Coming off the heels of their Cigar Aficionado #1 rating in 2011 for the Prensado, Alec Bradley introduced the Nica Puro at the IPCPR trade show in 2012. Rather than rest on their laurels, they went to work creating their first Nicaraguan puro, working with Nestor Plasencia on the blend to be made at Nestor’s Nica factory. Alec Bradley has long been based out of the famed Raices Cubanas factory in Honduras, creating some of the top rated brands on the market including Tempus, Prensado, Black Market, and many more. Stepping out of that familiar home may have not been easy but they did just that, reaching out to Nestor and creating a blend that is touted as being medium-full but well balanced with big flavors. We are going to test that today, smoking the Alec Bradley Nica Puro in the Bajito size. Let’s see what this Nicaraguan beauty has in store for us.
Size: Bajito 4 1/4 x 52
Wrapper: Nicaraguan Habano
Price: $6.75/stick or $120.95/box of 20
Appearance: The first thing most people notice about the Alec Bradley Nica Puro is most definitely the band. It is an eye-catcher for sure, full of lively, bright colors that create a beautiful design over the cigar. There are 2 bands on the stick, the top band states Nica Puro and Alec Bradley while the sub-band has the number 1685 scrawled on it, the year Esteli, Nicaragua was founded. The cigar itself is a rich, dark brown color with a slightly reddish hue to it, oily and a little rough to the touch. There is some small veining throughout the wrapper but nothing major that looks like it will interfere with the cigar. There is also a slight tooth to the cigar though not as much as I have seen on some other Nicaraguan wrappers. The presentation of this stick is beautiful I must say.
Pre-Light Aroma: The Alec Bradley Nica Puro provides a wonderful bouquet of scents, highlighted by sweet notes of raisin, apricot and earthy undertones. The wrapper is where the earthy notes are much more pronounced, taking over your sense of smell and creating a delightful combo with the sweetness of the foot. Once clipped, the draw is effortless, bringing a load of flavor to the palate. The biggest flavor from the draw is a sweet plum with a red pepper like spice at the back of the tongue. The flavors from the pre-lit tobacco are inviting and enjoyable so let’s light this beauty up.
The Alec Bradley Nica Puro starts off at the medium-full point right off the bat with big flavors of sweet earth with a nice peppery spice both on the back of the tongue and through the nose. Each puff leaves a lingering sweetness on the tongue that keeps you coming back for more. The ash is solid and a stark white color while the burn line is a bit wavy but nothing out of control and nothing that needs a touch up. The amount of smoke on each draw is phenomenal, providing a mouthful of dark, rich flavor from the thick cloud. The draw has remained open and easy through the first third without any issues.
Into the 2nd third of the Alec Bradley Nica Puro and the cigar has solidified itself into the full bodied stratum. The earthy sweetness has been replaced by a dark espresso like flavor while the spice stays prevalent in the same spots as the initial third. The bitter espresso and spice make for a nice lingering flavor on the palate, a sweet and spicy combo that I have come to love over the past few years. The burn line is straight throughout this portion of the Nica Puro and the ash holds the entire third before I voluntarily tap it off. The espresso flavor is so pronounced in this portion, it is hard to find any other flavors in the mouth, but it makes for a delicious middle third of sweetness.
The finish of the Alec Bradley Nica Puro brings the sweetness I smelled on the foot of the cigar to the palate. The rich fruits like plum and raisin I smelled on the foot are now coming through in combo with the espresso flavors from the 2nd third. The spice is now solely relegated to the retrohale with none being discernible on the tongue. The combination of flavors you get throughout this cigar create a nice balance between full flavor and the bigger strength profile of the blend. As much of a roll as Alec Bradley has been on lately it can be a daunting task to create a winning follow-up. Expectations were high on this cigar, and in my opinion, it definitely delivered! If you would like to order the Alec Bradley Nica Puro, give us a call at 800-669-7167 or order online at CigarKing.com.
Cigar King Staff Quotes:
Mitchel: “Nestor Plasencia and Alan Rubin made for a great team on this project. Delicious!”
Josh: “Nestor makes great cigars, Alan makes great cigars. This was no different.”
Gary: “The Nica Puro is full bodied but smooth and flavorful, all you can ask for.”