A few days ago, we published a review of a Famous Smoke Shop house blend, the Merciless by JdN Toro. We bought that cigar at Borneo Cigars in Malaysia. This Oliva Baptiste is another Famous Smoke Shop house blend, gifted to us by the co-owner of the Character Cigar Bar in Bangkok. The cigar is not for sale at the cigar bar, it came from the personal humidor of the owner.
This Oliva is made from Nicaraguan filler and binder. The wrapper comes from Ecuador and is a Habano leaf. The cigar is box pressed, yet not very square. It has rounded corners, almost making it oval but it’s too square to call it an oval. The size we smoked is 5½x54 .
Name: Oliva Baptiste
Factory: Tabacalera Oliva
Wrapper: Ecuador Habano
Price: $ 4.00
Cutter: Xikar X2
Lighter: single flame
Smoke conditions: indoors with ventilator
Smoke time: two hours
Sponsored by Character Cigar Bar
The wrapper is rustic. It’s dark, there is one thick vein on the bottom half of the cigar. The roller spilled some glue, creating a shiny stain but that should not affect the flavor or smoke. The ring is a copy of the Oliva series V ring, with the exception that the V logo is now a B and the color is red. It’s a combination of the discontinued Oliva Special S ring and the Oliva series V ring. The cigar smells like charred wood with some floral notes.
The perfect cold draw has a raw tobacco flavor. After lighting its strong sweet coffee flavor with a backdrop of soil, peppers, a hint of leather and minty freshness. After a few puffs, the flavors change to roasted nuts, caramel, cinnamon, spicy green herbs, and pepper. The leather lingers around on the background. The second third gives sweet grass with leather and citrus. The dominant flavor is caramel though, but balanced and smooth. The sweetness is supported by spice and pepper, with some toast. The flavors are mild creamy with a hint of vanilla. There is a slight bitterness in the front of the mouth, on the tip of the tongue to be more precise. Halfway the flavors evolve to oak, pepper, roasted nuts, coffee beans, and caramel. The flavor profile slowly evolves to a more spice based profile. Nutmeg, cinnamon, minty freshness but with some earthiness and oak, leather, and pepper. The sweetness disappeared. The final third has pas, leather, pepper, spices, nuts, and coffee. And all well balanced and smooth.
Oliva has quality controllers, the most experienced people in the company, that check every single cigar. If they suspect something is not right, the cigar goes through a draw master machine. The draw on this cigar was perfect. The ash is white dark, flaky and doesn’t stay on the cigar for long. The burn is straight. Strength: medium Flavor: medium-full