The Zino Embassy Selection Limited Edition 2010 is the next to last cigar on my list to smoke before I compile my Top 15 list of 2010. Having loved the 2009 version I was eagerly waiting the 2010 release and according to the Davidoff of Madison website, “As a tribute to the ambassador of luxury, Zino Davidoff, and his illustrious legacy, we’ve created the next offering in the “Zino Embassy Selection”—the Limited Edition Belicoso. It features the Selection 702 Ecuador Sun-grown wrapper, a new piloto binder and a unique blend of piloto and three different ligero tobaccos. It’s once again quintessential Zino—powerful yet refined, spicy and sophisticated with impeccably good taste. The velvety rich smoke delivers a crescendo of flavor and strength, complemented by a savory finish and captivating aroma. ”
So the question I asked before lighting up was, “Does this cigar belong on my Top 15 List?”.
Cigar: Zino Embassy 2010
Size: 5.5 x 52 (Belicoso)
Wrapper: Ecuadorian Sun-Grown
Binder: Domincan Republic
Filler: Domincan Republic
Appearance and Construction: A wonderfully chocolate colored wrapper with a nice amount of tooth to it and plenty of oils make the Zino Embassy Edition an attractive cigar to the eye. The cigar despite having a slightly loose looking foot has a nice solid weight to it and no soft spots. Exquisitely rolled right down to the Belicoso cap the stick sports a duel band with the first being the classic looking Zino logo and the secondary band denoting Embassy Selection. On a side note when I first started smoking and didn’t know any better I used to the think Zino actually said Lino.
Flavor & Notes: The cigar has some wonderfully rich and savory buttery notes mixed with earth on the cold drawn while the foot reminds me more of the buttery notes and a touch a spice. After I lit the stick I was a caught off guard by how spicy the cigar was as I was expecting a mild stick. As I worked my way into the experience of the first third there were some notes of spices, nuts and coffee present with an every so faint cedar. As the cigar breaches the second third of the smoke it serves up that rich and savory butter I experienced on the cold draw with some robust notes of coffee as well. The final third becomes a bit more spicy with smokey wood, and earth.
Smoking Characteristics: I had to light this cigar with matches as I couldn’t locate my lighter which was probably in my car which is currently burried under 2 feet of snow not counting the drifts. The stick started out a little uneven but quickly corrected itself. The cigar had a wonderfully solid medium gray ash that held for half the cigar before I ashed it. The cigar had a perfect draw and I always worry about that with a Belicoso due to experiences I’ve had in the past but that was not the case here. The cigar didn’t produce a lot of smoke compared to other cigars but the aroma was incredible even reminded me of brewing coffee a couple of times.
Conclusion: One of the tastiest cigars I ever had out of the Zino line and is definitely worthy of some space in the humidor. Sure the cigar won’t satisfy those who prefer an onslaught of strength but it is wonderfully rich and complex. On a side note I am saddened to hear that the Zino brand Manager Danielle Hawthorne won’t be making the the move to Tampa and will no longer be with the company as of January 1st. We will miss her and the relationship we had with her. I wish her happiness and success in her future endeavors.
Disclaimer: As always the typo’s and spelling mistakes have been left in this review for your amusement.