Cigar Review Wednesdays — Partagas Maduro No. 1
No collection would ever be complete without the impressive Partagas Maduro No. 1.
The wrapper on this cigar is something that you have to witness for yourself: it is a thick, oily and leathery tobacco leaf, so well fermented and cured that it is almost insulting to other maduros.
It is also a special cigar because it was the first Partagas to ever carry the “Maduro” name on the second band. Maduro means that the tobacco leaves were fermented for an extended period of time, making them darker in color and enhancing their flavor.
To buy this wonderful cigar, you have to go to a La Casa del Habano or a Habanos Specialist distributor because the Maduro No. 1 was made exclusively for these stores.
Strength / size
Medium — Full / 5.10" x 52
Before lighting up
The first smell is all about leather and dark chocolate. Lots and lots of it. And boy, what a great smell. Opening a box of these cigars is like traveling to a Christmas desserts table. Everything is sweet and we just want to stuff our face as soon as possible. On top of that, the dark and extremely oily wrapper leaf is a delight to look at. Seriously, it makes you want to unravel the wrapper and eat it while you smoke the binder and filler with a nice glass of whiskey.
Right after lighting up you know that you are holding a special cigar. With most Partagas, you get that characteristic spice right away, but not with this one. With the Maduro №1, instead of that spiciness, you get a wonderful sweetness. You also get a beautiful thick smoke you can almost chew, exalted with the sweetness that the oily wrapper is leaving on your mouth when it touches your lips. The flavors that it produces on this third are a surprise. We got that bit of spice from the white pepper, the rich body of a black coffee and that lovely sweetness of cocoa.
On the second third, it starts evolving quite a bit on its strength. From the initial medium body of the first third, it starts turning more and more towards the stronger side, but still very enjoyable and high-head free at this point. The flavors also change as the white pepper starts to fade away and the black coffee takes the stage, which offers a nicer balance to the cigar when comparing it with the beginning. The sweet cocoa is still very much present here and it will be for the rest of the cigar. As the wrapper gets wetter on the head of this cigar, it almost tastes as if you were smoking a sweetness infused cigar, that’s what a couple of years of premium leaves of Cuban tobacco can do when properly staged.
On the final third, the balance of the Partagas Maduro №1 reaches a perfect balance. Sweet, spice and strength all come together to finish this cigar in a strong note. The initial white pepper is just a tiny hint, just enough to keep things interesting. The cocoa and coffee are now very present and the body of the cigar just increased to its full power but without bitterness, which only some to of the line cigars (or properly aged) can achieve.
The Partagas Maduro No. 1 is an impressive cigar in its balance and deep complex flavors. There was no need to retouch the cigar and the burn line was razor-sharp all the way through. The only unpleasant issue you will have with this cigar is putting it down.