Emilio AF Suave
The Emilio AF Suave, AF stands for A.J. Fernandez who blended this cigar for Emilio cigars. Suave is Spanish for smooth or elegant. A little bit of the back story on this cigar. Gary Griffith went down to Esteli to meet up with A.J. Fernandez to finalize this blend. When he got there, he realized that A.J. had actually finalized it for him. He gave him a couple of options with the Connecticut wrapper and Gary chose the blend that would eventually become the Suave.
He was looking for a Connecticut wrapper that would stand out and show complexity, yet be enjoyable to even the most novice of palates. I’ve been somewhat hit or miss when it comes to Connecticut wrappers. There are some that blow me away, and others that I wasn’t a big fan of. I can completely understand what he was looking for when he said he wanted something that wasn’t one dimensional. So let’s see if he found what he’s looking for, or is he more like Bono
Don’t forget to check out the contest at the bottom!
The Emilio AF Suave should be fairly easy to spot in your local B&M’s humidor. The wrapper is a nice silky light brown even tannish cigar. Connecticut wrappers are so thin and supple and that typically makes it difficult to cover the cigar with them. However, when it’s done correctly you get a thing of beauty, and that’s exactly what we have with this cigar. I love looking at Connecticut wrappers, they typically are very light in color and can usually be picked out rather easily.
The band on this Emilio AF Suave lacks the artistic flair that I prefer in cigar packaging. To me, Emilio has made leaps and bounds in their packaging as they continue to improve their entire line. Personally, I’m a big fan of packaging if it doesn’t reach out and grab me then it makes it hard for me to want to pick it up off the shelf. If I had not heard so many great reviews about this cigar previously, I don’t know if I would have picked up based on packaging alone. As Gary says “The Tobacco Drives the Process”. So I’ll cut him some slack on the design of the band on this one. I’ve been fairly nice to him over the last couple of reviews and I’m sure he won’t mind me taking a couple of pokes at him here :).
The band is fairly simple, it’s a white background with the AF in black font and the “Suave” in a lighter gray font that is somewhat difficult to pick out in the pictures. Like I said, nothing too outlandish or eye grabbing, but it gets the point across. I do have to say this is a BIG cigar. It’s a Toro, standing at 6″ tall and a 50 RG. I used to be a fan of these big cigars, now I enjoy smaller vitolas. Occasionally I’ll bust out a big stick, but usually a corona or a corona gorda is the perfect size for me.
In the classic parejo shape this Emilio AF Suave feels like a very solid cigar. I rolled it between my fingers, and I wasn’t able to detect any soft spots in the filler. The wrapper had a few large veins running down through the barrel. If the wrapper had not been a Connecticut wrapper chances are you wouldn’t have been able to see them. But because those wrappers are so thing some of these veins are more pronounced that others.
Taking a look at the foot of the cigar it looks slightly box pressed. Maybe that’s just from sitting in my humidor. But the rest of the cigar doesn’t feel like a box press it appears to just be around the foot of this stick.
The wrapper on this cigar was again placed perfectly. It appears that they know what they’re doing down there in Esteli. They can sure apply some wrappers to these cigars. Man, you can barely see the seam on it. In fact I had even more trouble finding the seams of the triple cap. Maybe my eye sight is going out on me from looking at this computer too much! Either way this cigar is constructed beautifully.
I went ahead and decapitated this cigar so that I could test out the functionality. Whewwweee, the dry draw on this stick was is very similar to the Quetzal. Just an incredible draw, absolutely perfect and very little resistance! I’ll have to tell you right now. I’m ready to light this baby up!
I went back to using my lighter today. It was a bit windy outside and I figured my matches would have trouble lighting so I just went for the trusty torch. I honestly didn’t even take time to toast the foot. I just went right in and started puffing and rotating this Emilio AF Suave to the flame. I’m always amazed at the lack of smoke from these Connecticut wrappers. When you go from smoking something like the Liga Privada #9 to this it’s a huge change of pace.
The first third of this stick smoked like a dream. Great draw, great pace of the burn, and even a nice ash! What more could you ask for? The entire cigar smoked like this all the way down to the final third. I ended up stopping this cigar a little before the nub because it had already been 1.5 hours of smoke time. I figured that was enough to get a good estimate on what this cigar had to offer.
Talk about flavor! This Emilio AF Suave brought some flavor the party. The flavors weren’t overpowering, but there were a lot of them. On the pre light draw there I picked up a nice sweetness that offered some hints of nuttiness as well. The foot offered up more sweetness and that molasses smell that I always seem to pick up.
During the first third I’m blasted with pepper on the finish. It caused my tongue to tingle. With the retrohale I was picking up more of the overall nuttiness, but it finished with spice. I had a feeling this cigar would go really well with some coffee. I wasn’t able to pick out all the flavors from the retrohale. It seemed like more flavors were there, but I wasn’t able to pick them all out.
The second third of this Emilio AF Suave brought in some complexity. The spice really picked up, especially on the retrohale. I was still getting a lot of the creaminess and nuttiness overall. I started picking up some woodsy / oaky notes and a slight hint of cocoa. It almost feels like the tale of two cigars. I feel like the first third was similar, but still very different from this second third.
In the final third, there was a lot more of the same as the second third. The complexity was there, and the cigar really opened up. Like I said before I didn’t take it all the way down to the nub, but I doubt the flavors changed too much in what was left.
I would classify this Emilio AF Suave as a mild-medium body in strength, and a medium body in flavor. It has a ton of flavor, but it’s not overwhelming either.
Would I Buy It Again?
Ehh, potentially. I liked the flavors it provided, but I wouldn’t say I was wowed by this cigar. It was a great cigar, just not something that I’ll go jumping after all the time.
Is It an Every Day Smoke?
It certainly could be. For me it would have to be a much smaller vitola though. This toro is just too big of a cigar to smoke on a regular basis for me.
Would I Buy a Box?
You certainly can, I think it would go well with coffee and bring out lots of interesting flavors.
Overall, this Emilio AF Suave is a great cigar. It has all the great things that I love about a cigar. Tons of flavor, great burn, great draw, honestly, everything you want in a cigar. However, it just didn’t really wow me and make me want another one. I’ve never been a big fan of nutty tasting cigars and maybe that’s why I didn’t like it as much. I can’t take any points off because a ton of great things. It’s just not in my personal wheel house of flavors. I suggest you try it though and see for yourself. You never know you may like the taste of nuts!
Contest: Ok so I’m giving away a 5 pack of everything I smoke this week for #EmilioCigarWeek!
How do you enter? Simple. Leave a comment below on each post. Every comment left is an entry to the contest (Limit 1 per day)! Super easy, now go do it.