Published on January 6th, 2014 | by Siz0
Jose Piedra Brevas
Overall this Jose Piedra Brevas is a great cigar. Good flavor, great burn, great draw and a good overall smoking experience. It's hard to beat that for the price of $2.60 a stick.
- Made By:Jose Piedra
- Average Price:$2.6
- Ring Gauge:42
To be honest, I had never heard of the Jose Piedra line of cigars before I received a shipment of them to review. They showed up at my door from SwissCubanCigars.com and I was pleasantly surprised. After I let them rest for a couple of weeks in my humidor I decided it was time to smoke them. So I started digging in and doing some research. According to some sources online this Jose Piedra line of cigars is meant to be the everyday smoke or value cigar. After looking at the price tag of $65 for a box of 25 this breaks down to $2.60 / cigar. I would have to agree with the assessment that this is a value label cigar. However, it’s still a product of Cuba and we all know that Cubans makes some pretty darn good tobacco. So don’t judge the book by it’s cover just yet. This cigar comes in 5 different sizes. I was sent the Brevas line which is 42 x 5.2″. A good sized smoke and shouldn’t take longer than about an hour to get through it. So let’s get into the review and see what this stick has to offer.
The packaging on this box of Jose Piedra Brevas isn’t overly flashy, it’s fairly simple. In one large box came 5 smaller boxes packed with 5 cigars a piece. The dull yellow color on the boxes doesn’t really catch my eye too much, but there is a nice image towards the top of a field worker harvesting tobacco. I’m not sure if this supposed to be Mr. Piedra himself. I couldn’t find a ton of information out there about them. Again this is probably due to the fact that they are more of a value smoke and not a premium line with some marketing behind them.
This cigar looks rough, there are no two ways around it. The wrapper is rugged and veiny. It even has some sun spots on it. I tried to pick the best looking one out of the box that I had selected. The wrapper is a consistent medium brown color, some spots appear to have more oil than others. Definitely not a beauty pageant contender, but again, lets not judge the book by the cover just yet.
The first look at this cigar and I have a feeling that it’s not going to have the greatest construction. Especially knowing that it’s a value cigar. So I didn’t have my hopes up too high for this one. Giving the head and foot a once over I performed the ole pinch test. This Jose Piedra Brevas actually bounced back and had some nice sponginess to it!
I went ahead and nipped the cap. It looks like it’s just a single cap. Nothing magnificent to look at, but it buttons down the hatch on the head of the cigar. I’m testing the dry draw on this stick and I’m actually surprised that it has some nice pull to it. It’s a little tighter than I would prefer, but still reasonable and I can get some air flowing through it.
So now it’s time to put the fire to it. I went with this 3 match method of lighting. I’ve been trying to use that method lately and it’s working really well, so “don’t fix what ain’t broke” is what my momma always said. This Jose Piedra Brevas took right to the flame and started burning quickly. I kept the flame close to the foot to make sure I had a good solid light on it. I didn’t want it to start burning crooked on me. Now that we’re off and running let’s see how this thing smoked the rest of the way!
After a successful lighting of this Jose Piedra Brevas it started smoking perfectly. I had a nice little ash going strong. The initial ash broke off around the inch mark. It’s a nice grey with traces of black rings around it. When it fell off it didn’t splatter everywhere it held pretty strong, which to me is a always a sign of good construction. So even though this cigar is a value line it’s still constructed fairly well from what I’m seeing here.
The second third of this cigar is burning great, very consistent burn line all the way through. Never really see it get wonky or anything. I could never hold the ash over the inch mark though. That seemed to be it’s breaking point. The final third of the smoke was right in line with the first two. Very solid burn, draw, and great overall smoking experience. One thing that I’m always worried about with these value smokes is if I’m actually going to enjoy the smoking experience. For this little cigar I was pretty happy with it’s overall performance.
I’m definitely excited to see what this Jose Piedra Brevas has in store in terms of flavor. Knowing that it’s a Cuban product I’m hoping to get some great flavors out of it. During the pre-light I was checking out the foot and the barrel and I picked a nice sweetness in the aroma, similar to molasses. Following that up with some leather notes.
During the first third the leather was the dominant note that I picked up on, with some hints of cocoa along the way. One thing that I love about Cuban cigars is the smoothness of the retrohale. I’ve always noticed is a nice creaminess to this cigar, not harsh at all. I would have to classify this as a medium-bodied smoke right now, not really building up much strength which is fine.
The second third didn’t bring too much change, just some additional flavors. The leather note was still dominant, but there were some notes of earth and wood peeking through. It added a nice bit of complexity to the overall profile which I appreciate. The final third was more of the same. Not much changed. However, it did begin to develop some bitterness to it so I decided to purge the cigar and see if that cleaned it up. When I began purging it a big orange flame shot out the end of the cigar and burned for quite awhile. So there was obviously quite a bit of a tar build up going on inside. Once I got that build up burned out it, was smoking clean and fresh again. Then a nice solid spice was happening in the retrohale which sent this cigar out on a high note.
Would I Buy It Again?
I suppose so. I think it’s a great value cigar for sure.
Is It an Every Day Smoke?
This could be an everyday smoke. Seeing as how it’s priced at $2.60, it’s hard to get much cheaper than that and still get some quality cigars.
Would I Buy a Box?
Potentially, especially if I was going on a camping trip with some buddies. This would be a good box to get for the weekend.
Overall, I was pretty impressed with this Jose Piedra Brevas. Great flavor, great smoking experience and a great price. It’s hard to beat that! I would put this cigar up against others in a blind taste challenge and I bet that this cigar wins quite a few rounds. So if you’re able to locate some of these Cubans it’s worth picking them up. At this value it’s hard to pass them up. If you’re interested in getting a box click here to check them out!