Photo provided by Luke of aspiringgentleman.com
CAO is a relative newcomer to cigars, but no less successful than some of the established brands such as Padron, Romeo y Julieta, and Montecristo. They were originally pipe makers until they broke into the cigar industry and went off with a bang. They’ve since become known for bold blends, innovative and unique packaging, and excellent quality. I’ve written about one of their newest blends, the OSA Sol, in another review. Today I’ll be going over one of their older ones, the Brazilia. It’s created with a dark Brazilian maduro leaf and Nicaraguan tobacco for binders and fillers, all hand rolled in Honduras. The result is a bold, rich, and complex cigar.
The particular vitola that I’m reviewing today is the Gol, measuring in at 5×56. The Brazilian maduro wrapper is a nice shade of dark brown, dark enough to look black from the oil that soaked into the leaf in a few spots. It has moderate veining and mild tooth that gives it a rougher look, but the texture is that of soft velvet, and is very pleasing to the touch. I squeeze gently as I feel the wrapper and find that the cigar is tightly rolled and very firm. It feels solid and dense, with no soft spots along the length of it. I bring it up to my nose and inhale softly, taking in the sweet floral scent mixed with sharp red spices.
I toast the foot with my new Rikang lighter quite quickly and evenly, and clip the cap with my Xikar without an issue. I’m greeted with a medium bodied smoke that has a nice blend of cocoa, caramel, cedar, hay, and an overall tone of rich sweet maduro tobacco. The flavors flow into each other smoothly, complimenting one another through the transitions, sometimes mingling together. After about an inch the body picks up and the flavors become bolder. A bit of red pepper starts to build up at the beginning, and is especially noticeable in retrohales. It transitions into a core of cocoa and coffee, smoothly flowing into caramelized sugar, and finishing with wood and hay.
The flavors are fairly consistent from start to finish. The spice picks up a little as the cigar progresses, but it’s mostly noticeable in the retrohales. The cocoa and coffee flavors remain the core flavors throughout, and are very nice and bold. The caramelized sugar is a wonderful flavor to flow into from the cocoa and coffee, and the whole flavor profile has a wonderful sweet maduro tone to it. The smoke just has a natural sweetness to it that makes it mouth watering and delicious.
I was very pleased with this cigar. I remember smoking one years ago and enjoying it out on the deck alone with my thoughts. It was a joy then and it was a joy today. To make things better the price of these cigars is astonishingly low. I am able to find these at Famous Smoke Shop for roughly $89.00 per box, or a little over $4.40 per cigar. For that price you’re getting a sweet maduro with wonderful flowing flavors that last close to two hours. You’ll be hard pressed to find another maduro cigar with flavor, quality, and pricing like this. I highly suggest picking one up when you can and trying it out.