Plasencia Cosecha 149 La Vega
Posted on December 20 2021
Smoking Time: 72 Minutes
Cigars Smoked: 5+
Body: Medium +
Cosecha means “Harvest” in Spanish, and 149 signifies the amount of harvests since the Plasencia Family’s start in the tobacco business. The 149 is a Honduran puro sourced from multiple growing regions in the country. The tobacco is from 2014, thus aged for 7 years. This highly anticipated release from Plasencia is finally here, and it is one for your top “whatever” list of 2021.
Visual Inspection: There is little that doesn't appeal to me when I am looking at this cigar, it has a dark, chocolatey brown wrapper with a slight red hue to it. Followed up with the traditional 3 band approach we have come to expect from Plasencia. The veins on this cigar are rustic and apparent, but are dark in color, allowing them to go undercover. After squeezing La Vega, no soft spots have been revealed, instead it is very firm. The foot smells welcoming, there is a heavy coffee bean note to start, then hay, and finally peanuts. I will note, the head cap seems slightly off, it doesn't have the same level of detail the rest of the cigar appears to have.
However, after using my v-cut, all is well. The cold draw is similar to the aroma, it has a light coffee sweetness, has characteristics of hay and barnyard floor, With a touch of red pepper, and bakers chocolate. It is harder to see, because of how dark this wrapper leaf is, but there is a magnificent marbling present, similar to a FFOX BBMF I had the pleasure of glancing upon.
First Third: After lighting La Vega, I was met by bold flavors of smoke, or char, (a tasting note I have become quite fond of) bakers chocolate, and a various mix of spices, between black pepper, cinnamon, and oddly enough nutmeg. The body is certainly medium + to full, with flavors that are both sweet and bold. I find it hard to find a truly full body, full flavor cigar, let alone one with Honduran tobacco? Let alone an entirely Honduran cigar!
Smoke production is very notable, there are thick clouds of smoke coming off of the resting cigar, and post draw. Each Cosecha 149 I smoked performed the same way, with a “goldilocks'' draw. The notes of char linger the longest out of those present, with pepper in hot pursuit. A retrohale reveals amplified hints of red pepper, and yeast. The burn line isn't perfect, about 75% clean, but does not affect the performance. Ash has an appealing light grey, almost white color to it, with solid stacking.
Second Third: The peppery spice, and cinnamon notes are starting to develop more at the beginning of this third. They are most prevalent during the retrohale, but are not lost if that isn't your preferred way of exploring flavors. That yeasty hint that arrived on the retrohale now lingers post-draw, for a smooth finish. Notes of bakers chocolate have taken a back seat, given way to baked potato, and buttery dough.
The body has become a touch lighter, less spice is present, but the flavors are still full and evolving. The coffee notes that presented themselves earlier have given way to a smoother coffee with cream, a nice light breakfast roast. The burn line cleared up, but has returned to its slightly wavey form while retaining its pleasant color. Draw has been consistent in its entirety, with ample smoke, and no restraint.
Last Third: For having such a dark wrapper, there is surprisingly little oil production around the burn line. No peeling of the seams, and no issues with the head cap have occurred. Flavors are similar up front, predominantly bakers chocolate, hay, coffee and cream, and baking spices. But on the back end the notes are still evolving, the yeast is becoming stronger, with hints of peanuts, walnut, and bourbon developing even more. A retrohale brings char and yeast deeper into the profile.
The body of the cigar is fuller at this point, similar to first lighting it. But the retrohale is now very smooth and mild, almost completely opposite of the first third. The wood notes are becoming more prevalent, walnut, and oak are showing up immediately now, instead of lingering. All and all, this cigar has performed beautifully, it could easily be one of Plasencia’s higher cost cigars, and I wouldn’t bat an eye. But it isn't, it is very affordable for an everyday smoke.
Final Thoughts: I haven't compared different boxes, and different vitolas, to see how consistent the wrapper color is, but If I were to guess, they are all very close to similar. Each box is beautifully dark in color, and the bands absolutely pop, the contrast is exceptional. This cigar destroyed my preconceived notions of Honduran Tobacco. Don’t get me wrong, I am a huge fan of the Cosecha 146, the Aladino & United Cigar Bar Corojo, and multiple Alec Bradley releases, but the 149 is worlds apart, it is heavy, and flavorful, lacking any of the unique “dustiness” that the country typical brings (In my opinion). Since we received these I have smoked around 7 of these across 2 of the 3 vitolas. These are box worthy, and by that I mean multiple boxes. Get a box to enjoy and a box to age, my guess is that these will become unbelievably smooth with age, and only become more flavorful. If you love the notes of Connecticut Broadleaf, Nicaraguan, or sumatran tobacco bring, this will be your new favorite cigar.
I’d typically pick their toro vitola, or Azacualpa, over the Robusto (La Vega), simply because of time. I tend to get an extra 30-40 minutes out of the toro. The flavors are the same, and performance is as good, so it all depends on how much time you have!