Appearance: 6.25×44 Corona. Medium brown color on the wrapper, slight sheen, a few veins. Evenly packed, medium dense. The wrapper has a sweet aroma, I’m reminded of fresh popcorn. Taste is salt and pepper. Looks good.
Smoking: Lots of smoke, good burn line all the way down, draw perfect for me — I like it on the light side with only a slight resistance. Enough to remind you you’re not just breathing through a wide straw. Smoke time was 90 minutes, this is a slow smoking cigar.
Flavors: Light cedar, some pepper. I taste significant sweetness here, balsa incense, some sweet wood or leather, some warm cinnamon-like spice, brown sugar. I should note here that I am pairing this cigar with Mocambo 20, reviewed here, a rich rum with a lot of effect on a cigar. There is also some burnt vegetal flavor in there one of the things that makes this smoke different from my Room 101 favorite the Namakubi. In the second half, the leather comes forward while the brown sugar and pepper dial back. Some minty hint comes and goes. As the cigar gets to the nub the pepper comes forward again but everything else, a little muted, is still there!
These are good, highly recommended. I think the Namakubi is a little less expensive, around $8 compared to near $9 for the Ichiban but these prices vary a bit by vendor and more by vitola so look around. I think the Namakubi is sweeter and richer in flavor, but the Ichiban has those complex roasted vegetable and char flavors that the Namakubi lacks. Your palate might easily favor the Ichiban! Either choice will be a good cigar experience.