I am damn excited about this cigar! The first edition of the Private Keep (the Aqua) was outstanding! So good in fact that I rated it the best cigar of 2018! Round 2 the Viaje
Private Keep Tangerine is once again a nica puro, produced at Tabacos Valle de Jalapa S.A. (TABSA) in Estelí.
For those who don’t know, the Private Keep line is part of limited cigar blends Viaje have stashed over the years. Owner Andre Farka says “We are taking our most prized blends that haven’t yet found a home over to Private Keep for release.”
Lets take a look at the stick itself (as best we can….)
So yeah… never much info released about the Private Keep.. but let’s see how it stacks up!
Construction & Burn
Near perfect Construction, let down only by a small blemish in the wrapper that may very well have happened during transport at some stage. Burn is perfect, ash was a little flaky in the first 10 minutes but soon became thick and grey.
I was pre warned about the strength of this stick… it is very much a full strength stogie and not something for the casual smoker. That said, these are FRESH and may very well settle down a bit over time.
For me, I love strong cigars so it was great! If your a fan of the likes of the famously mucked up DT&T TLD thick Lonsdale then this is up your alley.
Flavour & Complexity
Pre light has a lot of natural tobacco flavour and a hit of sweetness. Once lit, there is a plethora of flavours all at once for a moment before settling into a delicious malt creaminess. Hits of sweetness weave throughout, as well as some natural tobacco, leather, Orange and caramel.
Great Complexity! A mixed bag of flavours, perfectly blended together, some really uncommon notes much like there was in the Aqua. These blends seem to be new, unique and interesting and I love it.
Damn! They have done it again. It’s too soon and too big a call to say this is my cigar of the year for a second year but I’m pretty confident it will make an appearance in the top 5!
Both this and the original ‘aqua’ had an x-factor, for lack of a better description, and It’s their uniqueness. They both present something I have not come across before in cigars and in a good way! The ‘smokability’ is fantastic and they keep you hooked and focused on them, bloody outstanding.
I give this stick 97 points. Floating up the top of my picks with the likes of DT&Ts Unicorn, Padron Presidente and obv the Aqua… Get yourself one fast. (Or 5)