Brand: Ortega Country: Nicaragua
Size: No. 20 6 x 60 Wrapper: Ecuador Habano
Price: $9.30 No. Smoked: 2
The Label Factor:
The Ortega Serie D label could also be referred to as “the total package.” The red, gold and white colors pop against the backdrop of the gorgeous Ecuador Habano wrapper. If you weren’t paying attention while browsing your local tobacconist, the front tells you it’s a Serie D, while the back shows you not only the wrapper but the vitola! You can’t ask for much more than that.
What We Liked:
If your brain works anything like mine does (and for your sake I really hope it doesn’t), then you may expect a cigar by Ortega to taste a lot like salsa or tacos. Be straight with me…is it weird that I considered that a possibility?
Instead of those flavors, the Serie D kicks off with a strong pepper blast. The first half-inch is not for the faint of heart, as there is a definite edge present. It’s a lot like when you wore all black and turned goth in high school. It’s just a phase!
After an inch, the Ortega Serie D hits its stride. The pepper subsides and allows a wide variety of delicious flavors in. The strongest note is of wood, while background notes of nuts, spice and even a bit of citrus compliment the earthy profile. Citrus is not something I often experience in a cigar, so it was a pleasant and unexpected surprise.
Both of the cigars smoked for this review were generously provided by one of our readers, Sam. He was fairly adamant that we had to try something from the Ortega Serie D line, going so far as to send a pair for us to review. Thanks again Sam! Keep your eye on your mailbox for a CigarNubs #1 Fan bumper sticker!
What We Didn’t Like:
Cherish the first 5 inches of this 6 x 60 behemoth, as the the last inch was nearly un-smokeable. There is a fair amount of harshness that creeps in, with notes of ammonia causing me to prematurely lay the stick the rest. You still get 5 solid inches of deliciousness, and 5 out of 6 aint bad!
While the flavors you find are delicious, it would be nice if there was a little sweetness to balance out that strong earthy profile. I was glad to have my trusty root beer to pair, as it helped keep things interesting the whole way through. I’m also now very curious about the Serie D Maduro, as I feel that wrapper could alleviate this complaint.
Should You Try/Buy It:
Yes. I’m curious how much different a smaller vitola of the Serie D Natural would be. I’m typically not a fan of huge 6 x 60 sticks and imagine the smaller size may help alleviate some of the flavor issues I experienced in the final section. Also, while you are out on an Ortega spending spree, grab a Maduro Serie D as well, just to compare how much of a difference the wrapper can make. I plan on doing the same.