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Written by Puff Staff

Friday, 15 March 2002

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ratings and scoressancho panza
sancho panza valiente
Our second Staff Review experience with Sancho Panza this month is the "Valiente", a box-pressed robusto. Our second Staff Review experience with Sancho Panza this month is the "Valiente", a box-pressed robusto. The Valiente was also highly regarded by the editors of CA, receiving a "91" rating. Some parts of this review may seem redundant if read after the Caballero review, but bear with us. In the looks department, the Valiente is again box-pressed, and a "valiant" attempt (couldn't resist!) at a Padron knock off. Not to imply that all box pressed cigars are Padron copies, but when you first open the box, and take a look at these cigars, they do remind you of the Padron "thousands" series. The Sancho Panza Valiente is summed up in the beauty department with the following observation, "2 or 3 years ago, the Sancho Panza Caballero would have been a real “looker”. A nice dark wrapper with a moderate box pressed shape. But today there are more box pressed cigars than ever in the market. At first sight, the Sancho is just one more." It's difficult to debate that the quality of the Valiente is much more than its price would justify. It's firm to the touch, and feels "juuuuust right" to quote Goldilocks...who was not one of our guest reviewers this month. In fact, on the subject of guest reviewers, here's a great quote on the quality of this cigar. "The Valiente is supple to the touch, but not as firm as say a Fuente Don Carlos. There was a noticeable pre-light aroma, a preview of things to come. The cap looks clean and neat. I used a cutter and the pre-light draw was almost perfect" So far the Valiente is lining up a bit better than the Caballeros did, and that trend continued with the flavor reviews. "The Valiente is a medium strength smoke. But I think the big story is the taste. The initial draw or two is strong, actually a little harsh, then smoothes out fairly quickly. This cigar has a very full, mouth filling taste with some spiciness that is hard to describe. The taste stays with you until the next draw. Not a bad characteristic as long as you like the taste." Even the reviewers who were down on the Caballeros, lightened their criticism on the Valiente. Everybody who reviewed it felt they got their money's worth, which is tough not to do on such a inexpensive smoke. The reviews of the Valiente varied a bit, primarily in the flavor arena. Most felt it was a cigar on the stronger side of the spectrum, while their were a couple folks noting a weakness in flavor. So what does this all prove? Basically that cigar reviews are very personal. The 5 editors who smoked 1/2 a cigar at CA loved it. Our folk who smoked two cigars each thought it was good, but not of the caliber CA did. Everyone did agree that the Sancho Panza Valiente is worth trying. Vital Statistics: Shape = Robusto Length=5 1/4" RG =50 Wrapper=US Conn Shade Filler = DR, Hon, Nic Binder = US Conn Brdlf Estimated Cost = $3.40



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