In late 2013, RoMa Craft Tobac released a sampler of cigars, including two each of its four brands at the time in a perfecto vitola. It was known as the El Catador de los Perfectos, and it was the first of what is now four El Catador samplers. The latest is the El Catador de Las Petite Coronas, a 10-count sampler of the company’s now five lines in a 4 x 46 size.
The CroMagnon Pestera Muierilor is the CroMagnon entry into the sampler. Like the Aquitaine and Neanderthal 4 x 46s, it’s a vitola the company has previously not offered. The same cannot be said about the two Intemperance blends in the El Catador de las Petite Coronas—the Intemperance BA XXI Intrigue and EC XVIII Charity—which have been around since the company launched the Intemperance line in 2012.
For the CroMagnon line, this is the 19th vitola na easily the smallest of the bunch.
- CroMagnon Anthropology (5 3/4 x 46) — Grand Corona — February 2011 — $8 (Boxes of 24, $192)
- CroMagnon Cranium (6 x 54) — Gran Toro — February 2011 — $8.50 (Boxes of 24, $204)
- CroMagnon EMH (Early Modern Human) (5 x 56) — Robusto Extra — February 2011 — $7.75 (Boxes of 24, $186)
- CroMagnon Knuckle Dragger (4 x 52) — Petit Robusto — February 2011 — $6.50 (Boxes of 24, $156)
- CroMagnon Mandible (4 1/2 x 60) — Petite Gordo — February 2011 — $7.25 (Boxes of 24, $174)
- CroMagnon Mandible XL (6 x 60) — Gordo — February 2011 — Sampler Only (Not Pictured)
- CroMagnon Atlatl (7 x 38) — Lancero — November 2012 — $9.50 (Boxes of 10, $95)
- CroMagnon Slobberknocker (7 1/2 x 56) — Gordo— November 2012 — $12 (Boxes of 10, $120)
- CroMagnon Blockhead (6 x54) – Box-Pressed Gran Toro – March 2013 — $9
- CroMagnon Fomorian (2013) (5 x 56) – Robusto Extra (Candela) – March 2013 — $7.50 (Boxes of 24, $180)
- CroMagnon Epoch (7 x 49) – Churchill – February 2013 — $10 (Boxes of 10, $100)
- CroMagnon Mode 5 (5 x 50) – Perfecto – $6.50 — March 2013 — (Boxes of 24, $156)
- CroMagnon Venus (6 1/2 x 56) – Petite Salomon – September 2013 — $10 (Boxes of 10, $100)
- CroMagnon Fomorian 2014 (5 x 56) — Robusto Extra (Candela) — March 2014 — $7.75 (Boxes of 24, $186)
- CroMagnon Fomorian Barber Pole (5 x 56) — Robusto Extra — March 2014 — Unreleased
- CroMagnon Breuil (5 1/2 x 37) — Panetela — September 2014 — $7.50 (Boxes of 10, $75)
- CroMagnon Fomorian 2015 (5 x 56) — Robusto Extra (Candela) — March 2015 — $7.75 (Boxes of 24, $186)
- CroMagnon Pestera Muierilor (4 x 46) — Petit Corona — August 2015 — $6.26 (Samplers of 2, $62,50)
- CroMagnon Femur (10 x 133 1/3) — Femur — November 2013 — $50 (Box of 1, $50)
This won’t be the last El Catador sampler. Skip Martin of RoMa Craft Tobac has already indicated that a fifth sampler is expected later this year. In addition, there are plans for a commemorative box set of all the samplers.
- Cigar Reviewed: CroMagnon Pestera Muierilor
- Country of Origin: Nicaragua
- Factory: Fabrica de Tabacos NicaSueño S.A.
- Wrapper: Connecticut Broadleaf
- Binder: Cameroon
- Filler: Nicaragua
- Size: 4 Inches
- Ring Gauge: 46
- Vitola: Petit Corona
- MSRP: $6.25 (Samplers of 2, $62.50)
- Release Date: Aug. 19, 2015
- Number of Cigars Released: 600 Samplers of 2 Cigars (1,200 Total Cigars)
- Number of Cigars Smoked for Review: 3
The Pestera Muierilor looks great and I really like how the CroMagnon band sits on the cigar, something that I always find a bit out of place on the longer and skinnier vitolas. Unlike say the Breuil, which for whatever reason smelled a bit different, this is just a smaller version of the dozens of CroMagnons I’ve had before. There’s a big sweet leather and barnyard mixture from the dark broadleaf wrapper. The foot is stronger and sweeter with a big chocolate and some pepper added to the mixture. The cold draw is a bit sweeter than I normally find the cigars: very sweet milk chocolate, barnyard and the familiar leather. One interesting note, if I take a slightly quicker cold draw, the cigar tastes much more vegetal.1
The Pestera Muierilor starts with a lot of barnyard, leather, some cocoa, and a bit of harshness. Pepper is all around my palate, but it’s most noticeable as a piercing part of the cold draw. Fortunately, the first third of the CroMagnon softens up a bit with the leather, cocoa and earthy mixture dominating the mouth. The retrohales become less punishing at each puff providing some toastiness, gingerbread cookie, faint hints of citrus and some red pepper. It’s a CroMagnon, and it’s solidly full.
The second third sees the barnyard and leather become a bit more prominent than the cocoa, but all three are still there. There’s an apple cider note around the side of my tongue, not something I would normally associate with the CroMagnon profile. Elsewhere, it’s still a full-flavored, full-bodied and full strength cigar that’s burning somewhat slow, but very well.
Changes for the final third aren’t particularly immense. On two of my samples, the cocoa entirely disappears. There’s some earthiness that comes into play, but it’s not particularly strong and never able to challenge a sweetening leather and barnyard mixture upfront. The CroMagnon finishes where it starts: full.
- This was a semi-exclusive release for those who attended the IPCPR Convention & Trade Show. There were only 600 samplers and they were sold on a first come, first serve basis at the trade show.
- Our coverage of the RoMa Craft Tobac booth at the show can be found here.
- Pestera Muierilor is a Romanian cave where a Cro-Magnon skull was found.
- I feel like I smoked some version of this cigar back a few years ago. I’m not sure if the size was the same, but I seem to recall being given some CroMagnons in a petit corona vitola at the factory.
- Final smoking time was 50 minutes on average.
- Cigars for this review were purchased by halfwheel.
- Site sponsors Cigar Hustler, Lone Star State Cigar Co. (972.424.7272) Serious Cigars and STOGIES World Class Cigars (713.783.5100) are all RoMa Craft Tobac retailers. At this moment, they all appear to be sold out, but a follow-up shipment from RoMa Craft Tobac is expected soon.
For most CroMagnon smokers, I think this will be a cigar you love. It’s a bit punchier than much of the line and offers that fuller profile from the moment you light up—all in a smaller format. For most, this should be great. But I’d rather smoke an Anthropology or Knuckle Dragger, two similarly-priced cigars that I find to be a bit more balanced. Another very good cigar from RoMa Craft Tobac, and one that I imagine we will see a chorus of requests for it to be added as a regular item.