4 Small Cigars with Full-Sized Flavor
Modern life is hectic. Thanks to smartphones and the internet, there's no getting away from work or the other demands of life. Cigars offer welcome relief from the constant overload, bringing you back to simpler times when people were sometimes content to just be.
Nowadays, we need to take these simple pleasures whenever we can, be it on the drive to or from work or in the fleeting time between when we put our kids to bed and have to go to bed ourselves. Big cigars that offer an hour or two of world-melting smoking are often a luxury we can only afford on weekends or vacations. So unless we want to throw out the last half of our sticks, we often need to turn to smaller cigars.
The good news is that there are more options for pint-sized smokes than ever before. That means that you no longer have to reach for cigarillos or opt for cheap cigars that you don't mind wasting when you're in a rush. The world's leading brands are coming out with full-flavored blends in small packages so you can enjoy a true smoking experience whenever you need a short break from the hustle and bustle.
Nub Maduro by Oliva
One day, Oliva set out to transform the way we think about cigars. They figured that since so many cigars hit their sweet spot in the last two-thirds, why not just skip the wait and get to the good part immediately? They experimented with different rolling techniques until they came up with what became their Nub line: 60 gauge monsters that are just 4 inches long. These little sticks have taken the world by storm over the past decade and have earned universal acclaim for their consistency, flavors, and burn qualities.
The Nub Maduro boasts a dark, oily Brazilian Maduro wrapper around Nicaraguan long-fillers. This is a rich and deep smoke with flavors of chocolate, toasted nuts, and a spicy sweetness. It's got all the right Maduro flavors, but it's not one of your full-bodied Maduro beasts and is light enough to enjoy at any time of day.
And all the time that Oliva spent developing the Nub line really paid off! This thing starts firm and stays firm, burns straight, and its ring gauge and length give an even draw with serious clouds of flavorful smoke. The design concentrates the flavors and delivers a powerful yet smooth, smoking experience – all in a very small package.
Seriously, if you want to feel like you're smoking a massive luxury cigar but don’t have time to smoke a massive luxury cigar, Nub is an amazing choice.
Arturo Fuente Hemingway Short Story
An homage to one of the literary greats, the Arturo Fuente Hemingway line is a true masterpiece by Carlos Fuente to rival A Farewell to Arms. Each leaf is hand-picked from the best crops of the year, aged to perfection, rolled in limited batches, and then aged for another 6 months. The construction, craftsmanship, and flavors are truly remarkable. And perhaps the most popular shape is actually the Short Story, a 49-gauge perfecto that is a true little flavor bomb.
A toothy, golden Cameroon wrapper embraces aged Dominican long-fillers to create a perfect harmony of flavors. This cigar is pure woody and leathery goodness, with some sweet cedar to brighten it up. It's a cool burning, well-balanced, and produces a surprising amount of smoke for such a diminutive stick. The experience may only last 20-30 minutes, but it's a complete pleasure throughout.
Debonaire Maduro First Degree
If you're looking for a full-bodied, rich smoking experience in a small package, then look no further than Debonaire Maduro First Degree. The second premium release from Debonaire House uses a Connecticut Broadleaf wrapper. Connecticut Broadleaf wrappers have become the final word in full-bodied, no-nonsense cigars (like the Drew Estate Liga Privada line), and this stick is no exception.
The remarkable wrapper is complimented by a Dominican binder which holds together a delicious mix of Dominican and Nicaraguan long-fillers. The first thing you'll notice when you pick one of these things up is the thick, glistening wrapper with characteristic Broadleaf veins running through it. It's not the prettiest stick you'll ever smoke, but it will knock down your door with complexity and intense flavor. It starts out peppery and woody, and things develop from there. In the last two-thirds, you'll notice a lot of coffee and oak with a hint of cherry sweetness, although the pepper continues throughout. This is a cigar worth savoring, even for the 30 minutes that the First Degree petit corona delivers. The construction and tobacco quality lends itself even burn no matter what, but the tapered foot ensures a maintenance-free experience and helps the flavors develop throughout the smoke.
When you don’t have time for third-degree smoking, the Debonaire Maduro First Degree is there to save the day.
Drew Estate Undercrown Shade Flying Pig
Released in 2015, Undercrown Shade was the result of over a year of development by master blender Willy Herrera and the rollers at Drew Estate. They had already succeeded in making an affordable reincarnation of Liga Privada 9 with the original Undercrown line and sought to top that achievement by delivering a truly complex and satisfying Connecticut cigar worthy of the Undercrown name. One puff into this masterpiece, and you'll see they accomplished that goal and then some.
Things start off pretty conventionally with an Ecuadorian Connecticut wrapper that is pure shiny golden goodness. But the cigar starts to get really interesting once you lift up the hood. A Sumatran binder, plus aged Dominican Criollo and Nicaraguan Corojo and Criollo long-fillers – this is no ordinary Connecticut. It’s still a mellow cigar that’s just pushing medium-bodied, but it is far from a one-note easygoing Connecticut. The smoke is rich and complex with a creamy mouthfeel and flavors of spice, nuts, citrus, and toasty earth intertwining beautifully. A good amount of sweetness makes the experience relaxing despite its complexity.
The Flying Pig Figurado is a fat 60-gauge that’s less than 4 inches long. It delivers billows of smoke for its entire short duration. Both ends are tapered to focus the flavors and keep the burn even and, true to its name, the cigar even boasts a pigtail cap.
Don’t have time for the whole hog? Try a Flying Pig!
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