This is my review of the Oliva Serie V Maduro Especial series 2010 release.
Having previously enjoyed the Oliva 2011 I didn't think I'd be disappointed by the 2010. I picked up a strong smell of fresh roasted coffee with a strong backing of earth. The nose on this has you eager to light up.
As a limited production every year you know that Oliva Serie V Maduro 2010 puts significant care and attention in rolling these cigars. The vitola is a 6x54 torpedo (versus the 2011 toro) which is a slightly larger ring gauge than the 2009. The wrapper is smooth and flawless with a nice tight cap and no imperfections on the foot. The Oliva V band is gold, red and brown which is a fairly sedated band for a limited release.
There was a nice amount of spice on this with the initial draws. It's not overpowering at all and as you move past the spice you get that earthy flavor from the nose as well as a sweet creamy backing. The flavor was so good that I actually had to slow down my smoking as I was taking draw after draw. About 15 minutes in the sweet creaminess picks up considerably to be the dominant flavor. The spice is still there, unlike a number of other cigars that start off strong and then drop off. The first is nothing short of outstanding. At this point the spice becomes an afterthought and unexpectedly the coffee from the nose picks up sharply with an undertone of cinnamon. As I proceeded through the first the spice comes back almost in waves for a few minutes at a time.
I didn't find any sharp change in flavor profiles between the first third and the middle. It just gently transitions with the creaminess, coffee and cinnamon and spice cycling in waves. At the halfway point of the middle the earth from the nose comes through very strongly. As I proceed all the other flavors fall away and the cycling flavors become a two note combination of earth and sweet creaminess in equal parts.
Just like the middle the transition to the last third happens without any sharp changes. The last third is largely dominated by spice and the earth and creamy flavors fade into the background. I almost found as if the spice was a finale encore to end the experience.
I used a straight cutter on this which is my standard operating procedure. I found the draw to be a bit tight and I attributed it to a bit of a tentative cut. I took a second go at it and the draw opened up to the sweet spot. I attribute the initial draw issues entirely to my error in cutting as there were no draw issues from start to finish. As with any other Oliva cigar I've had there are zero burn issues to be found. As this is a limited release I took my time and slowed down after initially attacking it. Total smoking time was approximately 2 and a half hours.
Value on a limited release is going to be extremely subjective. It may have been possible to find these as singles back in 2010, but I feel with a 10 cigar box and limited production you're better off to go with a full box. At the time of this review they are still available from Bonita Smoke Shop. They were $99 + shipping which works out to around $10 a cigar. You can't expect much of a deal on a limited run series.
After thoroughly enjoying the Oliva Serie V Maduro 2010 I can see why some people preferred the 2010 blend to the 2011. It's definitely bolder and fuller, and I find myself not wanting to give over the second box that I ordered in for web partner C4ddy. If you can still get your hands on these, and you enjoy a fuller flavored cigar, I would definitely recommend snapping up a box.
Stay tuned for a future mega review of the 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011 Serie V Maduro reviewed in a review as simultaneous pairs.