Macanudo Vintage 1997 Maduro – Cigar Review

Macanudo is one of the better known names in the cigar world, and one of the most popular cigars in the world. The Macanudo Vintage 1997 Maduro is the first Vintage Series Maduro to be created in the 30 year history of the venerable Vintage series. They come in three vitolas and are wonderfully presented in 12 count boxes. The three sizes are Perfecto (6 x 49), Robusto (5.5 x 50), and the Toro (6 x 54) which I am reviewing today.

Size: Toro (6 x 54)
Wrapper: Connecticut Broadleaf Maduro (13 years old)
Binder: Honduran
Filler: Brazilian Mata Fina, Nicaraguan Ligero & two types of Dominican Piloto Cubano
Strength: Medium to Full
Body: Full
Flavor: Full
Cigars Smoked For Review: 1

Construction and Appearance: The Macanudo Vintage 1997 Maduro Toro has two bands, one metal ring which rests where a regular band does, and a second band at the foot which lists it as a Macanudo Vintage Maduro 1997. Uniquely, the cigar is meant to be smoked with the metal ring on while smoking. Also, according to Benji Menendez, the blender, the tightness or looseness of the metal ring on this cigar tells you whether it is over (tight) or under (loose) humidified!

The wrapper of the Macanudo Vintage 1997 Maduro Toro is a very dark brown, almost dark chocolate in color, with moderate veins which give it a bit of a rough look, and a very oily to it. When I look into the foot of the Vintage 1997 you can see a couple of pitch-black filler leaves which really stand out.

Flavor and Notes: The wrapper of the Macanudo Vintage 1997 Maduro Toro has the scent of sweet rich cocoa and coffee. The foot has notes of cocoa, coffee, hay, and spice. I use a straight cut to prepare smoking, and on the cold draw there is some cocoa, coffee, and spice.

Smoking Characteristics: The Macanudo Vintage 1997 Maduro Toro kicks off with some very rich flavors of coffee, roasted notes, raisin, and some molasses. A light spice also lingers a bit on the palate between draws, but does not appear in the smoking profile. The burn line is fairly sharp, and the ash is very firm. The draw is excellent, easily providing a full body of rich, cool, smooth, slightly creamy smoke. During this third, the strength is in the medium to full range, but closer the the medium side at this point, with a nice rich spice on the retrohale.

During the second third of the Macanudo Vintage 1997 Maduro Toro, some rich cocoa and dark chocolate notes, which I could detect on the cold draw, finally start to join the flavor profile. The notes of coffee, raisin, molasses, and roasted flavors still remain in the flavor profile. The construction in this third remains excellent, the draw is still easy, the ash holds very firm, and the burn line is very tight. The strength in this third continues to build a bit becoming very close to full.

The final third Macanudo Vintage 1997 Maduro Toro is fairly consistant with the second. The notes of dark chocolate, coffee, molasses, spice, and roasted flavors all remain, with the flavors being quite enjoyable, well blended, and the aroma of the cigar has garnered many compliments while smoking. The strength has remained constant sitting just under what I would consider to be the “full” range. The Macanudo Vintage 1997 Maduro toro smokes cool the nub without pulling any heat.

Conclusion: From time to time I hear Macanudo getting left out of consideration from more seasoned brothers of the leaf. I think this is due to the fact that most people associate it with the cafe line, which is just too mild for veteran cigar smokers. I’ve found most of the full bodied Macanudos to be anywhere from good, to ones like the Vintage 1997 Maduro, which are pretty great. The flavors were wonderful, the construction was excellent, and I could see myself smoking more of these without a doubt.

Rating: 90

MSRP: $10.50