RYJ Reserva Real Maduro

Vendor’s Claim:

The love affair with Romeo y Julieta Reserva Real continues with this rich, full-flavored maduro. Featuring a deep, dark San Andres Morrón wrapper, a Nicaraguan wrapper and hearty blend of Honduran and Nicaraguan filler tobaccos, the cigar makes for an impressive and wonderful smoke that will satisfy cigar connoisseurs time and time again.”

The Stats:

Size:                       7 ½” x 40

Style:                     Lonsdale/Lancero

Wrapper:             Nicaraguan

Binder:                 Nicaraguan

Filler:                     Nicaraguan/Honduran

The Experience:

Initial Impression— I have never smoked a Lonsdale before. This ring guage cigar was a first for me. I picked it up because I thought it was similar to the one Jason had tried (Reserva Real Corona) and I wanted to smoke it so we could do a compare/contrast review on an upcoming segment. I’m not a fan of longer cigars as I usually don’t have the patience to sit through such a time consuming cigar, nor do I usually buy one with such a small ring gauge. But, erroneously thinking I was getting a cigar within the same family as what Jason bought, I picked it up anyway.

Appearance— This cigar has a filler with a combination of tobacco from the Dominican Republic, Nicaragua and Peru with a binder made entirely from Nicaragua and a Connecticut Broadleaf wrapper. I noticed that its cap had a pigtail to it; this was also a first for me. Not that a pigtail cap means anything or changes its flavor, it was just another first for me. I clipped the cap, there were a few fleks of wrapper which occurred but I blame that mostly on my cutter. The wrapper itself was dry and smooth-to-veiny. Again, simply an observation, not a slight to the  cigar itself. I did notice the overall construction to the cigar was medium to hard, I suspect that my tobacconist may need to crank up the humidity in the walk-in humidor.

Lighting/Burning/Ash— I lit the stick, it started up right away. It had a great initial burn. When I first lit up, I was doing some monthly maintenance on my 150 cigar capacity humidor which allowed me to sit it down, come back to it and it never lost its light. The ash was solid rarely needed to be removed (it usually just fell off when I set the cigar down in the ashtray). The burn on it was good, never a problem with canoeing. But this is where things started to fall apart. While in its resting position, the smoke which came from the cigar was an appropriate amount, however, when taking puffs off it, it produced A LOT of smoke. This would not be a cigar you could smoke around other people who were not smoking also. Likewise, this cigar was extremely high maintenance, which I’ll get to a little later.

Consistency/Draw—To its credit, the flavor of the cigar stayed consistent from beginning to end. I really thought that needing to be re-lit as many times as it did would have taken away from its taste. I’m pleased to say it didn’t. I am also pleased to say that the wrapper stayed in tact the entire time I smoked it. I was a little worried after I initially cut the cap and saw the shreds of wrapper protruding from it that maybe it was going to fall apart on me—it didn’t.

Maintenance/Flavor— Holy cow is this cigar high maintenance. I dn’t know if that’s to be attributed to the small ring gauge but this cigar had to be re-lit 5 times BEFORE it even got to the half way point! I don’t have the wear with all to some such a high maintenance smoke. It makes you light headed try to smoke it fast enough so that it doesn’t go out (which it does anyway so there’s a damned if you do/don’t going on here).  I have to attribute a slow burn as a part of the problem for this cigar. I can’t help but wonder if it burned a bit faster if that would have alleviated the re-light requirement.

In defense of this cigar I can say that it does have a nice taste to it. Romeo y Julieta (RYJ) cigars have a nice spicy flavor to it, but it’s a powerful cigar that bombards your palate or make you ill. The aroma of the smoke (albeit extensive for such a small cigar) is delightful to smell as it engulfs you.

Reflection & Rating

Once I started smoking this cigar more rapidly, it never went out once. That being said, I don’t want to have to smoke a cigar as fast I had I to smoke this one to prevent it from going out. It has the usual spicy taste that I’m accustomed with from a RYJ, but unlike the non-44 ring gauge cigars, they don’t usually require such attention by the smoker. I think this brand of cigar is good for newbies looking to get introduced to a touch more medium flavor of a cigar, but this Lonsdale isn’t one I would recommend to anyone except a cigarette smoker who knows how to constantly puff of such a stick. Good flavor, nice aftertaste, affordable, easy to find, VERY high maintenance.

For that reason, I would rate this smoke as a C-(and I think this is probably overly generous)

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