Filler: Honduras, Nicaragua
Made in the Toraño factory in Esteli, Nicaragua and introduced in 2003, this is one of the best Cameroon wrapped cigars on the market, in my opinion. When its very reasonable price is factored into the equation, this smoke beats Fuente’s Hemingway line hands down. This is not to disparage the Hemingway in any way, but for the price of half a dozen Hemingway Signatures you can find a box of 1916s. And to tell you the truth, I enjoyed these robustos better than the last Signature I had.
1916 was the year Carlos Toraño Sr. emigrated from Spain to Cuba, and the 1916 moniker marks that occasion. Weighing in at 5 1/2 x 52, this robusto comes fully dressed with two bands and a cedar sleeve. Removing the sleeve reveals a smooth and oily cameroon wrapper with its telltale tooth.
The first few puffs are earthy and smooth, and this is a trait that continues to the end. The ash is white and a bit crumbly. The sweet spice of the cameroon leaf is the next course on the menu, and it doesn’t disappoint. It’s a very slow burning cigar, lasting nearly an hour. The smooth flavor continues throughout, and ends with a woody flavor spiked with a pervasive sweet spice that lingers in the nose. The cameroon leaf burns with a fragrance that smells almost like perfume. Good perfume, not that fruity stuff.
The aftertaste is a little bitter, but that is the only criticism I have of this cigar. (Maybe the aftertaste would be a little less pronounced if I could keep myself from smoking these to the nubbin.)
All Toraño cigars are draw tested, and I’ve never had one that didn’t draw really well. The construction standards applied here are clearly exceptional. Anyone who appreciates cameroon leaf and likes a smooth medium-bodied earthy taste in their smoke should definitely give this one a try.