Today we will be taking a look at a prerelease cigar from La Aurora who because of their exclusive American distributor Miami Cigar Cigar & Co., fall into this weeks category. Many of you may be familiar with a cigar that came out in 2008 called the La Aurora Puro Vintage 2003, a 7 1/2 x 58 Salomon with an Ecuadorian Sun Grown Wrapper and aged Dominican filler all from the year 2003, hence the name Puro Vintage 2003.

The Puro Vintage 2003 was a good cigar, perhaps a bit mild, perhaps a bit overpriced and perhaps because of there being so many great cigars under $10 the cigar simply didn’t sell that well, in fact you can still find them for under MSRP three years later. I have no way to tell if this was why the project was put on hold, so to speak, for a couple years or if it is because they simply had never planned on releasing them every year.

Whatever the case, at the 2011 IPCPR the La Aurora Puro Vintage project was resurrected with the release of the Puro Vintage 2004, once again a Salomon vitola, this time a smaller 6 1/4 x 52 size, but as with the Puro Vintage 2003, they will be available in boxes of 8 with only 1,000 boxes being made.

La Aurora Puro Vintage 2004 1.png

  • Cigar Reviewed: La Aurora Puro Vintage 2004
  • Country of Origin: Dominican Republic
  • Factory: E. León Jimenes Tabacalera
  • Wrapper: Ecuadorian Habano
  • Binder: Dominican Republic
  • Filler: Dominican Republic
  • Size: 6 ¼ inches
  • Ring Gauge: 52
  • Vitola: Salomon
  • MSRP: $16 (Boxes of 8, $128)
  • Release Date: August 2011
  • Number of Cigars Released: 1,000 Boxes of 8 Cigars (8.000 Total Cigars)
  • Number of Cigars Smoked for Review: 3

The cigar is a gorgeous creation with a soft smooth, slightly oily wrapper. It has a milk chocolate color to it with a slight reddish hue, minimal veins and a tight wrap with visible seams and an open foot. It smells of sweet tobacco, cedar, touch of barnyard and some cocoa. The pre-light draw is full of cocoa, cedar and a wonderful aged tobacco.

Starting off in the first third, despite my usual luck with salomones, the cigar lights up very well, there is a blast of dark chocolate and pepper right out of the gate, not a lot of spice but a dry heat through the nose and on the tongue. There are also subtle hints of cocoa and coffee bean. Halfway into the first third the cigar changes suddenly and gets very smooth and slightly creamy, there are now flavors of cedar, earth, and some spice and pepper. The cigar is medium body with a long finish.

La Aurora Puro Vintage 2004 2.png

Coming into the Second Third the cigar continues from the last with a ton of smooth, mellow flavors but it’s balanced wonderfully with a nice spice and pepper which sort of fades in and out. Definitely rising in body slightly and the finish is ultra long with an earthy, coffee bean flavor.

La Aurora Puro Vintage 2004 3.png

Finishing up in the final third the cigar gets deeper and darker, a lot of dark chocolate, espresso, earth but there is still a smooth cedar mix as well as some spice and pepper creating a wonderfully complex and balanced smoke. The cigar is definitely more medium to full at this point and I am really enjoying it. Excellent construction and draw as well.

La Aurora Puro Vintage 2004 4.pngFinal Notes

  • In comparing this to the Puro Vintage 2003 I definitely found this cigar to be fuller in body, as I recall the 2003 was quite mild to medium and this one definitely hits the upper end of medium throughout the smoke. I found some similarities in the smooth cedar, and slightly creamy aspects of it but all in all this is a much better smoke.
  • These cigars have been aging for years and you can definitely tell, especially in the pre-light aroma, they have a wonderful aged tobacco smell as well as a strong cedar, earthy aroma. You can tell from the pre-light that they are going to be enjoyable.
  • I like the fact that they chose a smaller Vitola this time around, the Puro Vintage 2003 was way too big for my liking and while there are only a few select times you would want to smoke a Salomon that big this one is small enough to be enjoyed anytime.
  • Final Smoking time was one hour 30 minutes.
88 Overall Score

I wasn’t sure what to expect with this cigar, the only thing I had to compare it with was the Puro Vintage 2003 and I remember thinking that cigar was a little too mild for my liking; however this cigar surprised me with its more medium to full body. It took all the flavor of the 2003 but added a new dimension with its increase in body as well as spice and pepper. It’s a more rounded out cigar and I think people will enjoy it; I’m just worried the price will scare people away like the case with the puro Vintage 2003. However I would buy a box of these to enjoy for sure.

Steve Valle

Steve Valle wrote for Smoking Stogie, a precursor to halfwheel, from 2010-2011.