There’s a lot of various inspirations behind the hundreds of limited edition cigars that debut each year, yet the amount of times in which an employee of a cigar store is listed as at least part of the inspiration remains, somehow, relatively rare.
But that is exactly the case with the Buenaventura BV Treas. Sure, the Finck Cigars exclusive was not the brainchild of an employee, but the name is based off of one. And a fitting one at that. it’s named after Trea Bishop, an employee of the San Antonio-based chain of cigar stores, who just happens to be the company’s top seller of Buenaventura cigars.
As for the cigar, it’s a 6 x 52 box-pressed version of Curivari’s popular Buenaventura line, although the Nicaraguan puro blend is slightly tweaked with a bit more ligero according to Bill Finck Jr.
I believe this is the eighth size of the Buenaventura following six regular production sizes and one other store exclusive. Although, with Curivari’s secretive nature, I’m not 100 percent certain.
- Cigar Reviewed: Buenaventura BV Treas
- Country of Origin: n/a
- Factory: n/a
- Wrapper: Nicaragua
- Binder: Nicaragua
- Filler: Nicaragua
- Length: 6 Inches
- Ring Gauge: 52
- Vitola: Toro
- MSRP: $5.85 (Box of 10, $58.50)
- Release Date: March 15, 2016
- Number of Cigars Released: 500 Boxes of 10 Cigars*
- Number of Cigars Smoked For Review: 3
*The initial run was 500 boxes, presumably there could be more.
While the box makes it clear that this is an exclusive to Finck Cigars, or more specifically “Finck Cigar Company,” there’s nothing on the cigar itself that would lead you to believe this was an exclusive cigar. There’s no secondary band and the 6 x 52 toro size is a fairly standard size. Despite it being a common toro size, and the fact that the toro size is believed to be the number one seller in the U.S., the company doesn’t make a toro with the closest cigar arguably being the 5 1/2 x 54 Buenaventura BV7. While it’s not so clear in the pictures above, the cigar features a chocolate bar-style box-press, although the corners are rounded. Also a bit confusing in the pictures are the caps. They aren’t applied particularly evenly which exaggerates the unevenness of the actual shape of the cap. As for the wrapper, the box we received saw some variation between samples, but I honestly wouldn’t say any of them looked out of place unless you line them up side by side. Aroma from the non-cellophane-wrapped cigars was mild with some cedar and a roasted flavor breaking through. There’s much more of that on the foot of the BV Treas, along with some stronger, aged cedar notes, cocoa and some floral bits—reminding me of a fuller Cuban cigar. The cold draw has lemonade, meatiness and more of the familiar roasted flavor.
The initial puffs are very woody with cedar eventually breaking through joined by dry nuts. I get a touch of roasted grains but it’s short lived, and then the finish hits the middle of the tongue with a salty peanut butter leading the charge. The saltiness eventually moves up in the Curivari presents a mixture of roasted cedar and saltiness up top. There’s still some nuttiness beneath that along with burnt earth and a mild vanilla creaminess. The retrohale, which can be punishing at times, has a burnt citrus character, pine and some meatiness. Flavor is most certainly full, body is medium-full and strength is medium. Construction-wise, the Buenaventura forms nice chunks of even ash measuring over an inch long and a solid smoke production.
There’s a reduction in the roasted flavors as the saltiness begins to take over the profile. The cedar is still very much at the forefront of the Buenaventura BV Treas, but it’s now joined alongside a potato chip-like flavor. Retrohales are less punishing with a sour lemonade flavor joined by a growing meatiness and a more precise white pepper flavor. The finish is at times herbal, other times a delicate vegetal flavor—like celery—and other times a return of that roasted characteristics. I certainly wish that my water was replaced by something with a touch of sugar, as some sweetness would go along way in cutting through the profile. That being said, the flavor, while still full, is actually smoother, while the strength picks up to medium-full.
The sweetness I had been asking for in the Buenaventura BV Treas suddenly appears in the final third. It comes in the form of nuttiness on the tongue and a sweet citrus flavor through the nose. Joining the mouth flavors are a nice roasted meatiness followed by a mild habanero-like pepper. I should stress that it’s mild, but it is a bit clawing on the back of the throat. I pick up some cacao as well in two of the cigars and there’s still some woodiness, although it’s definitely at its mildest point. All three samples require one touch-up towards the end, and while it’s likely not a big deal for anyone not reviewing a cigar, it’s something that gets noted in a cigar review and on my scoresheet.
- The Buenaventura band reminds me of the Dupont logo.
- Even with the added sweetness, I found myself pouring a small bit of sweet tea after finishing each cigar just to help balance the flavors in my mouth out. If I wasn’t reviewing the cigar, I certainly would have brought some out with me for the review.
- It’s always nice to see a sub-$6 cigar that is not a 4 x 40.
- The Finck family runs a few different tobacco businesses. There are the three retail locations, a catalog distribution business and the company has its own line of cigars that up until very recently included cigars made in Texas. The Buenaventura BV Treas is only available through the company’s retail stores.
- I certainly would not have guessed this to be a difficult cigar to photograph, but trying to get the thin white lines in the band focused proved to be somewhat difficult, even with the Canon 5D Mk III’s incredible autofocus system.
- The strength is medium-full. I don’t smoke enough Buenaventuras to honestly say if I noticed the ligero strength or not, but I imagine medium-full was probably what the intention was given the limited experiences I’ve had with the other sizes.
- In terms of naming cigars after retail employees, there’s only one that initially comes to mind. Nat Sherman has the Bench Collection Legacy Series which they have used to honor some of its more tenured employees at the company’s retail store.
- What’s more common is naming cigars after owners of retail stores. The Tatuaje Porkchop was named after Jose Agosto, the owner of the now defunct Gloucester Street Cigars. Ortega’s Wild Bunch featured a couple retailers as inspiration of cigars.
- There are some cigar companies who have named cigars after its own employees. Rocky Patel has the Nimmy D by Nimish and Bold by Nish Patel. Jack Toraño has a size named after him in the form of the Duran Neya F8 Ligero Typhoon “Big Jack.” In one way, I suppose Habanos S.A.’s Vegas Robaina line could be seen as honoring an employee, although I’m not sure if that accurately reflects the late Alejandro Robaina’s relationship with the Cuban tobacco giant.
- Cigars for this review were sent to halfwheel by Finck Cigars.
- Final smoking time was just under two hours.
- As noted, Finck Cigars is the only place to purchase the Buenaventura BV Treas.
I remember when Curivari was still a relatively unheralded brand, even on the internet, and the cigars were most certainly towards the top of the list of hidden gems in the cigar world. I also remember 2013, when the brand had increased in popularity in the company’s older lines and newer offerings were nothing to write home about. While I wasn’t enamored with Buenaventura when it debuted in 2012, the line has grown on me and I think the BV Treas is the best of the three or four sizes I’ve smoked. In other good news, I also think the regular production sizes have gotten better. This is an extremely well-balanced full-flavored cigar that is medium-full in both body and strength. A couple of construction issues hurt the score a bit, but I’d gladly smoke another one and would easily recommend picking a handful up whenever you are in the San Antonio area. I’d also bring some sweet tea with me.