One of my favorite cigars in 2013 was the Ortega Serie D, so when I walked into my favorite brick and mortar and saw that name on a new black and gold label I admit that I got excited.
The Serie D Black was touted to me as having “a nice kick to it and some nice flavor”, so I was eager to try it out as I enjoy the challenge of enjoying a full-bodied, balanced cigar. And let me tell ya, it didn’t disappoint!
Ortega Serie D Black
Wrapper: Ecuadorian Habano
Binder: Jalapa Nicaraguan
Filler: Esteli Nicaraguan
Vitola Reviewed: Robusto 5 x 50
Number Smoked: 2
On first glance, the wrapper was an attractive, consistent chocolately-brown color that was complimented by the new black and gold label. It made me giggle a little because at no point could you forget what you were smoking, as on every side it was clearly marked “Black”. On the surface, the cigar had noticeable veins but was surprisingly smooth to the touch and felt solid as it was tightly packed with tobacco.
After gawking at it for a few minutes, I cut and lit it up. As I took my first draw, I was happy that I had eaten a little earlier. I was immediately confronted with a great, strong peppery taste. The tightness that I felt earlier affected my draw at first but it quickly got looser for me.
The first third was consistently strong and peppery. The burn stayed even as I smoked and I never needed to touch it up. That’s a big deal for me. On the retro-hale I started to pick up hints of an almost buttery, creamy sweetness, almost like cinnamon, which was a nice compliment to the spice.
This blend of leaves burned great together as the thick, white ash held on for dear life. Every time I thought it would fall off, it just kept on trucking. There was no tooth on it at all and it stayed just as smooth in appearance as it did before I lit it.
Halfway through, the spice started to yield to hints of oak and natural tobacco. This subtle change provided the right amount of balance so that it never became too overpowering. The Serie D Black finally ashed itself right before I got to the band. I figured this was a good time to remove it because the farther I smoked I wasn’t sure how steady my hands would be. It had given me a little buzz at this point.
As I wrapped it up, I surmised that this well-constructed stick was everything it was intended to be and everything I had heard it would be…a very nice, full-bodied edition to the Serie D line. Still in awe of the construction, I was actually able to stand the cigar on it’s ash and it balanced perfectly in the ashtray long enough for me to take a picture of it.
In conclusion, this was a great smoke. Full-bodied and a great price-point. If you’re looking for an incredibly consistent, well constructed cigar with a nice kick, the Ortega Serie D Black is the one for you. This is definitely one that you must take your time with as the strength and body can sneak up on you. The cigar scored a 4.0 on the CigaHr.com 5-point scale, scoring highest in aroma, body and construction, and is one that I will definitely enjoy again and again.