In early 2022, Scandinavian Tobacco Group (STG)’s Partagas brand launched a new small batch series known as the Partagas Añejo. Añejo brands typically refer to extra-aged tobaccos, and in the case of the Partagas Añejo, the cigar features two aged wrappers intermixed in a barber-pole format. The barber-pole format is something that has not been seen in the Partagas brand up until this point. What is perhaps most interesting is the barber pole combines Cameroon with Connecticut Shade. Cameroon is a wrapper long associated with the non-Cuban Partagas brand. On the other hand, it was only recently that a Connecticut Shade wrapper was introduced under Partagas with the Partagas Cortado. Forged Cigar Company has said the Partagas Añejo will be a seasonal small batch release. At the time of this assessment, the company announced its plans for a second small batch release. Today we take a closer look at the Partagas Añejo in the Petit Robusto size from the first batch released in early 2022.
As many know the Partagas brand traces its roots back to Cuba in 1845 when it was founded by Don Jaime Partagás. The brand was nationalized following the Cuban Revolution and owner Ramon Cifuentes Toriello fled Cuba. He eventually would make his way to the U.S. and would re-launch a non-Cuban version of the Partagas brand produced out of the Dominican Republic. This would eventually become part of the General Cigar Company portfolio. Eventually, General Cigar became a part of STG. In 2021, STG split its premium cigar brands between General Cigar and a new distribution company called Forged Cigar Company. The Partagas brand would move under Forged Cigar Company’s distribution.
Now, we turn our attention specifically to the Partagas Añejo Petit Robusto and see what this cigar brings to the table.
Blend and Origin
According to Forged Cigar Company, the Partagas Añejo features a rare 1998 Cameroon wrapper and a 2013 Connecticut Shade wrapper that make up the barber pole. The remainder of the blend consists of a Dominican binder and a combination of Mexican and Dominican filler. Production comes out of General Cigar Dominicana in the Dominican Republic.
Wrapper(s): 1998 Cameroon, 2013 Connecticut Shade
Filler: Dominican, Mexican
Country of Origin: Dominican Republic
Factory: General Cigar Dominicana
The Partagas Añejo is offered in two sizes. Each is presented in 25-count boxes.
Petit Robusto: 4 1/2 x 49
Esplendido: 4 1/2 x 60 (Figurado)
The visually dominant wrapper of the barber pole of the Partagas Añejo Petit Robusto is the Cameroon wrapper while the Connecticut Shade has more of a pinstripe effect. The colors of the barber pole don’t have a large contrast between them. There were some oils on the surface of the wrapper. In addition, there were some visible veins.
The band to the Partagas Añejo is the same one that is found on the Partagas Cortado. The majority of the band has a mostly red background. On the center of the red background are two large intersecting shields. Above the shields is the text “FLOR DE TABACOS” – in foil. Below the shield is the text “SINCE 1845.” On the far upper portion of the band is the text “SUPERIORERS IMPORTADOS” in red font on a white ribbon. On the lower portion of the band were two white ribbons (on the left and right side) with the text “HECHOS MANOS” in red font. On the lower portion of the red section is the text “CIFUENTAS Y CIA” In gold font. The remainder of the upper portion of the band had gold embellishments on it. There is a white stripe on the lower portion of the band with the text “PARTAGAS” in red font.
A straight cut was used to remove the cap of the Partagas Añejo Petit Robusto. Once the cap was removed, it was on to the pre-light draw experience. The cold draw delivered notes of cedar, natural tobaccos, and cream. Overall this was a satisfactory pre-light draw. At this point, it was time to light up the Partagas Añejo Petit Robusto and see what the smoking phase would have in store.
The Partagas Añejo Petit Robusto opened up with a wide assortment of notes of cream, natural tobacco, earth, cedar, white pepper, and fruit. Early on the natural tobacco notes moved into the forefront and became the dominant note. This wasn’t an overly sweet natural tobacco note, but the notes of earth, cedar, pepper, and fruit rounded out the flavors with spice and sweetness. The cream notes dissipated early. On the retro-hale was a combination of pepper and natural tobacco.
During the second third of the Partagas Añejo Petit Robusto, the natural tobacco notes remained grounded in the forefront There was an increase of both the cedar and pepper notes. Further in the background were the fruit and earth notes. The cedar notes increased at a quicker right before the midway point, but as the cigar moved into the second third, the pepper notes eclipse the cedar notes.
By the last third, the natural tobacco remained the primary note. The pepper and cedar were the next two more prominent secondary notes. There still were traces of earth, and the fruit notes had pretty much dissipated. This is the way the Partagas Añejo Petit Robusto came to a close. The resulting nub was slightly lukewarm and soft to the touch.
The burn of the Partagas Añejo Petit Robusto started out with a straight burn line and straight burn path. As the cigar moved into the second third on each of the samples, the burn became more uneven and was prone to meandering. This resulted in frequent touch-ups to keep the burn on track. The resulting ash was on the firm side and near white in color. The burn rate was ideal. While the burn temperature was ideal for most of the smoke, it became lukewarm in the final stages.
The draw of the Partagas Anejo Petit Robusto performed quite well. It has a touch of resistance – which is something that I like. This was also a low-maintenance cigar to derive flavor from.
Strength and Body
The Partagas Anejo Petit Robusto started out with medium strength and medium-bodied flavors. Both the strength and body did increase in intensity. By the second half, the strength leveled off and remained in the medium range. On the other hand, the flavors did progress into medium to full territory. In terms of strength versus body, the body maintained the edge throughout the smoking experience.
The Partagas Anejo Petit Robusto was a classic “tale of two cigars.” The first half of this cigar was dominated by the natural tobacco notes, but was well-rounded in terms of the secondary notes. By the second half, the burn became more high-maintenance and the flavors became muddled. In the end, while the $6.99 price point is quite attractive, the fact that the second half didn’t perform as well as the first half leads me to say that this is a cigar I would recommend trying first before deciding on whether to purchase or not.
Key Flavors: Natural Tobacco, Cedar, Fruit, Earth, Pepper, Cream
Complexity: Medium Plus
Body: Medium (1st Half), Medium to Full (2nd Half)
Value: Try a Sample
Photo Credits: Cigar Coop except where noted
Originally posted on October 21, 2022 @ 6:18 pm