H. Upmann Magnum 48 Edición Limitada 2009

Considering all things nice and beautiful, there’s certainly more than whisky alone to enjoy, well, there’s a lot more actually, and why not try a cigar this time. Winter is over, sun starts to come out  more often, and it’s great to sit outside with a cigar again. But beware. I’ve never reviewed cigars before so let’s see how this goes.

First up a Cuban Edición Limitada 2009 version by H. Upmann (48 x 110mm, Corona Extra or Short Robusto, Box Code Unknown).

H, or Herman for friends, was a banker who was interested in cigars for personal use. After seeing the possibilities for a cigar business, Herman decided to start his own brand in 1844. Much, much later, Prez John F. Kennedy liked Herman’s Petit Corona’s so much, he had his assistant buy all of Herman’s Petit Corona’s they could find the day before announcing the embargo on Cuba.

Upmann used to be famous for their stellar Churchill. More recent is the popularity of their Magnum 46 (46 x 143mm, Corona Gorda). Two more Magnums saw the light of day. First the Magnum 50 Edición Limitada 2005 (50 x 162mm, Double Robusto) and of course our Magnum 48.

Color & Looks: Colorado, maybe Colorado Maduro. Small veins, nicely cut, without frays. Good build, was easy to cut.

A cru: powderish, hints of stable odor and fertilizer, dusty, green, now fat powder and finally; sour.

Taste: Combustion and draw were good. The burn was a bit uneven but it let itself be corrected easily with the laser flame lighter. No tunneling and keeps burning without any problems. It took the Magnum 48 about a centimeter to find its balance. It is spicy, full body and again a bit sour. After the first centimeter the taste became deeper and more refined (leather, slightly bitter), and stayed there. It turned out to be very linear and not very complex, again hinting at its youth (ammonia). It produces a medium amount of smoke, and nice and firm white ashes, which fell off halfway through.

There was still a third left, when the cigar announced, with lot’s of leather and harsh bitterness that it was time to leave… A bit of a shame though, since it’s a rather short cigar. Well this is a cigar that should be smoked slowly, to keep it balanced and if you want to control the amount of smoke. When it burns hot, a lot of smoke (and taste) will disappear. I tried this with double burnt, dark roasted coffee and water and both worked very well.

A good friend of mine suggested recently, that the Edición Limitada series could be made for instant gratification, so it has to be good immediately and may not win a lot of character spending some time in the humidor. After three years I found the Magnum 48 to be still young, and would certainly be patient with it. It may not win a lot over time, but why rush it.

80 points (of course not to be compared with an 80 point whisky)