The Epicurean Carnavale in the lancero format is simply great to look at. Just released at IPCPR14, there is not a whole lot of information out there about this cigar, but the 7x38, box pressed cigar has some great looks. The dark brown wrapper is velvety smooth, with minimal veins and well pressed seams. Topped off with a colorful, shiny gold band, portraying a mask, similar to those worn at masquerade parties. The prelight is giving off the scent of cocoa and cereal, with a little earthy, sweet tobacco. The cold draw flows effortlessly and taste like plain cereal and cedar. Interesting flavors so far, time to see what happens to this tobacco when it burns!
The beginning of the Carnavale starts off very pleasantly. I am not getting any spice from the draw or the retrohale, but I am getting a mild citrus note. Almost an inch in I start getting notes of yeasty baked breads, which take over the main flavor profile. There is also a large amount of smoke pouring out of this little cigar, love it. As for the burn? Dead on. And the ash holds on for a respectable 3/4”, great for only a narrow cigar.
It’s a long ways to get to the second third of the Carnavale. lol The citrus notes faded out and a dry woodiness took over, at least for the first 1/4”. After that, the whole profile really ramps up. Suddenly, there is a whole lot of spice. A lesser amount on the palette, but a nose tingling blast on the retroahle. Was not ready for that. ;) Along with the woody notes, I am getting a mix of baking type spices, that I cant fully distinguish, but they are really taking my palette for a ride. As for the burn and ash? Still perfection.
To end the Carnavale, I do finally have one issue, though nothing major really. Suddenly, it went out on me, for no apparent reason. But, I lit it right back up with no problems or taste issues. The flavors are very bold in this third. There is a lot of leathery tobacco, with underlying cedar notes. The nearer I get to the end of this cigar, there is a harshness that starts to build. Probably just due to the accumulation of everything (especially in this vitola) at the head of the cigar.
Great construction and lots of interesting flavors. To be honest, I bet smoking another one would be a good idea, as I feel that there were so many things going on that I missed a few. I remember coming across some interesting and flavorful notes that came and went before I place what they were. Definitely worth a try, and I mean. Come on. Look at those ashes!