Deep in flavor. Deep in your mind.

Monday, February 8, 2016

Perla del Mar - Cigar Review

I paid out of pocket for this beaut. I know, I know. I'm as surprised as you are. I just hear it come up often as a dependable everyday option, don't see a lot of reviews of it, and wanted to throw my local B&M a few shekels. I also picked up a Nat Sherman something I'll review sometime later.

My trip was high-lighted by the usual low-lights of zero information or even passable chat; and the feeling as if I was interrupting something infinitely more important than I. Like a tuna sammich or cuticle trim. This got me thinking. I did THIS...perhaps a retailer version is necessitated? We shall see. Right now, I have a tuna hankerin', some gnarly cuticles, and

J.C. Newman Cigars
Perla del Mar
Perla TJ (Gordo) 6 x 60 Pressed
Ecuadorian Connecticut wrapper
Nicaraguan binder/fillers
There has not been a better band since Glenn Miller -- stylistically, that's also about the era this design pays homage to. Black and white sail ship and lighthouse surrounded by embossed gold medallions and topped with a crown. No big whoop. Blue is used nicely. Excellent quality stock. Some orange is mixed in on the backdrop and GO METS. Very well, then.

Box-press is a hinted at one with rounded and somewhat unevenly so corners. What it does is lend a great and smooth hand-feel, while making a 60 RG somewhat less unwieldy. Minimal veins on the Connecticut top-leaf of a milky coffee complexion with a muted caramel under-tone. Seams are tight and even. Cap looks to be at least a triple and very well affixed. Foot tobacco peeks out a half-tick past the wrapper and looks darkly Nicaraguan in healthy doses of low-lights. High-lights go to a bright auburn. In-between is, well, in-between. Medium+ eyeballed density and too, a smallish notch is divoted in there.

More on the hand-feel: slick yes, but in a very soft suede and not slippery oil manner. Balance is a bit off, but this is a good bit of cigar -- nothing egregious. Charmin squeeze testing deduces a medium packing and an even one. Nice spring-back into its loose press.

Schnozolla-wise there is a light and lighted barnyard smell to the shaft, led by a nice creamy hay note. At the foot is more sweetness from a solid tobacco core, creaminess, and a jab at caramel and pale blanched nuts. Very inviting, actually. Nibbling off such a nice cap -- tsk tsk -- I'm given, on a medium draw resistance, Now candied pale nuts behind a caramel note. Still a good dose of tobacco, and under that the barnyard which is now predominantly sweet creamy hay. I cold pull a couple more times and a suede note begins to lay on my palate as part of a sweet creamy finish. A bit of zetz I cannot place, but a vibe not a note of the stuffs.

I ain't gonna outside light a 6o RG with a wooden match, thank ya. Wouldn't seem fair. Where's my Djeep? Got it. Sweet wood and caramel with a little paper and cheap white toast are the aroma of foot-toasting. It takes a bit to flame on.

First hot pull is a blonde caramel coffee swig with hay and wood chips underneath. Creamy mouth-feel, but not dull. White pepper on the retro-hale, but only warmly so. Lots of very nice caramel notes. Woods float around in the secondary like a concussed free safety... sorry... I watched the Super Bowl. Under it is that nice barnyard of light and light. Hays, both sweet and creamy and high up for backing. Notes are carried very well. Third hot one is proof we've settled in. Also settled in is a very nice toasted sweet cream and caramel finish of solid medium length already.

Construction softens a tick off the light. Burn-line is razor thin but ribboned. Ash is pale pale grey to medium up by the toasting. Draw tests the boundaries of medium then loosens back to dead center. Copious cumulus off the foot and into my smoke-hole. Room-note is quite light and sweet. Almost a floral honey that appears nowhere on my tongue or palate. Interesting.
What does appear on my tongue and cheeks, is the just right amount of white pepper to cleanse away some sweetness and prevent a building up of the stuff. Still a goodly finish of sweet cream and caramel, but not sickly and ultimately clean. Profile is interesting, all over the place but sensible nonetheless. Body is a creamy medium+, flavors are a -medium, and strength ain't a thing. Somewhat interesting way to get to a classic medium. Or perhaps I was just overly round-about. I do get paid by the word. That's a lie. I get paid. By the sentence.

Draw resistance wobbles from a medium to medium+ resistance, but the amount of delivered smoke remains the same. Primary is creamy toasted caramel and an un-close second of woods. Secondary is a blonde coffee that occasionally stretches into the caramel. It's quite nice when that happens, by the by. White pepper is behind that but plays a nice sized role as mentioned before. Too, there's a very kind spice-rack coming in. An unpretentious diner spice-rack. Older clientele who don't like a spicy chili and who hated the Super Bowl half-time show. They also hate Cam for doing what Peyton did years ago. One guy's classless act is another's fiery competitiveness.

Woods crisp up now but remain simply hardwood. Retro-hale heats up a bit with the new diner spices, but remains mild. Creaminess is very nice and there's maybe some vanilla entering with the caramel. Perfect moisture level on the mouth-feel. Blonde coffee thickens sans strengthening. Very pleasing smoke.

Burn is less ribboned, but not yet burning even. Ash is palest of greys and a loose sheath with some dry flakes. Ash grows to an inch of coarse dry and dense powder before I roll it off and re-touch the light. I do quite a bit of work, but I'm not seeing much response. Oh, well.

Finally, and apparently unavoidably, there is a potential issue with a runner. It's simply burning a few ticks hotter in one spot. I can't get it to slow, or the rest to quicken. Kinda a shame, because the rest of the offering just wants me to relax and take a load off. Coffee picks up some chest hair and the caramel seems to be staying there as well as on its creamy lonesome. Nuts are macadamia and pine with a hint of blanched almond, mayhaps. Woods are wood. Married together, is the white pepper (subdued) and the diner spices (notched kindly up). Talking like Yoda I am.

The burn is first now, attempting to even-out, and quite successfully so. Purely subjective, but I feel a bit like my jaw might wanna dislocate. Again, subjectively, I prefer Churchills at 48RGs, Coronas, and Lonsdales. Also, my birthday is February 25th. It's the first sunny day in many a moon, and I step out from my shaded carport. This Perla del Mar loves the sun. Some cigars pair better with darkness. Not this puppy.

There's something influencing the large stock of creaminess now, and doing so in a sour fashion. Almost a Lemonhead. Remember those "lemon" candies. Sorta that. Not unkind, but not completely un-annoying. Pepper is almost gone and spice is well downed. Coffee is unchanged but more solitary than prior. Quite woody. Backing is lower now and a bit less hay. More barnyard, but still bright. Some toast comes into the middling of it all. Profile is a more classically arrived at classic medium. Strength has not yet registered. Very mild and ultimately enjoyable to a vast degree. Un-complex but not dim-witted.

Burn has another runner. Combustion/construction are joining forces to really harsh mah mellow. Unwieldy ain't never felt so comfy. Jesus, take the wheel! Oy vey. Sour note dies far back and I believe its a spectre I sense now and mainly on the finish, which has lengthened. Other notes are widely and generally unchanged. I've been retro-haling rather often to enhance the profile and suddenly: course ground white pepper. A goodly zetz from left field. I heard somewhere that pitchers and catchers report in something like a dozen days.

Oh, packaging has firmed.

First thing I notice here is a widening of the burn-line to a medium thickness. Its finding even again, this time on its own, but also is a ribbon in spots. Ash has some pepper in it now and is looser of a sheath. Spice-rack comes back in, dragged by its re-emerged white pepper component. Coffee is gone and woods soar on less-toasted creamy caramel. Macadamia is a solo act now and ebbs/flows. Caramel is now over-taking woods. It's a race! A lively final act, this. Sour note has vanished.

Strength registers to a -medium. Profile is medium. Creaminess, untested, sets nicely into a very kind mouth-feel and sweet finish. I do that trick where I let it sit in my $0.99 center black plastic Walmart tray for less than normal -- well under two minutes, and the Perla del Mar almost goes Perla del Out. I nurse it back to previous voluminous-pourings. Room-note is a more simple yet even kinder maybe, sweet tobacco. I think there should be a dog track called Perla del Mar.

The late transition clamouring of Act III's onset has now become a Sunday drive of primarily wood and caramel. Secondarily, there is some slight spice that's more a vibe on my tongue. I forgot all about the suede a while ago and I forget if I even typed it. Macadamia has left. backing is now an earthy return to sweet hay notes. Cream billows it all along. Nice. I get what I call the "Stogie effect" of wanting to putter instead of set still. I'd love a good game of dominoes right about now. A loud and entertaining conversation of little depth. Burn is just this side of fercockt and I care about as much as I do of Jimmy cracking corn. There is some small cracking in the top-leaf.

As the band approaches, so doth the end of the blow-by-blow portion of this affair. On a last note, a very thin and fleeting light honey note is on the very end of the draw now. A very good chew is hampered by 60 gauges o' ring. Just as quickly as fercockt happens -- so does even come in to escort me out on still cool and always sweet smoky smoke.
I'm swinging around to my sunny front porch to finish this off. brb I think I'll yell at some cars.

Diner-style coffee, fully loaded with cream and sugar. A few pips or Kisses of Hershey. Dominoes and rambunctious company. Sunshine. Why not a dog track or maybe even pre-season baseball? Dog track.


(I liked the 'Jenneff' K A P L O W I T Z format so much, I've adopted it.)
Letter grades are graded on a scale of K A P L O W I T Z. K being the least, Z the greatest.

Appearance W
Construction W
Combustion L
Flavors/Body O
Strength K

A follow-up dinner of milk toast was very nice. I added a peanut butter schmear to the bread. Because I am worth it. It's all about self-care, gentlepersons. I gave my schmatta the night off because I rapidly abandoned ash-building. I dab the peanut buttery corners of my mouth with it, though. There. I made mention of the thing.