As has been the case for now 13 years, the months preceding spring mean one thing for General Cigar Co.—the Punch Rare Corojo. In recent years, General has made a single vitola exclusive under the Rare Corojo name a single-year release.
This year, that release is a 7 1/4 x 57 perfecto known as the Rare Salomones. It features an Ecuadorian Sumatra wrapper, a Connecticut broadleaf binder and fillers from the Dominican Republic, Honduras and Nicaragua.
While General Cigar Co. updated the packaging of the entire Rare Corojo line—now in bright red sliding-lid-boxes, the Rare Salomones is in a special white ten-count box.
- Cigar Reviewed: Punch Rare Corojo Rare Salomones
- Country of Origin: Honduras
- Factory: STG Danlí
- Wrapper: Ecuadorian Sumatra
- Binder: Connecticut Broadleaf
- Filler: Dominican Republic, Honduras & NIcaragua
- Size: 7 1/4 Inches
- Ring Gauge: 57
- Vitola: Salomon
- MSRP: $7.99 (Boxes of 10, $79.90)
- Date Released: February 21, 2014
- Number of Cigars Released: n/a
- Number of Cigars Smoked For Review: 3
The Rare Salomones features a reddish wrapper that I suppose could pass for corojo, but my attention turns first to the bands, which are beautiful. They are not embossed, which would certainly have made them better, but the color scheme and layout are clean and effective. I pick up medium notes of wet grass and barnyard aroma-wise. One of the samples I smoked was loaded with anise and green licorice. The other two had apricot, pineapple and some harsh pepper—full and with good resistance.
It begins a bit more pedestrian than the cold draw would suggest—creamy cedar, anise, toasty cedar and a familiar apricot note. As the Rare Salomones moves around the nipple, the draw predictably opens up, which is good as it begins a bit tight. The Rare Corojo continues with the great apricot note, a bit of green licorice, cedar and a burnt jalapeño note. Construction is great with a solid draw and an even burn.
A creamy almond note takes over the profile. There’s also notes of leather and unfortunately grass. What was once a defined secondary note, the pepper note is almost completely faded behind the cedar note. At the halfway point the draw tightens a touch, but smoke production is still good. On two samples the burn also wavered, but it manages to correct itself without the use of a lighter. I still peg this on the higher side of medium, not entirely medium-full in strength.
Enjoyably, the flavors begin to lighten as the cigar comes to an end. The nuttiness is entirely gone, leaving a creaminess on top of cedar with some more generic fruitiness and even a touch of coffee. It’s much lighter than the first two thirds, although a solid ending to the cigar.
- The Punch Rare Corojo 10th Anniversary actually did feature a Connecticut corojo wrapper. I find it a bit odd the wrapper is not corojo given the name.
- I am a big fan of the salomon size. I don’t smoke them as often as I would like, but I enjoy the heft of the size and the art behind them.
- It cannot be stressed how impressive the $8 price point is on this cigar. Salomons are the most challenging size to roll of any commonly made cigar, meaning they require the most skilled—and consequently highest paid—rollers to produce cigars at rates far lower than a typical parejo size.
- We’ve discussed this a few times on the site, but I do not understand those who suggest that clipping both ends of the salmon is a good idea. It’s five minutes of a slightly tight draw and then the cigar is fine.
- On all three Rare Corojos I smoked, the draw was good, never getting outside of my comfort range, and the cigar burned cool.
- Ash held to just under two inches without much issue.
- I would describe the strength as medium, stronger than the 10th Anniversary size, but a bit lighter than some of the other vitolas in the line.
- Cigars for this review were purchased by halfwheel.
- Site sponsor Atlantic Cigar has the Rare Salomones listed.
For the most part, General Cigar Co. does a phenomenal job of pricing its products—the Rare Salomones is no exception. It’s a good cigar with some of the most unique flavors I’ve found in the line, which quite possibly is my favorite in the massive General portfolio. For me the Rothschild and Elites remain the best of the bunch, but the Rare Salomones is a solid cigar a a great price.