I first smoked a Wilson Adams around two months ago. Josh and I sat down with Brandon Wilson and Stephen A. Miller(Stephan has since stepped down from Wilson Adams Cigars), co-founders of Wilson Adams, and smoked their cigar while we talked. I remember Stephen mentioning how he enjoyed smokes that could be “palate trippers”, cigars hard to distinguish that can throw off anyone’s palate. Yet he also stressed how they wanted to make a cigar they and everybody else could enjoy daily. So did Wilson Adams make a cigar that eludes one’s palate whilst still being an everyday smoke? I feel I’ve had the requisite time (and multiple WA cigars in differing vitolas) to wrap my head around their blend and answer that question.
Rolled: Placsencia Cigars S.A.
Country of Origin: Nicaragua
Size: 7×38 (Lancero)
Wrapper: Ecuadorian Habano
Filler: 3 Country Filler (Predominantly Nicaraguan)
Enveloped in a reddish brown wrapper with minimal veins and tight seams, the Wilson Adams is an aesthetically pleasing cigar. The lancero smoked for this review has a solid pack, substantial feel in the hand and no soft spots. I procured faint vegetal herbs, mulling spices, earth, barnyard and a nose tingling cayenne pepper from the foot. From the wrapper I picked-up earth, barnyard and that same cayenne pepper tingle. After the punch, I noticed vegetal tobacco and hints of cayenne flavors on a perfect cold draw.
Cayenne pepper was the most noticeable note from the initial light. It wasn’t overpowering by any means but for at least the first quarter inch, it was the most prominent note. Right around that quarter inch mark an aromatic floral tone came to the foreground, matching the cayenne in strength. There was some sweetness coming in the form of a faint vanilla cream. Near the end of the first third was where mulling spices entered the picture. To me the mulling spices were comprised of nutmeg and anise, although anise was most prominent during the retro-hale coupled with a tingly cayenne pepper sensation. Rounding out the first third were hints of faint dried fruit. The floral, cayenne and anise flavors resonated on a medium-length finish. Medium body. Mild-medium strength.
The aromatic floral tones along with the mulling spices took over as the most intense flavors during the second third. Once again, the mulling spices were comprised of nutmeg and anise. The sweet tones of vanilla cream and dried fruit became slightly more prevalent. Hints of mineral-salt arrived. The salt was noticeable on the the retro-hale and also slightly on the tongue. Along with the hints of mineral-salt, anise was once again most prevalent on the retro-hale. The cayenne was slightly noticeable on the retro-hale at this point, but only as a flavor and no longer a tingly sensation. Anise, floral tones and vanilla cream combined to create a long, substantial finish. Medium body. Medium strength.
The final third saw a transition in the floral accents as they grew in depth, becoming more robust. I thought of this flavor as lavender as opposed to a rosy note. The anise and nutmeg mulling spices continued to dominate along with lavender throughout the final third. Sweet tones of caramel took the place of the vanilla cream but backed off slightly. Dried fruit remained at the same strength. Hints of petrol would accentuate the rest of the flavors during the final third as well. The retro took on a toasty quality and was still composed of anise and mineral-salt while the cayenne died off completely. Toasty anise, dried fruit and caramel on another long finish. Medium-full body. Medium strength.
The Wilson Adams Lancero is a prime example of how a Santa Fe doesn’t have to be “spicy” like a cayenne or jalapeno pepper. Although this cigar did have a spicy kick for a quarter inch, the main part of its spiciness was through the flavors and not the sensations. When you hear that a cigar is “spicy”, oftentimes you may think of something that will blow out your sinuses. The Wilson Adams has spice in spades, but the spices are primarily flavors like anise, nutmeg and hints of cayenne pepper on the retro-hale. The other dominate note throughout the Wilson Adams Lancero was a floral accent, which can be found as a secondary flavor in our Santa Fe class.
The Wilson Adams Lancero reaches that goal of becoming a “palate tripper” while still being enjoyably smokable. Because of the base mulling spice and floral tones, this cigar is excessively unique. Each time I smoke one, a wave of familiarity comes pulsing back to my palate. You think this might hurt the Wilson Adams from becoming an everyday smoke, but because the unique flavor-structure, along with its medium strength, the Wilson Adams can easily be enjoyed on a daily basis.