Stogie Press Top 25 Cigars of 2018 - Micallef Grande Bold Nicaragua

Top 25 on Stogie Press – 93 rating

Bold Nicaragua 554N – Ranked 23 of 25

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Cigar Review: Micallef Grande Bold Nicaragua 554N – Rated 93

Posted on August 28, 2018

At the 2017 IPCPR, a new name hit the market, with a full portfolio of cigar blends and sizes – Micallef Cigars. The new company had an impressively crowded booth for any brand owner let alone a new brand. They had a great story and a successful businessman as an owner. Throughout the week, word shot around the floor, like an electron traveling through a super collider,  as everyone asked, “Have you checked out Micallef cigars?”

Well this year, coming off a big success, Dr. Al Micallef and his crew once again hit the show floor with not only lower prices on some their core lines, but an additional portfolio of cigars known as the Micallef Grande Bold.

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The Grande Bold line includes 5 different blends with 22 smoking options (vitolas).

  • Grande Bold Mata Fina

  • Grande Bold Nicaragua

  • Grande Bold Ligero

  • Grande Bold Maduro

  • Grande Bold Sumatra

The line is Micallef’s premier entry into the stronger fuller body cigar market as contrasted to the current medium body line of their 2017 portfolio.

The Grande Bold line is made in Nicaragua by the Gómez Sanchez family, just like the original lines from the company.

For today’s review, I would like to introduce you to the Micallef Grande Bold Nicaragua, a blend that the company describes as full body and a ton of flavor, but never over the top.

The Micallef Grande Bold Nicaragua

The Micallef Grande Bold Nicaragua is just a leaf shy of being a Nicaraguan puro with a blend described as:

  • Wrapper – Connecticut Broadleaf

  • Binder – Nicaragua

  • Filler – Nicaragua

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The Grande Bold Nicaragua is available in 4 vitolas and come packaged in 20-count boxes. The names of the vitolas were kept simple using just a 3-digit number and letter to denote the size and blend.

  • 548N (5 x 48) MSRP $7.49

  • 554N (5 x 54) MSRP $8.25

  • 654N (6 x 54) MSRP $8.99

  • 754N (7 x 54) MSRP $9.69

For this review I sampled the Micallef Grande Bold Nicaragua 554N, which I received from the company, for the purpose of reviewing n Stogie Press.


Pre-Light Examination

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The Micallef Grande Bold Nicaragua 554N is a dark brown cigar with minimal veins a few bumps and a some characteristic broadleaf blemishes. The wrapper has a fairly high sheen to it.  The cigar is solid on the hand and is finished with a double cap.

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There are two bands that adorn the Grande Bold Nicaragua. The primary band uses a bold new band design that incorporates a green, gold, red, and silver motif. The Red letter “M” is centered below a knight’s silver mask all on a green background surrounded with gold. The Word Micallef is placed on top and the phrase “Grande Bold” on the bottom.  The secondary band states “Nicaragua” on a blue background signifying the blend.

Micallef Grande Bold Nicaragua

Micallef Grande Bold Nicaragua

After the visual exam, it was time to run it past the nose where I picked up a musty note off the foot and some natural sweetness along the barrel.

Moving to the cold draw, I sliced the cap with a double blade cutter and gave it a few puffs where I noticed the restriction was just fine and tasted notes of black pepper and grass.

It was now time to fire it up with my double torch lighter as I warmed the foot gently and evenly. Taking in a solid puff I brought the foot to a glowing orange color.

Cigar Review Notes

Micallef Grande Bold Nicaragua 554N

Micallef Grande Bold Nicaragua 554N

Micallef Grande Bold Nicaragua 554N

Micallef Grande Bold Nicaragua 554N

Micallef Grande Bold Nicaragua 554N

  • Spicy notes to start 

  • Sweetness quickly moves in to join the spice

  • Nut aroma is wafting off the foot

  • White ash sets on a wavy thin char line

  • Very smooth smoke even on the nose

  • Spice is quite gentle and covered in the early sweetness

  • Excellent ash is growing in length

  • Cocoa notes after first third

  • Decent oiling on wrapper

  • Slight run in the burn moving into the second third

  • Once the ash fell, there was a flat and off centered burn cone

  • Sweetness grows wrapped around a cedar core just south of second band

  • Sour notes enter after the secondary band

  • Citrus notes enter deep in the second third 

  • Sweetness has faded

  • Strength is medium full

  • Nut finds its way back in laying behind the citrus

  • Earthy aroma at end

  • Strength has hit full at the final

  • Total Smoking time was just over one hour

Overall, I rate the an 93. This cigar had a well-balanced flavor profile with just a small section where there was some sour notes that was more of shift to the citrus notes that followed. Sweetness was the dominate note once it got into the burn. There was an off burn early on along with a burn cone that was  flat and off centered once the ash fell. This certainly increased in strength during the journey finally hitting the full mark in the final earning the name Grande Bold.  At a price of $8.25 this is one would I suggest buying a fiver of.

Point Deductions:

(-1 ) Off Burn; (-1 ) Off Centered Burn Cone; (-1) Flat Burn Cone

Micallef Grande Bold Nicaragua 554N

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