinct notes of earth, salt and a splash of pepper. Saltiness fades by mid first third. Mostly earth and white pepper through the first act. Sweet spice enters the mix at the midpoint, while the body exhibits more depth. Some charred wood notes also peek in. For the final act, the pepper and saltiness yield to the sweet spice notes, while some chariness remains on the finish. The change-ups along the way make this slim cigar notably complex. The last few inches need to be handled with care, since the cigar can turn bitter if it hasn’t rested long enough between puffs. This Lancero was good with coffee, but might offer more complexity with a sweet Bourbon.

– Gary

Cigar Advisor Staff

Cigar Advisor Staff

The Cigar Advisor Staff is comprised of three good-humored, yet dangerously unpredictable writers who share over 75 years of premium cigar smoking experience. Traversing the tobacco landscape like smoke-shrouded Avengers, they wander (mostly because the fat one ate the map) in search of new leaf adventures armed with nothing but torch lighters and runcible spoons as their weapons. Each is equally knowledgeable on the matters and pursuits of the cigar lifestyle, with his own unique and capricious insights on various luxury, sports, automobiles and entertainment affairs - all served with good counsel for your reading pleasure.

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