Connoisseur’s Corner: Fuente Fuente OpusX Fuente Fuente
From the first production run of the OpusX line, and it’s amazing how much oil continues to seep through the wrapper, which is still silky and supple after 26 years. Equally amazing is the amount of flavor left in this cigar. It starts slow and cedary, and stays that way for awhile, but then, without warning, a huge blast of walnut, fruitcake and caramel hits the palate all at once, with considerable amounts of nutmeg and star anise.
The spicy red pepper notes that OpusX can sometimes be known for have all turned sweet and nutty over time, and the construction is perfect, as this entire cigar smoked in three solid ashes.—Gregory Mottola
This cigar was handed out at the 2016 Habanos Festival, and made at El Laguito, the spiritual home of Cohiba. It’s a classic Cohiba with the perfect balance of strength and flavor—coffee bean, a hint of leather, a bit of nutmeg. The finish is long and smooth, with a mouth-filling earthiness. Like the critics say about great Bordeaux, the best vintages taste great from the beginning and only get better. This cigar has decades of life left. —Gordon Mott
This gorgeous large smoke (known as a Paco in Cuban cigar factories) is nearly the same size as a typical double corona, and comes with a wrapper the color of milk chocolate. Smoking this is like diving into a bowl of warm, roasted nuts, with almond, peanut and meaty Brazil nut flavors. A dusting of sweet cedar accentuates the long finish. It’s neither mild or strong, but well balanced and elegant. A fine morning cigar. —David Savona
Completely unlike today’s Cuban lonsdales, with its tapered 109-style belicoso head and odd diamond-pressed shape. Even after all these decades, the wrapper is still dark and oily, the draw full and the burn, dead even. Dusty and slightly bitter at first, the cigar shows its age, but it eventually picks up, with detectable notes of fruit, flowers and nuts. Certainly past its prime, though an interesting period piece in the history of pre-Castro Partagás. —Gregory Mottola