The original My Father cigar debuted in 2008 and was part of an overall transition for the García family as they expanded their operations in Nicaragua. The family’s first factory was El Rey de los Habanos in Miami (where Tatuaje was born and many are still made), later expanding to TACUBA factory in Nicaragua before assembling their pièce de résistance in Estelí in 2009. The facility was dubbed Tabacalera Cubana, later changed to Tabacalera García, and finally My Father Cigars S.A., recognizing the success of the My Father brand—which was the family’s first cigar to make use of tobaccos grown on their own farms in Nicaragua.
Since this time, My Father introduced two more blends under the MF name (Le Bijou 1922 and My Father Connecticut), leading to the fourth—My Father The Judge—at IPCPR 2016 (they have since launched yet another—My Father La Opulencia—at IPCPR 2017).
My Father The Judge is said to be most similar to the original MF cigar, using an Ecuador-grown wrapper and Nicaraguan fillers, cultivated from three of the García’s farms. The brand is differentiated by box-pressed sizes, a focus towards larger ring gauges, and an increase in strength.
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My Father The Judge Toro Breakdown
- Wrapper: Ecuadorian Sumatra Oscuro
- Binder: Nicaraguan Corojo | Nicaraguan Criollo
- Filler: Nicaraguan (García Farms)
- Factory: My Father Cigars S.A. (Nicaragua)
- Production: Regular Production
- Vitola: 6″ × 56 Toro
- Price: $12.10 (MSRP)
My Father The Judge was inspired by a friend of the García family, whom is in fact a judge. The cigars were on display at IPCPR 2016 but did not have a finalized design for two more months, eventually shipping in late fall.
The Garcías have made increased usage of their own tobaccos since planting their first seeds in 2006. My Father The Judge incorporates tobaccos from three García farms (La Bonita Two, El Pedrero and San Rafael) for the cigar’s filler blend. As with all García blends, the cigar showcases a double binder, featuring Criollo and Corojo varietals from Nicaragua.
Maintaining a familiar feel for the MF lineup, The Judge is packaged in stout, stained-wood boxes. On the interior there is a new vista display that has been recreated from an antique, Victorian-era lithograph. The primary band is the same used throughout the MF lineup, adding a new chestnut-hued sub-band that denotes the cigar as “MF THE JUDGE,” as well as an added foot ribbon. This isn’t exactly my favorite look for the brand—yes, the primary band is now a classic, and the foot ribbon and lithograph are nice, but the sub-band is a bit oversized and feels rushed in its design (which, considering the FDA regulations of 2016, it probably was).
The cigar is noticeably chunky and, despite being termed “Toro,” is more of a toro grande. The wrapper has a chestnut brown hue and an overall smooth feel, with a few nicks across the leaf and slightly loose seams. The cigar’s density has what feels like a medium-plus bunch, giving a solid feel to the soft-box-pressed toro, looking almost oval-shaped.
The wrapper aroma is very faint, having a subtle mineral note. There is a bit more to the foot, giving cedar, various nuts, and generic, raw tobacco. A pre-light draw of medium/firm resistance shows white pepper in the back of the throat, some manure/barnyard, and leather.
Dry is the first adjective that comes to mind after the first few smoke-filled draws. The cigar takes its time developing any familiar flavors on the palate, being in the harsh territory with nondescript attributes like burning brush. White pepper eventually joins the fold, backed by an appreciated hint of caramel sweetness. As the pre-light draw hinted, the smoking resistance is on the firm side (7.5/10 if I were to convert it to a scale—5.5 being about perfect in my book). This brings a fairly light smoke output, delivering a subtle spice in the nostrils and a relatively short finish.
This increases before the first third has finished, with a more noticeable smoke output delivering long-lasting nutmeg spice in the retrohale, mineral, baker’s cocoa, and the first real sweetness—toffee candy with nuts. It’s an airy smoke that is hard to wrestle down and pinpoint many individual nuances, catering towards aroma rather than flavor. The cigar performs adequately on construction through this portion, occasionally requiring touchups to correct a wavy burn that can become a bit unruly. The ash is flakey, about medium gray, and seems to last around one to one and a half inches before falling. The overall profile could be pegged at around medium in flavor, strength, and body.
The Judge seems to hit its stride around the mid-section, showing more palate-friendly flavors of caramel milk, pretzel dough, and a more unique (and very noticeable) flavor of nut skins (or nut shells, perhaps) on the finish. These somewhat softer flavors are contrasted by heavy doses of clove in the nostrils, which eventually unfolds into raw peppercorn, mineral, and anise. The smoking experience concludes with one last blast through the retrohale, saving the cigar’s strongest spice for the finale, delivering horseradish that zings through the sinuses.
Would I Smoke This Cigar Again?
Probably not. I really can’t think of an occasion to do so. The story is anything but intriguing, the look is tired, and the smoking experience is vague and airy. I typically find that larger ring gauges showcase softer and airy profiles and The Judge fit the mold. I had hoped that the advertised amped-up strength would combat this tendency, but I could find no signs of that effect. In my experience, the cigar was not strong at all—starting around medium-minus and maybe reaching medium-plus, if I’m being generous.
I can’t say the cigar was bad, but I really don’t envision an occasion where I smoke another.
- Flavor: Medium
- Strength: Medium
- Body: Medium
- Smoke Time: 1 hour, 50 minutes
- Pairing Recommendation: Kentucky straight rye, ginger beer, caramel latte
- Purchase Recommendation: Try 1
- Long burn time
- Good construction
- Harsh flavors at times