January 8, 2015

Cigar Review: Espinosa Laranja Reserva Corona Gorda


Back in September of this year, I reviewed the Laranja Reserva and I reviewed it in the Toro format. I was not blown away by the cigar, so I kind of put it in the back of my my mind and humidor, but I have recently come back to it. You see, the cigar was nominated for Cigar of the Year by several members of the Cigar Media Association, so I thought it was important to come back to it and see what they were talking about. I know a lot can change over four months, so I don't know why I didn't come back to it earlier, but I am here know and ready to revisit the cigar. I would typically revisit the cigar in the same vitola format, but I also wanted to review it again under my new system, so I am smoking and reviewing it in another vitola offering. With that being said, let's look at the Espinosa Laranja Reserva Corona Gorda.




The cigar features a Brazilian Laranja wrapper, and as I said in my initial review, Laranja is Portuguese for orange. The filler and binder tobacco are Nicaraguan, but the regions where the tobacco is from are not disclosed. For this review I went with the Corona Gorda, and it s your standard corona gorda that measures 5 5/8" with a 46 ring gauge. I love the coloring of Laranja Reserva, and I find it to be a gorgeous wrapper overall. The wrapper has some veins present throughout, and there are areas where the veins are minimal and other areas where the veins are larger. The wrapper overall though is smooth and showing few oils or gritty qualities. The triple cap is applied well to the cigar and it is a nice finish for construction with a nicely firm cigar. The foot of the cigar is giving off an aroma of spices, tobacco, earth and nuts, and the wrapper is giving off some tobacco, wood and leather notes.

The first third opens up beautifully and it is showing some amazing spice and leather notes. There are some tobacco qualities present as well, and it has some toasty, nutty and earthy qualities with that. I am picking up red and black pepper notes with the cigar, and it is a complex blend that is showing a lot of flavors. There are some actual orange rind notes with the cigar, and it is fitting with the name of the cigar. The corona gorda is a great size in the blend, and I find it much superior to the toro. Since September, the cigar has improved greatly and it is a blend that I can really get behind right now. The construction is solid with the cigar overall, and it is showing an even burn line with a nice charcoal ash on the end. The draw is smooth and cool, and it is producing a nice bit of smoke with each draw. I would classify the cigar as being medium to medium-full in strength, and the body is around a medium-full level.

As I move into the second third of the cigar I begin to pick up some coffee notes and they are pairing with the spice and wood notes from before. I am still getting those tobacco and leather notes, and it is matched with some nutty, toasty, orange and earthy qualities. The pepper notes are not as present in this third, but it is still a great flavor profile that is complex and enjoyable. I keep saying this, but the cigar has really grown on me over the months, and while I prefer this size more, I believe the blend overall has matured. The construction remains solid in the second third of the cigar and it is showing that even burn line with a lovely gray ash on the end. The draw is cool, giving off a nice bit of smoke, and it is a cigar that makes me want to sit back and really relax. The body and strength are at a medium-full level, and it is a perfect strength and body level for me.

When I get into the final third of the cigar I find that it continues to deliver those enjoyable flavors from the first and second third and it is showing some nice nutty, orange rind, tobacco, earth, and spice notes. I am getting some red and black pepper qualities here and there, and it has a nice finish that is showing some leather qualities. It is an enjoyable flavor profile, a complex one at that, and one that I could find myself smoking on a frequent basis. The construction continues to perform well and it is showing an even burn line with that nice charcoal ash on the end. The draw is cool and smooth, and it is producing a great amount of smoke with each draw. The final draw is flavorful, showing the flavors from before, and it is cool to the nub. It ends at a medium-full level for strength and body, and as I have said throughout it is a level that is to my liking.
The Laranja Reserva is a cigar that has grown on me greatly since I first reviewed it in September and in the smaller offering it is even better than it was before. The blend is complex and satisfying, and it has depth and some transitioning throughout. I can now see why a lot of guys were raving about this cigar in the fall, and I think that the time aging improved the blend. This is a cigar that is ready to be smoked and is a cigar I will smoke more of. The construction is solid with the blend, something I have never had a problem with when it comes to La Zona, and it is a nice medium-full body and strength cigar. On a personal level, I still prefer Espinosa Habano, but that is because it is a little bit softer and the flavors are more to my liking. This is definitely a cigar that is aimed for the current market, and an exciting new release from Espinosa. I think most people have picked this up and loved it, so there may be no point in telling people to go out and get some, but if you have not smoked this yet you need to. I am giving this a solid 90 rating and look forward to my next one.

Seth's Humidor Rating: 90

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