13 October 2009

CIGAR REVIEW - NEW RELEASE: Alec Bradley - Prensado

Last Friday I had the distinct pleasure and privilege of smoking with Mr. George Sosa, National Sales Director of Alec Bradley Cigars, and was fortunate enough to be one of the first to receive their newest release, the Prensado. Not only is Mr. Sosa one of the company’s three principal executives, he is also a retired U.S. Navy – Explosive Ordnance Disposal Technician, so naturally he and I hit it off right away and he is also the only other person in the industry I have ever met who knew the answer to the riddle of why do Bomb Technicians like box-pressed cigars? If you want to know, you have to ask.

The Prensado was d├ębuted by Alec Bradley at this year’s IPCPR convention in New Orleans and is their strongest cigar to date. It is being released in five vitollas: Corona Gorda, Robusto, Churchill, Gran Toro, and Torpedo. It is made with a Honduran – Corojo 2006 wrapper, a Nicaraguan – Jalapa binder, and Nicaraguan and Honduran fillers. It is box-pressed and has a maduro-colored, oily wrapper that had a little veiny character to it. The body had a mild pre-light aroma with a hint of sweetness and more pronounced aromas at the foot. Interestingly, the filler blend could be clearly seen at the foot as a swirl of light and dark tobaccos. The body was also firm with no soft spots or defects and passed the squeeze test with flying colors.

I made a straight-cut with scissors and tested the draw, which was smooth with light to moderate resistance. The pre-light taste was primarily a pleasant tobacco flavor with notes of slightly bitter cocoa. Once lit it started out mild but shortly began to develop a little spice at the tip of the tongue with stronger notes at the back of the throat. It burned with an attractive blue smoke from the foot and a light grey smoke from the draw, leaving a crisp, semi-dense “zebra-ash”, meaning it was alternately a distinct light and dark grey in color. The early spice, while the dominant flavor characteristic, was mild to moderate and never overwhelming although it did make retro-nasal exhalation a little difficult. This isn’t a big deal of course and is by no means a comment on a cigar’s quality, I just like to do it in order to try and maximize my appreciation of all a cigar has to offer. As it progressed, the spice mellowed in the middle third and maintained a consistent and pleasant flavor throughout. Once into the final third the spice began to reemerge and progress a little farther along the tongue leaving a mild peppery finish.

My overall opinion is that the Alec Bradley – Prensado is a well made, quality cigar. I enjoyed every minute of it and found it to be a good choice for relaxing alone or with friends. The bi-phasic characteristics of a premium cigar were definitely present in this one and in good proportions to each other.

As always, I wish you Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.


  1. handypilot said,
    on November 13th, 2009 at 20:15
    Nice review…now how about that 12yr Macallan in the background!

    I haven’t tried any AB sticks yet, but I do have one sitting in the humi reading to smoke…sounds like another review.

  2. MountChuck said,
    on November 13th, 2009 at 21:47
    I smoked one of these last week in the Gran Toro size. Excellent flavor. However, the burn was less than impressive. It went out several times and required relights. I’ll grant it was only one sample, and the flavor justifies trying it again. But at nearly $14 after tax in Maryland for that size and nearly $12 for the robusto, I except better construction for the price. I’ll smoke it again, but if I get similar burn results, I won’t smoke one again

  3. cigar palace said,
    on November 13th, 2009 at 23:49
    Nice review and very good whiskey. How ever I prefer oban 14

  4. Keith1911 said,
    on November 17th, 2009 at 01:06
    Ok, I’m curious. Why do bomb techs like box pressed cigars?

  5. Because they stay put when you lay them down. We tend not to like things that move around while we are working. Thanks for asking Keith, you are the first.

  6. Keith1911 said,
    on November 18th, 2009 at 01:20
    capn that makes perfect sense!

  7. Myshkin said,
    on April 25th, 2010 at 12:47
    I am a relatively new aspiring aficionado. I live in Tampa, and accordingly have had opportunities to stumble across some great cigars. The Presnado is a new favorite of mine. The aroma and flavor are fantastic. Suprisingly to me, I did have to relight an hour into the cigar, but it was a small price to pay for the enjoyment that the Presnado provided. May God bless all of those who have served and are serving the United States of America.

  8. in my experience, the good cigars require a relight if you leave it long enough ... and the others - well ... if you leave them for a long time ...

    up untill moving to america - ive smoked nothing but cuban cigars.. mostly cohiba ... they all require a relight if left alone for a little while.
    since moving to the US, all the cigars i buy here are lit untill they are done... if i leave them alone i have to wait a good while untill they turn off .... the prensado gran toro is by far the closest thing in the US ive had in relation to a fine cuban cigar by cohiba.

  9. i wanted to clarify that in my earlier post im talking about a personal experience, to make a point about the relight issue most have spoken of regarding the Prensado ..

    -Basically, i wouldnt say the Prensado has relight issues. if anything it serves as a compliment. to me atleast.

  10. theCorporal said,
    on May 30th, 2010 at 15:08
    I have a five pack of these ordered and can’t wait to try them out. I have been a big fan of Alec Bradley for a while. Surprisingly, sitting in the middle of Afghanistan is a very relaxing place to smoke a nice cigar. And I hope no one else ever has to experience it lol. I believe I will take this cigar to “The grand Smoke” in Long Beach. Semper Fi Cap’n