Perdomo Champagne Sun Grown Torpedo
Country of Origin: Nicaragua
Size: 7″ x 54
Wrapper: Nicaraguan Sun Grown Jalapa
Presentation: Boxes of 25 / 5-packs / singles
Here we have a wonderfully rich-tasting and peppy medium-full bodied cigar with plenty of flavor and aroma that hold on to the very end. The Jalapa wrapper is somewhat veiny, but I liked its even light brown hue, and the construction was superb all around (it was hard to find the seams on my second sample). I used a V-cutter on the first cigar, and a double-blade cutter (cut to 3/8ths of an inch) on the second. Each cigar draw equally well and burned clean with a firm, dark grey ash.
Pre-light-wise, I picked up earthy, woody, and leathery flavors. The cigar toasted and lit well, offering an earthy-spicy aroma. The first few puffs were smooth, creamy, and mostly woody, while the base flavors settled into a well-balanced mix of cedar, earth, coffee bean, some nuttiness, and spicy pepper. ZOWIE! On the retrohale…if you want to clear your sinuses, hold on!
Both cigars were consistent on practically every level. Nick’s goal was to create a cigar that was as smooth and creamy as his Champagne Connecticut, but with more BALLS, and the Sun Grown certainly lives up to its expectations.
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Even though it’s part of the Champagne line, this cigar’s tawny wrapper and large size give it an imposing look.
After cutting and lighting, I noticed that the draw was kind of tight. After 30 seconds, it opened right up to deliver plenty of pepper, both on the retrohale and on the palate, especially toward the back and middle on the tongue and on the throat. I noted an appealing sweetness in the aroma and on the finish.
1/3 through, the peppery flavors peaked, especially the white pepper sensation. The sweetness deepened into a rich, well-aged tobacco flavor. The profile became somewhat leathery.
Halfway through, the intensity of flavor curiously diminished, and the cigar really “settled in.”
I didn’t note many transitions after that. It burned beautifully, although by the end I noticed it had become deceptively strong. My hands were actually sweating, which is saying something.
This cigar is recommended for those who prefer a full-strength cigar with a smoother profile. True, it does show some of the pepper characteristic inherent in so many Nicaraguan cigars, but once it settles in, it can really sneak up on you.
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I came to this cigar with a bit of a bias: (a) I love the Champagne line and (b) I had already tried this cigar out in Vegas at IPCPR. The cigar is a solid stick, and adding the Sun Grown wrapper turns the flavor dial up to 11. The wrapper has a beautiful color and a silky appearance (reminds me of a Carmelo bar). There were a few large veins, but they didn’t distract from the attractiveness of the cigar.
The cigar had an excellent draw with an earthy pre-light flavor and a slight hint of citrus (think clove-orange). Once lit, KAPOW!…a powerhouse right out of the gate.
Pepper, spice and a bit of citrus were the base flavors, later giving way to something more akin to a strong Cuban coffee, and much creamier, too.
The aroma? Let’s just say this is what being dealt Blackjack 10 times in a row smells like. The burn offered a sharp line and a firm white ash with no flakes that held on for about an inch.
What I liked about this cigar: It was mouthful; consistent as a metronome, bountiful in its smoke production, had out-fucking-standing balance, and an incredible spicy citrus flavor that marries the sizzle to the steak.
What I didn’t like about this cigar: While most of the cigars we review on the Panel are what I would consider “anytime” smokes—meaning, at home in the morning or the afternoon—I would tend to lean more towards the afternoon on this one; not because it’s overpowering, but you have an opportunity to really savor the flavors with more typical afternoon/evening activities. There are a lot of nuances here thanks to the wrapper; it would be very easy to overlook them by rushing through them.
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The light up was a little spicy, but not overpowering. Black pepper was present, giving way to an earthy flavor. The cigar constantly went out on me. I had to relight 3-5 times throughout the smoke, even after big billowing draws just 20 seconds before putting it down.
To me, the Sun Grown Champagne Torpedo was a medium-full bodied smoke packed with some powerful tobacco, which may explain why it kept going out. Just like every other Perdomo cigar, the flavor was consistent throughout, with the pepper fading out and earthiness taking over for the remainder of the smoke; no sweetness, just true tobacco and earthy taste. I also have to give credit to the balance, which was perfect. Overall, the cigar wasn’t harsh nor too light. It’s a true cigar smoker’s cigar.
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Okay, let’s not beat around the proverbial bush…this is just a phenomenal smoking experience and Nick Perdomo is a god-damned genius. Last year he bangs us right between the taste buds with the Perdomo 20th Anniversary masterpiece, and now he ramps up a cigar that was already a great one, with a Sun Grown wrapper that delivers ample amounts of oomph with every puff!
First off, the construction of this cigar is flawless, from the silky wrapper to the clouds of smoke that fill your every mouthful. For me, I put this in the medium to full category as it intensifies while it burns. Now, if you judge a cigar by flavor alone, this is every grand slam, touchdown-filled cliché in the book. The two most notable taste components I got were nutty and black licorice/anisette flavors, and to me they were both very pronounced.
Having smoked several of these, I have to say it’s a very satisfying stick and a real cigar smoker’s cigar. It’s one of those cigars that’s meant to be savored while sitting on your patio or deck on a clear night where there’s just nothing in the world but just you and your cigar. So, if you thought that perhaps the original Champagne was a bit too light for your tastes, well, Mr. Perdomo went and fixed that for you. This new Sun Grown is a delicious, full-flavored treat I am making an important part of my regular rotation.