Written by Puff Staff

Wednesday, 01 January 2014

User Rating: / 2

caocao la traviata angry santa
cao la traviata maduro evil snowman

Just on the cusp of the holiday season, here I am bringing you two very interesting cigars. Namely, the CAO La Traviata Angry Santa and the CAO La Traviata Maduro Evil Snowman. Silly names aside, how do these Winter-themed stogies stack up to my scrupulating eyes? Light em up's cold outside.

CAO La Traviata Maduro Evil Snowman

I love quirky cigars and I love quirky horror movies, so when I saw the artwork for these cigars, I liked the concept, though I wasn't sure how the cigars would actually taste. They reminded me of hokey horror movies like Christmas Evil, Thankskilling, and for some reason, Killer Klowns from Outerspace. That may or may not be good for a cigar brand. But cigars don't always have to be taken so seriously do they? I'd rather have a menacing looking Santa and Frosty the Snowman on my stick than a jolly one any day.

With that in mind, the most noticeable part of the Evil Snowman is the band - which sticks out like four sore thumbs on an aberrant hand. This thing is huge! It features a maniacal snowman glaring angrily at the world and takes up half of the cigar itself - no small feat, consider this bad boy weighs in at a hefty 6 1/2 inches (with a ring gauge of the ever popular 52). The cigar is billed as both a Toro Extra and as medium to full-bodied. They sell in boxes of 14, with only 1,500 boxes in production (21,000 total cigars). Expect to pay a little over $6.50 a stick, or $92.40 a box.

The cigar is constructed of Nicaraguan and Dominican Republic Piloto Cubano filler with a Honduran binder and a delicious (I anticipate) Connecticut Broadleaf wrapper, straight from the good ole' US of A. Formed in the STG Estelí factory out of Nicaragua and part of the La Traviata line from CAO of General Cigars, I am expecting a pretty decent smoke for the buck.

On a side note, this cigar (and the Santa and all La Traviatas) were inspired by the Cuban cigar company of the same name, who made cigars that were renowned for their "Cuban craftsmanship". That company, in turn, was named for an Italian opera based off of an Alexandre Dumas (of Three Musketeers fame) play. To add cartoon characters to such a line does seem to diminish it a bit, but what the hell - its Christmastime.

The Evil Snowman is dark brown and oily with some good veining. It is a little spongy to the touch but overall I would say it is well formed. It has some mottling here and there, or at least what I can make out from what isn't covered by the enormous brand. I smell leather, earth, and (my favorite) chocolate. A pre-lit draw gives up essences of more chocolate and pepper.

Lighting this Snowman Up and making it melt was a pretty good experience. Good draw, a couple touch ups, but nothing out of place. Be careful to tap the ash prior to it reaching the band by the way - it gets pretty close before falling off. Nice amount of smoke.

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