Welcome to another edition of my beer and cigar reviews where we take a look at some notable (and not-so-notable) microbrew/craft beers and premium cigars! Let’s just jump right in and, as always, we will start with today’s beer selections:
Wintervention is a winter warmer style ale brewed by Peticolas Brewing Company right here in Dallas, Texas. It weighs in at 10% ABV and 45 IBU.
Had on tap at Flying Saucer in Garland, TX. Pours a very dark amber color with a thick tan head. Aromas of toffee, black cherry, alcohol. Some spices also on the nose. Big blasts of flavor that follow the nose almost exactly – toffee, brown sugar and black cherry. A faint spiciness on the palate and a slight hint of banana. A delicate tea-like hop bite in the back. The alcohol is very well hidden without astringency. Big body with medium carbonation. Easy drinking and warming.
An excellent example of the style: big, bold, festive. A real winner. 4.5/5.
Mysterium Verum Coffissar
This beer is a Russian Imperial Stout brewed by Real Ale in Blanco, TX. It is aged in oak and rye barrels with coffee. It weighs in at 9.8% ABV and an unspecified IBU rating.
Had on tap at Goodfriend in Dallas, TX. Jet black pour with a thin head. Aromas of dark chocolate, pine and coffee. The initial flavor profile consisted of plum and natural cherry supported by notes of caramel, dark chocolate and licorice. Coffee very prominent on the back of the palate into the finish. Not as hoppy as the nose would have suggested. Medium body, low carbonation. Smooth drinking and alcohol well hidden.
I felt this was a very good beer but a little lacking in mouthfeel for the style. Very tasty, just was wanting something a little more. Rating: 4/5.
And now for our cigar picks:
Rocky Patel Vintage 2006 San Andreas
This offering from Rocky Patel features a Mexican San Andreas Maduro wrapper over Connecticut Broadleaf binder and Nicaraguan long fillers. The vitola reviewed here is a 7″ x 48RG Churchill.
The first light revealed quite a firm draw but producing a good amount of medium/full bodied smoke. Very heavy earth on the draw and a big black and red pepper blast on the finish and retrohale. A slight hint of dark chocolate on the draw.
Getting into the first third the flavor profile remains largely the same but just gets a bit smoother and creamier. The initial pepper blast tapers off slightly allowing a leather to join the nose. Draw opens up slightly but still on the snug side. The 2nd third mellows slightly to a straight medium body as the red pepper heat completely vanishes leaving just a slight hint of black pepper. No further changes were noted. The smoke started going hot and acrid at 1 hour 30 minutes for an average burn time for the vitola and brought in a mild/medium nicotine strength.
Construction was fair with a fairly straight burn that interestingly enough only needed to be corrected when the ash dropped. Ash was fairly short, about 1″ chunks, but not surprising given the smaller ring gauge.
I have to say this was not my favorite Rocky Patel by any stretch (that title goes to the previously reviewed Royale). It’s not bad mind you and would pair well with a red wine, bourbon or rum. At the price point though, I’ll take the Royale any day. Rating: 3.25/5.
Brick House Maduro
This offering from Brick House cigars features a Brazilian Arapiraca Maduro wrapper over Nicaraguan binder and long fillers. The vitola reviewed is the “Mighty Mighty,” a 6.2″ x 60RG Gordo.
First light revealed a perfect draw producing plumes of thick smoke. Medium/full bodied flavors out of the gate consisting of leather and cocoa on the draw and a big blast of pepper and spice on the retrohale.
Getting into the first third the pepper dies down slightly while remaining present and the smoke remains medium/full. A sweet cream finds its way into the draw as well as a hint of caramel going into the finish. The 2nd third drops the pepper almost completely while the leather takes a back seat to a medium roast coffee. Strength starts setting in early, already at medium. The final third shifts completely to a heavy earth and entering a nougat and nutmeg into the draw and a hot cinnamon on the retrohale. The cocoa is still prsent but becomes fleeting. I ended the cigar at 1 hour 40 minutes for an impressive burn time while the strength held at a medium.
The construction was absolutely impeccable. Normally 60 ring gauge cigars burn terribly and Maduro cigars don’t burn very straight either, but this one had a mostly straight burn that only required one minor correction around the halfway point. Ash held on almost all the way to the first band:
What can I say? I wasn’t expecting much out of this one given the ring gauge and price point (about $6.50/stick depending on where you get it) but this one defied expectations. It’s a real winner of a cigar for sure and you’re doing yourself a big disservice if you don’t check it out. This one would pair well with a good, strong Scotch. Rating: 4.5/5.
So that’s a wrap for today. Have you tried any of today’s offerings? Let me know what you thought!