Sancho Panza Double Maduro Cigar Review

Today I’ll be smoking a Sancho Panza Double Maduro cigar in the ‘Lancero’ size. This is not the first time I will have smoked this cigar. In fact, spoiler alert, it is one that I enjoy quite a bit and happen to stock regularly.

This particular cigar was purchased online at JR Cigars. I ordered a box back in April of this year and had been smoking them on and off throughout the summer. However, I first learned about this fine cigar a few years earlier while visiting a not-so-close-to-home cigar retailer. I walked in and had asked the tobacconist to recommend something based on my preferences at the time. Needless to say… he nailed it.

Cigar Logistics

Originally getting their start in Cuba in the 1850’s Sancho Panza cigars were later introduced back in 2001 as being Honduran. Experienced cigar maker Estelo Padron is the one behind the creation of the Double Maduro line, which follows the cigar’s previously released and well-received Natural line.

Sancho Panza Double Maduro is truly a dark, square-pressed gem. Its popular three-nation blend is wrapped in an extra-dark Connecticut broadleaf, making it a robust and earthy type of smoke. Furthermore, four of its frontmarks scored 90 or better in Cigar Insider Magazine – a publication from the editors of Cigar Aficionado. It is said to be an excellent maduro cigar at a solid value price, and I would obviously concur.

Additionally, here are a few other noteworthy details:

Made by: Estelo Padron

Size: Lancero

Length: 5.25″

Ring Gauge: 54

Wrapper Color: Oscuro

Wrapper: Connecticut Broadleaf

Binder: Connecticut Shade

Filler: Honderous, Nicaraguan, and Dominican Republic

Strength: Medium-Full

Body: Medium-Full

Price: $2.98

The SP Double Maduro is available in four additional sizes, to which I have tried most. I’ll be enjoying the Lancero option today, but smokers can also choose from:

Cervantes: 6.25″ x 44

Escudero: 7.25″ x 54

La Mancha: 5.5″ x 44

Quixote: 4.5″ x 50

Setting the Mood

I’m a runner and just one hour ago I completed my last race of the year – a local 3 mile “Turkey Trot” where I finished 13th in my age group and in the top 10% overall. Since this is only my second year of running and my first year of actually competing, I wanted to celebrate this accomplishment with a fine cigar.

Additionally, I should also mention that today is Thanksgiving, which in itself is a fine reason to celebrate too. My wife, son, and I are already enjoying the holiday with my wife’s family. I’ve stepped out to enjoy a Sancho Panza Double Maduro as well as a beautiful fall day before heading to the dinner table to gorge on Turkey and sides. I love life.

Cigar Review

Pre-Light

My first impression of the SP Double Maduro ‘Lancero’ is that it’s a dark cigar. There’s a generalization in the cigar world that states the darker a cigar is the stronger it is. In most cases, I have found this to be true. However, spoiler alert once again, this double maduro isn’t as strong as it leads on.

A quick inspection of my cigar found a lot of tiny veins. The wrapper is dark and oily, and the cigar features a very thin, conservative looking band with its name front and center in an oval setting… an almost overly modest appearance if you ask me. I clipped the head using my Xikar X3 guillotine cutter and took a quick draw. My pre-light draw did field a tiny bit of resistance, but nothing major. I tasted leather notes as well as some sweetness which I categorize as being similar to dark chocolate.

One last thing worth mentioning is that upon clipping my cigar the cap fell off. This happens to me every time I smoke this cigar, and I’ve read other reviews citing this as an issue as well. If this happens to you, don’t fret as it appears to be a consistent issue with construction.

First Third

Lighting my cigar was both quick and easy. The burn is excellent. It’s straight and letting off a lot smoke and an overall woody aroma. I also want to mention that I am still finding a slight resistance in the draw, which, I can say is a normal characteristic of the Sancho Panza Double Maduro.

With regards to flavor, this cigar provides a sweet, medium bodied experience thus far with strong notes of leather, dark chocolate, and nut. The smoke on the intake is smooth, cool, and dry.

Second Third

Two-thirds into this cigar and not much has changed in any department. SP Double Maduro is providing a medium and rich experience that is full of dark chocolate and nut flavors. Frequent notes of leather are also noticeable. The stick is still pushing out a lot of great smelling smoke that I absolutely enjoy. And, more importantly, I’m really enjoying my overall smoking experience.

I’m having zero burn issues at the moment, and the slight resistance in the draw is still present.

Finish

I am no longer experiencing resistance in my draw. While smoking cigars I tend to roll the stick between my thumb and index and middle fingers naturally, and I’d assume this is likely what helped to loosen up the tobacco here in the end.

The SP Double Maduro finished medium as promised and present throughout the cigar. I tasted more dark chocolate and nut flavors with the additional notes of leather here and there. Also present in this final-third was a slight spice that sort stings the tip of the tongue. I wouldn’t say that the spice is over-powering by any means or anything to be concerned with, but it does make itself known and wasn’t present previously. I always find this to be interesting. Once again, the cigar produced a hefty amount of smoke and an overall enjoyable aroma of woodiness.

Cigar Rating

After smoking a Sancho Panza Double Maduro Lancero, I am confident in giving this cigar a score of 24 out of 30 and a rating of “Very Good.” Here are my notes:

Appearance: 1  2  3  4  5

Burn: 1  2  3  4  5

Construction: 1  2  3  4  5

Draw: 1  2  3  4  5

Taste: 1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10

Total Score: 24

Rating: Very Good

Summary

SP Double Maduro is a consistent, great tasting smoke with low-medium complexity. I tasted dark chocolate, nut, and leather flavors throughout my entire smoking experience, and found the smoke and aroma of my cigar to be very pleasurable. While this blend is marketed as medium-to-full bodied, I have no problems calling it just medium.

Additionally, at under $3.00 per stick this is definitely a great value, everyday type of cigar. In fact, I prefer to stock these for the golf season and smoke them on the course. They’re cheap and consistent, and even though I set it down on the ground to take my swings, I have yet to have a single burn issue. For these reasons alone, the Sancho Panza Double Maduro is both box and humidor worthy.

In the end I scored this cigar at 24. As much as I enjoy smoking them, I simply can’t ignore the few minor appearance, construction, and draw issues that always seem to occur. Furthermore, I also found it necessary to dock it a few points in the taste department. While it does have a rich dark chocolaty flavor, the cigar overall lacks in complexity… which is something I have grown fond of as a cigar smoker. Overall, however, this cigar gets my stamp of approval and has earned its “Very Good” rating.

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