A little while ago I sat down to enjoy and review a fine looking robusto from a company that had I had not much knowledge of: Lampert Cigars. This is a fairly new to the game brand that first came on to the scene just a few years ago, and there was a noticeable buzz surrounding its name in my locale in the Midwest. Patrons and tobacconists alike were frequently telling me at my local brick and mortar that I should give them a shot. Always eager to discover new blends and new cigar experiences, I happily grabbed a few. Doing some research on the brands history was fun, discovering that while their family history was deep, their involvement in the industry was very new.
The man who actually ventured to start a cigar company bearing this family name is Dr. Stefan Lampert from Liechtenstein. For those of you who are geographically challenged like me, Liechtenstein is a small German speaking state located in the Alps between Austria and Switzerland. Dr. Lampert, who was first inspired to start the company while vacationing in Thailand, had the desire to offer a break from everyday life to his future customers. A small vacation if you will. His first company project was titled My Cigar Lab and was aimed at custom tailoring a smoking experience for his patrons. His first blend was named the Ocean Breeze and was very successful in his European market. Moving forward, Stefan wanted to venture further into the game and starting scouting Central America in search of ideal blenders and manufacturers for his future projects. He soon encountered the Ortez family (yes, that Ortez family, as in Omar and his daughter Indiana) in Nicaragua, and in 2021 the Lampert Cigars Azul line was launched. Again, it was very well received in the European market in March of that year, and by May 2021 it had its introduction into the USA market.
The first thing that struck me when I picked up the Lampert 1675 out at the shop was the elegantly simple band work on the cigars. A beautiful family crest featuring a rearing lamb and a shield, prominently silver and blue in the color scheme. This is the AZUL line, and they have another similarly styled crest for the ROJO line which of course dons red instead of blue in the crest and band work art. Evidently, these two crests are the real family crests that the Lampert Family has maintained since 1675 and 1593 respectively. Indiana Ortez is credited with blending this cigar, manufactured at the AgroIndustrial Nicaraguense de Tabacos S.A in Nicaragua. It consists of Nicaraguan and Peruvian Long fillers with Nicaraguan binder and an Ecuadorian wrapper leaf. The vitola I opted for was the 5”x50 robusto and it is a truly beautiful stick with wonderfully uniform coloring, and perfectly even roll and very tight seams.
Lampert markets this blend as a full flavored, medium bodied smoke. However, my experience with this one was a notch down on both fronts, more of a medium flavor with a mild-medium body. While not overly complex, the flavors were remarkably clean, smooth and elegant. Very European in style and rather a departure from a typical Nicaraguan tobacco experience. Leave it to Indiana Ortez to command that sort of subtlety! The retrohale likewise was noticeably smooth and elegant, possessing just enough spice to grab your attention while never overwhelming the senses. The draw is perfect and delivers and abundance of smooth, cool smoke. The initial flavors are of sweet cedar, pistachio and nutmeg, followed by soft vanilla and cream. Baking spice, cashew, sweet cedar and the lightest touch of citrus on the retrohale. Later I get a warmer feeling smoke with notes of a lightly buttery cashew and light touches of cinnamon on the draw, along with some caramel sweetness, a musty cedar, walnut, cinnamon, and nutmeg on the retrohale. To wrap it up in the final third I notice a pleasant cappuccino note along with a lingering walnut, a rebound of sweet cedar, very subtle citrus notes, and a phantom bready note from time to time. I got nearly 90 minutes of smoke time out this one and was very pleased with the overall experience.
Cigars like these get me excited for the future. There is clearly plenty of room for new players in this game, and Indiana Ortez has shown her skill once more with this entry. This is a fine example of what to light up after a nice lunch or after a cheeseboard snack. Cognac, single malt Scotch (other than an Isla) and cappuccino all jump out at me as great paring suggestions. I don’t see this as one to enjoy after dark (something about the daylight seems to love this flavor profile) and heavier flavored foods beforehand or stronger beverages during would certainly overshadow this one’s finesse and refinement.
Watch the video review on the Jonose Cigars channel on YouTube.