Delving more deeply, the first thing we noticed is that it's much better looking in person than in publicity photos. The wrapper is even darker, oilier and more attractive, though maybe a little more veiny, if that kind of thing bothers you. (Leaves have veins; this is something the cigar community is going to have to get over.) The sky blue bands look great and set off the wrapper color nicely.
Prior to lighting, this cigar throws its weight around on multiple fronts. It's big and weighty, on the plus side for a toro at 6.5 inches by 52. It's also nice and stinky in a good way, like aged cheese, putting off a hearty tobacco aroma from a distance. A deep sniff from the foot got us sneezing thanks to a good dose of peppery spice.
Initially, this was a more straightforward cigar than we expected. The flavors were simply Generic Nicaraguan—the woody/peppery/earthy thing we all tend to expect, but leaning more toward fresh tobacco. Not bad, but unexciting. Things pick up quickly though, with a sweetness that smacks of dried fruits. A little baking spice sneaks in too, which was perfect for the late October weather. As the cigar warmed even further, a nice nuttiness added extra dimension and played well against an intensifying woodiness.
Performance-wise, the Noblesse burned and drew well enough. As the cigar softened up during smoking, we noticed it was just a bit lumpier than we initially thought. Still, it held a nice ash and was easy to enjoy. Considering how expensive these buggers are, and the fact they show considerable strength and body, we'd highly recommend aging. These have the potential to show more nuance and an even smoother overall personality.
Though it's a slow starter, the Noblesse is a nice smoke and worth a try for fans of La Aroma and/or the My Father range of cigars. But back to the elephant in the room we alluded to in the opening paragraph. The core La Aroma costs around $6 and is every bit as good as this cigar. Different, but equally good, though a little rougher around the edges. What's so special about this special edition aside from the appealing wrapper leaf and packaging then? Hmmm...
WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING — NEW!
Starting now, for your convenience we'll be ending each review with a roundup from other sites we like. We generally avoid reading reviews of a cigar before we sample it ourselves so as not to be inadvertently influenced. However, we make it a point to read all of them we can find afterwards to see how our experiences compare to others.
Cigar Coop balked a bit at the price but otherwise rated the cigar highly. StogieNet thinks it a heck of a good special occasion smoke. Halfwheel didn't mince words, calling the price "a kick in the pants" but taking no issue with the cigar itself aside from noting some slight burn issues. All in all, a very favorable response to this limited-edition luxury cigar.
W: Ecuador Habano
A rich, smooth and reasonably complex cigar that should more than satisfy fans of the brand. Smokable now but strong enough to merit aging.