Today we will be taking a look at one of the larger cigars introduced at this years IPCPR, the XIKAR HC Series Salomon Limitado! XIKAR has been one of the most innovative cigar accessory manufacturers since their start in the mid 1990s, the XIKAR Cutter is one of the most recognizable cigar tools out there and with the usability, price point and overall customer service that comes with it, it’s hard to find a better tool. Over the years XIKAR has put out lighters, traditional cutlery, travel humidors and cases but only recently (in the last 4 years) have they taken the plunge into actual cigars. In 2007 XIKAR commissioned Jesus Fuego to blend them a cigar, this cigar was called the Defiance and received rave reviews from magazines and bloggers when it came out in 2008. During this time XIKAR also decided to make a cigar that would coincide with their popular Havana Collection cutters and lighters, They settled on calling it the HC Series and it would be available in three wrappers, Connecticut shade, Criollo, and Habano Colorado. This brings us to today’s review, the HC Series Salomon Limitado is a large Figurado with only 1,000 boxes of 10 available. I am personally familiar with the HC Series Habano Colorado and I enjoy them a lot, I am definitely looking forward to smoking this cigar.
Let’s get to it!
- Cigar Reviewed: XIKAR HC Series Habano Colorado Salomon Limitado
- Country of Origin: Honduras
- Factory: Tabacos de Oriente
- Wrapper: Nicaragua Habano Colorado
- Binder: Nicaragua
- Filler: Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Honduras
- Size: 7 Inches
- Ring Gauge: 58
- Vitola: Salomon
- MSRP: $10.00 (Boxes of 10, $100.00)
- Release Date: November/December 2011
- Number of Cigars Released: 1,000 Boxes of 10 Cigars (10,000 Total Cigars)
- Number of Cigars Smoked for Review: 2
It’s hard to not love the look of a Salomon and this one is no different, it has a really nice Colorado shade wrapper with a perfect red/brown tint, minimal veins and a seamless wrap. The cigar is firm, but has a little bit of give, a uniform feel with no soft spots and a nice slow taper. This cigar sports two bands, one traditional one up towards the head and a secondary band at the bulbous part of the foot showing some Havana Series art. It smells wonderful and for one of the first times in my life I get a distinct Pickle aroma, It’s definitely a controversial descriptor and I have heard of people experiencing it in the past, but I myself haven’t, until now. It’s a sweet, sort of tart aroma, it’s very pleasant (if you like pickles), and there are also subtle notes of tobacco, leather and milk chocolate.
Starting off in the First Third the cigar starts of very smooth and rich, there is a very nice aged tobacco flavor present as well as a dense earthiness, some leather and pepper on the tongue and through the nose. The cigar is medium body with a nice oily mouth feel, great draw and even burn, as well as a long finish with pepper and leather.
Coming into the Second Third the pepper dies down a bit and the flavor profile changes a bit with a real prominent Cocoa flavor coming in, it mixes well with the earth and leather and creates a really sweet smoke but balanced with just a bit of pepper.
Finishing up in the Final Third the cigar culminates into a whirlwind of great flavors, Cocoa, earth, leather, aged tobacco, pepper, definitely a lot going on and rising to a medium-full body. The finish is ultra long with tobacco, earth and leather just lingering until the next draw. The burn has stayed consistent and I never had to touch it up once…
- As I stated in the intro notes I have always enjoyed the regular HC Series Habano Colorado line and this was a similar experience, it has all the flavors that I enjoy the most and it’s balanced with pepper beautifully. I like how it starts out as a solid medium body and then slowly rises to a medium-full.
- I tend to have bad luck with Salomons in general because they always tend to burn a little wacky, which leads me to cutting them a little at the foot to get a better burn but with this one I lit it as is and had a great experience construction wise.
- Final Smoking time was 1 hour 40 minutes.
The Bottom Line: If you like the regular HC Series Habano Colorado vitolas than you are going to like this one, flavor-wise it’s on point with the regular line: full flavor, medium body, well balanced and complex. I typically don’t enjoy Salomon simply because it’s not my personal favorite vitola, but if I was in a situation where I was going to smoke one like a party, special occasion or simply had the urge to, I would definitely smoke one of these again.
Final Score: 89