Brand: Drew Estate Country: Nicaragua
Size: El Brujito 6 x 52 Wrapper: Connecticut Broadleaf
Price: $6.95 (Buy) No. Smoked: 2
The Label Factor:
The yellow and red colors on the Nica Rustica paint a stark contrast to the Undercrown and Liga Privada lines that Drew Estate has become synonymous with. The label itself appears to be made out of a thick, leather-like substance reminiscent of the Herrera Esteli. Against the Connecticut Broadleaf wrapper, it works well. When combined with the 50-count boxes these come housed in, you have a cigar that does a great job standing out on the shelf.
What We Liked:
The first thing you’ll notice is how smoky the Nica Rustica is. If you’ve had Drew Estate sticks in the past, this won’t surprise you. I thought you couldn’t produce more smoke than the Feral Flying Pig, but I was wrong. It’s often difficult to capture a good photo of a cigar with smoke pouring out. I challenge anybody to take a shot of a lit Nica Rustica without having smoke in it. It can’t be done!
I’ll be honest here; the first few puffs of the Nica Rustica were more like Nica Rough-stica. Get it!? Seriously, I was worried. I’m not sure if it’s due to the covered foot or what, but the initial flavors were harsh and one dimensional spice. Thankfully, this is present for no more than the first quarter inch, so it doesn’t ruin the cigar.
After the harsh spice breaks away, the pepper becomes pleasant and complimentary to a profile of earth and leather. It’s not difficult at this point to understand the “rustic” name, as it just has a gritty feel to it, but in a good way. By the halfway point, the sweetness I’ve come to expect from Drew Estate shows up with a distinct chocolate note. The pepper becomes less prominent as the sweetness ramps up, and you are left with a delicious and smooth second half.
If you have the means, I would also encourage you to try pairing the Nica Rustica with an Anchor Brewing Porter. The coffee and chocolate flavors of the porter complement the earth and spice present in the Nica Rustica. Plus, you may need something to help you through that first quarter-inch.
What We Didn’t Like:
Once you get past the initial harshness, there isn’t a whole lot to dislike here. If you’ve tried many sticks in the Drew Estate lineup and haven’t enjoyed them, the Nica Rustica isn’t going to be the stick that changes your mind. For that, I’d recommend you pick up the Herrera Esteli.
I also need to mention that one of the two sticks I smoked needed touchups a couple times. Though, while we’re being honest, I should also let you know it was windy while I was smoking. Do with that information what you will. In fact, please let me know exactly what you do with that information.
Should You Try/Buy It:
Without a doubt. I think Drew Estate deserves a bit of credit here. With the huge success of the Liga Privada line, they could have easily called this cigar the Liga Privada Rustica and charged double the suggested price of $6.95. They still would have sold a boatload. As it is, you get a fantastic cigar, that’s just as good, if not better, than some of the Liga sticks, but for a fraction of the cost. That’s called “beating the system,” and I encourage you to do just that.
If you are interested in trying the Nica Rustica, you can purchase it here.