A. J. Fernandez has released a new cigar called the Mayimbe (pronounced Mah- jim-be). It was shown as a preview at the IPCPR show in Las Vegas over the summer and is now reaching store shelves. The Mayimbe has four different vitolas, Robusto 5×56, Toro 6×56, Churchill 7×56 and Torpedo 6×54 and are all in 10-count boxes in a limited production. It features a Lancaster broadleaf wrapper.
In Las Vegas, I was shown a pre-production sample in an oval box-press format but the production version are all traditional round shapes. Interestingly, it says “Habano” on the front of the box. When I asked A.J. about this, he explained that the prototype had a Habano wrapper. He and Kris Kachaturian were shown another blend within two weeks of the IPCPR show that they ultimately decided on using. However, the boxes had already been commissioned and so that is why Habano is on the front of the box.
A. J. explained to us that the Mayimbe is a happy cigar. Mayimbe, in the Latino culture, is someone who you are always happy to be around. Let’s see how happy this cigar makes us.
Wrapper: Lancaster Broadleaf Select
Binder: A. J. Fernandez Nicaraguan
Filler: Nicaraguan/Honduran Jamastran/A.J.Frenandez Privativo
Strength: Medium to Full
Cigars Smoked For Review: 10, the whole damn box
Construction and Appearance: The Mayimbe has two bands. The foot band is solid gloss black with an AJF monogram inside a white circle outlined in gold. The main band of the Mayimbe is gold, black and dark burgundy and is almost 1½ inches tall. “Mayimbe” is written in black capital letters using the Greek “y” in the spelling, giving the cigar a Greek, mythical feel to it. The background is the brownish burgundy.
The wrapper is medium brown with moderate veins and a visible seam due to the mottled color of the Lancaster Leaf. The wrapper has a reticulated texture to it.
Flavor and Notes: The wrapper has notes of rich oak and sweet notes. The foot has a notable sweetness and heavy pepper. This cigar is very firm in hand with a generous cap, and after using a v-cut, the cold draw offers a nice resistance with the same muted sweetness noted on the foot.
The contrasting tobaccos used to blend this cigar are very apparent from this picture with the darker, slower burning leaves being perfectly placed at the center of the cigar. The cigar next to the cigar for review is a pre-production version where you can see the contrasting oval shape.
Smoking Experience: The Mayimbe Robusto starts out with an earthy and dry tone and has lingering spice that is very sharp, but pleasing. The spice lasts through the first half inch and is predominantly on the front of the palate. The retrohale is medium in strength and flavor, very enjoyable. The ash is a nice gray and the burn line is very sharp with only a thin black line between the ash and unburnt wrapper. The v-cut I have chosen continues to offer just the right amount of resistance to provide very full amount of smoke.
As I start the second third, the flavors have mellowed and woody notes are the most notable. There is a subtle raisin sweetness that is working with a graham flavor and just the right amount of cilantro heat, making this a very enjoyable smoke. The flavors are not bold, but play nicely with each other and the strength continues to build.
I keep thinking about the theme of this cigar as someone you would want to be around and it really is quite fitting, I am really enjoying this cigar. The burn continues to be razor sharp and the ash has held firm well to almost two inches with the image of the wrapper veins left as very prominent silhouettes in the ash. I wish the camera could have caught this moment, but the ash fell as I was trying to take the photo.
The last third continues to amaze me with ample smoke production, increased strength, and a lovely tangy note joining the woody and sweet flavors. No dominant flavors emerge, but this is not a bad thing. As the intensity builds, I keep waiting for a sour turn in the profile, but it never happens. I smoke right to the nub and savor the nice pleasurable buzz, relaxing with contentment.
Conclusion: The Mayimbe is a home run for me. I love maduro smokes and the woody, dry profile of this cigar works well with the Lancaster leaf. Go out and grab yourself a box of 10, I already smoked through my first box compiling this review. You will not be disappointed.