Today’s review is a cigar by Omar Ortez and is the Don Diego Fuerte. According to the Altadis USA website who distributes these cigars, “”Fuerte” means “strong”. And the new Don Diego Fuerte by Omar Ortez certainly packs a wallop. About as subtle as a heavyweight boxer, the Don Diego Fuerte is highlighted by a select Ecuadorian Cubano wrapper surrounding a superb Nicaraguan binder and powerful blend of Nicaraguan and Dominican filler tobaccos. For almost 50 years, Don Diego has been synonymous with high-quality mild- to medium-bodied cigars, but the new Fuerte, created in Nicaragua by cigar master Omar Ortez, is the brand’s first venture into robust, fuller-bodied smokes.” The cigar is available in 5 sizes, Churchill (7 x 54); Belicoso (6 x 54); Toro (6 x 54); Robusto (4.75 x 54) and Corona (5/5 x 44).
On a side note, sometimes I think if my head wasn’t attached to my shoulders I would forget that. At the time of writing this review my camera was left at my office and I had to kick it old school with a camera phone pictures.
Cigar: Don Diego Fuerte
Size: 5.5 x 44 (Corona)
Wrapper: Nicaraguan Cubano
Filler: Dominican & Nicaraguan
Cigars Smoked For Review: 5
Appearance and Construction: The Don Diego Fuerte has a moderately dark wrapper that reminds me of milk chocolate and is glistening with oils. There are few veins present on the wrapper ad the cigar is well rolled with a nice cap. The foot of the cigar is nicely bunched to it and there is a nice weight to the cigar as well. Under close inspection there are no soft spots and the cigar is perfect for smoking. The one thing that gets negative marks from me is the band. It looks cheap, and while it appears they tried to make themselves look younger, the band comes off as a bundle cigar.
Flavor & Notes: The pre-light draw serves up some thick syrupy notes of caramel and chocolate while the foot of the cigar has a sweetness about it. As I smoke the first third of the Don Diego Fuerte I am treated to notes of chocolate and pepper. From the first light I am a bit surprised at how smooth this cigar is. Occasionally before the first third end I pick up a touch of cinnamon and raisin as well. As we move into the second third of the cigar the leather notes are the focal point with some lingering sweetness in the background that borders on caramel. The final third of this cigar returns some of those chocolate notes with a touch of coffee on the finish.
Smoking Characteristics: The aroma on this cigar is the most complex I have ever had the pleasure of being around. The nose picked up raisins, mocha and a variety of spices. It was mind blowing to be honest with you. The draw was perfect, and the salt and pepper ash held on well for a corona. The burn line was crisp and even throughout. Definitely a memorable experience.
Conclusion: The aroma of this cigar kind of took away from the profile of the smoke as odd as that seems. It was complex on so many levels but the experience of the scent stood out about the rest. What I do not understand is why they released this under the Don Diego line. Sure it has the aroma quality which is associated with Don Diego, but the cigar is so much more. I know I was hesitant to try these because they were attached to the brand, but having done so I am extremely happy I did so.