- Price: $30
- Made By: Tabacalera A. Fuente y Cia.
- Factory Location: Dominican Republic
- Dimensions: 5 1/4″ by 50 ring gauge
- Shape: Robusto
- Filler: Dominican Republic
- Binder: Dominican Republic
- Wrapper: Dominican Sun Grown Rosado
- Cold Draw: Cedar, Pepper, Oak, Earth, Spice, Cinnamon
- First Third: Pepper, Cedar, Leather, Sweet Honey, Tea
- Second Third: Spicy Pepper, Oak, Coffee, Caramel, Cream, Almond
- Final Third: Spicy Pepper, Oak, Roasted Coffee, Floral Notes
The classic Opus X Lost City robusto is a slightly pressed torpedo shape, its gently tapered and sleek design an homage to the prowess and skill of the Fuente family that built it. The name of this highly sought after cigar sounds like it comes straight from a movie. To be precise, from Andy Garcia’s The Lost City, the inspiration and name behind this complex and unique blend. In 2004, Garcia approached the Fuente family for some advice on shooting his movie, and ended up with his own specially-grown plants for the film.
The prestige of the Opus X Lost City rises even higher with the rare production of only 500 boxes a year. The plants are grown deep in the elusive Chateau de la Fuente itself, with a flavor depth that is left to mature over five years. The quality of the blend is reflected even further in the seamless design of the cigar itself. If you’re fortunate enough to secure a box of ten, you’ll also receive a copy of the movie and a serial number and certificate to prove its authenticity.
Even the logo on the band itself whispers secrets of a buried treasure. The center of the wrapper contains a flourishing X, truly marking the spot of the middle third. The way this elegantly wraps around the cigar looks almost like an embossed ring, with subtle gold, deep reds and opaque blacks weaving elegantly around the X. Below it, is a second band embossed with its namesake of the Lost City. It feels like you’re about to unfurl a treasure map or scroll outlining the secrets of Atlantis, or the location of El Dorado. The design is rustic yet still intricate and well-constructed.
The wrapper comes complete with a quality oily sheen and its woody appearance and texture speaks of some of the flavors that will be uncovered throughout the draw. Its slick design, enticing backstory and rare nature make it easily one of the most mysterious and highly-prized cigars in the world. Opus X Lost City Robusto has a lot to live up to even before the 60-minute taste and draw begins.
Taste and Draw
The Opus X Lost City definitely delivered on the complexity of depth and flavor that the appearance tantalisingly promised. Combined with the unfaltering razor sharp and continuous burn, it takes you on a constantly changing and ever-developing journey through the wilderness to that elusive treasure.
The first cold draw already promises a full experience, with a rich, white smoke that transports you to the woody climes of a deserted island, complete with deep earth-tones and nutty richness. The taste plays like a musical piece, with mild yet complex flavors like pepper, coffee and oak which swell, build and fade with each third. Interspersed within are sweet and unexpected tastes that clearly divide each draw into separate experiences.
Throughout each third, the build of the cigar lends perfectly to the experience, with a perfectly crisp and intact wrap that sees you right through the end of the journey. Each third is so good you genuinely find yourself worried that the final third can’t possibly build on your experience so far, but the ending is even better than expected. We’ll save the surprise until the end.
Cedar, Oak, Earth, Pepper, Spice, Cinnamon
The cold draw is already an extension of the aroma that begins from the opening of the box, and a hint of the delicious woody, earthy smell of the thick smoke that’s yet to come. You are immediately hit with gentle and mild notes straight from a luscious forest, with palate awakeners of cedar, oak and earthy tones. Then, unexpectedly, the wood gives way to the subtlest flavors of pepper, spice and cinnamon.
It feels as though you’re about to open that treasure map, and can already taste the scents of that exotic island to come. The cedar and oaky tastes mature even over the cold draw, while the pepper, spice and cinnamon gently build towards the end. For a cold draw, these sensations feel authentic and line with what you’d imagine the experience of the first third to be. The quality of the cold draw is almost dangerous, you’d imagine that the experience cannot live up to the hype of those initial scents.
Pepper, Cedar, Leather, Sweet Honey, Tea
From the moment that the first third begins, the flavors of mild yet complex pepper and cedar refresh your memory of that playful cold draw. You’re ready to begin the treasure hunt, and are excited at the experience to come. The first third always has the potential to disappoint after the cold draw. Fortunately the Opus X Lost City just builds upon its initial introduction.
The smoke is deep white and aromatic right from the outset, and recalls a bakery in the depths of the Dominican Republic, with the delicate aroma of raisins and spices wafting gently towards you. As the smoke develops, notes of leather unexpectedly join the earthy taste and spicy scents. The consistency of the peppery notes in both the aroma and flavor boost the taste from mild to powerful, yet never insult the senses, just deepen your enjoyment.
The solid, medium-body flavor of the leather brings to mind a well-oiled saddle, with a rustic, authentic feel that matches the appearance of the cigar perfectly. So far, the senses all line up: the sight of that sleek yet rustic cigar, the fragrant spices of raisin, and the accompanying oaky and spicy tastes. It is easy to see why this cigar is so highly sought after.
Finally, the first third ends with a burst of sweet honey and tea, which builds while the leather gently fades. Throughout this session, the pepper and cedar remain constant, while the welcome sharp, almost fruitiness of the honey makes you hungry for the smells coming from the baking-like smoke.
Spicy Pepper, Oak, Coffee, Caramel, Cream, Almond
With cigars of a lesser quality, the second third might distract, with a crack in otherwise perfect wrapping, or a faltering burn. The Opus X Lost City’s straight and consistent burn remains throughout, as does the flawlessness of the construction. Meanwhile, the burst of the sweet honey and tea mysteriously evaporates into the start of the second third.
Your second third begins with our ever constant backdrop of our wild okay forest, while the pepper deepens into a spicy zest that is somehow hot, fruity and sweet at the same time. The cedar essences have dropped slightly as we move into richer, deeper flavors.
A coffee texture and body emerges and deepens, evolving into a sweet, surprising caramel experience which once again compliments the scents of the smoke. A tart yet welcome bitter flavor recalls ground coffee and almonds. These essences compete with and yet complement each other, and the spice, tart and creamy flavors are all underpinned with an oaky, earthy quality that grounds the experience of the second third.
Unlike the first third, which offers a new burst of flavor, the experience of the second is definitely a focus on the emergence and development of three unique tastes. The two contrasting coffee textures are overwhelmingly different sensations, from a bitter, organic blend to a creamy, sweet aromatic one. Yet somehow these two tastes work, even with the peppery spiciness that has remained with us throughout each third. These three tastes seem to work due to this earthy texture that ties these wildly varied experiences into one unique mix.
Spicy Pepper, Oak, Roasted Coffee, Floral Notes
An advanced warning: you will feel genuinely sad when you realize you are nearing the end of this experience. Even the cold draw lived up to its promises. The smoke has remained consistent, and we haven’t been distracted with the fear of a faltering burn or ruined wrapper. You’ve worked your way through the forests of that exotic island, from wooded cedar forests accompanied by the enticing local scents of delicious baked goods and diverse coffee blends. We’ve been surprised by sweet honey and tempting caramel, and the final third brings everything together into one.
The spicy pepper eclipses the bitterness of the coffee and the creamy sweetness in the final third, and brings with it the tastes of the deep oak. The coffee taste develops into an earthy, roasted blend, remaining true to the prevailing theme of the Opus X Lost City. Although the flavors are bold and full-bodied, your senses have been played with but never assaulted. You’re ready to see what happens next in this final chapter of this rare and exquisite cigar.
So we leap into our final third with our three consistent and defined flavors: our wood is oak, our spice is pepper, and the roasted coffee is competing well in the mix. Then, out of nowhere comes this bitter, floral, fragrant taste. The taste and smell dance in your airways, and are completely unexpected. Yet, somehow, it works. The earthiness and the flowers make you realize you’re coming to the end of your journey. The thick ash is lingering off the end of the cigar and even though the smoke is still thick, your experience is over.
The Opus X Lost City is one of those rare breeds of cigars that offers something unique with each third. The senses of smell, taste and sight combine perfectly to make for an authentic and powerful blend with primarily rustic wood, spicy pepper and deep coffee, with bursts of sweetness throughout. The earthy essences are integral to the success of this cigar, and have been present even since the initial cold draw.
With the exquisite flavors, rustic appearance and expert craftsmanship of the Fuente family, it’s easy to see what makes this rare robusto so popular. The large gauge and light tapering of the torpedo-like design allows the flavors to expand and burst throughout. The exclusiveness and elite price tag truly makes this cigar feel like luxury, and it doesn’t disappoint. If anything, one of the sole critiques is that we need the experience to last longer.
The pairing notes for the Opus X Lost City are extremely varied, undoubtedly because of the depth of flavors available. The competing flavors allow for most bourbons, chocolate stouts, fruity rums and even water to work well alongside this king of cigars:
- Balvenie Single Malt Whisky
- 1792 Full Proof Bourbon
- Samuel Smith’s Organic Chocolate Stout
- Ron Zacapa Rum
- Sweet Tea (wish a dash of honey)
- Johnnie Walker Black
- Americano coffee
- Chilled still water
The Fuente family’s exclusive cigar empire began in 1912 with Arturo Fuente’s revolutionary cigars. Originally from Cuba, Arturo began making the original Fuente cigars in Florida, before returning back to his original Caribbean heritage and starting the Tabacalera A. Fuente y Cia. organization in the Dominican Republic. Today, Carlos Fuente Jr. continues this dynasty with his original and unique blends.
The Fuente Fuente Opus X brand as a whole is defined by its burgundy wrapper, made with Cuban seeds grown on Dominican soil. The Fuente family faced adversity when people thought the Dominican Republic could not successfully develop wrappers of high quality. Yet the brand is one of Fuente’s best sellers, and the unique Dominican sun grown rosado wrapper is a huge part of their success.
Opus X Lost City was not just the brainchild of Garcia’s film and Fuente’s cigars, but of an innovation needed to feature tobacco in the film. Garcia was shooting Lost City in the offseason for tobacco growth, meaning that there were no plants weren’t ready to shoot on location. To overcome this, Fuente suggested growing a new batch of tobacco plants that could thrive even in the offseason. Garcia grew to love filming on the Chateau de la Fente, and wondered what would become of his plants once filming had ended. Thus, the Opus X Lost City was born, developed from that specific offseason batch.
Treat yourself to this elusive yet exquisite cigar (when you can get hold of it). The depth of wood, coffee and spice with sweet bursts of honey and caramel won’t disappoint.