In October, Skip Martin of RoMa Craft Tobac posted onto social media that there would be a final line extension for the Aquitaine brand, the 7 x 49 Epoch, and that it would be retailer exclusive release “somewhere West of the Mississippi.” We eventually learned that the store that would be receiving the new cigar was to be En Fuego Cigars & Lounge in Las Vegas, Nev., and that they will go on sale on Monday, March 9.
As with the other Aquitaine vitolas, the Epoch uses the same Cameroon binder and filler tobaccos from Condega, Estelí and Pueblo Nuevo in Nicaragua that are in the CroMagnon line, but replaces the Connecticut broadleaf wrapper with an Ecuadorian habano ligero leaf. Only 1,250 total cigars were produced and sold in boxes of 10, with each cigar selling for $10.50.
There are now 11 different vitolas in the Aquitaine line:
- Aquitaine The Knuckle Dragger (4 x 52) — $6.50 (Boxes of 24, $156)
- Aquitaine The Mandible (4 1/2 x 60) — $7.25 (Boxes of 24, $174)
- Aquitaine The EMH (5 x 56) — $7.75 (Boxes of 24, $180)
- Aquitaine The Anthropology (5 3/4 x 46) — $8 (Boxes of 24, $192)
- Aquitaine The Cranium (6 x 54) — $8.50 (Boxes of 24, $204)
- Aquitaine Blockhead (6 x 54) — $9 (Boxes of 10, $90)
- Aquitaine Atlatl (7 x 38) — $9.50
- Aquitaine Mode 5 (5 x 50) — $6.50
- Aquitaine Breuil (5 /12 x 37) — $7.00 (Boxes of 2, $54)
- Aquitaine Venus (6 1/2 x 56) — $10 (Boxes of 10, $100)
- Aquitaine Epoch (7 x 49) — $10.50 (Boxes of 10, $105)
- Cigar Reviewed: Cromagnon Aquitaine Epoch
- Country of Origin: Nicaragua
- Factory: Fabrica de Tabacos Nica Sueño
- Wrapper: Ecuadorian Habano Ligero
- Binder: Cameroon
- Filler: Nicaragua (Condega, Estelí & Pueblo Nuevo)
- Size: 7 Inches
- Ring Gauge: 49
- Vitola: Churchill
- MSRP: $10.50 (Boxes of 10, $105)
- Release Date: March 9, 2015
- Number of Cigars Released: 125 Boxes of 10 (1,250 Total Cigars)
- Number of Cigars Smoked for Review: 3
Covered in a dark mocha brown wrapper, the cigar is relatively smooth to the touch with minimal veins and a bit of oil present. it has some nice give when it is squeezed, and the triple cap seems excellently applied. Aroma from the wrapper is a combination of strong barnyard, sweet cedar, leather, and chocolate, while the cold draw brings flavors of sweet raisins, creamy oak, espresso and earth.
The Aquitaine Epoch starts off immediately with a overtly sweet maple and oak combination that is quite distinct, along with other notes of gritty earth, bitter espresso, leather, hay and bread. There is a sizable amount of black pepper on the retrohale and a touch of spice on my tongue, both of which seem to be receding as the first third burns down. Smoke production is massive off of the foot and both the burn and draw are excellent so far, with the draw being the standout in that category. The overall strength starts out close to the medium mark, but fails to reach any higher before end of the first third.
While the sweetness in the blend remains at about the same level during the second third of the Aquitaine Epoch, it morphs a bit into more of a graham cracker note, while keeping the oak flavor intact to go along with it. Other flavors of almonds, earth, hay, leather, barnyard and coffee flit in and out, and while the black pepper on the retrohale has retained its strength, the spice on my tongue from the first third is all but gone by the halfway point of the cigar. Both the burn and draw continue to impress me, while the smoke production remains quite high, dense and white off the foot. The strength has increased noticeably, and ends up solidly in the medium range by the end of the second third, and is still increasing.
The final third of the Aquitaine Epoch features the same graham cracker sweetness that was present in the second third, but it is not near as strong, and the oak flavor has increased dramatically, easily becoming the dominant note in the profile. There are still other flavors of espresso, nuts, dark cocoa, leather hay and even a touch of tea leaves, but all of them don’t hold a candle in strength to the oak note. The black pepper stays constant on the retrohale, as does the smoke production, while the burn and draw give me no issues whatsoever until the end of the cigar. The strength has increased as expected, and when I put the nub down with a little more than an inch left, it has it a point about halfway between medium and full.
- I have smoked quite a few of the Aquitaine vitolas—although mostly the Atlatl—and I find the Epoch to be noticeably stronger and not even close to as creamy on the palate as most of the other sizes in the line.
- I can’t say enough about the construction of these cigars. Each of the samples I smoked had an excellent draw with just the right amount of resistance for me, along with a burn line that, while not razor sharp, never needed to be touched up. Just a joy to smoke in that regard.
- En Fuego told halfwheel that it will likely offer a small number of the cigars to other stores, something that many who have received exclusives from RoMa Craft in the past have done.
- This is a very slow burning cigar, and the average smoking time for all three samples was just under two hours.
- The cigars smoked for this review were sent to halfwheel by En Fuego Cigars & Lounge.
- If you would like to purchase any of the Aquitaine Epoch, the only place you can buy them is at En Fuego Cigars & Lounge by calling them at 702.384.9262.
I have long been a fan of RoMa Craft Tobac's Aquitaine line, and while the Epoch is not the best in the line—not even close, in fact—it still retains most of the attributes about the line that I love. At different points it is sweet, slightly creamy and earthy, with a wonderful balance that pulls the while profile together. Yes, I still prefer the Atlatl (lancero) and the Breuil (panetela), but the Epoch is a very good smoke that fans of the Aquitaine line and fans of full flavored blends will definitely enjoy.