Ferio Tego is quickly establishing itself as a major player in the cigar industry. Interestingly, the man behind the rise is no stranger to the industry. For those of you who do not know him, Michael Herklots has been in the industry since 1999. A quick overview of his time in the industry tells us he spent nine years running a retail operation for Davidoff in New York City and was the Vice President and face of Nat Sherman International until the brand ceased operations in 2020. Always looking forward, Michael got right to work and launched Ferio Tego in 2021. Featuring the crest of Hercules slaying the Hydra, taken right from the Herklots family coat of arms, it was readily apparent that there would be a strong personal connection and commitment to this brand.
Why am I starting a cigar review with a history lesson? Well, I felt it was necessary, as the name of the latest release from Ferio Tego, Summa, means “a comprehensive work or series of works covering, synthesizing, or summarizing a particular field or subject.” This is a bold name choice, and it comes from someone who rightly understands its meaning and has produced the series of works it represents.
Following the success of 2021’s Limited Edition Elegancia and Generoso, Summa is the first core line introduction to wear the Ferio Tego name. The company states, “Ferio Tego Summa is a blend that embodies the diversity and complexity of the Ferio Tego Portfolio. The Summa blend highlights the incredible trifecta of body, flavor, and intensity… and maximizes those levels with wonderful balance.” With an Ecuadorian Corojo wrapper over an Ecuadorian Sumatra binder and fillers from the Dominican Republic and Nicaragua, the cigar sounds absolutely delicious! Let’s get it cut and take a closer look at what the Summa torpedo has to offer.
Under the Lid
- Wrapper: Ecuadorian Corojo
- Binder: Ecuadorian Sumatra
- Filler: Dominican Republic and Nicaragua
- Vitola: 6 ¼” X 52 Torpedo $20.00 (Box of 10 $200)
- Factory: Quesada Cigars SA
- Release Date: June 2023
- Number of cigars released: Regular production.
- Other vitolas available
- Ferio Tego Summa Corona Gorda (5 3/4 x 46) — $18 (Box of 10, $180)
- Ferio Tego Summa Robusto (5 x 50) — $19 (Box of 10, $190)
- Ferio Tego Summa Gordo (6 x 60) — $21 (Box of 10, $210)
The cigars come packaged in an attractive matte-hinged Okume dark blue box with the Ferio Tego name and shield emblazoned in gold. The ten cigars inside are individually wrapped in cello and feature a primary blue and gold band with the shield and a blue and gold sub-band with the Summa name in a gold oval. The cigars themselves are elegant. They feature a medium brown oily wrapper with a very smooth surface and minimal tooth. The seams are very well done, creating a seamless look. There are some raised veins running throughout, but none are pronounced.
Pre-light aroma has a great combination of cashews, black cherries, and graham crackers, all with a faint floral note on the finish. Pre-light draw, which is just about perfect, has more of the same with the addition of a cedar note on the finish.
First Third: The cigar starts with fresh ground coffee beans, cashews, and baker’s chocolate, with a solid red pepper spice on the back end. Retrohale has an interesting combination of fresh French bread and dark plum, with just a hint of white pepper on the finish. There is a heavy, sweet cream to the finish, making for a very smooth, elegant start. A little farther in, hints of walnut shell appear on the tongue. The burn is exceptional, and the draw is as close to perfect as it could be. Strength to me is on the upper end of medium, with body and complexity solidly medium-full. So far, the cigar is off to a flavorful and complex start.
Second Third: As the cigar burns into the middle section, things get a little heavier and darker. The coffee notes are more espresso strength, with the chocolate becoming more of a bitter dark chocolate with sea salt. Everything else from early on is still there, making for a very complex experience. The retrohale has gained some cabinet spice to go with the bread notes, pushing the dark plum to the background. There is also a noticeable shift in pepper spice, with a noticeable hint of black pepper on the finish. The sweet, creamy finish is still there and intensifies as the cigar burns on. Strength is just teetering on medium-full, while the body and complexity are still at the upper end of medium-full. The burn has gotten a little wonky in one of my samples, but the draw is still perfect.
Final Third: It has been a fun journey thus far, and the beginning of the final third continues that course. The cigar has become “meaty” with charred meat, leather, and damp earth, while the dark chocolate note has increased in intensity and has shifted to a sweeter finish vs. the bitterness detected earlier. The retrohale remains unchanged in the final third, carrying on with the bready baker’s spice notes, and the smoke has become thick and “chewy.” The sweet cream on the finish continues to increase in intensity, which is uncommon in my experience with a cigar with this type of flavor profile. At this point, it is not unusual for a cigar this complex to become muddled with all the flavors competing for dominance. The sweetness is preventing that from happening, allowing the flavors to each stand on their own.
Core flavors throughout the smoking experience are coffee, bakers and dark chocolate, bread, cabinet spice, cashews, and sweet cream. This is a wow on the complexity scale.
- Strength: Medium-Full
- Body: Medium-Full
- Complexity: Full
Having been a huge fan of Elegancia and Generoso, I had high expectations for this cigar. It did not disappoint. I recently had a chance to sit with Michael Herklots and smoke this cigar with him. Michael says, “The intention behind Summa was to create flavors the skew darker: Leather, coffee, chocolate, spice, cedar, etc.… but to deliver those flavors on a body that is cream, round, and almost fatty. We also paid a great deal of attention to the first few puffs, giving each vitola delicious and deliberate flavor from the very first puff.” It is my opinion that the goal of the blend in this cigar was hit in every way. Knowing this is a regular production cigar and will be readily available is very satisfying. Before they came to market, there was some chatter that the $20 price point for Elegancia and Generoso was too high for an introductory blend, and I have heard similar comments on Summa. My opinion on the price point is you are paying $20 for a $40 luxury cigar experience. This cigar embodies the greatness of each limited-edition blend to create a unique and satisfying smoking experience. If you liked either the Elegancia or Generoso, you will like this blend!
There is no question that Summa is a box buy in multiple sizes.
-With the increase in popularity of larger ring gauge cigars that are notorious for air flow, burn and flavor issues, Michael mentioned that they spent a great deal of time perfecting the airflow of the Gordo size to create the best possible smoking experience
-I was able to attend a release party before doing this review. During the event, I was able to experience the Gordo paired with a South American Pinot Noir. This made for an exceptional pairing.
-Ferio Tego is distributed through Davidoff of Geneva in the USA
Cigars smoked for this review: Three.
Smoking time: 2:05
Kevin Acuff – Senior Reviewer & Editor
Kevin Acuff was born and raised in Northeast Ohio. Growing up in a rural area, he indulged in some very exciting life experiences at a young age. He acquired his private pilot license before he had a driver’s license, spent several years on the competitive bass fishing tournament trail, and even spent a couple of seasons racing motorcycles. In 2001, he relocated to Las Vegas, spending the better part of the past 20 years working in the sign industry. It was one of those industry trips back in 2014 that changed his life for good. His boss handed him a Siglo V, and an instantaneous bond was formed.