After having a long career in the tobacco industry that included a very successful time with Altadis USA, José Seijas retired from the company in 2012. That retirement didn’t last long, as his next venture was one he went into with his sons, Enrique and Ricardo. That venture was Matilde Cigars, which wasn’t just a new brand, but the Tabacalera Matilde factory to make his cigars at as well. His return in 2013 saw a slightly delayed product that didn’t hit shelves until early 2014. That line was the Matilde Renacer, debuting in four sizes.

Matilde Oscura

The follow-up to the Renacer is the Oscura, which was announced in July of this year, and was to be shown off at the 2015 IPCPR Convention and Trade show. Launching with three sizes, it was shown off in the Quesada booth, which had recently taken over distribution of the Matilde brand.

  • Matilde Oscura Corona (5 1/2 x 44) – MSRP $7.50
  • Matilde Oscura Robusto (5 1/4 x 50) – MSRP $8.00
  • Matilde Oscura Toro Bravo (6 1/2 x 54) – MSRP $8.50

Matilde Oscura Corona 1

  • Cigar Reviewed: Matilde Oscura Corona
  • Country of Origin: Dominican Republic
  • Factory: Tabacalera Matilde
  • Wrapper: Mexican San Andrés
  • Binder: Sumatra
  • Filler: Dominican Republic, Nicaragua & U.S.A.
  • Length: 5 1/2 Inches
  • Ring Gauge: 44
  • Vitola: Corona
  • MSRP: $7.50 (Boxes of 20, $150)
  • Release Date: Oct. 7, 2015
  • Number of Cigars Released: Regular Production
  • Number of Cigars Smoked For Review: 3

The Oscura’s medium brown wrapper while beautiful, looks a little rough and sure enough has a fairly coarse feel to it. When squeezed it is firm without too much give, appearing to be very uniform as far as the construction goes. The aroma off the wrapper is a very bright hay note along with a touch of grains and a graham cracker sweetness. The cold draw is quite different, with a vegetal, almost green olive note up front, with some spice and earth following it.

Starting out the first third there is a rich, peppercorn and meaty note that leads the pack, followed with some earth, burnt sugar and a touch of espresso. The burn starts out and continues very spot on even. Dense ash does a good job of holding on to around three quarters of an inch. About an inch and a half in the peppercorn bite has died down, though the meaty note is still quite strong. Added along with the earthiness, burnt sugary sweetness and dark roasted coffee beans, it makes for an interesting profile so far.

Matilde Oscura Corona 2

The second third continues with much the same profile of meatiness, earth, burnt sugar and some roasted coffee beans. The burn continues to be impressively even, not needing any assistance from me in the least bit. While the draw is on the tighter side of ideal, it is still well within the acceptable range, but as such there isn’t a ton of smoke production. The peppery bite has died down to just a minor background note, though added to the meaty richness it makes it more like a nice salt, pepper and coffee rubbed, wood-fired steak. There is still a touch of sweetness going on, but not as much as it had been.

Matilde Oscura Corona 3

The final third doesn’t see much change, still powering forward with the meaty steak profile. Just when the burnt sugar had seemed to die down, it returns in a steady, but minor background note. With about an inch and a half left, the burn continues to impress, not needing any help from me the entire time. As the cigar wraps up, the meat, salt, coffee, earth, pepper and sugar wrap it up nicely without getting harsh or hot.

Matilde Oscura Corona 4

Final Notes

  • All three samples smoked almost completely identical.
  • While the Renacer bands kind of blended in to the wrapper color, the Oscura’s green and gold bands really pop against the dark brown wrapper, creating a visually pleasing look to the whole cigar.
  • I love the corona size, and it worked well with this blend. I haven’t had the chance to try the other sizes, but I’ll be interested to see how they compare.
  • The construction was seriously impressive through all three samples. Touch ups were completely unnecessary and the burn line was just a little short of being sharp and even.
  • As mentioned at the beginning of the review, Quesada Cigars had taken over distribution of Matilde before IPCPR 2015, so Matilde was part of the Quesada booth, which we covered here.
  • The cigars for this review were provided by Matilde Cigar Co. Quesada Cigars advertises on halfwheel.
  • Final smoking time averaged a little over an hour and a half.
  • Site sponsors Atlantic Cigar Co., Lone Star State Cigar Co. (972.424.7272), Serious Cigars, STOGIES World Class Cigars (713.783.5100) carry the Matilde Oscura.
91 Overall Score

Going into this with the expectation of a bolder follow up to the Renacer, I was greeted with just that. While I wouldn’t put the cigar at more than a medium-full in the strength department, the flavors really bring that strong profile that was advertised. The rich meatiness that ran from beginning to end lead the profile nicely, with flavors that complimented it nicely, adding to the richness. Construction was really on point, impressing me throughout each sample with its consistency. The Oscura is a fantastic addition to the Matilde line up, and one I wouldn’t hesitate suggesting you seek out and try yourself.

Brian Burt

I have been smoking cigars since 2005 and reviewing them as a hobby since 2010. Initially, I started out small with a 50-count humidor and only smoking one or two cigars a month. Not knowing anybody else that smoked cigars, it was only an occasional hobby that I took part in. In March of 2010, I joined Nublive and Cigar Asylum, connecting me with many people who also shared an interest in cigars. Reading what they had to say about brands I had never heard of, I quickly immersed myself in the boutique brands of the industry and it was then that cigars transformed from a hobby into a passion.