His father is one of the cigar industry’s legendary master blenders; Avo was his adopted uncle, he knows the cigar business inside and out. He’s also just a really nice guy: Klaas Pieter Kelner, Davidoff Cigars Brand Ambassador, who talks with us about growing up at the heart of the business, the appreciation of a fine cigar, and more
Medalist by Alec Bradley Cuban Belicoso
Alec Bradley Medalist Cuban Belicoso Cigar
Produced in Honduras, this cigar sports an attractive, oily, Costa Rican wrapper. The filler is Nicaraguan Jalapa, Nicaraguan Esteli, and Honduran Jamastran with U.S. Connecticut binder. Dark and virtually void of veins. Expertly rolled, well-packed, and quite beefy.
Upon lighting, the foot lit evenly across. The cigar drew easily and smoothly producing a thick, creamy smoke. Aroma is a big factor with me, and this cigar really put out. The scent was strong and earthy with a discernable trace of sweetness.
The cigar was well-balanced in flavor throughout, and did not get stronger or turn bitter well into the last half. For the most part, the smoke was loaded with dark tobacco flavor underpinned by notes spice, hazelnut, cedar, and semi-sweet notes of dark chocolate. However, I did find one thing that I would have to list as a caveat: Due to the thickness and texture of the wrapper leaf, the cigar tended to angle at times. Or, if left alone too long, it would go out.
Although this cigar falls into the “full-bodied” camp, by today’s strength standards, more experienced smokers might argue that it leans more toward the top of the medium-bodied scale. Less experienced smokers will very likely find this cigar full-bodied, but I prefer to use the term “full-flavored.” Moreover, due to its 52-gauge ring, there’s a lot of tobacco to smoke. This cigar will get into your system and can be quite heady. Therefore, I suggest you take your time with this cigar by letting it “breathe” between puffs.
In closing, I found the Medalist Cuban Belicoso a luxurious smoke that can be enjoyed by cigar smokers whose palates have adapted to robust, multidimensional cigars, as well as those who may be ready to move up to a much more flavorful cigar that’s not too overbearing.
Final Score: 9.0