The first entry in the Muestra De Saka series was the most elegant, refined and understated cigar in the DTT lineup.  For the second release, Owner and Master Blender Steve Saka created almost the exact opposite.  A strong, flavor bomb with layer after layer of complex flavors.

Brand: Muestra De Saka Nacatamale

Size: 6x48

Vitola: Toro Especial

Wrapper: Nicaragua

Binder: Nicaragua

Filler: Nicaragua

Factory: Joya De Nicaragua

MSRP: $15.95

Cigars smoked for review: 3

Cigars for review provided by: Purchased by Tripp

Note: For this review I used Cigar Federation's rating system

Prelight: I'll start by saying the presentation of this cigar is top notch.  An elegant dark laquered box with gold print, containing 7 individual cedar coffins.  Inside each coffin is a cigar adorned simply with a ribbon on the foot, stating which Muestra de Saka you have.  One of my favorite touches is the individual 'icon' for each blend.  In this case, a crossed knife and fork, referencing the culinary influence of the cigars name.

The cigar it self is expertly constructed, with a bit of a rustic double-cap and a short fantail.  The wrapper is smooth, with almost invisible seams, and few lumps from midrib veins in the binder and filler.

The wrapper smells of Hickory, roasted peanuts, and a light cedar while the foot smells of spicy tobacco, roasted red meat, with a little ammonia.  After a straight cut, the cold draw offers just the right amount of resistance, and notes of spicy red pepper and hickory.


Smoking:

First third:  Starts off with tons of sweet cedar and a dry, smoky burning hickory flavor with a mild white pepper spice, and finishes with a very long, black pepper finish.  There’s just a touch of a coffee/cocoa bitterness, but it’s just barely there.  The retrohale starts off with a mix of sweet and spicy.  A meaty sweetness with an intense black pepper spice.  There’s also a bit of a sweetness that reminds me of candied pecans.  As I progress through the first third, a cinnamon note works it’s way in.

Second Third: Just over an inch in, the ash drops off, and the spice on the retrohale has actually picked up a bit.  If you don’t like spice, you may want to think about this one.  On the palate, however, it’s taking on some more savory cedar and meaty flavors.

Halfway through the second third, the coffee note is equally bitter and sweet, like a cuban coffee, and picking up a bit.

Final Third:  In the final third, an earthy flavor makes it’s way in, the spice has faded, and I start reaching that heavy, ’nub’ kind of flavor as it begins heating up, and all 3 samples got a little hot in the last third.  I think a few more months in the humidor, and focusing on smoking slowly will really have an impact on the hotness of the final third.

Final Thoughts:  This cigar strikes a spectacular balance between strength and balance, and delivers layers of intense spice and wood, while slowly ramping up the sweetness and savory flavors after the conclusion of the first third.  It ends up being full bodied and full strength, but a much more elegant experience than you would expect.  This cigar begs to be smoked after a large meal, and paired with a peaty, full bodied Scotch like Port Charlotte or Caol Ila.

I recommend buying a couple boxes, because if you’re anything like me, that first seven-count box isn’t going to last long.


Tripp's Rating:  97 AKA “Box Purchase”

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