It’s hard to believe the Punch Rare Sumatra has been around for 10 years already. Yes, I know, it’s actually the “Punch Rare Corojo” but I’ve been calling it “Rare Sumatra” for so long that I can’t change now. This is what happens when you get old.
As most of us already know, the original Rare Corojo doesn’t utilize a Corojo wrapper at all. It has a lovely colorado-hued Sumatra-seed wrapper grown in Ecuador. So WHY did General Cigar call it Rare Corojo? I haven’t the slightest idea, but like many of the cigar industry’s enduring mysteries it probably comes down to marketing.
So it’s a bit of a reversal that the Tenth Anniversary edition of the Rare Corojo is not Sumatran — it’s actually corojo! Truth in advertising at last! But wait. It’s an odd sort of corojo: it’s grown in Connecticut. So not only is it actually corojo, it’s also quite rare. Up to this point I’d never heard of Connecticut Corojo.
The filler and binder appear to be the same as the Rare Sumatra: the binder is Connecticut Broadleaf, and the filler is a Honduran-Nicaraguan-Dominican blend. And like the original, the 10th Anniversary is rolled in General’s Honduras HATSA facility. Just this one size — a 5 x 50 robusto — has been made in a limited edition.
Like the original Rare Sumatra, the 10th Anniversary Rare Corojo is box-pressed, and like most cigars from General it exhibits generally excellent construction. The wrapper is quite dark for a non-broadleaf Connecticut, and it shows some weathering and a few fine veins. The single cap is not really attractive, but it’s functional. The draw is excellent, and it burns perfectly.
Overall excellent construction.
The Punch 10th Anniversary Rare Corojo flares up with a touch of black pepper and a citric edge. The smoke is quite dry and mouth-wateringly acidic. The aroma is mildly spicy and somewhat intriguing. I’m not sure what to make of it because it has the softness of Connecticut shade, but the spiciness of corojo. An odd combination.
At the half-way point the smoke is decidedly medium in body and strength. The flavor is woody with overtones of earth and nuts. There is enough tannin here to go around for everyone. All you little taste buds, get in line. Who wants more tannin? The aftertaste is earthy and astringent.
The cigar finishes in expected fashion– woody and quite dry — though I found myself primarily concentrating on the sweet and exotically spiced aroma.
While I enjoyed the aroma of the Rare Corojo 10th Anniversary and its excellent roll and burn, these didn’t quite balance out the boldly tannic foundation on which the cigar is built. Tannins have a tendency to even out with age though, so this Punch Anniversary blend may just be a diamond in the rough. I didn’t really care for the original Rare Corojo when I first smoked it years ago, but then it grew on me. This cigar may do the same thing.
The Punch Rare Corojo 10th Anniversary should be in stores soon, if it isn’t already. MSRP is around $6.50 per stick.
Special thanks to General Cigar for sending review samples of this new release.