After a year off, La Flor Dominicana’s flagship limited edition cigar returned late last year. The Small Batch line began in 2006, and has been released every year since then, other than a two year absence from 2008-2009 and a one year absence in 2014.
In 2006, La Flor Dominicana introduced this first Small Batch, the company described the release to Patrick Lagreid in 2014:
We began experimenting with growing our own wrapper in the early 2000′s, namely Sumatra seed Dominican. The problem back then, and today to a lesser extent, was that the success rate on our wrappers was minimal, only allowing for ‘small batches’ to come out of the farm every year. The LG small batch series truly is as the name suggests, a very small batch of a very special tobacco, the most special tobacco we grow.
The latest incarnation in the Small Batch series is composed entirely of Dominican tobacco—including a pelo de pro wrapper—that came from the 2009 crop and was grown at the company’s fields in La Canela. The release comes in a 6 3/4 x 52 toro extra vitola that carries an MSRP of $21 and is sold in boxes of 105, with only 250 cabinets produced.
There have now been seven releases in the Small Batch line.
- Litto Gomez Diez Small Batch No. 1 (7 x 52) — 2006 — 200 Cabinets of 105 Cigars (21,000 Total Cigars)
- Litto Gomez Diez Small Batch No. 2 (6 1/2 x 54) – 2007 — 285 Cabinets of 105 Cigars (30,000 Total Cigars)
- Litto Gomez Diez Small Batch No. 3 (6 3/4 x 52) — 2010 — 285 Cabinets of 105 Cigars (30,000+ Total Cigars)
- Litto Gomez Diez Small Batch No. 4 (7 x 52) — November 2011 — 250 Cabinets of 105 Cigars (26,250 Total Cigars)
- Litto Gomez Diez Small Batch No. 4 Oscuro (7 x 52) — June 29, 2012 — 100 Cabinets of 105 Cigars (10,500 Total Cigars)
- Litto Gomez Diez Small Batch No. 5 (6 3/4 x 52) — December 2013 — 238 Cabinets of 105 Cigars (25,000 Total Cigars)
- Litto Gomez Diez Small Batch No. 6 (6 3/4 x 52) — December 2015 — 250 Cabinets of 105 Cigars (26,250 Total Cigars)
- Cigar Reviewed: Litto Gomez Small Batch No. 6
- Country of Origin: Dominican Republic
- Factory: Tabacalera La Flor S.A.
- Wrapper: Dominican Pelo de Oro
- Binder: Dominican Republic
- Filler: Dominican Republic
- Length: 6 3/4 Inches
- Ring Gauge: 52
- Vitola: Toro Extra
- MSRP: $21 (Boxes of 105, $2,205)
- Release Date: Dec. 1, 2015
- Number of Cigars Released: 250 Cabinets of 105 Cigars (26,250 Total Cigars)
- Number of Cigars Smoked For Review: 3
The Litto Gomez Small Batch No. 6 is covered in a dark reddish brown wrapper that is quite smooth to the touch, although there are a significant number of small bumps running up and down its length. There is a bit of give when it is squeezed, and I can feel a couple of soft spots under the band, but they are not bad enough for me to think they will cause any issues. Aroma from the wrapper is a combination of creamy oak, cinnamon, leather, earth, baker’s spices and dark chocolate, while the cold draw brings flavors of the same creamy oak, earth, espresso beans, dark cocoa, leather and nutmeg sweetness.
The Litto Gomez Small Batch No. 6 starts off the first third with immediate flavors of both espresso beans and marzipan sweetness, both of which are quite aggressive on the palate. There are others notes in the background, including gritty earth, creamy oak, dark fruit and yeast. I notice quite a bit of both black pepper on the retrohale and spice on my tongue for the first 20 puffs or so, but it eventually calmed down and leveled off. After cutting the cap with a straight cut, the draw is excellent, and while the burn is nowhere close to razor sharp, it has not needed to be touched up as of yet. Smoke production is well above average — even when the cigar is resting—and the overall strength ramps up early, easily hitting a point close to medium by the time the first third comes to an end.
Both the black pepper on the retrohale and spice on my tongue begin to dissipate noticeably as the second third of the Litto Gomez Small Batch No. 6 begins, allowing more flavors of oak, almonds, dark fruit, leather, espresso, bitter dark cocoa and tobacco. The marzipan sweetness from the first third has also morphed, becoming more of a maple syrup note that becomes stronger as the second third burns down. Construction-wise, the draw remains excellent, and although the burn does wander a bit, it is not bad enough to have to touch up yet. The strength hits a solid medium just after the halfway point, and although it continues to climb, it barely makes it over the medium mark, although it is still rising.
The profile of the Litto Gomez Small Batch No. 6 becomes even smoother in the final third, with dominant flavors of aged oak, baker’s spices along with other notes of dark chocolate, bread, dark fruit, almonds, gritty earth and hay. While there is a bit more black pepper on the retrohale, the sweetness level has remained about the same, and still tastes of maple syrup, along with an interesting cinnamon note added. The burn line has really gotten off track, forcing me to touch it up a couple of times, but the draw is still excellent. The strength does increase compared to the second third, but still does not come close to hitting the full mark before I put the nub down with about an inch left.
- The box for the Small Batch No. 6 uses an Arabic number to indicate the release instead of a Roman numeral, despite the fact that the secondary band uses a Roman numeral.
- The cabinets these cigars come in are huge, and not something that the normal cigar smoker could even come close to finding room for in a humidor. Having said that, I have always loved that about this release, as I think it really sets it apart from most other cigars.
- The ash is bit of a strange situation: while it was not overly flaky, it tended to fall off at odd places, thus the reason I don’t have a full shot of the cigar ash for the first third photograph. Just be aware that the ash could fall at any moment if you are smoking this cigar.
- While I am not usually a big fan of secondary bands, I am thrilled that LFD added one to this release for showing which release it is. Past incarnations have either not had any indication of which one it is other than the size (No. 1 , No. 2 and No.3), had a small Roman numeral on the side of the band ( No. 4 and No. 5) or a secondary band (No. 6.)
- Each of the six releases in the Small Batch series has been a 52 ring gauge other than the Small Batch No. 2, which bucked the trend and was one size larger at 54.
- The 6 3/4 x 52 vitola is by far the most popular in the series, three different years coming in at that size: No. 3, No. 5 and No. 6.
- The final smoking time for all there samples was just under two hours.
- The cigars smoked for this review were purchased by halfwheel.
I always look forward to the Small Batch series, as I find them to be very well blended and nicely constructed. Compared to previous years versions I have smoked, the Small Batch No. 6 is both noticeably sweeter and creamier on the palate, as well as a touch more complex. The profile does shift significantly after the first third, losing both the pepper on the retrohale and spice on the tongue that was present, allowing more maple sweetness and other flavors to emerge. Construction was fantastic overall, with very few problems in the burn or draw, and the smoke production is well above average for the whole time. This is one of the best versions of the Small Batch series I have smoked, and there is no doubt in my mind they will age wonderfully.