Everyday cigars, or an EDC as some of us like to call them, play a key role in the premium cigar industry.
Affordable, flavorful, and plentiful, these cigars are what you reach for when you don't know what to grab in the humidor. Like Sierra Nevada IPA or Buffalo Trace bourbon whiskey, these smokes do not carry nearly as much clout or collectability as limited releases or smaller batch smokes.
But from a cost-to-performance perspective, the EDC is undeniably appealing, especially since there are so many solid options to choose from nowadays.
At just $30 a 5-pack, the "New World Cameroon" by AJ Fernandez is one of these smokes. While some may argue that this price point falls outside of EDC lines, I tend to categorize anything under $8 as a potential candidate for this classification. Your budget might be different than mine though, so if that's the case please consider today's review as more of a weekend BBQ companion sort of smoke.
But the price is just one piece of the overall EDC package. Flavor, performance, and consistency/quality control all play equally important parts. After smoking five of these box-pressed Cameroon cigars from AJF, I can confirm that they are indeed top-tier EDC grade in every way.
Keeping with the rest of the New World line, AJF's Cameroon blend comes packaged with a green double band that mirrors the rest of that portion of the portfolio.
The wrapper is a nice-looking Colorado-colored Cameroon leaf, with the cigar's squat box-pressing ironing out most of its seams or veins. All five sticks were damn near identical to the next in appearance and production quality, so that covers the quality control portion of the puzzle I mentioned prior.
Aromatics are sweet, faintly mulled wine spiced smelling, and quite nutty. There's an aged cedar smell here too that overwhelms me with feelings of nostalgia every time I sm
There is a faint nuttiness to the start of this cigar, and a bit of cedar to keep balance. It is a milder start than one might expect, and it doesn't take long for that Cameroon wrapper to come alive.
Earthy, white pepper kissed, and a little leathery, the first thirty minutes of this sun-grown cigar are very refreshing. Hazelnuts, vanilla, and a faint coffee-like bitterness arrive toward the tail end of the first half, but in a smooth, medium-strength sort of way. The body is mild-medium up to this point, and very enjoyable.
There is a change within the cigar right before the final third that reminds me of roasted chicory milk tea. Strength ascends slightly, and so too does the body of the cigar. The blend becomes more cedar-oriented as well at this moment and offers more traditional, dried nut Cameroon flavors. Touches of vanilla bean here and there, a dash of white pepper, and a splash of sweetness finish the cigar flavor profile out nicely.
Charred cedar staves and a chalky sweetness appear in parting puffs. There's a bit of cereal grain to be tasted as well, and a last belt of cinnamon-forward baking spices to close things.
It's a medium-strength, medium-bodied closing to a really good cigar.
Ash / Burn / Smoke / Draw
Not a touch-up or burn issue to be seen on a single one of the five sticks that I smoked. Draw and smoke levels are outstanding as well, even when the cigar is punched. Just beware of sudden ash drops when burning through this blend.
For habitual stogie smokers, a premium cigar blend doesn't have to be a brain-meltingly amazing experience to be labeled as enjoyable. It just has to be a solid smoke that is fit for any occasion.
The "New World Cameroon" by AJ Fernandez is precisely this sort of cigar.
It's an affordable smoke with enough flavor, balance, performance perks, and consistency from one stick to the next, that it never has the chance to disappoint.
So while it may not be a cigar that will change the way you view or smoke cigars, it will provide that even keel level of enjoyment that comes with a really balanced, medium-bodied blend. A smoke that is perfect for any occasion, and any given day of the week.
AJ Fernandez "New World Cameroon"
5.5" x 54 "Double Robusto" (box-pressed)
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