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Cigar Geeks Geek Critique

CAO Flathead V450 Sparkplug
Written by Cigar Geeks Member: Don Miller (DonM)
88
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 Black coffee

Pre-Light: 18 Points of 10 Possible

The wrapper on this cigar had an oily feel to it with almost no veins visible; dark, smooth and seamlessly rolled.  The cigar itself was firm to the touch with no soft spots. The cap was a flathead hence the branding with a folded foot which was a nice touch.  The flathead cap cut clean with a guillotine cutter and held together.  


Light & Burn: 13 Points of 15 Possible

Initially a little hard to light with the folded over foot then revealed a very nice draw and plenty of smoke right away.  The initial burn was not completely straight but didn’t need any corrections.  The ash was mostly light grey in color and held together fairly well for about 1.5 inches and was a little loose from then on..  The wrapper rolled some while burning with the oils in the wrapper.

Construction: 28 Points of 30 Possible

The construction on this cigar was near flawless, a very smooth wrapper, firm to the touch.  The cigar was a box press with slightly smooth edges and well-constructed.  The flathead cap was very well done and cut clean with the head staying intact.  The folded over foot was a nice touch.  



Flavor: 29 Points of 45 Possible

The initial Flavors were leathery with some pepper and near medium full in strength.  The flavors were like a sparkplug, lots of spark with some spices on a retrohale.  Into the 2/3 I picked up on some espresso with spices and definitely bold in flavor.  A slight sweetness and mocha slipped into the flavors.   The flavors mixed well in the 3/3 while keeping the flavors of the first 2/3 with some espresso, mocha and earthy flavors.   The cigar was mildly complex with some nice flavors in it.

Summary

A very well made cigar with some nice flavors.  The presentation had a nice gimmick to it with the flathead and the folded foot.  At the price point I think CAO did a really good job on this cigar.  It was hard to find flaws in the construction, smoked well and had some nice flavors while being mildly complex.  In scoring, I had a hard time deducting points on this cigar but didn't see it as being something rated in the 90's.  I enjoy CT Broad leaf wrappers and would definitely smoke it again



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