Earlier this year, Mombacho Cigars S.A. announced that it would be bringing one of its older blends to select retailers in the U.S. under the Liga Maestro name.

The Nicaraguan puro uses tobaccos from Condega and Jalapa. It was created in 2012 by Claudio Sgroi, Mombacho’s master blender, and Stefano Bertini of B.L.S. Sigari in Milan, Italy.

It’s offered in three sizes.

Liga Maestro vitolas

  • Liga Maestro Petit Corona (4 1/4 x 44) — $8.95 (Boxes of 12, $107.40)
  • Liga Maestro Robusto (5 x 50) — $9.95 (Boxes of 12, 119.40)
  • Liga Maestro Piramide (5 1/2 x 52) — $10.95 (Boxes of 12, $131.40)

Only a dozen accounts were selected to receive the cigar, they are:

  • Cigar Hustler (Fla.)
  • Lone Star State Cigar Co. (Texas)
  • Riverside Cigars (Ind.)
  • Nice Ash (Wis.)
  • Havana House (Ohio)
  • Leaf and Bean on the Strip (Pa.)
  • Mom’s Cigar Warehouse (N.Y.)
  • En Fuego Cigars (Nev.)
  • 8 to 8 Cigars (Ill.)
  • Tobaccology (Va.)
  • Smoke Manayunk (Pa.)
  • Smoking Dog (N.J.)

Liga Maestro 1

  • Cigar Reviewed: Liga Maestro Piramide
  • Country of Origin: Nicaragua
  • Factory: Casa Favilli
  • Wrapper: Nicaragua
  • Binder: Nicaragua
  • Filler: Nicaragua
  • Size: 5 1/2 Inches
  • Ring Gauge: 52
  • Vitola: Belicoso
  • MSRP: $10.95 (Boxes of 12, $131.40)
  • Date Released: May 7, 2015
  • Number of Cigars Released: Regular Production
  • Number of Cigars Smoked for Review: 2

There is an obvious resemblance to Partagás with the gold on red bands, albeit, it’s not as egregious as this. The wrappers themselves are dark and the extra-angular cap is interesting. From the foot, I pick up leather, varnish, root beer and some pepper. The cold draw of the Liga Maestro is a bit more common with lots of leather, roasted nuts, bread and black pepper.

In many ways, the start of the Liga Maestro is quite similar to the cold draw with nuttiness, toastiness, bread and a mild pepper. The one significant difference is that there is a large berry flavor on the back end. As the cigar progresses, it changes fairly dramatically with a sweeter cold brew coffee flavor, nuttiness and a huge sea salt note. It manages to balance out well, although the finish is odd: parsley, saltiness, peanut butter, a more generic coffee, sweet chocolate and oak. The burn is not so even on the start, but it works itself out. I do wish the draw was a bit more open, which presumably would help the smoke production.

Liga Maestro 2

The second third of the Liga Maestro is much nuttier than the earlier parts. The sea salt is still there, along with sugar cookies—which makes the profile a bit more enjoyable. The finish has came down a bit with the nuts, chocolate, peanut butter and oak forming to a calm mixture. Unfortunately, the burn needs a touch-up and the draw is still not where I would like it to be. It’s medium-plus all the way around, but the Liga Maestro seems to be getting a touch fuller.

Liga Maestro 3

For much of the latter half, the sea salt seems slightly reduced after taking each puff. That most certainly continues, but it’s also still very much there. Herbal flavors, including the early parsley, along with a mint make there way into the final third. It’s not the greatest upfront profile, but the Liga Maestro redeems itself with a deep and hearty finish highlighted by nuttiness and herbs. Unfortunately, it also needs a final touch-up.

Liga Maestro 4

Final Notes

  • The first half, particularly the first third, was great flavor-wise. Unfortunately, the second half left something to be desired.
  • Mombacho Cigars S.A. sells its cigars in the U.S. under the Tierra Volcan name because Casa Fernández/Tabacalera Tropical owns the rights to the Mombacho name.
  • I would appreciate the band being a bit lower on the cigar. I don’t cut off much, but there’s once again the annoyance of my lips touching the band.
  • The touch-ups were annoying and I probably would have done a bit more if I wasn’t reviewing the cigar.
  • Cigars for this review were sent to halfwheel by Mombacho Cigars S.A.
  • The Liga Maestro took one hours and 40 minutes.
  • Site sponsors Cigar Hustler and Lone Star State Cigar Co. (972.424.7272) have the Liga Maestro Piramide in stock.

Update — The original version of this article indicated that Mombacho Cigars S.A. was distributed by RoMa Craft Tobac. It is no longer distributed by RoMa Craft Tobac.

80 Overall Score

Burn issues aside, I enjoyed the Liga Maestro. It was neither the richest, nor most complex cigar I’ve smoked this year, but it was rich and complex enough. My largest complaint is that, flavor-wise, the cigar seemed to fade after a stellar start. It’s been a while since I’ve seen that much of a downward linear trend in the flavor portion of my scoresheet, and that’s not great. I haven’t smoked the rest of the sizes, but I’m wondering if a simpler vitola could help out the construction issues I had—which scoring-wise proved to be the downfall of an otherwise good cigar.

Charlie Minato

I am an editor and co-founder of halfwheel.com/Rueda Media, LLC. I previously co-founded and published TheCigarFeed, one of the two predecessors of halfwheel. I handle the editing of our written content, the majority of the technical aspects of the site and work with the rest of our staff on content management, business development and more. I’ve lived in most corners of the country and now entering my second stint in Dallas, Texas. I enjoy boxing, headphones, the Le Mans 24-hour, wearing sweatshirts year-round and gyros. echte liebe.