The Short Report with Tony Short – Bahia Icon Presidente ErnestoAuthor: Marty Klausmeier | Filed under: The Short Report with Tony Short
By Martin Klausmeier, Managing Editor
(Editor’s note: Our good friend Tony Short continues his overseas deployment, until his return, you’re all stuck with me. – M.K.)
The Bahia Icon Presidente Ernesto is a nice looking cigar, no doubt there. The striking chrome and black band highlights a deep, espresso brown wrapper giving the cigar a very classy appearance. But, the Icon is not just about looks, it goes much deeper…
Beginning with the nearly oscuro, 6 year aged, Jalapa Valley raised Nicaraguan wrapper the Icon is all about well-aged, well balanced tobaccos. Beneath this exquisite wrapper is a 12 year aged Nicaraguan binder, and at the core of it all is a 12 year aged, all Nicaraguan filler blend. Taken as a whole, the Bahia Icon exemplifies what can be done with the highest quality tobaccos.
The Presidente Ernesto, a 7” x 52 Double Corona named for La Gloria Cubana creator, Ernesto Perez-Carillo, is one of three vitola that comprise the Bahia Icon line. The cigars are produced by Tabacalera Fernandez in Esteli, Nicaragua.
Now, you may recognize the name there… We’re talking about the same Tabacalera Fernandez started and run by Abdel J. Fernandez, one of today’s hottest blenders. A.J. Fernandez is the nephew of tobacco growing legend, Nestor Plascencia, and he brings a wealth of tobaccos to the blending table. Fernandez also studied under Cuban cigar master, Alejandro Robaina, quite possibly the greatest tabaquero of all time.
All of this cigar mastery has been brought together in the cigar created by Tony Borhani of Bahia Cigars and young A.J. Fernandez, the Bahia Icon.
The cigar’s wrapper, in addition to being an incredible color, demonstrated some oil with few veins and a slight tooth. The foot revealed nicely bunched collections of tobaccos and had a slightly sweet smell to it. The cigars were wrapped smoothly in a left-handed fashion. The caps were slightly flattened and expertly applied. Both cigars cut easily using my Xikar Xi1 grip style cutter and lit beautifully with a single jet, torch lighter.
The opening salvos from the Icon Presidente Ernesto delivered a woody aroma with a bit of spice through the nose. The spice drifted back as the cigar moves through its first few inches but never quite disappears, in fact, at times it roared back, if for only a few moments.
The burn of the Presidente was flawless and continued to produce predominately woody aromas with a slightly tangy and occasionally salty finish. The tastes from the Bahia Icon were those classically Nicaraguan; leathery, slightly sweet, and deep. The cigar maintained a medium to full body throughout, although the tastes and aromas increase and diminish, providing an interesting smoke.
As I smoked the Icon President Ernesto that I had for this review, I was constantly impressed with how well balanced the aroma and taste profile of this cigar was. While not overly complex the Bahia Icon delivered constant, often subtle changes which kept my attention focused.
Considering the age and source of the tobaccos used in the production of the Bahia Icon, I shouldn’t be surprised by the harmonies achieved. However, the Bahia Icon Presidente Ernesto did surprise me. The Icon is the first Bahia cigar I’ve smoked and honestly, I was a bit unsure what was in store for me. I was impressed with the high quality construction of the cigar and its great burn, enticed by the blend, and overall with the Icon’s ability to keep me entertained for a full one and one half hours.
A very good cigar worthy of a try for any lover of full bodied Nicaraguan cigars.