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Cigar Geeks Geek Critique

CAO Flathead V450 Sparkplug
Written by Cigar Geeks Member: Chip (Chip Lemaster)
89
Cigar Geeks Rating

Welcome to another Member sponsored Geek Critique.  Up for review this time is the CAO Flathead V450 Sparkplug, the latest release from CAO in their Flathead line - a box pressed 4.5 inches by 50 ring gauge and features a closed foot. The cigar is packaged in a box reminiscent of the packaging that sparkplugs come in.  Some of the hype surrounding the cigar: "CAO Flathead cigars are for the car lover in us all. Each cigar is named after a legendary hot rod engine and comes in a beautifully crafted box to commemorate the old school muscle car. Each cigar contains a flavorful Nicaraguan filler, a smooth yet spicy Ecuadorian Habano CT binder, and a Connecticut Broadleaf Maduro wrapper to add sweetness and balance out the spicier Habano binder. No doubt another great offering by CAO developed by master blender Rick Rodriguez."  This cigar has been generously sponsored by our member Chuck (cfickter).  Thanks very much for your generosity Chuck!

Length:
4.5
Ring Gauge:
50
Country Manufactured:
Nicaragua
Filler:
Nicaragua
Binder:
Connecticut
Ecuador
Wrapper:
Connecticut Broadleaf
Color:
Maduro
Strength:
Medium-Full
Shape:
Rothschild

This cigar was enjoyed with Ice water

Pre-Light: 19 Points of 10 Possible

Dark, oily wrapper which is chocolate in color.  Square shaped. It has a nicely capped head. The foot has a flat pigtail which needs clipping before the pre-lit draw.  It has a barnyard smell with possibly a hint of chocolate.  It has a very firm feel.  The lime green band gives one a reminiscence of a sparkplug.  The pre-lit inhale had a slight resistance but was still manageable and had very little flavor.

Light & Burn: 14 Points of 15 Possible

Ash is light gray but tended to split across the cigar in the first 1/2 inch but then subsided.  An inch of ash remained on cigar until a little pressure was applied to remove it.  This was done a total of three times.  It had a slightly uneven burn which self corrected throughout the remainder of the smoke.

Construction: 29 Points of 30 Possible

Cigar is square in shape with a flattened cap and foot.  No large veins in the Maduro wrapper. No seams or blemishes are visible. Cap and foot are nicely done.  Pre-lit draw had some resistance.  The cigar is box pressed to accommodate the sparkplug-like packaging.

Flavor: 27 Points of 45 Possible

First third of the cigar was a bit harsh with a nicotine kick.  It has a little sweetness and earthy flavor. It leaves both a bitter and metallic after taste.
Second third of the cigar burns a little unevenly. The sweetness and bitterness are slight but still present.  The grass and light wood taste have become more apparent. The metallic taste is still prevalent. The cigar itself has a nice, warm barnyard aroma.
Final third of the cigar the grass and wood notes blended with a touch of cedar.  The bitterness and metallic taste remained throughout the entire smoke.

Summary

Other than the crack in the first 1/2 inch of the ash and an uneven burn that self corrected, this CAO flathead sparkplug 450 developed some woody to cedar flavors.  It had a slight sweetness that made this a decent cigar. However, the bitterness and the metallic taste which remained throughout the entire smoke was the downside of this full flavored cigar.   This would prevent me from wanting another one without aging it first.



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