Don Jaime Partagás Ravelo had worked in the Cuban tobacco business for years before establishing his own factory, Real Fábricas de Tabaco Partagás in 1845, on 60 Industria Street in Havana, Cuba. The factory is located directly behind the Capitolio building on the SW corner, in the heart of Havana. I have been privileged to visit the Partagas factory on several occasions, most recently this past January on a trip with my wife Lisa.
The Partagas 898, varnished box of 25 is packaged in three rows of 8, 9 and 8, thus getting its name “898”. This Lonsdale, in my opinion has been a strong cigar up until recent production (08/09) where I find these to be much milder.
Format: Cuban Puro
Size: Lonsdale, 42 x 6.75
Price: $27.00 Cdn
Reviewed Box Code: GKI ABR04 Varnished
The construction on the reviewed cigar was good. It had a light brown, rough wrapper with a few veins that run the entire length of the cigar. This cigar has a nice, firm feel with no signs of sponginess. The pre draw is woody/earthy with a slight hint of mushroom.
The 1/3 started off fairly harsh with strong tobacco flavours and hints of black pepper. Medium to full bodied. I have to admit that black pepper is not something I enjoy in a cigar. The cigar soon settled in and treated me to lots of earthy notes and subtle hints of cream.
The 2/3 was fantastic. Again, lots of earthy, dry, woody, creamy notes with hints of spice on the retro hale. For me, this is the Partagas “twang” that I have grown to love! All the black pepper that I had experienced in the 1/3 has diminished. At this point the cigar is medium bodied.
The final third turned a tad harsh, releasing strong tobacco and leather notes onto the pallet. Unfortunately this harshness muted a lot of the flavours in the cigar. I had to purge the cigar several times, and this was successful in bringing it back to life, although temporary.
Overall, I did enjoy this medium bodied cigar, although I have to admit that the 08/09 production is far superior and more inviting to my senses. I will revisit this cigar in another year and hope to provide another review at that time.