Gary Korb takes one more look at the Holidays with his list of top shelf cigars adorned with fancy white & gold bands. Whether it’s a last minute gift idea or a humidor-worthy primo to ring-in the New Year, you’ll find 12 of them all dressed-up and ready to smoke.
My Weekend Cigar: May 21, 2018 – Guardian of the Farm JJ
MY WEEKEND CIGAR: Guardian of the Farm Cigar Review
By Gary Korb
A Cigar Whose Bite is More Pleasurable Than Its Bark
This weekend called for a little collaboration, like this Guardian of the Farm JJ robusto. The series is named for the pups that guard the Aganorsa Farm in Nicaragua, and is made in collaboration between Aganorsa Leaf (a.k.a. Casa Fernandez) and Warped Cigars. Maybe it’s a sign of age, but for some reason I thought this was the cigar that made the #8 spot in the “Top 25 Cigars of the Year 2017.” It was actually the Apollo Seleccion de Warped. Nevertheless, this JJ looked mighty delicious, and so I ordered a coffee, black – not my usual but I’m trying to get off of sugar – and fired it up.
Country of Origin: USA (Miami, FL)
Size: 5¼” x 50
Wrapper: Nicaraguan Jalapa shade-grown Corojo ’99
Filler: Nicaraguan Aganorsa Criollo & Corojo
Binder: Nicaraguan Aganorsa
My Experience: The first thing you notice about the “JJ” is the wrapper. It’s absolutely striking, as its milk chocolate color and lustrous patina make it look more edible than smokeable. What I also like about this cigar is that it’s rolled entubado style – typical of Aganorsa Leaf’s cigars. This traditional Cuban method of rolling offers a better draw and a cleaner burn. The cap was an expertly applied triple seam, so all-in-all, we’re talkin’ a real work of art, and I like the way the black and gold band stood out against the wrapper.
The first few puffs of my JJ issued a creamy spoonful of peppery spice that quickly rounded out to a bittersweet, cedary flavor. Moving along, I was hoping the velvety smoke would offer some sweetness to make up for the lack of sugar in my coffee, but instead I got a nice surprise. Rising through the woodiness came an impressive, almost lemon pie-like tartness along with some floral elements. That tartness coursed through most of this well-balanced cigar, but what I really enjoyed about it was that it offered something completely different in both the texture and flavor of this particular blend.
Suffice it to say. . . I hate to make comparisons to Cuban cigars, because many cigar smokers haven’t had them, which seems a bit unfair, but the Guardian of the Farm JJ had a certain “something,” and Havanas just came to mind. Now that said, once you actually smoke this cigar, there’s no escaping the fact that it’s a deep, dark, full-flavored NICARAGUAN all the way – make no bones about it.
Due to the ultra-smoothness and balance of this cigar, I’m placing it more in the medium-full camp, and finally, the Guardian of the Farm JJ offers indisputable testimony to the kind of tobacco they’ve been doing at the Aganorsa farm. Take a “WOW!” out of petty cash for this one (and I’m really looking forward to that Apollo).
If you’ve had an experience with this cigar, please share it by leaving a comment.
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