CI Knock-Offs – Coffee

A dear friend orders frequently in bulk from Cigars International for his house cigar. When it came time to do a re-order this go around, his usual stick wasn’t in stock, so he opted to order the Cigar International Knock-Offs – Coffee bundle and see how it goes.  This Brother of the Leaf unboxed this in front of me and the smell was amazing.  This is an intensely aromatic coffee cigar!  It is delivered as a brick of cigars, each one individually wrapped, and no fancy ring or anything, just a bunch of cigars of a nice length, nice color, and amazing scent.

CI Knock-Offs - Coffee

After a day of puttering and chores, a bonfire with a cigar sounds like an amazing idea.  Bonfire had been built and my friend offered one of these Coffee cigars for the evening.  I must say, I am really impressed. I do love the Drew Estate Java, and this is certainly something to compare to that cigar.   The size is nice, the aroma is intoxicating (I really love coffee!), and it was a lovely smoke around a fire.   Unlit, the aroma is coffee with a bit of leather and vanilla.   Upon lighting, the coffee is still definitely the star on this cigar, but the leather and vanilla really help round it out to be a stick that isn’t entirely sugary– this is a very good balance for a cigar that smells much sweeter than it smokes.

Knock-off Coffee Feet

The draw is a bit easier than I would expect from a DE Java, but it made for a  tidy foot on this cigar.  The flavors really didn’t change much, but I wouldn’t expect that from a cigar of this nature.  As I really enjoyed the intense coffee-ness with the nuances of leather and vanilla from this cigar, I didn’t mind that the notes didn’t really change much from any point while smoking it.  If you like coffee, this cigar is a definite value and I would recommend it. For a lighter body cigar, I was definitely impressed.

Macanudo Café

After a long day of working, I opted to go for a lighter cigar from my humidor.  The Macanudo Café grabbed my eye for it’s slightly flashy cigar ring and it’s lighter wrapper.  This stick was part of the sampler sent by my Brother-in-Law as a 90+ rated cigar. I remember a few folks in college who liked Macanudo cigars.  This was before I started down the Path of the Leaf.  As that was a young crowd, that might explain the appeal of a lighter leaf.

Macanudo Café

Before lighting, this cigar smelled faintly of leather with some floral and honey notes.  It cut nicely, and after lighting, the aroma was definitely on the floral side, with nuances of honey and hay.  I feel my palate has gotten too accustomed to darker (and I mean generally medium body when I say darker) cigars and for the spicier notes of my preferred tobacco.  While I’m sure this is a much more appreciated cigar for those who enjoy a lighter smoke, this was really just okay in my book. It wasn’t awful, but I wouldn’t rate this as an amazing smoke, personally.

Macanudo Foot

To the Macanudo credit, this cigar did smoke easy and smoothly.  I had no trouble keeping a nice foot going, in fact I took a few different pictures as I kept wondering when the ash would break. Much to my surprise, I actually made a rather impressive foot on this cigar, but hadn’t photographed it.  I don’t always trust my gracefulness (especially as there is a distinct lack of grace, but pretty decent reflexes) ash properly when a foot gets large, so I tend to probably ash too soon.

I know this is a beloved brand, and even considered a highly rated cigar. However, it’s just not for me as it’s simply too… bland. I feel like this is a cigar that is smoked to say one smokes a cigar and by folks who don’t generally really get into cigars as quality moments in life.  I didn’t get any unique flavors, I can say I wouldn’t call it awful, but there was nothing to draw me in to really examine what I was smoking. I had this with sparkling water, perhaps if I had smoked this with something more potent I would like it more.