Montecristo Master - Cuban Cigar Review
Released in 2009, the Montecristo Open Range was seen a failure among many Cigar smokers. With two years of age, will the Montecristo Open Master fair any better?Published: 04 May 2012
Written: Stephen Griffiths
|Factory Name:||Robustos||Ring Gauge:||50||Length (mm):||124mm|
Today's review is the Montecristo Open Master. One of four Cigars released under the Master marquee, the Master is a Robusto in size.
The Montecristo Open series was introduced in 2009, and was aimed more for the novice smoker who maybe wanted to puff on something while on the golf course. All four Cigars in the Open range have a blend that is light in body.
You only get one chance at a first impression
When the Montecristo Open range was first released, initial impressions from most aficionado's were poor. Due to their light flavour profile, many smokers thought they come across as bland and lifeless. I too was in this camp. The Open's I smoked just didn't hit any of those spots that you would like in a premium Cigar.
Fast forward three years later. There's talk that the Montecristo Open may have come of age. All those Master's, Regatta, Junior and Eagle's that have been left gathering plume in retailer's walk in humidor's may have matured into a decent smoke. I've now heard from more than one person that the Montecristo Open have developed into a nice, well balanced Cigar.
Well, I couldn't take their word for it. I had to smoke one myself and see if what they was saying were true.
I managed to obtain two Montecristo Open Master's, one that I will be smoking today and using for my review.
Looking closely at the Cigar, I was happy with the construction of the Montecristo Open Master that I held in my hand. There's nothing wrong in the way that these are rolled, there's ghastly veins, or soft spots when you squeeze the Cigar slightly.
On the nose, I could detect that classic tobacco profile with some barnyard. Decent. I would have expected that the aluminium tube to have helped elevate the pre-light aroma of the Cigar. Cutting and lighting the Cigar is no problem. Draw is very good. Just a little amount of resistance, the way that Cuba makes them and the way I like it.
Smoking into the first inch or so, I was greeted with a light to medium bodied Cigar, with toasted tobacco, cocoa with some floral notes. Looking back at my video review, I didn't detect any of that classic Montecristo twang that I love. A shame really. If you're going to offer us Montecristo, don't just leave it at the band Habanos SA, give us that flavour profile too...
Carrying on towards the half way point
The second third continues pretty much like the first - mild and easy. The Master doesn't expect you to think or critique it's smoking characteristics. But we are doing a review here, so it will just have to take the criticism, there's just not enough going on. I'm happy with the burn, but I'd take flavour over poor burn and build characteristics any day.
Final third and conclusion
Laying the Montecristo Open Master down to rest, I was overall disappointed with the smoking experience that it delivered. The Cigar is just not for me. I knew that the Open Master was going to be a mild Cigar, but it just did not deliver what I'd want from such a well respected brand as Montecristo.
The Open Master has a Montecristo band, bit it ain't a Montecristo. The flavour profile of the Montecristo line just wasn't there. Maybe I'm too much of a purist. Someone may take up debate that not all Montecristo's need to have a similar flavour profile. But I would say that with all the different Cigar brands that come out of Cuba, the Open range would have been better positioned under a milder brand... But then Habanos SA would say that they're in the business of selling Cigars. So then they would have to be either a Montecristo or Cohiba.
So, with two years of ageing, the Montecristo Open Master didn't deliver me what I was looking for. Maybe someone who likes their light bodied Cigars would like this. Better luck next time.