With a lot of hard work Litto Gomez and his wife, Ines Lorenzo-Gomez, have built La Flor Dominicana into a top-shelf brand worthy of the same respect as Arturo Fuente and Padron. Started in the boom years with a cigar called "Los Libertadores," the company has grown on the principle of total quality control over their cigars– they grow their own leaf, run their own factories, and dictate who will get to stock their cigars.
Both Litto and Ines are first-generation cigar makers. Previously, Litto had been a jeweler, and Ines was educated in international relations. Today, he is in charge of the production of La Flor Dominicana, and she handles the business and marketing side.
I remember back in stone ages (about 1997) when the LDF "El Jocko" came out — it was a very odd shape, kind of a trumpet shaped perfecto — and it was a huge hit even then. One of the things it had going for it was power– back then it seemed like so many of the cigars were geared toward the mild end of the spectrum, and a lot of them had no character. Not so El Jocko– both the shape and the power made it stand out.
So it's no surprise that La Flor Dominicana should anticipate the trend toward heavier bodied cigars with their Ligero and Double Ligero lines.
The Ligero 400 is composed of Dominican filler and binder leaf grown on the Gomez farms and wrapped in an Ecuadorian Sumatra leaf. There are three sizes of the Ligero line: big, bigger and biggest. (No, not literally. The 300 is a 50 ring gauge, the 400 a 54, and the 500 a whoppin' 60. They all measure 5 3/4 inches long.)
The wrapper is smooth with a Cuban-style flat cap. From initial ignition to the band the draw is easy and the burn is even. It forms a solid white ash and the burn needs no attention whatsoever. This is a very well constructed cigar.
The Ligero 400 produces a nicely refined corojo-like aroma, a somewhat sweet, slightly toasty scent. Toward the mid-point it picks up some pepper and it bites down just a little. The flavor is fairly dry with a tinge of astrigency on the tongue.
Overall this is a very nice cigar, toasty with some sweet overtones and a short bitter aftertaste. And the construction is top notch.
It lives up to its "Ligero" name with a good punch to the gut. Make sure there's something in there besides some petit fours. This ain't no tea party smoke.