When dedicated cigar fans think about the places that play a part in our treats, our thoughts usually fall to locations like Cuba, Dominican Republic, Nicaragua, Honduras, and a few others. After all, these are the countries where most of the cigars are made, and thus these places make the bulk of our conversations of origin. But the tobaccos making up these cigars don’t always have to be grown in the aforementioned locales. In fact, the United States has a long history of growing cigar tobacco. That is what gives the Florida Sun Grown (FSG) cigars from Drew Estate a unique flavor aw well as a link to the little known history of United States cigar tobacco.
Florida Sun Grown Toro
Size: 6 x 52
Origin: Nicaragua (Drew Estate)
Wrapper: Mata Fina (Brazil)
Binder: Habano (Honduras)
Filler: Corojo (Florida, U.S.A.), Nicaragua
In addition to the Toro size reviewed here, the FSG by Drew Estate is also available in a 5 x 54 Robusto (MSRP $11.50), a 6.5 x 54 Belicoso (MSRP $14.00), and a 6 x 60 Sixty (MSRP $15.00). All are sold in 20-count boxes. The FSG line was released by Drew Estate in 2016.
The FSG Toro has a rich and deep brown color, like dark chocolate. The ones I purchased all had some over-use of vegetable gum that had dries on the wrapper. While this was not pretty, it did not affect flavor or performance. The foot has an intense smell of pepper and an interesting sweetness. Those same notes are present in the slightly snug cold draw.
As I start to burn this cigar, black pepper comes in a bit heavy but then mellows into the background. Most of the flavors are cocoa, and some toasted wood. I also get some nice sweetness and some coffee on the finish. Had I been sleepy, the retrohale would have awakened me immediately. It was bold and spicy with plenty of pepper.
When the middle of the cigar is reached, some new hints start to drop. Dark flavors like licorice, dark sugar, and something that reminds me of dried fruit. It has some nice unique characteristics, and lots of big smoke on each puff. The burn goes a little crazy, but a little correction with the lighter takes care of it. The retrohale does get a little bit more mellow, but only a bit. It is still forward with black pepper and hints of sweetness.
As the cigar closes out, black pepper, cedar, and dried fruit are at the forefront. But something new comes in that is utterly unexpected and different. It reminds me of old hay, or manure. That may sound unpleasant but it has a nice earthiness that complements the sweetness and spice. The retrohale has more of that so-called ‘barnyard’ aroma, but also with the ever present black pepper note.
When approaching this cigar, it is best to go in with the understanding that it is surprising. Of course, it’s still a premium cigar with the flavors one would expect from a Mata Fina wrapper, but it brings a real unique flavor that I have to believe is a result of the Florida Sun Grown tobacco. Jeff Borysiewicz, owner of Corona Cigar Company, and the farmer of this Florida tobacco, should be proud of this cigar. While it is not for the faint of heart, it is bold and unique, and should absolutely be considered for a place in anyone’s humidor.
FSG Toro – How Bout That Cigar?
Rating: How Bout A 5er?
Overall Score: 88
Flavor Summary: Black Pepper, Dried Fruit, Cocoa, Toasted Wood
Strength Assessment: Medium-Full
Source: Cigars for this review were purchased by HBT Media LLC