Brand: La Palina Country: Honduras
Size: 6 x 40 Wrapper: Mexican Maduro
Price: $7.80 No. Smoked: 1
The Label Factor:
Outside of the Classic line, all the cigars from La Palina come wrapped in the same gorgeous band. I don’t blame them. When you have a winning formula you should stick with it. I do wish that more of the sticks had a secondary band, vis-à-vis the Mr. Sam, but that is a small complaint on an otherwise fantastic looking cigar.
What We Liked:
When I picked the La Palina Maduro up from a local shop, I had a choice of multiple vitolas. When I saw the 6 x 40, I couldn’t resist. If you look at the La Palina site, they refer to this size as the “40”, which is a little boring. They could have gone with something a little more flashy….like lancero light, or lancelite. I dub thee The La Palina Sir Lancelite! Man, imagine if they put THAT on a secondary band. It markets itself!
The Sir Lancelite lured me in with sweet, dried fruit and floral notes on the pre-light draw. Those flavors ring loud and clear on the initial puffs, getting me excited to see where the sweet profile takes me.
Interestingly, by the time you hit the halfway point, it’s possibly even sweeter than when you start, only with more of a dark chocolate note than floral. A bit of spice creeps in as well, bringing some diversity to the overall sweetness. The draw is flawless, allowing a silky smooth smoke which only serves to enhance the experience.
The final inches sees the addition of a slightly bitter and earthy coffee, while the spice increases a tad. This is perhaps the best part, as you now have sweetness, spice and coffee working together very well.
What We Didn’t Like:
Here is where the Sir Lancelite name begins to break down. One might expect a knight of the cigar table to hold up in a long battle or not crack under pressure. Unfortunately, he didn’t live up to expactations. If you look at the photo above, you can see that my cut took a little bit of the wrapper with it. Now, that may be entirely my fault, as I’ve been told I can be an overzealous cutter. However, that is only a minor flaw in the armor.
The real issue can be seen developing in the midsection. Eventually, that small crack in the wrapper led to the horror you see below. It’s truly the stuff of cigar construction nightmares. Amazingly, it seemed to have zero impact on my flavor enjoyment, but definitely caused me to put the stick out quicker than I would have liked. Considering my previous experience with La Palina sticks has been stellar, I’m more than willing to chalk this one up to a bad sample, and not something I expect to happen the next time I reach for the La Palina Maduro.
Should You Try/Buy It:
Even with the crazy construction issues, the La Palina Maduro is still a stick that I look back on with fond memories. Sure, I would have liked to smoke the last inch and half, but I’m confident that my next time will allow me to do exactly that. If you haven’t yet had the LPM or are looking to be introduced to the La Palina line in general, the Maduro is a great place to start.