Most of you know I am a whore when it comes to cigars made in the Dominican Republic. I have always leaned to tobacco coming from this region historically, even though recent medium production coming out of Nicaragua have been dominating my Top Cigar lists. Hearing that Jose Blanco and Jose Siejas had planned on releasing Dominican blends for this year, I was beyond excited. Siejas had retried from Altadis in 2012, but opened a small batch factory with his brothers, and his first creation is the Matilde brand under their company New World Cigars. The first blend is called the Renacer, and is available in four sizes ranging from a corona to a 6x60. Siejas employs very few rollers, and insists that all of them are cigar smokers to insure a better product. Siejas has 40 years in the industry, and sits on the Cigar Aficionado Hall of Fame. Looking at the sheer beauty of the wrapper, you can feel and smell the history of the cigar and know that this was not made by the hands of new player to the market. When Seth sent me one recently, I made it a priority to review the blend immediately. I hope to get the chance to sit and talk with Jose at IPCPR, and if I ever get a chance to visit the Dominican Republic, make a stop at his factory.
Wrapper: Ecuadorian Habano
Filler: Dominican and Nicaraguan
Dry Draw: Raspberry chocolates from Sees Candy
First Third: Lush milk chocolate came to mind, as the Renacer introduced itself to my palate in fine fashion. The depth of the flavor from the dry draw was enough to excite the senses, and from first draw the finish was divine three draws in. Smoking the Renacer was like eating a fine chocolate really, the kind you give your old lady when you royally screw up or need a get out of jail free pass. Nuts hit the nose, along with brown sugar and creamy custard like flavors on the draw. Immediately, I was prompted to let Seth know how amazing the cigar was and start blasting social media. Full flavor, medium body, and a long finish that impressed the hell out of this reviewer.
Second Third: The texture of the draw changed significantly, as the cream notes really began to shine, and the draw was so thick you could chew it. The nut notes defined themselves as peanuts on the retro, and the strength and distinction of the note began to stand out. The chocolate subsided a bit, and a liqueur burn hit me hard. A round sweetness marked its territory on the tip of my tongue with the peanut notes hitting the tongue after the retro to create the liqueur effect. Another fantastic change had taken place, and the Renacer continued to impress.
Final Third: The sweetness stepped out in the forefront of the profile, almost candy like in nature. The Renacer is absolutely a dessert cigar. All the notes were hitting my palate, in and out, confusing my note pad, and exciting the credit card in my wallet to search for a retailer immediately. Hints of chocolate, less liqueur, peanuts, creamy custard, and the candied sweetness came in and out as I put the note pad down, and rode out the final third in all its glory. The Renacer had unreal complexity to end, and the review had to take a back seat to my enjoyment.
Construction: it went out once, but I was making notes for a final and smoking very slow.
Final Thoughts: Box Purchase – 95. Jose Blanco and Jose Siejas may be having an all out brawl to the death for the top spot on my Cigar of the Year list for 2014. As it stands, the Matilde Renacer had perfect balance, an excellent finish, and from the dry draw to the last draw a candy like experience that reminded me of the finest chocolates money can buy. Now I am no chocolate connoisseur, but I know what the good stuff tastes like, because I learned a long time ago it buys favor. I do not think all Nicaraguan fans will like this, because it has no spice, no power, and really embodies the art of full flavor and smooth finish. For those smokers, I would suggest smoking the Renacer on a clean palate or in the morning. For everyone else, buy it now if you can find it. The Renacer is a gem amongst a sea of boutiques that confuse the consumer with slick labels and marketing. The fact is you can taste 40 years of elegance and history in the Renacer, without the influence of corporate oversight. This is what a small batch boutique cigar should taste like. I will be seeking out Jose at IPCPR and the Matilde team for an interview. If anyone from the company reads this, feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.