Each El Rico Habano starts with carefully selected long filler tobacco from Nicaragua. It is given a rich Nicaraguan binder, wrapped in either a specially aged natural sun-grown leaf from Ecuador or a dark Connecticut broadleaf maduro, and then aged again in a Spanish cedar room to maximize its deep, rich flavor.
The maduro version of this cigar is terrific looking, dark and sultry with an oily sheen and some moderate veining. Fine earthy scents come off the wrapper and the foot.
The construction is excellent with good seam-work and a firm hefty feel in the hand. A very good cold draw hints at the flavors to follow and shows off the handiwork of the rollers.
The cigar’s burn was almost always even, the ash was whitish gray colored, and fairly firm.
Better have a full stomach with this cigar, it starts out at full strength right away with a blast of pure pepper. After about a half inch, the pepper drops down a notch and earthy leathery flavors are identifiable. There is a salty and charred dried fruit flavors in the background, and raisins and cinnamon in the smoke, which is very discernable.
Approaching the middle, the pepper continues to ebb and the other flavors continue. There is a noticeable dryness in the finish and the strength is still very full. A toffee/caramel flavor comes and goes.
Persistent earth and leather flavors carry the background in the end with saltiness continuing and pepper trailing away. Some reviewers have tasted a bitter citrus note here, but I didn't pick that up. Smoke is still very fragrant / stinky depending on your point of view. Nicotine content is very noticeable in this cigar.
The El Rico Habano is certainly a must have for those who enjoy a strong, bold cigar.