Released at the IPCPR show in New Orleans in 2009, the Cain Habano is the creation of Sam Leccia in conjunction with the Oliva Cigar Co. Blended with three types of ligero tobacco, one would expect this cigar to blow your socks off and make you cry mommy! But by using a triple fermentation process, Leccia has been able to smooth out the power, and bring out the deeper and richer flavors of the tobacco. Make no mistake, the Cain Habano is still a full bodied cigar, but it is not overwhelmingly so.
The Cain Habano, wrapped in a simple foot band, is simply gorgeous. The chocolate brown, slightly mottled wrapper wears a light sheen of oil and exhibits a fine tooth and minimal veining. It is also well constructed and firm throughout.
The cap clips cleanly and a pre-light draw tastes of sweet earth. The draw is excellent.
Easy to light, most of our cigars burned fairly well, though one gave us a struggle and had to be constantly touched up. Not really surprising given that ligero tobacco tends to be slow to burn. Overall, the cigars performed well with a slightly flaky white ash and a wavering burn line.
Once lit this cigar is a smokestack. Even with a slight pull, large amounts of flavorful smoke fill the mouth. Deep earthly flavors appear initially with spice and pepper on the tongue. The smoke is smooth and easily passed through the sinus however, much to our surprise.
The flavors hover between earthy and woodsy through the first third, with a sweetness appearing near the middle of the cigar. The sweetness has a dark fruit note that must be the result of all that fermentation. The cigar ends up back in the earthy range with the sweet flavor fading and some spice reappearing.
The Habano never backs down on strength, it is full flavored and full bodied to the end. But it is also smooth and tasty and that is where it succeeds. Expect a buzz from this one, even on a full stomach. And pair it with food or drink that can match its strength, see below for our suggestion of a malt that can stand up to it.