They may not happen at every performance, but when an encore is given people get stoked. Musicians are notorious for it. They take a minute at the end of the set, some people chant for the beloved encore, we all wait for it, and then they show up on stage again and the crowd roars. It's a magical moment. Ernesto Perez-Carrillo is a musician too, he just makes music with tobacco. The masterpiece La Historia was a big hit with consumers and received high marks with critics. The show wasn't over though and he delivered an encore named, well, Encore! The Majestic vitola won Cigar of the Year in 2018 by Cigar Aficionado and rated 96. Spoiler Alert: It was well deserved!
Cigar: E.P. Carrillo Encore Majestic
Origin: Dominican Republic
Factory: Tabacalera La Alianza, Santiago
Size: 5 3/8 x 52
What a gorgeous looking cigar. The smooth wrapper screams quality and the seams are nice n' snug. There is an oily spritz over the entire wrapper that gives it a nice sheen without feeling like an oil rag. I had 3 cigars to compare while doing this review and a couple of the caps could have been more meticulously placed. They hold up though, so no harm no foul I guess. Oh and did you see the band picture above?! Forgetaboutit. The thick, quality band has classy copper trim and adorned with two women on the sides. It's suggested one is Ernesto's grandmother and the other his daughter. The Perez family crest along with the Carrillo family crest are also included. An Encore look if I ever saw! I did however have 1 cigar that had the band on so loose that it had to come off immediately. "Who cares" to some, but it still chaps my bum a little. That one instance aside, ba-boom, it's a bangin' looking cigar.
The draw starts off perfect. This is a huge factor to me. A bad draw can make the whole session a hassle with tinkering and Encore purrs just right. I used a conservative straight cut and it was on point until the final third. A couple quick pokes (without removing any tobacco) and it was up & running just fine.
Giving this a 7 was a bummer. The ash held up for the most part, but it was a disappointing the number of times I looked down to see ash flakes that made their way to my shirt. At a couple points the ash was splintering. All 3 of the cigars used for the review needed some babysitting with the cherry. If I wasn't stopwatching the intervals it would puff unevenly, which would require me to give it the torch touchup. Grabbing the fire so often became annoying. I would imagine that the volume at which EPC has to pump these out has something to do with that. The blend is a masterpiece; I just wish the construction was too.
1/3 - Off the starting line are notes of fresh cut wood, molasses, and a mild spiciness. Inch or so in there are some more milder notes that poke through like hickory and floral. Are you a fan of Golden Grahams? I am, and I got dry Golden Grahams at the close of the first third.
2/3 - The first third's dryness comes to an end and cream notes become very noticeable. The dash of sweetness that comes with the cream is quite delicious and up front. Trailing behind are cinnamon and leather notes that flirt with bold.
3/3 - Molasses reappears but with a more charred characteristic. The sweetness has vanished and been replaced with roasted nuts, branded leather, and hickory still doing its thing. The final third wraps things up with a bolder profile than it did the previous two thirds.
This blend is bound to be a classic, if it's not considered one already. Wonderful presentation coupled with a complex flavor profile that has noticeable transitions. It's a cigar that can be enjoyed any time of day and leave you satisfied. A box purchase of these would not be a bad call in my book.
**Number of cigars smoked for the review: 3