Pros: Cost, Mild might be okay for some, Construction
Cons: Taste is boring, Appearance, Needs improvement
A good maduro cigar, is supposed to be dark from its wrapper "getting a tan from the sun," and have a lot of sweet flavor. Fuente cigars have been around a long time, and in fact, are often known as the "Congrats on the Baby" stogie, due to them producing such large amounts of those. Yet, this family needs to go back to work with their 858 maduro line. Its not the worst that I've had, but its hampered by the lack of flavor. For those who want a mild maduro, or a boring smoke, this might be just fine. Yet, for an experienced smoker, skip these and go with either another Fuente, or a completely different brand.
As most Dominicans are, this is a mild cigar. That doesn't have to be boring, but these are one to fall asleep with. Yes, you can taste a bit of sugary notes, but not much more than that. Its velvety smooth level of kick is good for many, but it lacks complexity, and anything to distinguish it from a handful of other mild ones. The sugary sweet taste was all I could detect, no chocolate or expresso notes, and while not hideous, its just lacking what should be. If given to me free, and it was my only cigar, I'd fire it up, but I'll be damned if I drop another $5 for this 6x47 smoke.
The appearance is good but not spectacular. This seems to be a trend with Fuente's as well. While the band is colorful, the maduro wrapper doesn't have the oily sheen that I desire. It does have decent smoke volume, and I did appreciate the lack of plugs. Cutting it was a cinch, as was firing it up, even with the matches that I had no choice but to use. I spent a half hour with this, as the burn rate was a bit fast, and a fault of sorts for a cigar of this size, although with its lack of flavor I'm not too disappointed with that. Although quick it stayed even throughout, as did the smoke volume and ability to have ash hanging on the end of it.
This maduro just isn't all that the Fuente's long reputation, would like for you to believe. Its on every shelf of every tobacco store I've been to, and there are fans, but I'm not one of them. There are better $5 smokes out there, and even a couple that can be had for even less. Not many, but there are choices. For those who just want to try a maduro, and getting into cigars and do not want to get railed, this might be okay for you. Yet, with experience you'll see why these just don't have anything special about them, other than their name recognition. I will not have another one, and while I'm not going to trash it, they shall stay in the bin at the cigar store.