February 6, 2013

Cigar Review: Oliva Serie V Maduro Especial 2012

Serie V
This is one review that is so late in getting published it is embarrassing. It is one of the reviews that after I went over my notes I needed to smoke another one then just so I could really remember what it was like. You can only get so much from reading your notes; sometimes you got to get your hands dirty. There was no hesitation in the review because of my rating of the cigar, I love the smoke, I just got lost in time with so many other things. I think this was a great addition to the Oliva Serie V name, and it is a smoke that keeps the name fresh each year. The Serie V is always highly rated by the online media, Cigar Snob Magazine and Cigar Aficionado.



Beginning in 2008, Oliva Cigar began the Oliva Serie V Maduro Especial. The cigar is a limited release that is released annually. We are in the fifth year since the line was initially released, and while some vintages have been different than others they have all been thoroughly enjoyable. This years release is the same format as last years release, and is practically identical in blend as well. The cigar comes in a single vitola, a 6" by 50 ring gauge toro, and like all of their cigars is made in Nicaragua at Tabacalera Oliva de Nicaragua S.A. The cigar begins with a Mexican San Andrés wrapper, and is then completed with Nicaraguan binder and fillers. The cigar is smooth in hand, and has a gorgeous cap. There are no real veins present in the cigar, and it is slightly silky and gritty to touch. There is a lovely aroma of spices, rich earth, and pepper at the foot of the cigar, and it has some nice sweetness to it.
Mexican San Andrés 
Lighting up the cigar I am getting some great earthy and rich cocoa flavors, and it is accompanied by some nice black coffee flavors and a finish of black pepper and spices. It has a nice complexity to it, but more importantly it is very enjoyable and smooth. The cigar is very balanced, and it shows a great strength level with a terrific flavor profile. I would say the strength level of the cigar to begin with is at a medium full level, and it is an evening maduro in my opinion. The construction is top notch, and I am getting a razor sharp burn line on the cigar with a lovely charcoal colored ash. There is a nice bit of smoke being produced with each puff, and what a wonderful start to the smoke.

\When I get into the second third of the cigar the flavors continue to grow in terms of complexity, and I am getting some definite leather and wood notes. The coffee flavors have become a little bit more bitter, and it is like espresso beans now. I am getting that black pepper flavor profile still with that, and it has a rich cocoa finish that balances it all out. The strength of the smoke is a little over medium full now, but it is still showing that terrific balance between flavors and strength like all great Serie V smokes. The burn line is still razor sharp to the cigar, and that charcoal colored ash is holding on wonderfully. This is simply a great maduro, and my style of a maduro.
In the final third of the cigar I am beginning to see the flavor profile show the great notes from the first and second third. There is a lot of leather showing up to the cigar, and it is accompanied by those great black pepper notes from before. The coffee flavors are still those black coffee flavors, and it has that woody finish to the cigar that is slightly sweet. There is a bit of richness to the cigar, but for the most par the final third does not show those rich maduro characteristics. The construction remains top notch, with that beautiful charcoal ash, and it smokes evenly down to the nub. The strength finishes at a full body level in my opinion, and it is in the end that you pick up the strength of the smoke. It is cool and flavorful to the end, and is a maduro that makes me want another.  

I thoroughly enjoyed this blend, and in terms of construction it was terrific. I was getting a perfect burn line from beginning to end, and with each third I was getting a great charcoal colored ash that was holding on to the cigar firmly. I was getting a cool draw as well from beginning to end, and the amount of smoke being produced with each draw was terrific. I thought the flavor profile was very enjoyable as well, and though it was not the most complex of smokes, it provided a very enjoyable smoking experience. I would say this is the best Maduro Especial I have gotten my hands on. It has definitely gotten better since they began using a Mexican wrapper, and it has been a Maduro flavor profile I have preferred. The strength level was great for me, and this is an evening maduro in my opinion. I give the cigar a solid 93, and will enjoy these while they are available.
Serie V Maduro Especial 2012

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