In 2016, Perdomo relaunched its Estate Selección Vintage line. Three years later, Perdomo showed off yet another version of ESV with a new look in more than one way.
The line debuted in 2005 as a tribute to the late Nick Perdomo Sr., who passed away the year prior. Perdomo used tobaccos from the 1991 harvest, which Perdomo Sr. purchased in 1995, which helps to explain why the line was often styled as Perdomo ESV 1991.
In 2016 the line returned with a new blend and a much different look, including updated packaging using paper treated with a monofilament and aluminum for a distinctive look. As for the blend, it was now using the first batch of secos from Finca Natalie, named after Nick Perdomo Jr.’s daughter, and had grown to five vitolas in three different wrappers.
For 2019, the cigars are now box-pressed, the first time for the ESV line, along with a new secondary band. For ESV, the company says that only the top 3 percent of its tobaccos are eligible to be selected for the blend. Perdomo Jr. told halfwheel that the 2019 ESV is using not only secos, but also ligeros from the first harvest at Finca Natalie.
In typical Perdomo fashion, there are three wrapper options to choose from: Ecuadorian Connecticut, Nicaraguan Maduro and Nicaraguan sun grown, while the fillers are all Nicaraguan. There are still five sizes, with two of the sizes are offered in gift set packaging options as well.
- Perdomo Estate Seleccion Vintage Sungrown Regente (5 x 54) — $12 (Box of 20, $240)
- Perdomo Estate Seleccion Vintage Sungrown Imperio (6 x 54) — $12.50 (Box of 20, $250)
- Perdomo Estate Seleccion Vintage Sungrown Prestigio (6 1/2 x 54) — $13 (Box of 20, $260)
- Perdomo Estate Seleccion Vintage Sungrown Phantom (6 1/2 x 60) — $14 (Box of 20, $280)
- Perdomo Estate Seleccion Vintage Sungrown Aristocrata (7 x 54) — $13.50 (Box of 20, $270)
- Cigar Reviewed: Perdomo ESV Limited Edition Box-Pressed Sun Grown Prestigo
- Country of Origin: Nicaragua
- Factory: Tabacalera Perdomo S.A.
- Wrapper: Nicaragua
- Binder: Nicaragua
- Filler: Nicaragua
- Length: 6 1/2 Inches
- Ring Gauge: 54
- Vitola: Torpedo
- MSRP: $13 (Box of 20, $260)
- Release Date: November 2019
- Number of Cigars Released: Regular Production
- Number of Cigars Smoked For Review: 3
This is the very pointy version of a belicoso shape, a style that isn’t used very much these days. If you didn’t know this cigar was box-pressed and never considered that it was, I wouldn’t blame you. The cigar itself doesn’t have anything close to a crease, but it is obvious that it is not perfectly circular, particularly once it has been removed from the cellophane sleeve. The wrapper itself is a muddy color, one that fades in with the accents on the tops and bottoms of the bands, though the main parts of the band, particularly the black in the secondary band, stands out. Aroma from the wrapper smells of barnyard, leather and some graham cracker sweetness. The foot is super strong with tons of chocolate flavors, almost like the smell of a chocolate shake, and a bit of a dying fire pit, like the smell 30 minutes after it happened. The cold draw has a sweeter chocolate note and a bit of generic fruits with a tingling of pepper on the back end.
The Prestigo begins with earthiness, creaminess, walnuts and something similar to Nespresso’s Ciocattino flavor. Pretty early on, the main flavor in the mouth turns to more of a pistachio-like flavor, eventually joined by some white pepper, a muted fruity flavor similar to an overly fruity coffee and a bit of peanuts. Retrohales have orange peel, coffee, a watered down bourbon flavor and a pita bread flavor towards the finish. That pita bread flavor is rather distinct, like as if I’ve actually just consumed pita bread, and it’s eventually joined by some peanuts and some fruity sweetness. Flavor is full, body is medium-full and strength is medium-plus. Construction is great through the first third with the draw being as good as can be.
Up until the very end of the second third, the pita bread flavor increases in intensity. I think most of the flavors from the first third are still there, just drowned out, and now joined by a roasted coffee and an increased white pepper. Retrohales are toastier with some lemon, though still very much pita bread-forward. The finish is the one area where the pita bread isn’t present, now a dry flavor profile of nuttiness, creaminess and a bit of spice. Flavor is full, body is medium-full, strength is medium-plus. While the draw continues to be stellar on each sample, touch ups are needed to keep the burn line even.
The final third of the Perdomo ESV Sun Grown seems to be what the second third could have been if it wasn’t dominated by the pita bread. There’s a creamier texture with brighter flavors like lemon, a more refined white pepper and a standalone roasted flavor. Retrohales have more of the familiar coffee and just a hint of the pita bread, though that might be some of the lingering profile. Flavor is full, body is medium-full and strength is medium-plus. Two cigars need touch ups to get to the finish line, while the other sample is able to get there without the assistance of a lighter.
- If you are OCD about using the exact proper name that the manufacturer uses, I would recommend not going to Perdomo’s new website. On the company’s page dedicated to this line there are references to:
- PERDOMO Estate Selección Vintage Limited Edition Box-Pressed
- PERDOMO ESV Limited Edition Box-Pressed
- ESV Box-Pressed
- Estate Selección Vintage
- That being said, Perdomo’s newly redesigned website looks nice, one of the better ones in the industry.
- Technically, this cigar is limited to 953,000 cigars between the various blends and sizes. While that’s limited, that’s about as many cigars as a small factory will make all year long. It’s also limited to 133 retailers nationwide.
- Each of the three cigars I smoked had issues getting out of cellophane. Most of that was related to the main band though on one sample that extended to the secondary band.
- I really like the old Perdomo ESV bands, there’s a nice clean look to them and wouldn’t mind seeing them make a comeback.
- Given some of the combustion issues and the issues with bands stuck in cellophane, I’m guessing that these might have been over humidified at some point. For those wondering, we had the cigars for almost all of December.
- For many years, Perdomo didn’t really do media outside of a few publications. Patrick Lagreid—and by extension halfwheel—has had a relationship with the company for years and the company seems to have certainly made an effort to change its outreach. However, there are still some vestiges of the lack of media. This was the first new Perdomo in quite some time and yet, to my knowledge, no publication wrote a story about its release, likely because the company didn’t really say anything. This appears to be a launch event, or at the very least an event around the time the cigars started shipping, and there’s no way to know that unless you look at the retailer’s event page.
- In case it’s not clear, the lack of media outreach doesn’t seem to be hurting the company one bit and I’ll admit, if I was in the same position as Perdomo was in, I’m not sure I’d make that much of an effort to do media outreach.
- Cigars for this review were purchased by halfwheel.
- Final smoking time was two hours and 15 minutes on average.
The 2019 version of the Perdomo ESV Sun Grown was an example of the types of dynamic profiles I don't recall smoking for most of this year. An overwhelming pita bread flavor isn't for everyone, but I'm all for it here. It was flavorful, balanced and things worked together. If the cigars were overhumidified, the flavors likely were affected—and that could be for the better or worse. A few construction woes notwithstanding, this is one of the better cigars I've smoked all year.