In general, Arturo Fuente cigars tend to have unusual or engaging backstories, but the story behind the Casa Cuba Divine Inspiration might just take the cake.
But first, a but of history. Introduced in 2013 as part of Arturo Fuente’s 100th anniversary celebrations—albeit a year late—Casa Cuba debuted in four vitolas packaged in boxes of 30: Doble Cinco (5 x 50), Doble Cuatro (4 1/2 x 54), Doble Seis (6 x 52) and Doble Tres (5 1/2 x 44.) According to the company, the new cigars were blended by Carlos Fuente Sr. to have a profile similar to older Fuente releases that included Cuban tobacco, and were composed of an Ecuadorian wrapper covering Dominican tobacco used for both the binder and filler.
The new incarnation was available in just one vitola—a 6 1/8 x 47 corona gorda— and while we know the blend is different from the original release, the company has been less than forthcoming on specific details. The cigar is packaged boxes of 30, and was part of Fuente’s specials at this year’s IPCPR Convention & Trade Show, which are distributed to retailers depending on how much product they purchased at the show. That means that as with the Don Carlos Eye of the Shark, Don Carlos Personal Reserve, Fuente Fuente OpusX Rosado Oscuro, Short Story Maduro and Fuente Fuente OpusX 20th Anniversary, the new Casa Cuba was not able to be purchased individually.
- Cigar Reviewed: Casa Cuba Divine Inspiration
- Country of Origin: Dominican Republic
- Factory: Tabacalera A. Fuente y Cia
- Wrapper: n/a
- Binder: n/a
- Filler: n/a
- Length: 6 1/8 Inches
- Ring Gauge: 47
- Vitola: Corona Gorda
- MSRP: $8.99 (Boxes of 30, $269.70)
- Release Date: 2016
- Number of Cigars Released: n/a
- Number of Cigars Smoked For Review: 3
The Casa Cuba Divine Inspiration is covered in a greenish-tinged brown wrapper that is quite smooth to the touch and features a touch of oil. The cigar is nicely spongy when squeezed, and while there are veins present running up and down the length, they are not overly distracting. Aroma from the wrapper is a combination of barnyard, hay, manure, oak, sawdust and sweet nutmeg, while the cold draw brings flavors of leather, cinnamon, milk chocolate, peanut butter, earth and sweet vanilla.
It starts off the first third immediately after lighting with strong and dominant notes of peanut butter and creamy leather, along with lesser notes of toast, earth, dark and bitter chocolate, ground coffee and a touch of varnish. There is a great nougat sweetness that is pervasive in the profile and really coats your mouth, bringing the flavors together nicely. It also has the perfect amount of white pepper on the retrohale and a tad bit of spice on the lips. Both burn and draw are phenomenal so far and the strength ends the first third at a mildish media, although it is still rising.
The nougat sweetness only gets stronger in the second third of the Divine Inspiration, and although I did not think it was possible, the profile has become even more creamy with the same dominant notes of peanut butter and leather. Other flavors of oak, espresso beans, raisins, cinnamon and hay flit in and out, and while the spice from the first third is long gone, the white pepper on the retrohale continues to be obvious in the profile. Smoke production is above average while both the burn and draw remain excellent. As expected, the overall strength continues to increase and hits a point slightly below the medium mark by the time the second third comes to an end.
The final third of the Arturo Fuente Casa Cuba Divine Inspiration continues the creamy trend with that same wonderful and perfect amount of white pepper on the retrohale, along with the same creamy peanut butter at the forefront of the profile. The nougat sweetness is still very evident—albeit a bit reduced from the huge levels in the first and second third—and other notes of cinnamon, dark chocolate, fresh roasted coffee, leather, licorice, hay and oak are distinct on the palate. Construction-wise, the draw is still wonderful, and the burn finally becomes bad enough to need correcting once. The overall strength does break through to the medium mark right before I put the nub down with about an inch left.
- Usually, a varnish flavor in a cigar is a bad thing, but the note was so slight in the first third of the Casa Cuba that it actually added a bit of complexity to the overall profile. It was never close to a major flavor and was gone almost as soon as I noticed it.
- The greenish wrapper on this cigar is interesting, to say the least. I would call it a pale green, and while it is not overwhelming green, it is noticeable, especially when you look at it on a white background or next to another cigar.
- This new version tastes virtually nothing like the other incarnations of Casa Cuba I have smoked in the past, which is a very good thing, as I found those to be less than engaging.
- As with the first release, the names Arturo or Fuente do not appear anywhere on the band for the Casa Cuba.
- The cigars smoked for this review were purchased by halfwheel.
- The final smoking time for all three samples averaged one hour and 15 minutes.
- If you would like to purchase any of the Casa Cuba Divine Inspiration, site sponsors Corona Cigar, Lone Star State Cigar Co. (972.424.7272) and STOGIES World Class Cigars (713.783.5100).
Having smoked a few different vitolas of the original Casa Cuba blend in the past, I was wondering how the new version would stack up. Turns out, the profile on the new incarnation is better in just about every way, both rich and delicate with an ever-present combination of creaminess, pepper and sweetness that really sets off the rest of the flavors that are present. In addition, the construction was excellent overall, and the amount of strength was perfectly suited to the blend. Whatever they changed in the new Casa Cuba is a very, very good thing, and it is a cigar I will be smoking again.