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Cigar Review: Arturo Fuente Rare Pink Sophisticated Hooker

January 3, 2023 By Mitchell Santaga

 

 

The Rare Pinks were blended by Carlito Fuente with inspiration from his daughter, Liana Fuente, after she lost both her aunt and grandmother to breast cancer. She has since been a heavy supporter and advocate for the disease and even raised and donated money to multiple breast cancer causes. The Rare Pink line debuted originally back in 2020. The Rare Pinks use an Ecuadorian wrapper from Oliva Tobacco Company’s La Mecca farm and aside from some Nicaraguan tobacco, most of the blend is undisclosed.

Originally, the Rare Pinks debuted in four vitolas; Short Story (4 x 42/49), Signature (6 x 46), Work of Art (4 7/8 x 46/60) and Happy Ending (5 1/2 x 53). All of the sizes are perfectos reminiscent of the existing Hemmingway line. At PCA 2021, we saw two new sizes – the Queen of Hearts (3 3/4 x 54) and the Sophisticated Hooker (7 1/4 x 53)

  • Cigar: Arturo Fuente Rare Pink Vintage 1960’s Sophisticated Hooker

  • Origin: Dominican Republic

  • Factory: Tabacalera A. Fuente y Cia

  • Wrapper: Ecuadorian

  • Binder: Dominican Republic

  • Fillers: Dominican Republic, Nicaraguan 

  • Vitola: 7 ¼ x 53 Sophisticated Hooker

  • MSRP: $14.70 / (Box of 20 $294)

The Sophisticated Hooker comes covered in a beautiful cedar sleeve and a pink foot band. The wrapper is a medium to dark brown with a bit of mottling. Slight number of oils on the wrapper with a thin vein structure and tight wrapper seems. The cap has no visible issues. The aromas off the foot are sweet fig, vanilla, and mild barnyard, while the wrapper presents mainly with mild barnyard and a hint of sweetness. The cold draw brings forth a dark fruit note, hay, and mild mustiness. 

On light up the Sophisticated Hooker opens up with notes of baking spices, cedar, and some mild dark fruit sweetness in the background. As the first third develops the profile becomes nicely balanced with those three main notes of baking spice, cedar, and dark fruit sweetness. The baking spice reminds me of cinnamon and cardamom which stimulates a bit of the side of the tongue and tip of the tongue. The retrohale brings a nice pepper note alongside a bit more depth of sweetness. The first third continues very consistent and balanced with no major flavor development as it finishes off. It has medium body, medium strength, and a medium plus flavor profile.

The start to the second third still has that upfront baking spice, cedar, and dark fruit sweetness, but the cedar is developing a slight mustiness that balances well with the dark fruit note of the cigar. A background note of mild leather and earth appear as well. The flavor profile continues to be consistent during the second third and that really allows the flavors to meld and blend together creating a nice balance. The retrohale continues with pepper and mild sweetness. As the second third develops and comes to an end the strength and body increase slightly leaving a slightly longer woody finish. 

The final third begins with the baking spice transitioning slightly more into a peppery note. The sweetness is dropping off slightly and the earth and leather notes start to come forward in the profile. The cedar note still holds that mild mustiness. Although the profile is shifting from this slightly brighter profile that was offered in the first and second third to a darker earthier profile in the final third, all the notes seem to transition together and still create an overall balanced experience. The retrohale stays consistent with just a slight increase in the pepper note. The tip and sides of my tongue are stimulated alongside a mild tingle on the roof of the mouth, the smoke causes a nice amount of salivation as the profile ramps up overall. Strength is medium to full, body is medium to full, and flavor profile is medium plus to full. The final few puffs of the final third become a bit hot and the profile becomes slightly muddled mainly focusing on musty wood, earth, and pepper. 

Construction wise, two out of the three samples performed very well with only minor touch ups and no relights needed at all. Unfortunately, one sample was slightly misshapen and caused the cigar to continuously canoe and require a touch up every time I had to ash the cigar, I am not sure if I stored the cigar improperly for a few weeks in a foam sleeve lightly compressing it which led to this shape, because I did not notice the oblong shape when I received the cigars originally. The ash on all samples held on for one to two inches and was medium in density. The draw on all samples was ideal with just a minor amount of resistance allowing for a smooth smoking experience without heating the cigar up. There was ample smoke production on all samples which only needed between one to three puffs to produce a mouthful of smoke.  

Overall: The Arturo Fuente Rare Pink Vintage 1960’s Sophisticated Hooker performed very well and offered notes of baking spice, cedar, dark fruit sweetness for the majority of the profile transitioning into a slightly earthier profile near the end. The retro hale balanced the profile out well with the addition of pepper and depth to the sweetness. The cigar lost a few points due to the one sample having some burn issues, but because I have a strong feeling it was contributed by user error and the flavor profile was not changed, I did not redact the full number of points. It also lost a few points due to the profile muddling during the last third a tiny bit. I will definitely revisit this cigar whenever I can get my hands on it since it delivered a profile that I found really enjoyable. 

  • Average Smoking time: 2 hours and 6 minutes

  • Samples Smoked: Three 

  • Final Score: 91

 


Mitchell Santaga started his journey into tobacco in 2010 by trying different flavored and machine-made cigars while enjoying a handle of Jack Daniels. Shortly after that he yearned for a more premium experience and dove headfirst into pipe tobacco that his local tobacconist blended. The tobacconist introduced Mitchell to Cuban cigars and for special occasions he would light up a Cuban cigar. Next, he stumbled into new world cigars and fell in love with the bold flavors and great consistency and construction. Ever since then he has been entrenched in exploring as much of the new world cigars and finding his favorites to keep in the humidor.

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