Cigar Federation Consolidated Top Cigars of 2013: #8 El Cedro

As we near the end of 2013, you will begin to see many "Top" lists throughout the cigar community. The Cigar Federation team decided to attempt to do something a bit different. Each of the main reviewers on the site - Logan, Rob, Dustin, Jerad and John - has their own list, but we also wanted to see what a Cigar Federation Consolidated list would look like.

I gave the guys absolutely no direction - I just asked for their lists. Some of the lists included only cigars released in 2013 and others included the reviewers favorite cigars smoked in 2013. Some of the lists were just cigars that the reviewer had reviewed on Cigar Federation while others might not have been reviewed and were only smoked. Some lists included Cubans and some were just "domestic". This, coupled with the fact that the 5 reviewers live in different parts of the country and Canada (and, thus, have access to different cigars) and have vastly diverse palates, produced some interesting results. The #1 cigar on our Consolidated list only showed up on 3 of the 5 total lists. The most any cigar appeared was 4 times meaning no cigar was a unanimous "Top" cigar for all our reviewers.

Over the next ten days (not including weekends), I will unveil another cigar in the Consolidated List. In the end, each of our reviewers will unveil their personal lists. How does your list match up? Without further adieu, I unveil #8 on our list - please check back tomorrow for #7.


#10 Jameson Santos de Miami Lancero

#9 Regius Mitchell Orchant Seleccion

#8 El Cedro

Anwar Elboustani is a former military man whose love of cigars came from little herfs he would have on his downtime.  One day while smoking a cigar he promised himself that he would make a cigar when he made it back home.  Fast forward several years, Anwar has returned home and has not lost sight of the promise he made himself, but has struggled to make in-roads into the tobacco industry to produce his own cigar until a chance encounter in the Dominican Republic leads to him being introduced to Henke Kelner.  While Henke was unable to help Anwar, he introduced him to his son, Henke Jr, who just so happened to be in the process of opening his own factory and releasing his first cigar - Smoking Jacket.  After telling Henke Jr what he was looking for and going through many samples that Henke Jr already had, the cigar Anwar ended up with is #8 on our Consolidated List of 2013 - El Cedro!

The El Cedro blend isn't exactly known but it relies heavily on Dominican tobacco for the wrapper, binder and filler with a bit of Nicaraguan Ligero in the filler.  There has been some confusion in the marketplace about the naming of this cigar with some referring to it as the El Cedro 14k, but Anwar clarified this on Cigar Federation and further on CigarChat.  14k is a Phonecian word - from right-to-left, k(A), 4(R), 1(Z) - that translates to CEDAR. 

"Honey immediately hit my palate, complimented by a mild cinnamon draw, and light finish mid-tongue.  The retrohale was all cedar, and much stronger then the draw, providing a nice balance of mild-medium flavor interaction on my palate.  The front of my mouth and lips had a rich long finish from a creamy draw; wonderful complexity that I related to custard."

"Approaching the mid-point, the honey subsided a bit, and some of the creaminess went away.  A green vegetal note entered, with no pepper really, almost like fresh pablano or grassy notes found in some Habanos.  The grassy nots came from the retrohale, and combined with the cedar to add depth as the creamy custard profile was still there.  Towards the end, medium coffee bean notes began to arrive, as the body and finish of the 14k moved toward a medium body, full flavor cigar."
"Bitter nuts entered the profile at this point, similar to a cashew at first, with the cedar, grass, and coffee bean notes.  Another wonderful transition took place at this time."
"The strength of the retrohale burn combined with the nut notes to remind me of a liqueur burn."
"Of all the KBF cigars, this was my favorite, and I could smoke this every day."

You can read Dustin's full review of the El Cedro here.
You can see El Cedro on CigarChat here.
Get into the discussion and share YOUR Top List here.

Views: 249

Comment by RobbyRas on December 11, 2013 at 1:18pm

I REALLY dig this cigar... I had it at #10 on my list and I kinda wish I could go back and bump it up a bit higher... Great profile with a lot of complexity and nuance and just enough strength to keep you honest... And Anwar is a cool dude with a good story... I'm really rooting for him 

Comment by Matt Ross on December 11, 2013 at 6:31pm

Geesh, Rob - you're supposed to keep your list a secret until after we unveil the Consolidated Top 10! :P

Seriously, though, I thought the Smoking Jacket and Cabal were stellar, so I'm very excited to track down some El Cedro!

Comment by RobbyRas on December 11, 2013 at 6:33pm

All I have given away is that El Cedro is my #10 and that Crowned Heads appears on it... i'm teasing it... like bad hair in the eighties...

When my box gets in I'll send you a few Robustos... I owe you a Dub Dub anyway

Comment by El Cedro Cigars on December 11, 2013 at 6:41pm
Thank you gents. I am honered to be at your top 10 list of 2013. Thank you for your continuous support. Long ashes and many blessings.

Comment by RobbyRas on December 11, 2013 at 7:08pm

Anwar, you a quickly becoming one of my favorite people in the industry... Happy Holidays to you and your family!

Comment by El Cedro Cigars on December 11, 2013 at 7:25pm
That you Robb that means a lot to me. Hope you have a blessed holiday and your family.
Comment by Generally Useful Jared on December 11, 2013 at 8:44pm
I can't wait to get a chance to fire up the one Catfish sent. Starting to think he and I have similar likes, and I know he digs them.

Comment by Nate Martin on December 11, 2013 at 10:16pm

Sounds like a deliciously laid back cigar.


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