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Written by Puff Staff

Wednesday, 26 June 2002

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olivaoliva o omni
ratings and scores
Oliva hits one out of the ballpark with the "O" Omni.

When I think of Oliva, I think of Tony.  Tony “O”, one of the greatest ball players to grace a Minnesota Twins uniform.  Well Tony, we may have stumbled upon a cigar you would be proud to have wear your fabled name.

 

After a somewhat disappointing run of Staff Reviews, the Oliva “O” Omni, a 6 x 46 Grand Corona, surprised our reviewers.  Thankfully it was a pleasant surprise, with only one reviewer remaining on the skeptical side.

 

If you haven’t had a chance to see the relatively new Oliva "O" line of cigars yet, you’re in for a visual shock.  No paper band on these little guys, they’re gussied up for a night on the town.  We’re talking fabric bands!  Just think of what those nicely woven textile bands will do for the taste of these cigars…that’s right, not a damn thing.  Humidor candy for sure, but you also quickly start wondering if the nice clothes are hiding something underneath. 

 

Did we mention these nice looking cigars live in a gorgeous lacquered house?  Well, they do, and this box is worth keeping.  Unfortunately both boxes of our Oliva cigars reeked of varnish, to the point that I thought the cigars would be ruined.  In fact…the founder of T25C and ClubStogie was accused of being a “cigar snob” by his lovely wife, as upon opening the box of Oliva’s I let out an exasperated quote “man, are these things going to suck…they must taste like the inside of a Sherwin-Williams store.”  I stand corrected, and have filed the lesson learned.

 

On to the cigar…by now you figured out the looks are on the “fantastic” side, and this includes the cigar, not just the packaging.  The dark, rich Nicaraguan wrapper was nearly flawless, and only added to the contrast of the aforementioned band.

 

The construction was uniformly praised by our reviewers.  Some of the more amazing quotes we have seen when referring to construction were heaped on the Oliva Omni.

 

“Beautiful, rich Colorado wrapper, nice oily sheen, toothy and perfectly rolled. Hardly a trace of the seam and a neatly applied cap. After cutting the cap, I could see the leaf bunched inside in perfectly uniform little "s" curves. Obviously the work of a master torcedero”

 

“First impressions were confirmed after the lighting, with an even burn and good draw throughout, although it lost a point for a relatively fast burn. Ash was medium gray and relatively tight- not flaky.”

 

The big daddy of rating criteria is obviously taste.  If a cigar performs everywhere else, and fails on taste, it still fails as a cigar.  So with plenty of momentum, the Oliva Omni raced into the tasting criteria.  Unfortunately, the trip was not without some speed bumps.  While most discussions were on the good side…we had a couple of folks remaining skeptical.

 

“But damn...that taste?  This baby burned hot with a bitter taste.  Felt like I started my smoking journey in Newark, N.J.

 

“Very tasty, sweet and flavorful-black cherry???  Long finish, it's an hour later and the taste is still with me.  Very good cigar!!!”

 

This stick has some good qualities, but lacks the balance and roundness of a really good cigar. I wouldn't give up on it just yet. Some time in the humidor might just make a difference.”

 

“There was a strong overtone of aromatic cedar throughout, and the body built up nicely toward the end. The finish was earthy and had some pepper, but not overpowering. If you like a lot of smoke, this baby billows smoke like a house on fire. I would characterize the strength as medium.”

 

We wanted to give the Oliva Omni an “A-“ grade, but some of the taste comments prevented us from doing so.  On the flip side, most mentioned that they believed ageing would help this cigar.  We don’t know about that, but we do know the Oliva line is relatively inexpensive at between $4 and $5 a cigar.  This is a safe bet for your humidor, as this cigar was extremely close to getting that coveted “A” grade.

Vital Statistics
Size: 6 x 46
Shape: Grand Corona
Wrapper: Nicaragua
Binder: Nicaragua
Filler: Nicaragua
Est. Cost: $4.25




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