Some time ago, CAO Cigars ran a promotion called Last Stick Standing. The premise of the promotion was simple, 3 cigars marked simply with a C, an A, and an O respectively were available to customers in 3 pack tins. After smoking each, a customer could go to a special website set up to vote on which was their favorite of the 3 different blends. Whichever blend received the most votes would become the next CAO release. It proved to be a great idea, with thousands upon thousands of people participating and allowed you, the consumer, to choose one of CAO’s releases. Fast forward to today, and one of those releases is upon us, in the form of the new CAO Hurricane. The Hurricane is based on the blend from Last Stick Standing marked O, the darkest and possibly heaviest of the 3 test samples. Released in 10 count boxes as a limited edition of just 3000 boxes, the Hurricane could be a formidable addition, albeit not regular, to the CAO lineup. Coming in just one size, a 6×54 toro, be sure to check them out before they are all gone. Now onto the specifics of the CAO Hurricane.
Size: 6 x 54 Toro
Price: $7.50/stick or $69.95/box of 10
Appearance: The CAO Hurricane has a milk chocolate colored wrapper with a slight oily sheen and some small veining throughout. The band is a simple black and red motif with a gold foil border and just a symbol to represent Hurricane. Nowhere on the band does it state Hurricane, however there is a secondary band that simply states CAO. The cigar is firm and feels very nicely filled, though not hard and overfilled feeling. The foot on the sample I will be smoking has a noticeable dark spot of ligero in the center, making me wonder just how strong this cigar may be. The seams of the roll are tight and only somewhat visible, a sign of what should be good construction. The cap is neat and tidy as well, another good sign.
Pre-Light Aroma: The foot of the CAO Hurricane brings to the nose a sweet white pepper smell, causing a bit of a tickle when smelling it. Behind the spice I pick up some notes of hay, cashew, and baking cocoa. The dry-draw is somewhat loose and provides a nice combination of the sweet white pepper flavor and cashew on the tongue. The darker wrapper led me to expect a much earthier and sweeter flavor than what I am picking up before I light the cigar, a nice surprise. The spice causes a slight tingle on the lips as well, something I always enjoy due to the flavors of the wrapper being so apparent.
The CAO Hurricane starts off with a thick, chewy cloud of smoke with a very earthy profile. Highlighted by a distinct oak and almond earthiness, each puff lingers on the tongue for quite some time after letting the smoke leave the palate. Through the nose you can pick up more of a cocoa sweetness along with the white pepper I was able to pick up through the nose before I lit the cigar. There is a slight transition once into the cigar about half an inch to a slightly sweeter profile on the tongue, though not heavy enough to be specific. The draw stays easy and open and the burn line straight as a razor. The ash is a nice white color and while slightly flaky, holds for 3/4 of an inch before I tap it off. This definitely reminds me of the O in the Last Stick Standing promo though seems a bit heavier than I recall the O being, more medium-full, even this early into the cigar.
The 2nd third continues with the earthy profile carrying over from the first third all while picking up a nice bitter espresso flavor to complement the earthiness. The spice also comes through a hair at the back of the palate. The strength has stayed a steady medium-full to this point, definitely strong enough to notice though well balanced and not overpowering. While letting the cigar rest I pick up an aftertaste that reminds me of dark chocolate covered coffee beans, very sweet and delicious. The burn line gets a little wavy into this third but not out of control, never needing a relight or touch up. The smoke remains thick and chewy in the mouth and the aroma is pleasant and sweet while resting in the ashtray. The flavors do a nice job of mixing it up between the earth and sweetness through multiple puffs.
Into the final third and the flavor has really become a heavy espresso hit. The spice stays on the back of the tongue and the strength has crept into the full-minus realm to finish. The sweet finish on the CAO Hurricane is nice after being so earthy dominant throughout the first two thirds. I love having a cigar that starts earthy and finishes sweet, it is a nice way to end the experience. This blend is a great example of CAO lead blender Rick Rodriguez’ palate and blending expertise. Rick went through a 5 year training program with cigar Icon Benji Menendez to hone his blending craft and the CAO Hurricane is a great way to showcase that training. If you would like to order, feel free to give us a call at 800-669-7167 or order online at CigarKing.com.
Cigar King Staff Quotes:
Mitchel: “The team at CAO did a great job on the Hurricane. Great flavors from start to finish.”
Josh: “Rick and his team put together a winner with the CAO Hurricane.”
Joe: “Sweet in all the right places, with a nice strength profile to complement the blend.”