I tell you, dojo, researching the 2014 edition of the Viaje Full Moon has been the most difficult research I’ve encountered to date. Viaje, and its owner, Andre Farkas, have been very tight-lipped about their product. I have been able to find out the 2014 release is, as the 2013 edition was, a Nicaraguan puro that uses a Corojo wrapper. The blend is the same as the 2013 LE. Where the cigars were made is also some kind of secret apparently. I get the impression they were produced in the Raices Cubanas Factory in Honduras, but I absolutely cannot confirm that.
As the name implies, the cigar is a Halloween holiday release (first introduced in 2013) – the 2014 LE is the second year of the line. The 2013 and 2014 cigars actually have only one obvious difference—the 2014 has a skirted/closed foot where the 2013 does not. Even the boxes are intrinsically the same, the only difference there being notation on the boxes as “2013” or “2014”. Farkas also used the same duel band presentation as 2013—one band reading, “Full Moon” and the other “Viaje”. And as was the case last year, this year’s stick was shipped in bundles of 24 with an accompanying empty circular dress box. I believe retailers could also get the cigar in bundles (sans dress box) and save the $35 cost of the box. Though a limited run cigar, I have no idea how limited until further details emerge.
But enough of that, what about the cigar itself? It’s a fat, stubby stick (5 x 58) with a beautiful, oily, mottled, mahogany brown wrapper. The seams are hardly noticeable and the vein structure is well-proportioned. Prelight aroma off the foot is a light barnyard smell. The draw is fairly open, but not annoyingly so. I get a little anise flavor on the pre-light draw, but there really isn’t much happening to start.
Once lit, the cigar opened with a very nice, interesting flavor combination of leather, honey and almonds, balanced by fiery, white pepper notes. The cigar continued on with caramel and sweet cream that was still balanced with a blast of white pepper that was strong enough to sting sharply through my nose. The experience through the first half of this 2014 Viaje Full Moon was nothing short of spectacular—very well-balanced and flavorful.
Into the second half of the stick, the white pepper diminishes, the sweet, nuttiness becomes more subdued, and overall, the flavors regress into the background – leaving light, moist tobacco and leather notes as the main characteristic of the cigar.
So, where does that leave us? Well, I wish the second half of the cigar was as good as the first. The first half was one of the best smoking experiences I’ve had all year. The second half, far from it. The overall strength went from a medium-full back to medium by the band point.
Would I smoke this cigar again?
Afraid not. I don’t like being let down by a cigar. I saw so much potential with this cigar through the first half, only to be disappointed by the second. Tell you what though, if you do get one of these that holds its flavors through the entire cigar, you are in for a treat! That first half was outstanding. So until next time…
– Dojo Mojo, ya’ll!
- Flavorful start
- Sporadic flavors make for an unpleasant 2nd half
- Off-putting cartoonish design