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Short Cuts: Viaje And EPC White Label Piña

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Love of all things cigars, craft beer, IPA's (any beer). Follow me on Untapped @Toar Campbell. Writer, reviewer, founder cigarsmoke.net
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Viaje And EPC White Label Piña

 

 

 

 

 

 

A cigar industry veteran has collaborated with someone much younger in the business. Longtime cigarmaker Ernesto Perez-Carrillo is making a limited-edition cigar for Andre Farkas called the Viaje White Label Piña. 

Farkas, who owns the Viaje brand, is no stranger to collaborative cigar projects, as he’s teamed up with companies like Quesada Cigars and PDR Cigars in the past. This time, he turned to Perez-Carrillo of EPC Cigar Co

The word piña translates to pineapple in Spanish, and there’s a pineapple icon stamped onto the outer lid of the box.

 

 

The cigar features tobacco from Mexico, Ecuador and Nicaragua with magnetic enclosures housing the wheels of 24. After over a year in the making, these limited edition Viaje’s are now finally available. Piña is a concept that originated in Hawaii and was well worth the wait.

 

It’s a cigar that features tobaccos from Mexico, Ecuador, and Nicaragua. Piña is available in two sizes: 

 

  • Nohea: 5 x 54
  • Makana: 6 x 52

 

Via Andre Farkas FB Page

“During my many trips to Hawaii, I’ve noticed how welcoming and warm the people are.  So much so, I wanted to offer a cigar which celebrated these sentiments. The pineapple, often associated with Hawaii, seemed like the perfect image. The fruit symbolizes warmth, welcome, friendship and hospitality.  Similarly, cigars often function as the catalyst that brings people together. With this idea Ernesto and I blended Piña. We hope you enjoy”.

 

 

APPEARANCE

 

The Mexican San Andrés wrapper is dark chocolate brown in color, toothy with notable seam and vein. Rolled in the Robusto Nohea format it has a wide open foot and a rounded cap.

The band on the Viaje Pina is typical White Label Project, matte white with “VIAJE” in straight black font with a circular black line around the circumference. Pre light aroma had notes of woody cedar, leather and sweet tea. The cold draw produced flavors of mocha, cocoa bean and earth.

 

 

FIRST LIGHT

  • WARM CHOCOLATE OFF THE TOASTED FOOT
  • Bitter Orange Peel
  • Coffee/Black
  • Cinnamon
  • Dark Chocolate/Bitter
  • Wood Chip/Char
  • Leather
  • Black Pepper/Med
  • White Pepper on the retro no evolution of flavor

CRUISE CONTROL BURN

  • FLAVORS HAVE TURNED TO MILD SWEETNESS
  • Toasted Graham Cracker
  • Cocoa Bean
  • Raw Cinnamon/Light Char
  • Rich Cedar
  • Roasted Nuts/Salted
  • Coffee/Light
  • Orange Peel/Light Citrus
  • Mild Spice/Black Pepper
  • White Pepper/Full on the retro evolving into a light dusting of Black Pepper

FINAL THIRD

  • THE STRENGTH PROFILE HAS AMPED UP
  • Charred Cedar
  • Coffee Grounds
  • Spicy Aftertaste in between draws
  • Chocolate/Dark with Glazed Pepper
  • Walnuts/Raw
  • Black licorice/Mild
  • Leather/Cream
  • Black Pepper/Med-Full
  • A Sting of White Pepper through the nose on the retro evolving into nuances of Caramel

CONSTRUCTION/STRENGTH

  • CONSTRUCTION: Solid
  • BURN: Slightly uneven but always correction itself by the end of cruise control
  • ASH: Dark/Whitish/Grey Compact holding past the inch point
  • CUT: V Cut all 4 examples
  • DRAW: Wide Open/Perfect Resistance
  • RE LIGHTS: Zero, Burn Line Touched Up. Excellent Combustion
  • STRENGTH: Solid MEDIUM bodied, FULL Flavors

SUGGESTED PAIRINGS

 

 

CONCLUSION

 

“Andre is very creative and he has a unique model of going to market with his brand,” said Perez-Carrillo, who has been in the cigar industry for more than 30 years. By comparison, Farkas has owned his Viaje brand for 10 years. The Viaje Pina is by far my favorite White Label project. Tasty, extremely balanced with a myriad of full toasty flavors.

The cigar transitioned through each stage perfectly with the flavors increasing during the final duration. The construction was solid despite a slightly crooked burn line. Straight medium bodied FULL on flavor that pairs perfectly with morning coffee or afternoon/evening beer.

 


Cigars for review: Purchased

Cigars smoked for review: 4

Cigar Smoke rate: 91

Size: 5 x 54: Nohea (Robusto)

Wrapper: Mexican San Andrés wrapper

Binder: Ecuadoran

Filler: Nicaraguan

News source: Cigar Aficionado

 

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