The name Macanudo Gold fits this cigar to the ‘T’. The wrapper is a golden Connecticut shade leaf with a burl-like gradient and a pleasantly mild aroma. With a snip and a quick, easy light I was ready to go. First impression: smooth. Very smooth in fact, but very mellow. An extremely loose draw made it difficult to pick up any definitive flavors, but I did find one unique characteristic that seemed quite unusual. Ever add a ton of salt and pepper to your plain white rice to make it not so plain? Well, it seems like that’s what was done with this cigar. There was a sweet saltiness to it, a flavor I find common in most candelas. Also, each puff ended with a slight pepperiness, almost like freshly cracked black pepper. These flavors were pleasant, but I wanted more, and so I puffed on into the night. Aside from the flavor, the loose draw also affected the production of smoke. Normally, I feel like I am sitting in a thick, fluffy smoke cloud, I love that. Instead, I felt like I was simply seeing my breath on a cold winter day. After breaking the midway point, I decided to check the washers. I returned to my cigar just shy of 10 minutes later, two loads of laundry are in and my cigar is amazingly still lit. To my delight, the existing sweetness mingled with a twist that I can only explain as citrusy. This didn’t last long, but considering how straightforward and one-dimensional this Churchill has been since lighting, it was a welcome change, no matter how short. On the upside, the ash was light grey and held strong for a good 1.5 inches before I helped it off the cigar each time. Also, the burn was slow and even, and despite my furious ‘puffing pace’, the flavor did not turn bitter or harsh toward the end. In the end, I wanted to nub this cigar, but didn’t see the point. The flavor showed no sign of building or changing, so I decided to put it down with about 2 inches to go and head inside.
That’s about it. Despite the overly loose draw, Macanudo Gold is a good cigar. Consistent in flavor, slow burning, super mild and buttery smooth…one that would appeal to most. That’s why Macanudo is the number one selling cigar in America. However, it doesn’t meet my personal (critical) tastes and I don’t see myself craving one in the immediate future. Gimme gusto…rich, robust layers of flavor complemented by a subtle buzz. Now we’re talking.