La Aurora’s 1495 line was created to celebrate the founding of the city of Santiago de los Caballeros in the Dominican Republic, and it is the first cigar from La Aurora that has been an instant hit.
Sales Director and master blender Jose Blanco brought together five types of leaf from four different countries to create a complex cigar. “I’m a great believer in blending,” Blanco said in an interview with Cigar Aficionado, “I don’t care how good a cigar is, if it’s good and it’s one-dimensional, it’s just a good boring smoke. I like cigars that are complex and that change a lot.”
Starting with the skin and moving to the core, we have an Ecuadorian Sumatra sun-grown wrapper, underneath which is a Dominican corojo binder. The filler is a blend of Dominican piloto cubano and Nicaraguan and Peruvian ligero leaves. These are all powerful choices, but Blanco believes that the elements that stand out are the wrapper and the Peruvian filler leaf.
The Corona measures 5 1/4 inches with a 43 ring gauge. It seems a little small for a corona, but on the other hand it’s a tad too large to be called a petite corona. The scent of the silky smooth wrapper is earthy with plenty of barnyard. The cap clips easily and the prelight draw is good. It lights up and starts an even and carefree burn. The ash is a dirty gray.
Sun grown Ecuadorian leaf has a leathery, somewhat spicy aroma, and this cigar has it in spades. This little stick introduces itself with lots of black pepper and a lengthy finish. At first I am not terribly impressed with the flavor — it’s not harsh, but with so much pepper it comes off as very sharp. After a few more draws the aroma of the wrapper adds a complementary note that evens things out and calms down the spice.
By the middle of the cigar the complexity becomes more evident. There is a definite transition from the peppery introduction to a more balanced flavor at this point. This balance does not, however, lessen the strength of the smoke pouring from this little feller. The ligero and the piloto cubano keep the flavor strong and the finish long.
With about two inches left I’m quite satisfied with this corona and ready to call it a day. A strong drink is a welcome companion to the Aurora 1495 — an Imperial stout went well for me, though scotch or bourbon would do the trick just as well. While not overpowering, this is definitely an after dinner cigar due to its aggressive flavor and finish. The way the ESG wrapper blends in with the richness of the other tobaccos is really worth the five or six clams you’ll have to shell out for this cigar. It’s a little too heavy on the pepper for my taste, but if you enjoy the Joya de Nicaragua Antano or the Partagas Serie D, you should definitely check this one out.