From Epicurean’s website:
“Epicurean Cigars was created under the careful eye of Steven Ysidron with its focus on handcrafted small batch salon cigars. Steven started making cigars in the late 1980’s with his father and the Fuente family in the Dominican Republic. His passion for the long forgotten art of making hand-rolled cigars stems from four generations of his Cuban cigar making heritage that has been reborn in the Epicurean brand.”
I was introduced the AG Azul about seven months ago when Gary Griffith of House of Emilio sent her over to me as my “mail-ordered bride”. It turns out that I wanted to wait a bit before taking the plunge so I rested her in my humi until yesterday – months after experimenting with a variety of other tasty Latinas.
So there we were, just her and I nestled in my cigar cave ready to party. To make our consummation celebration that much more special, I decided to add a dram or two of Woodford Reserve Bourbon into the mix to create an extraordinary ménage a trois.
When I scooped Azul out of my humidor she was enveloped in the same cedar sleeve and silky black ribbon fastened around her foot that she had on the day I met her. It exposed a tantalizing glimpse of her milk-chocolate brown colored Sun-grown Ecuadorian Habano flesh atop her elegant band emblazoned with her name in a sexy silver and black font.
After I gently removed her cedar gown, she revealed a radiant glow of natural oils twinkling off her nude 6 x 60 body. Her flawless construction was firm and tight with just the right amount of give when squeezed. Sexy little veins and slightly visible seams added to her allure. She was a typical Ysidron gal – beautiful, well-constructed and damn near irresistible.
Underneath her wrapper she was packing a binder from Honduras and vintage filler from the Estelí and Jalapa regions of Nicaragua, aged four years before release. Her wrapper emitted an amorous perfume of rich, sweet tobacco and earth with a hint of spice that was absolutely intoxicating, while her foot revealed similar notes but with a twist of dried fruit.
Without further hesitation, I whipped out my cutter and gently snipped her double cap before massaging her foot with a touch of warm butane. My stimulating foreplay got her fired up and primed for action.
Don’t let the coy exterior of this temptress fool you. Her girl-next-door appearance belies a gal full of flavor with a medium dose of strength. Upon our initial kiss, she immediately released a yelp of thick smoke that filled the air with plumes of her sweet breathe that danced about. Her opening smooch was rich and robust, a memorable moment that tasted of cedar and earth, but it was the spicy pepper notes that dominated our long-awaited first kiss. It was not an overpowering spice by any means, but rather an affable passage to a rich, complex flavor profile that got better as the evening progressed. She even sneaked in a little sweetness here in the opening moments of our affair.
Azul fashioned a razor sharp burn line that produced a firm and dense ash that was salt and pepper in color and grew to about two inches before falling off. The draw of this heartthrob was perfect and the burn was cool and consistent.
Her short but affable finish was a sweet and spicy fusion that was to die for. It blanketed my palate and left me yearning for more between smooches.
As our desire for one another increased so did her flavors. This was where Azul revealed her true personality of rich, complex flavors that screamed “WoW”. Her decadence clearly shined here in the second third. The extra seven months of aging in her cedar gown definitely added extra pizazz to a profile that was already off the charts. Aging cigars is definitely worthwhile, but the temptation of smoking a young, fresh Latina delivered directly to one’s doorstep is usually too much to resist.
As I worked my way down her body during the second third of our rendezvous, she started to release deafening screams of smoke that revealed an obvious attraction. Her flavors began to increase with each kiss. I continued to taste a rich earthy body that coupled harmoniously with a spicy sweetness that elevated my senses to a new level. At this point I think I started to taste some hay notes and her smoke started to coat my mouth with a creamy goodness that I absolutely loved. There was also some citrus mingling in the background as well. And, her finish started to linger about much longer on my palate, which means that she definitely wanted to keep her man satisfied. Her extremely balanced flavor profile was truly a one-of-a-kind experience.
The final third of our night was amazing. We had a great close to a remarkable evening together. Her flavor profile pretty much stayed the same but the cedar and hay started to take over as the dominant flavors. The pepper remained on her breath and her smoke was still creamy and delicious. As I approached the nub she continued to greet my soft, methodical puffs with whispers of love. Azul ramped up her strength a bit, but never reached full strength, but rather remained on the upper end of medium. Azul’s depth and rich character were extremely satisfying. She was unique, bold and sustaining – the perfect blend. None of her flavors was overpowering the other and the cedar gown added the extra cedar flavors that I expected.
As darkness started to fall and the nub was getting smaller and smaller, a sudden sadness blanketed my emotions. For I realized that I would soon have to bid farewell to one of the greatest cigars with whom I have ever kept company. My lips pressed firmly against her shoulder as I unwillingly said goodnight with my final puffs.
In conclusion, Azul was an incredible cigar with a flavor profile to die for. It was indeed the perfect semblance of a maiden willing to satisfy her man. She did not disappoint by any means and lived up to the stellar reputation that Steve Ysidron has manifested and continues to exhibit now with his own brand, Epicurean. I recommend the AG Azul to anyone who appreciates a flavorful cigar that is well-constructed and highly satisfying.
Made by Epicurean at the Tabacalera Oliva
Wrapper: Sun-Grown Ecuadorian Habano
Filler: Vintage Nicraguan (Estelí & Jalapa)