"BEST CROP EVER"
Macanudo blender Daniel Nunez said of 1997 that it's the best crop ever used. Now, about the only thing we've ever blended is a smoothie, but one look and you know it's true. These wrapper leaves are chestnut hued and beautiful, with the kind of fine vein structure you generally only see on fine Cuban leaf.
SERIOUSLY WELL AGED
It gets better. Though the wrapper was harvested back in 1997, the cigars could have been rolled as far back the late 2000s. (Information is scarce, but we believe these went into production somewhere around 2003 and were discontinued around 2007-2008.) When you open the box, you get slammed with enticing, pent-up cedar aromas and the sense that these have been slumbering for at least a few years, but probably much longer.
SMOKES LIKE A DREAM
In larger formats, Mac Vintage cigars can be a little underwhelming. After all, the filler blend is basically still standard issue Mac. Not in this case. The smaller ring gauge allows the wrapper, and the zesty Mexican binder, to really shine. The draw is just about perfect and so is construction. These are woody and creamy, but with lovely notes of baking spice and nuts. The smoke is lush and surprisingly mouth filling, lingering on the palate. Definitely on the medium side of mild. Smoke these slowly and savor the experience of aging on top of aging.
NOW...ABOUT THAT PRICE
From what we can tell, the original MSRP on these peaked in the $11-$12 range, which was certainly pretty pricey for the time, and still is today. To give you some perspective, an Ashton VSG corona gorda was $8.25.
Cigars International doesn't list an MSRP, but they're selling these for $339.80 per box. Famous has them on sale for under $200 through March. JR Cigars has them too, for a much more reasonable $89 for bundles of 10. These are a non-starter at CI's price, and a maybe at CI's and Famous's.
However—right now, CigarPage.com is selling boxes for $99.99. At $5 a stick, for very fine and well aged cigars, it's on! We don't know how long that will last, so don't sleep on it if you're interested.
SO WHY ARE THESE STILL FOR SALE SO LONG
AFTER BEING DISCONTINUED?
Listen, there's a reason this stock is still hanging around. These are expensive cigars in an unpopular format with an undesrved reputation for being mild and boring. But at $5, they're suddenly a great buy for a genuinely excellent little 35-minute smoke. If that's what you're after, or you've never smoked an aged cigar and are wondering what it's like, now's your chance.
By the way...CigarPage and other retailers mistakenly lists these as 5x42. They're actually 5.56x43.
DEAL ALERT RECAP
THE DEAL: ABOUT 70% OFF MSRP -- ONLY $99.99/box of 20
THE DRAW: SERIOUSLY WELL AGED SMOKES FOR A SONG
THE LINK: CIGARPAGE.COM