There’s a street in Paradise Valley, Ariz. that I drive by with some regularity when I’m out of my errands that always catches my attention. Not because it’s long or winding or lined with fancy houses—though I think it is, you just can’t see them from the main intersection—but because of it’s name; Camino Sin Nombre. Some years ago I was driving around and noticing the names of streets and thinking which ones sounded like a cool address to have, and that one keeps sticking out.
The name is Spanish for nameless road, or street with no name, one I find some appeal to not only because it reminds me of the U2 song, but there’s a whimsicalness to the name, even though as I write that I also think someone might just have been a bit lazy with the selection.
When it comes to cigars, there’s one that immediately comes to mind when thinking about unnamed things, the Arturo Fuente Unnamed Reserve. It’s a collection of cigars as opposed to a single release, debuting in December 2012 and adding releases the following three years before going on hiatus. It returned in September 2021 with a 5 3/4 x 48 vitola—the same as the first release—and uses a sun grown rosado wrapper and Dominican tobaccos for the binder and filler. Additionally, the company says that the cigars were rolled in 2016, meaning they arrive on shelves with five years of age on them.
It’s a limited run, with 1,000 boxes of 20 cigars produced, and each of those cigars having an MSRP of $10.93.
- Arturo Fuente Unnamed Reserve 2012 (5 3/4 x 48) — December 2012
- Arturo Fuente Unnamed Reserve 2013 Robusto (5 1/4 x 48) — November 2013
- Arturo Fuente Unnamed Reserve 2013 Toro (5 3/4 x 50) — November 2013
- Arturo Fuente Unnamed Reserve 2014 (6 x 60) — December 2014
- Arturo Fuente Unnamed Reserve 2015 (5 1/2 x 48) — December 2015
- Arturo Fuente Unnamed Reserve 2015 (6 x 50) — December 2015
- Arturo Fuente Unnamed Reserve 2021 (5 3/4 x 48) — September 2021
- Cigar Reviewed: Arturo Fuente Unnamed Reserve 2021
- Country of Origin: Dominican Republic
- Factory: Tabacalera A. Fuente y Cia.
- Wrapper: Undisclosed (Sun Grown Rosado)
- Binder: Dominican Republic
- Filler: Dominican Republic
- Length: 5 3/4 Inches
- Ring Gauge: 48
- Vitola: Grand Corona
- MSRP: $10.93 (Box of 20, $218.60)
- Release Date: September 2021
- Number of Cigars Released: 1,000 Boxes of 20 Cigars (20,000 Total Cigars)
- Number of Cigars Smoked For Review: 3
There are times when I smoke a cigar and not only think about how I look at it today, but how I might look at it down the road. I say that because the beginning of the experience with the Arturo Fuente Unnamed Reserve 2021—box notwithstanding—starts with removing a cellophane sleeve that is stamped with the phrase ProducXion 2016. I bring that up because I wonder what I would think of this cigar if I pulled it out of my humidor in ten years. Would I know that it was rolled in 2016 but released in 2021? Or would I think it was released in 2016? Something to ponder, I guess. Once out of the cellophane, it’s time to remove a black foot ribbon and cedar sleeve, the former of which comes off easier than the latter. Once that is done, I’m greeted with a reddish-brown wrapper that has a dry yet supple texture on the fingers and a decent vein structure that is small but quite visible, with one cigar being what I would describe as more vein-laden than average. The samples are all rolled well and consistently firm. The foot has a light, mild and slightly sweet aroma, and it seems like the cedar sleeve has left its scent mark. One sample lacks any real aromas, giving me something between generic cereal grains and dried tobaccos. Air moves well on the cold draw, with the flavor mellow and reminding me of a soft scone with a bit of raspberry sweetness.
After a start that I would call a fairly familiar Fuente and a fairly familiar Dominican start, meaning a bit of loamy soil, a very light cedar flavor and some supporting pepper, the Arturo Fuente Unnamed Reserve 2021 quickly ramps up with white pepper just about a quarter of an inch along. That brings with it a bit of the lighter terroir flavor and an aromatic firewood that gives some weight to the experience. It’s a profile that immediately has me thinking of something to pair it with as it dries my palate out a bit, but other than that there’s nothing to complain about. There is a bit of light tanginess in the mix as well, one cigar hides it better than the others, and while it never overtakes the profile, it does color it a bit like an out f tune instrument would a small band. There is some building creaminess here, and while it doesn’t overtake the profile or really even do much more than hint at its presence, it does suggest that an enjoyable change could be in store. The end of the first third sees the pepper in the profile sharpen up a bit, nudging the flavor up to medium-plus, body is medium, and strength is medium-minus. The draw and smoke production are good, while the burn line a bit wavy.
The first third of the Arturo Fuente Unnamed Reserve 2021 gave some hints that creaminess might be on the way, and the second third starts to deliver on that earlier tease. That creaminess can pick up a bit of chalk at times, which is one of those flavors that just doesn’t add much to this particular blend, and if anything distracts from it given the other flavors already eliciting many of the same physical reactions. Across the middle point, the Arturo Fuente Unnamed Reserve 2021 hits a real sweet spot, partially because of the introduction of some pastry sweetness, but also because the pepper settles just a bit. From there it’s back to a slightly dry profile, with the first puff where the change is noticeable reminding me of dry, unsalted pretzel sticks. Retrohales are interesting, as they combine white pepper, cream, chalk, and a bit of a mineral note, the last of which seems to reverberate off the palate, even though I don’t pick it up off a regular puff. Flavor is still close to medium-plus, body is a bit fuller and now in that same medium-plus range, and strength feels only mildly stronger than the first third, just enough to get into medium territory.
As the final third gets going, the Arturo Fuente Unnamed Reserve 2021 dives right into a grains-and-pepper combination, holding onto the white pepper that has been part of the profile since the first puffs but now taking the dry pretzel flavor and expanding on it, hitting some multigrain bread flavors, flirts with wheat toast, and then into a breadbasket of expressions that come and go fairly quickly. Unfortunately it still has the mineral and chalk notes from earlier, which have faded just enough to have me think they are more terroir-related than that something might be off with the tobacco, but either way I’m not crazy about them. The creaminess from earlier comes and goes as well, and while I think the profile and body are both better when it is present, it does have the tendency to mute some of the other flavors. Flavor finishes at medium-plus, body right about there as well, and strength just barely clearing the bar for medium.
- I’m really thrilled that the Arturo Fuente Unnamed Reserve 2021 returns to its smaller vitolas. I wouldn’t have had much if any issues with the other sizes, sans the 60 ring gauge, but among the existing options, the 48 ring gauge is the pick for me.
- While the wrapper is on the delicate side, it held up well save tor one sample that chipped a bit when the band was removed.
- I’m not familiar enough with the production of cellophane to know how hard it is or how much it costs to add that gold printing, but having long wanted some kind of age statement to be more a part of how cigars are presented, I like it added in this way on the Arturo Fuente Unnamed Reserve 2021.
- I didn’t get to see them in person, but the boxes also look rather impressive.
- I didn’t get much if any strength from the Arturo Fuente Unnamed Reserve 2021; there are some moments where I can feel a slight building of nicotine in the second half, but the net effect is still well within my comfort range.
- Final smoking time was two hours on average.
- Arturo Fuente advertises on halfwheel
- The cigars for this review were purchased by halfwheel.
As I noted above, the Arturo Fuente Unnamed Reserve 2021 starts with what I would consider a very typical and familiar Fuente profile, and one that for the most part is rather enjoyable. The cigar doesn't stray too far off the path the rest of the way, weaving a core of flavors in and out of the profile that will hit the palate with a decent amount of pepper, dry woods, cedar, loamy soil and creaminess, all of which show some signs that align with the idea that the cigars have been rested for a bit but are still full of vibrance. My one gripe with the flavor is a funkiness that is hard to put a specific name on, but that seems to draw on some combination of minerals and chalk to just color the rest of the profiles enough to be a detractor. Maybe it's part and parcel of the profile, but it's enough to have me holding back on fully loving the cigar. Thankfully construction is fantastic and there's really no other objections I can present. This is one of those cigars that falls into the category of easily smoking another one and picking up a few if I find it, but not going too far out of my way to track them down.