In today’s market, the Nicaraguan cigar industry is such a powerhouse it is hard to imagine a time when it was just a fledgling industry. Truth is, after the revolution in Cuba many cigar families fled, and Nicaragua became a new home for many of those families. When Joya de Nicaragua started making cigars in 1968, little did they know what would come in 2018 and beyond. The Cinco Décadas was made as a very special project to celebrate 5o years of the Nicaraguan Cigar Industry, not just Joya.
In addition to the El General reviewed here, the Cinco Décadas is also made in a 6 x 54 Diadema. Each presented in 10-count boxes.
Joya de Nicaragua Cinco Décadas El General
Size: 7 x 50
Origin: Fabrica de Tabacos Joya de Nicaragua S.A.
When seeing and holding this cigar, it is evident how fitting the name is. It is a generously-sized Churchill and feels well packed and somewhat heavy. The color is a dark reddish-brown that compliments the band nicely. There are some veins popping on the surface, but it is not uneven. The wrapper has a pronounced tooth and oil sheen. When I take a cold draw, it is syrupy and peppery all at the same time, while the foot smells like graham crackers and cedar.
When the smoke starts producing on this cigar, it is plentiful. The draw takes more time because of the length, but no issues with smoke output. Flavors start with some mild spice and dark sugar. Also some cedar notes and coffee. The retrohale is surprisingly smooth, with just a little bite at the end.
This cigar is certainly a slow burner, but shows no sign of going tired. The spice actually starts ramping up in the middle. That is also joined by a defined earthiness, and some dry mineral notes. The spice almost seems to have hints of red-pepper and black, at least the zing is more potent. This all comes with that subtle sweetness still lingering in the background. The retrohale is showing signs of that earthiness as well.
As it winds down, the cedar is back. Some charred wood or charred meat also seems to be there, but doesn’t seem acrid or harsh. The nice sugar-sweetness is coming back to the forefront and is a good balance with all of the spices going around. Sounds crazy, but I even tasted something that reminded me of a cinnamon cookie at the very end. As it closes, the retrohale is frontal with red pepper and cedar.
In total, I have smoked quite a few of these so far, and I can say it is one of the slowest burning cigars I have had, so make sure you clear your schedule before firing this one up. It has a really nice mix of flavors, while still being balanced and approachable. The spice was always there, but fluctuated during the smoking time. It was nice to have different things go in and out of the flavor profile and keep it interesting. I would say this is definitely a proper cigar for Joya to celebrate 50 years of Nicaraguan Cigars.
Joya de Nicaragua Cinco Décadas El General – How Bout That Cigar?
Rating: How Bout A Box?
Overall Score: 91
PAD: +0.0 (What is PAD?)
Flavor Summary: Spice, Earthiness, Sweetness, Wood, Coffee
Strength Assessment: Medium-Full
Source: Cigars for this review were purchased by HBT Media LLC