Now, we should know better than to trust Habanos' descriptions of their own cigars. For instance, remember when the Montecristo Open line was first introduced? The premise was, it was supposed to be a lighter Monte to help ease younger smokers into the rest of the line. Of course, turns out the Open vitolas were among the fullest-bodied Montes yet produced.
And so it is with the Quai D'Orsay Imperiales. This Chruchill-size cigar is darker, oilier and smells stronger than the Romeo y Julieta Churchill, which it is supposedly milder than. Historically, it' has also been slightly pricey, another reason why we stayed away all these years. After all, who wants to pay dearly for a beginner's cigar? Well, the fact is, this is anything but.
So what are they like? The short version is, like a slightly amped-up RyJ Churchill. A real smoothie. Lots of classic Cuban sweet tobacco notes bloom in complexity the more the cigar progresses. First, a little cedar peeks in. Then some molasses and nuts. A floral character enters the picture. Later, the sweetness and nuttiness becomes increasingly specific. Factor in that these are relatively young samples from 2012 production, and we think they have lots more to offer in the years to come.
Since production halted last year, what's out there in the marketplace is all that's left. If this gorgeous and complex cigar appeals to you, better start making like President Kennedy before he signed the embargo. Go forth, friends, and horde!
Gorgeous, oily, well made. Despite its reputation as a "beginner's" cigar, our samples smoked marvelously with admirable complexity. Lovely, and easy to enjoy any time of day.