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Case Study CS/05 ‘Robusto Extra’

Case Study CS 05 Robusto Extra 1May 24th, 2018

This, my final review of the Case Study series from Ventura Cigar Company, is a write-up on the CS/05, one of 26 different blends in the line that pay homage to 26 famous homes built in Los Angeles. The LA homes are renowned for their simplistic, modernist designs and their famous master architects. The Case Study cigars mirror the homes with their simple, minimalist labeling and the fact that all were blended by famous, albeit secret, blend masters.

Sixteen of the blends are ‘Master Editions’, while ten are ‘Limited Editions’. The CS/05 is a limited edition. My knowledge of the cigar is restricted to what informs me. No information is given regarding the blender’s identity or where the cigar was blended.

The Case Study CS/05 blend comes in three vitolas, respectively measuring 5.75 x 60, 5.75 x 54 and 6.75 x 52. This review profiles what I’ll call the ‘Robusto Extra’, given that its 5.75 x 54 format doesn’t fit conveniently into any established size category. Maybe it’s a short Toro or a fat Double Corona. Who knows? Full disclosure... I love the size of this cigar. At any rate, here’s what I thought of it.

The band was black with plain white lettering indicating ‘Case Study’ and the logo ‘CS/05’. It was indeed simplistic – almost generic in nature. The Oscuro wrapper displayed a single uniform shade of very dark brown, the color of a Hershey’s chocolate bar. The outer leaf was smooth and dry with no flaws or imperfections, and only a few inconsequential veins, while the cap was thick and bumpy. The cold smell was sweet and fruity, and the cigar had a uniform sponginess from cap to foot.

I used a punch for my cut and a cedar splint to light the CS/05. The cigar fired up easily. The punch provided an easy enough draw, and there was adequate smoke output. The cigar was a little shy, tending to ‘go to sleep’ between draws. Early on, I had to ‘puff it back up’. The ash was light-gray and flakey. More on the burn later.

Case Study CS 05 Robusto Extra 2

Initial notes were hard to discern. The CS/05 was secretive. There was an early tartness, which gave way to a warm, organic feel. (Edamame perhaps?). Wood and smoke were the first flavors. At about the one-inch mark, a touch of leather and tea became apparent. More of a natural tobacco flavor came through, and the nature of the cigar turned savory. Sound complex to you? It did to me, too.

Toward the mid-point, there were no more changes in character, but the flavor did intensify. On the back end, black pepper came in subtly at first, and then intensified toward the finish. There was no bitterness to announce the end of the cigar. I’d call it a medium-bodied smoke overall.

These tasting notes certainly relate directly to the construction and burn of the cigar. Soon after lighting, the burn went wonky. Normally, I would correct a problem like this with my lighter. But this was a review sample, and I let it play out naturally.

There was a change in the character of the cigar (from tart to warm) at about one inch. Eventually, the burn evened out and the character changed again to savory. Around about the middle of the back end, the burn caught up and the cigar really opened up. At the three-quarter mark, the CS/05 hit its sweet spot. Total smoking time was 55 minutes.

Case Study CS 05 Robusto Extra 3

So how did I rate the Case Study CS/05 using the Cigar Weekly formula?

Pre-light: 9.2 (It’s a pretty cigar)
Light: 9.2 (Easy peasy)
Draw: 9.2 (Perfect)
Construction: 8.9 (Not perfect. An uneven burn that finally caught up)
Flavor: 9.4 (Complex and pretty darn good)
Power: 8.9 (Mid-range – not included in the average)
Average: 9.18 (Very nice)

The Case Study SC/05 is a medium-bodied cigar with a subtle and complex flavor profile. Even though I prefer heavier, bolder cigars, I really liked this one. I have no idea what this cigar costs. So I can’t, in good conscience, recommend it for just anybody. Novices won’t appreciate this cigar. However, for the serious cigar enthusiast, I highly recommend it. It was a most pleasurable experience. Get them while you can, because the Case Study Limited Editions are truly limited. Once they’re gone, they’re gone. The CS/05 should hold up to almost any beverage pairing. That said, I’d suggest something milder – all the better to appreciate those subtleties in the cigar’s flavors.

Ventura Cigars, the Case Study lines and the CS/05 are distributed nationwide and on-line.

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