In 1995 General Cigar offered an extremely limited edition cigar to commemorate the 150 years Partagas cigars have been in production- the Partagas 150. Ten years later, using the same rare, 1977 vintage Cameroon wrapper, they launched the Partagas 160 Signature Series. Blended with Dominican Piloto Cubano and Mexican San Andres filler tobaccos, these cigars have been sorted three times to intensify the flavors of the tobaccos. The result is a cigar connoisseur’s delight; a medium bodied, well-balanced, extremely rich and creamy smoke. Because of the limited availability of the tobacco, these cigars will never be issued again.
I was at Primo Cigar Shop in Santa Fe, New Mexico this past week and was stunned to see a box that was about half full available for sale. I grabbed a couple leaving a few for those who would also appreciate such a classic, rare cigar. Although we reviewed this cigar back in 2008, we decided to see how this smoke and our palate has changed.
Cigar: Partagas 160
Size: 4.5 x 48 (Robusto)
Filler: Dominican Piloto Cubano and Mexican San Andres
Cigars Smoked For Review: 2
Appearance and Construction: The Partagas 160 uses a wrapper form 1977 which put it at 24 years old. This is remarkable considering how fragile a Cameroon wrapper can be. The wrapper has the appearance of a dry paper bag even though there is a slight amount of oil visible. There is one ugly vein on the stocl that is the only flaw. The band is a simple gold and red, which doesn’t work for me in terms of colors. The cigar is rolled well, has a nice weight to it and a perfect cap.
Flavor & Notes: The cold draw on the Partagas 160 had some oak notes which made me crave some Macallan 18 yea old to pair with this beauty. The nose of the foot was a a bit spicy, but mostly it was tobacco. The first third of the cigar is as smooth as they come with notes of wood and underlying sweetness. As we progress into the second third of the smoke the sweetness becomes almost fruit like and fights with the wood notes. The last third of the cigar continue with some oak with a vanilla like sweetness in the background.
Smoking Characteristics: The burn of the Partagas 160 has one of the best ashes I have ever laid my eyes on. Light gray in color it held flawlessly for the first half of the cigar. The aroma of the cigar added much to the experience and I found it hard to put the cigar down as I wanted to enjoy it as I waved it in front of my nose. The draw was a bit resistant, but not tough in the least. Great characteristics.
Conclusion: There are some cigars that just scream class, and this one is a class by itself. While not overly complex the cigar is the complete package of construction, flavors, aroma and more. I know Primo ships these and I believe they are 13.00 each but if you see them anywhere still, they are a must buy.
On a side notes, when I reviewed this cigar back in ’08 I rated it a 90, but over the course of 3 years I think I have learned to evaluate a cigar better. Subtle nuances are better appreciated, and I decided to revisit this cigar.