In 2018, Joya de Nicaragua introduced a new limited edition brand to commemorate the company’s 50th anniversary in business. Carrying the somewhat appropriate name of Cinco Décadas—which translates to five decades from Spanish—the line debuted with a pair of sizes that Joya de Nicaragua says were amongst the first two sizes rolled by the factory when it opened in 1968: Diadema (6 x 54) and El General (7 x 50).

More sizes have followed in the years since, and each vitola has been named for prominent figures or events in the history of the company. For example, as noted above the Diadema celebrates one of the first vitolas produced at Joya de Nicaragua’s factory, while the El General was named to commemorate the pioneers of tobacco in the country of Nicaragua. In addition, the El Fundador vitola was released as a tribute to the founders of Joya de Nicaragua, while the El Doctor release was named after Dr. Alejandro Martinez Cuenca, who purchased the company in the early 1990s. The El Embargo—a release for non-U.S. markets—recognizes the embargo that the United States placed on Nicaragua in 1985 which pushed the company into European markets.

Late last year, Joya de Nicaragua announced the newest addition to the Cinco Décadas line named El Cumiche, which is a Spanish term referencing “the young ones” that is meant to recognize the next generation of the company’s leadership. The 5 1/2 x 50 robusto extra is packaged in boxes of 10 and carries an MSRP of $20 each.

Joya de Nicaragua never disclosed the exact details of the cigar’s blend, but it is described as mostly Nicaraguan and comprised of some of the company’s best tobacco.

  • Cigar Reviewed: Joya de Nicaragua Cinco Décadas El Cumiche
  • Country of Origin: Nicaragua
  • Factory: Fábrica de Tabacos Joya de Nicaragua S.A.
  • Wrapper: Not Disclosed
  • Binder: Not Disclosed
  • Filler: Not Disclosed
  • Length: 5 1/2 Inches
  • Ring Gauge: 52
  • Vitola: Robusto Extra
  • MSRP: $20 (Box of 10, $200)
  • Release Date: 2022
  • Number of Cigars Released: Regular Production
  • Number of Cigars Smoked For Review: 3

The combination of a soft box-press and a deep, dark chocolate brown wrapper covering the Joya de Nicaragua Cinco Decadas El Cumiche makes the cigar extremely attractive from a visual standpoint, even with the noticeable amount of mottling that is present. There are very few overt veins on two of the three cigars—one has almost none at all that I can see—but my first and last cigars each have a small soft spot on the left side. Aromas from the wrapper include creamy earth and almonds, followed by nutmeg, leather, barnyard, dark chocolate and a hint of vanilla extract. A strong scent of cocoa nibs leads the notes emanating from the foot, along with light pistachios, tobacco leaves, dry hay, generic wood and slight raisin sweetness. Finally, after a v-cut the cold draw brings flavors of almonds, earth, dark chocolate, citrus peel, black pepper, oak and more raisins sweetness.

The El Cumiche starts off with some obvious spice on my tongue as well as a creamy almond flavor, both of which continue to be part of the profile during the entire first third. After about 10 puffs, the creamy almond flavor is joined by a distinct nutmeg note. That combination is followed by secondary flavors of oak, powdery cocoa nibs, leather tack, roasted espresso beans and a slight citrus peel flavor that comes and goes. Meanwhile, the retrohale is full of both black pepper and a sweetness that instantly makes me think of orange slice candy—more on that below in the Final Notes section—although there is definitely more of the former than the latter so far. Flavor starts off with a bang at medium-plus, body is just below medium and the strength hits a solid medium just as the first third comes to an end. In terms of construction, there are no issues with either the draw or the smoke production on all three cigars, but one cigar does run into enough of an issue that it needs a quick correction with my lighter to keep on track.

A noticeable increase of spice on my tongue starts the second third off. That, along with a combination of creamy almonds and oak, takes over the main spot. Secondary notes of cocoa nibs, hay, toasted bread, earth, leather and light cinnamon flit in and out at various points. While the amount of black pepper on the retrohale remains constant, the orange slice candy on the retrohale has morphed into a graham cracker sweetness that continues through the second third. Flavor increases slightly to medium-full, body hits a solid medium and the strength increases to medium-plus. Construction-wise, two cigars get into burn trouble early on in the third and need to be rescued with corrections, but the draws and smoke production continue to give me no problems.

While the combination of oak and creamy almonds easily remains the top flavor in the El Cumiche’s profile during the final third, there is more of the oak than the almond compared to what was present in the second third. Other than an obvious increase in the amount of earthiness, the secondary flavors have not changed much, with toasted bread, powdery cocoa nibs, dry hay, cinnamon, roasted coffee beans and leather all getting their chance in the sun. There is a bit less black pepper on the retrohale, but the graham cracker sweetness remains at about the same level. Flavor remains at medium-full while both the body and strength increase to just over medium and medium-full respectively. While all three cigars continue to feature excellent draws and copious amounts of smoke production, two of the cigars once again need a minor correction each with my lighter before I put the nubs down with about an inch remaining.

Final Notes

  • I spent pretty much the entirety of my childhood living in countries outside of the U.S., but my family would return to visit our relatives in rural North Carolina every summer. When I stayed at a specific grandmother’s house, I would often sit and watch cartoons on her old television with one station—Voltron was a particular favorite show, as I recall—and snack on a couple of candy orange slices like these. The sweetness I noted on the retrohale in the first third reminded me of that flavor.

  • I absolutely love the art and writing that has been printed on the inside of every band.
  • This is one of those blends that gets bitter quickly if you puff too hard or too fast, so my advice is to take it slow and easy.
  • The Cinco Décadas line finished #1 on The Consensus in 2018 and #6 on the 2019 Consensus, while the El Doctor vitola took eighth place in halfwheel’s 2020 Top 25 awards.
  • I was a bit surprised at the number of burn corrections these cigars needed—it has been fairly rare for a Joya de Nicaragua product to have issues like this—although it should be noted that all of the corrections were minor in nature.
  • I found the El Cumiche vitola to be quite a bit stronger than either of the other two sizes I have smoked, including the El Doctor.
  • Joya de Nicaragua advertises on halfwheel.
  • The cigars smoked for this review were purchased by halfwheel.
  • Final smoking time averaged a fairly quick one hour and 39 minutes for all three cigars.
  • If you would like to purchase any of the Joya de Nicaragua Cinco Décadas El Cumiche cigars, site sponsors Atlantic Cigar Co. and Corona Cigar Co. have them available on their respective websites.
89 Overall Score

Rich and nuanced, the Joya de Nicaragua Cinco Decadas El Cumiche is full of flavors that just about everyone will probably enjoy. From the main flavors of almonds, oak and nutmeg to the sweetness on the retrohale that transitions from orange slice candy to graham crackers the final two thirds. However, this will not be mistaken for a mild blend anytime soon, as the combination of close-to-full strength and ever-present spice and black pepper—on the palate and the retrohale respectively—does get a bit overwhelming in the final puffs. If not for the burn issues in two cigars, the El Cumiche would have easily continued the Cinco Decadas line's impressive feat of scoring 90 or better in reviews. 

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Brooks Whittington

I have been smoking cigars for over eight years. A documentary wedding photographer by trade, I spent seven years as a photojournalist for the Dallas Morning News and the Fort Worth Star Telegram. I started the cigar blog SmokingStogie in 2008 after realizing that there was a need for a cigar blog with better photographs and more in-depth information about each release. SmokingStogie quickly became one of the more influential cigar blogs on the internet, known for reviewing preproduction, prerelease, rare, extremely hard-to-find and expensive cigars. I am a co-founder of halfwheel and now serve as an editor for halfwheel.