Before I swan dive into this meticulously crafted blend by the Oliva cigar making family, I must speculate on the naming of this blend. As a matter of fact, I have a few alternatives that may tickle the fancies of the branding powers that be. Perhaps they would consider Equator Rare Aged? World’s Goal Line!? The Mason-Dixon Line of Planet Earth Limitada 2014!? Half Planet Habano!? Consider it, ya’ll.
Anyways, this heavily banded treat is densely packed with the finest of tobaccos and you can certainly feel it in the hand. While offered in several different sizes, I choose to review the Robusto size, a 5” by 52 ring gauge delicacy.
The wrapper is dark…well, at least the parts of the cigar you can actually see, as the globe-graphic band covers the entire middle third of the cigar, exposing only a small part of the head and foot respectively. Though it’s not a true maduro, it features a “burnt sienna” type color and has been given the enigmatic title of, “R13E Grade Angel’s Cut”. Apparently, this R13E Grade “Angel’s Cut” wrapper leaf is a Cuban-Seed tobacco grown in Ecuador and, according to whoever writes the product descriptions on our website, “the finest he’s ever seen”. Sounds fancy; let’s see how it tastes. Upon the lighting of this cigar, I immediately take in hints of nougat with a touch of Snickers bar. The Kit-Kat flavor hits the back of my palate and makes me wish I was pillaging for Halloween candy in my Ultimate Warrior costume once again.
But seriously, this thing starts off nice and immediately has my attention. There’s a slight black pepper accompanied by an incredible smoothness on the retrohale. Furthermore, the voluminous smoke I’m getting from the effortless draw is leaving a chocolatey aftertaste (I’m serious about that one). At this point, the cigar is holding a beautiful, white ash and is constructed perfectly. Suddenly, I garnished a brackish, papery taste and aroma that has me wondering, “How the hell did this cigar get so bad?” Much to my dismay, I remembered that I had failed to take off the four-inch long cigar band that covers most of the cigar. Indeed, I was smoking paper.
As I sheepishly remove the singed cigar band that I had smoked for a good quarter inch, the flavor of rich tobacco once again envelops my palate as I get hints of roasted almonds and, once again, a pleasant natural sweetness. Strength-wise, the cigar toned down to, in my boastful opinion, a solid medium body. Moreover, there’s a distinct Cuban-esque character to this blend at the halfway point. The grand finale has surprisingly returned to the cigars’ original flavor, a pleasant, slightly warm pepperiness with a slight intensity in strength. Overall, however, I’d consider the Latitude Zero medium to full in body. Furthermore, I’d be hesitant to consider this cigar anything short of a great experience.
Buy this cigar. Buy it in wholesome quantities. Considering the price point, the Latitude Zero is one of the best values on the market. Just take the band off the cigar before smoking. As you can read, I joke around a lot and take a fairly lighthearted approach to this great industry that has provided me happiness, relaxation and ultimately a respectable livelihood. That’s what this business is about: Relaxation, fellowship and, most importantly, fun. If someone tells you otherwise…it’s just a big bowl of wrong.
Expert advice for the day: Tell less jokes. I pity the fool that has to sit through and listen to someone’s droll, long-winded joke that has a lackluster punchline and, overall, is just plain unfunny. 10 minutes of your life you can’t get back is a serious problem. A common response I give to a bad joke teller is, “I had no idea your joke would be that revolting”. The jokes usually cease afterward. Seriously folks, stop with the jokes.