Posted by Jack | in RoMa Craft Tobac | on 14 Aug 2014 | at 11:16 AM | 2764 views
I will admit that I was going to save my sample of the RoMa Craft Neanderthal until last out of the pile of samples I was handed from the IPCPR.  Honestly there have only been three good ones in the batch so far and so many bad ones that I felt that I better go with a sure thing today.  Smoking many boring and just downright bad cigars in a row can make a guy start to loose faith.  So, let's see if my sure thing is what I need to erase the cigar-blahs.
Construction: A flat cap and tapered foot....man, Skip makes some cool shapes.  No band (yet) so nothing to say about that.  The wrapper leaf is shiny and smooth with well manicured seams and veins....let's face it, RoMa Craft cigars are always pretty.  This one is easily caveman club shaped.  Awesome!  I can make caveman jokes!
Pre-light Aroma and Draw: Out of the cellophane, I get a nice set of aromas - leather, raisin, and chocolate.  Always a good sign.  Draw is nice and open and a cold pull gives a nice bittersweet note.  Can't wait to fire it up.
Light and Burn: Not a hitch in this beautiful cigar.  Perfect light and burn from start to finish.  Solid performer.
Tasting: Off the start, I get a nice lemon zest note and then the neanderthal winds up and hits me in the face.  Loads of strength.  Some cream, earth, leather, and meaty notes balance well together.  I get a coffee note, some nice soft spices, and a taste of black pepper in there too.  Delicious so far....and strong.  Medium-full starting off...and the high side of that scale too.
A very nice creamy sweetness shows up at the start of the middle third.  I am not sure how Skip and crew blend their cigars with such a creamy smooth texture to the smoke, but I want to find out.  Notes of roasted meat and cashews.  Good grief this is a good cigar.
The final third is here...which makes me sad.  I just told Skip that you know you have a good cigar when you don't want it to end...and every RoMa Craft I have smoked has provided that feeling.  As I approach the final turn the Neanderthal hits me with a rich dry earth, dark coffee beans, and still that creamy texture under it all.  Word to the wise if you get your mitts on these....Take your time and savor them.  The strength by the end is full tilt so you will want to take your time so it doesn't smash your head in and drag you to the cave by your hair.
Value: Okay, so the Neanderthal is not as cheap as some of the other RoMa Craft sticks....this one will run you $12 or so.  Still...it is worth every hard earned cent.
Final Thoughts: I did find out where Skip gets that smoothness.  Good tobacco, time, and blending.  You can tell the RoMa Craft guys take their time to get it right.  So many cigars are rushed by makers to get things on the shelves with less regard to the smoker's palate.  The samples I have smoked (so far) from the 2014 IPCPR have been very lack luster but the Neanderthal shows that some cigar makers care about the folks smoking their products.  Very highly recommended.
Wrapper: Mexican San Andres
Binder: US Connecticut broadleaf maduro
Filler: US Pennsylvania double ligero, Nicaraguan (Conega, Jalapa, Pueblo Nuevo, Esteli), Dominican Republic (Olor)
Size: 5 X 52/58
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