Cigar Ratings & Reviews

#nowsmoking: Avo XO Intermezzo

Reading Time: 3 minutes

#nowsmoking Classic EditionAvo XO Intermezzo Cigar Review

Avo XO Cigar Review – Intermezzo

Factory: Tabadom – Santiago, Dominican Republic 
Size5″ x 50 Robusto 
WrapperEcuador Connecticut Shade 
Binder & FillerDominican Republic
MSRP: $11.40 (at press time) 

#nowsmoking Avo XO cigar review at Famous Smoke Shop

What’s the cigar’s back story?  

Avo XO cigars, and Avo Classic were the first two Avo blends made by Hendrik Kelner ca. 1988. Just in time for the Cigar Boom 90s, the Avo brand skyrocketed, taking Avo and Henke to newfound fame and they never looked back. Avo XO’s profile is spicier than the Classic for its use of more ligero and a special aging process that the fillers are subjected to. 

#nowsmoking Avo XO cigar review by Gary Korb
#nowsmoking @famoussmokeshop: The Avo XO Intermezzo offers a rich, medium-bodied smoke with well-balanced flavors of cedar, almonds, dried fruit, and sweet spices on a semi-dry finish.   

Rolled in an Ecuadorian Connecticut Shade wrapper over a Dominican binder and fillers, XO has the admirable creaminess, balance, and rich tastethe core components found in all Avo cigars—that has made it one of the longest running success stories in the industry.   

Why is it classic? 

#nowsmoking avo xo cigar review classic cigar

The Avo XO Intermezzo is like a perfect storm of success. First of all, it’s been blended by Henke Kelner since time immemorial with the same perfectly cured and aged tobaccos. It‘s part of the Oettinger Davidoff family of premium cigars, and was darling of the Cigar Boom 90s. Since then, its never lost its prestige because, even though it may not have the intensity of today’s popular Nicaraguan-forward cigars, it consistently smokes like a dream.  

How well is the cigar made?  

Seamlessly. Perfectly packed from head to toe, even in its ochre color, and some visible vein patterns. The cap clipped-off in a perfect circle (I’ve never had an Avo that didn’t), offering an ideal draw with notes of nuts, cedar, and an herbal-like flavor.  

How does it smoke?  

#nowsmoking Avo XO cigar review act 1

The smoke is crisp and creamy-smooth with an excellent burn that results in fairly solid ashes that drop at about one nugget per inch. The flavors are well-balanced, and based on two sessions with the Intermezzo for this review, I picked up notes of raisin, herbs, cedar, nutmeg, and a little brown sugar. The cigar also emits a redolent, herbal-floral aroma, which is another nice trait of the XO selection.  

What is the cigar’s flavor profile?  

#nowsmoking Avo XO cigar review act 2

Medium-bodied with core flavors of cedar, almonds, salted raisins, and sweet spices on a semi-dry finish. Coincidentally and amazingly, Jared and I both came to the same conclusion in terms of what the Intermezzo reminded us of—trail mix—and we mean that as a high compliment. 

What drinks can I pair with it besides coffee 

#nowsmoking avo xo cigar and wine pairing

With the Avo XO Intermezzo, which does make a nice cool summer smoke, Jared recommends a Blue Moon ale, which I’ll second, and just about any of their selections will do. But for something a little stronger, check out the George Dickel Rye Jared paired in the video. Try it with a well-made Manhattan, too. 

(Find more cigar and drink pairing combinations here.) 

Who should smoke this cigar?  

#nowsmoking Avo XO cigar review act 3

Everybody—at least everybody who likes top-flight Dominican cigars in the medium-bodied realm. The XO Intermezzo may be a little upmarket for some newbs, but this cigar is so spot-on in balance and flavor, it could easily serve as an ideal “first cigar.”  

Should I buy this cigar? 

Definitely. Every cigar lover should have at least one seminal Avo cigar during their cigar smoking lifetime. The Avo XO Intermezzo is great for kicking back and letting it lull you into Avo Nirvana, or “Avovana (which, of course, I made up).  This is a great break from bolder smokes, and could easily become an everyday affairSpeaking of whichthe XO Intermezzo was Avo’s personal everyday favorite. (He actually told me so, in person, and that’s good enough for me.) 


#cigaradvisor #cigar #cigars #cigarlife #cigarlifestyle #cigarsociety #cigarporn #cigarreviews #cigarphotography #botl #sotl #NowSmoking #menwhosmoke #thecigarculture #relax #luxury #ultimateluxury #luxurylifestyle #luxury #gooddeal #smokeability #famous80 #avocigar #savoreverynote  


Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Gary Korb

Gary Korb

Executive Editor

Gary Korb has been writing and editing content for since its debut in 2008. An avid cigar smoker for over 30 years, he has worked on the marketing side of the premium cigar business as a Sr. Copywriter, blogger, and Executive Editor of Cigar Advisor. A graduate of the Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University, prior to his career in the cigar business, Gary worked in the music and video industry as a marketer and a publicist.

Show all Gary Korb's Articles
cigar advisor news – famous smoke shop adds house of romeo and capulet nicaragua lines – release – cover1

Cigar News: Famous Smoke Shop Adds House of Romeo and Capulet Nicaragua Lines To Their Exclusive Cigar Line-Up

Reading Time: 3 minutes Famous Smoke Shop has added two new cigar lines by way of Nicaragua to their bestselling Romeo y Julieta “House Of” selections. Named House of Romeo Nicaragua and House of Capulet Nicaragua, get the story behind these exclusive new cigars here.

Read More
cigar advisor #nowsmoking cigar review muestra de saka the bewitched - cover

#NowSmoking: Muestra de Saka The Bewitched

Reading Time: 4 minutes One of the more anticipated releases in the PCU (the Premium Cigar Universe) are the Muestra de Saka cigars from Dunbarton Tobacco & Trust. Here Gary reviews ‘The Bewitched.’ So, did it captivate his palate? Check it out now and find out.

Read More
cigar advisor top new cigars - cover

CA Report: Top New Cigars (August 22, 2022)

Reading Time: 3 minutes This week in Top New Cigars, we review CAO BX3, El Rey del Mundo, and All Saints. See which ones you should be smoking before summer ends!

Read More
cigar advisor #nowsmoking cigar review 20 acre farm drew estate - cover

#NowSmoking: Drew Estate 20 Acre Farm

Reading Time: 4 minutes Cigar Advisor’s Jared Gulick gets down to the details in his #NowSmoking cigar review of Drew Estate 20 Acre Farm. See why he thinks it’s well worth the buy.

Read More