Years ago, when Christian Eiroa sold Camacho to the Davidoff-Oettinger group, many suspected it would just be a matter of time before he was back behind the reins of a cigar maker. In 2012, that suspicion came to fruition when Christian launched Tabacalera Unidas, a conglomerate of cigar manufacturers all under the same roof with Christian being the common thread. Companies like Asylum, Wynwood and Edgar Hoill all fit under the Tabacalera Unidas umbrella, joining Christian’s namesake brand, CLE. CLE is simply Christian’s initials and for him represents the pride in his family namesake and their history in the cigar business. Launching in 3 blends, today we will be looking into the CLE Connecticut, the mildest offering under the CLE badge. Using a blend of Honduran fillers held together with a Honduran binder and finished in an Ecuadorian Connecticut wrapper, this isn’t your typical mild cigar. Coming in 4 sizes, the robusto will be our subject matter today, so let’s get to it shall we?
Size: Robusto 5 x 50
Wrapper: Ecuadorian Connecticut
Price: $5.95/stick or $133.95/box of 25
Appearance: The CLE Connecticut carries a light, honey colored wrapper that is slightly veiny from cap to foot. There is a slight mottling to the wrapper and a very slight oily sheen as well, though the wrapper is devoid of any tooth. It is smooth to the touch, like silk or velvet. The cigar is soft when squeezed with just enough give and carries no overly soft or hard spots from top to bottom. The construction from a visual perspective appears flawless, a very pretty cigar to look at. The band is a simple one, salmon colored with CLE Connecticut written in silver and 2012 in red, something I find curious as it points to the idea that each release could be a “vintage” release of sorts.
Pre-Light Aroma: When pressed to the nose, the foot of the CLE Connecticut presents a floral bouquet highlighted by notes of rose, sweet cinnamon, and a creamy vanilla finish. The wrapper is much earthier in aroma with a simple leather scent, though very mild and not overly distinct. I clipped the cigar with my Xikar XI1 and found a sweet cream flavor on the lips quite pleasing with the floral like spice really hitting the palate on the dry-draw. The draw itself carries just a slight resistance, perfect for what I typically look for.
Lighting the CLE Connecticut delivers a taste explosion on the palate right off the bat. Cedar, nutmeg and caramel sweetness immediately come to the front of the tongue with a creamy finish lingering on the palate. There is a sweet woodsy note through the nose with a hint of spice as well, though not heavy enough to really put a finger on. The abundance of flavors is wonderful, not overpowering and provides a unique complexity that you don’t often find in milder Connecticut wrapped cigars. The cigar is mild-medium in the strength department right off the bat with no signs of it creeping to any stronger levels. The burn line is even and holds a strong ash, nearly an inch in length before I tap it off as it starts to strain to hold on. The ash is also strikingly white, something I don’t normally note in my reviews, but felt it was striking enough to do so here, almost snow colored as it burns down.
The 2nd third of the CLE Connecticut adds a layer of fruit sweetness, almost akin to a mixed berry jam, into the mix with the still heavy cedar, nutmeg and caramel sweetness. It is an intermittent flavor that comes every 3-4 puffs and lingers ever so slightly on the palate. The nose remains much the same, with the sweet woodsy note still the abundant flavor with a light spice on the finish. The burn line remains optimal, even through the entire cigar thus far without touch up while the ash continues to hold strong for near an inch. Strength wise the cigar has remained mild plus, never hitting the true medium body mark.
The final third of the CLE Connecticut marks a big change in the flavor profile, leaving behind the cedar and nutmeg. The caramel still plays a big part with the added bonus of graham cracker added into the mix. It is a wonderful combination that is a nice change of pace from the first portions of this cigar and adds a layer of flavor that is nice on the finish. The strength remained consistent at the mild plus stage from start to finish allowing the flavors to really shine throughout. While I typically smoke a cigar with a stronger strength profile, this really sat well with my palate. I can see myself enjoying this early in the day with a coffee after breakfast, maybe even just after lunch. It carries a wonderful flavor profile while maintaining a strength level that anyone can hold up to. If you would like to try this cigar yourself, you can order them from us at CigarKing.com or by calling us at 800-669-7167.