Issue: Cigar Aficionado: Jan 01, 2013 | Score: 95
The small Aging Room brand first appeared on our radar in 2011, when the Presto size performed well in our final tastings and took the No. 16 spot in our Top 25 list. Today a new version of the Dominican brand has done even better, standing out again and again in test after test to claim the No. 2 spot in our rankings. The Aging Room Quattro F55 Concerto was created by brand owner Rafael Nodal of Boutique Blends Cigars and cigarmaker Jochi Blanco of Tabacalera La Palma. The name Concerto is a nod to the musical background of Nodal, an accomplished violin player and pianist who began selling cigars in 2002, first under the name Oliveros. Blanco, who grows tobacco and makes cigars, turned to some of his homegrown leaves for the bunch and a rather unusual wrapper to cloak the Churchill-sized cigar. The wrappers were grown on the Indonesian island of Sumatra, and while Sumatra seed grown elsewhere is a big component in the premium cigar industry, the Sumatra that actually grows in Indonesia doesn't play as heavily in the premium cigar world. Indonesian tobacco gets more use on machine-made cigars, particularly the tiny dry-cured variety that are made in Europe. The story goes that the wrapper leaves used for this cigar had been sitting around in a warehouse owned by a German cigar producer before they were found by the Aging Room team. The result is a balanced, sophisticated cigar that displays rich notes of roasted coffee bean and sweet cedar. It's a lovely smoke that impressed our tasting panel time and time again.