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Old 05-18-2013, 11:37 AM   #1
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Default Illusione MK Corona

Illusione MK Corona

Origin – Nicaragua
Ring Gauge- 42
Filler- Nicaragua
Binder- Nicaragua
Wrapper- Nicaragua
Paired with: Nothing
Smoked: Outside
Smoke time: 1 hour 15min
History: Bombed to my by a buddy via USPS mail, rested in humidor at 65 humidity for a month before it was smoked.

Pre-Light:
This was my FIRST Illusione and I have heard nothing but good things about them so I was a bit nervous going in that I wouldn’t like it. Seldom do cigars that are over hyped meet, much less exceed, expectations.
The pre-light led me down a somewhat dark path. The cigar was pretty toothy, with a splotchy wrapper that just screamed “this isn’t going to end well.”
After a quick cut and cold draw, things were looking up. The cold draw produced a nice amount of spice, a hearty tobacco flavor and I swear a bit of citrus even though the draw was a bit hard.
Reminder to self, don’t judge a book by its cover.

1st Third:
Right off the bat I am hit with a flavor BOMB!! Lots of cocoa and woodsy notes. The draw was still a bit touch but after a few good chomps on it the cigar loosened up quite nicely. On the retrohale, I was getting a slight floral note but only on the first few retrohales that I did. After that, it morphed into more of an Asian spice. Almost like a cross between ginger and maybe nutmeg.
The burn is razor sharp but the wrapper did crack a bit on me. It did not effect the burn at all so no harm, no foul.

2nd Third:
Whoohoo is what I said out loud when I hit the 2nd third. The amount of flavor packed into this cigar is something that needs to be experienced first hand. The slightly floral/Asian spice flavors have melted into leather and spice with a good amount of body. The mouth finish has a slight earth to it but not in a dirty, gritty way. While moving the smoke around in your mouth you can taste the earth mix with the leather quite nicely. Like a fine wine, this cigar begs for you to take your time with it and explore the nuances it has to offer.
When a cigar is as complex as this, I tend to blow the smoke out very slowly through my lips, letting only very small amounts of smoke escape a little at a time, so I can taste all the flavors as the smoke dissipates. The smoke seems to produce a sweetness on the lips as well which is a nice addition to all the power this cigar delivers.

Last Third:
I nubbed the ever loving crap out of this cigar. This is most definitely a full bodied, full flavored smoke. The last third moved into more of a gut puncher than I expected but I powered through it and was rewarded with a solid smoking experience I will not soon forget.
The leather and spice intensified and added to it a good amount of white pepper. I was beginning to think I may have smoked this too fast but then I realized It has already been over an hour. To me that just means that this is not for the faint at heart. If you are an experienced smoker, looking for a lot of flavor, power and a great deal of complexity, this is the cigar for you. If you are newish to cigars and still smoking mild to medium, I would recommend you hold off on trying one of these as you might just turn one of the walls in your house into a Jackson Pollock painting with your mouth (if you catch my drift).

Last word:
If you’re looking for a great shortish smoke with loads of flavor and complexity, you should rush out and get one of these. I would recommend it to any seasoned cigar fan looking for a good journey. This cigar has a great story to tell, with a beginning, middle and end that are separate experiences unto themselves and THAT my friends, is worth every penny you paid for it.
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Old 05-18-2013, 12:16 PM   #2
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Default Re: Illusione MK Corona

Thanks for the review, this has always been one my favorites.
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Old 05-18-2013, 12:35 PM   #3
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Default Re: Illusione MK Corona

One of my all time favorites!!! Nice review
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Old 05-18-2013, 01:56 PM   #4
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Default Re: Illusione MK Corona

Great review, thanks for sharing
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Old 05-19-2013, 07:24 AM   #5
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Default Re: Illusione MK Corona

Nice! I believe that is an MK Ultra, a little more kick than a regular MK.
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Old 05-19-2013, 09:00 AM   #6
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Default Re: Illusione MK Corona

Yea you are right Jake, MK's have a white and gold bands like the HL and Epernay. They don't make MK's any more. It was better than the ultra IMO
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Old 05-19-2013, 09:24 AM   #7
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Default Re: Illusione MK Corona

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gabe215 View Post
Yea you are right Jake, MK's have a white and gold bands like the HL and Epernay. They don't make MK's any more. It was better than the ultra IMO
I'm pretty sure that the originals mks are still available, and I also thought they were much better than the ultras.
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Old 05-19-2013, 11:04 AM   #8
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Default Re: Illusione MK Corona

They stopped making them unfortunately they may be available in some stores that still have the old boxes, if you have access to them PM me for a trade brother!!
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Old 05-20-2013, 12:47 PM   #9
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Default Re: Illusione MK Corona

I have old mks that have the white and gold band. I also have mk ultras that have a mostly black band that say ultra on them. I also bought some regular mks (I thought) recently that have the mostly white band with mk on them (like above). So now you're telling me these are actullay mk ultras? . . . CRAP!! One of my favorite sticks and now discontinued? I thought that wrapper looked oddly dark as the OR mks are not that dark.
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Old 05-20-2013, 03:43 PM   #10
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Default Re: Illusione MK Corona

Yea new blend, cherish the white and gold banded ones!!
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Old 05-20-2013, 04:57 PM   #11
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Default Re: Illusione MK Corona

The orignal MK is still in my top 5. Right up there with the Epernay Le Elegance and HL Maduro. I believe the small ring guages to be the best Illusiones.
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Old 05-20-2013, 06:27 PM   #12
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Default Re: Illusione MK Corona

I smoked an HL (not maduro) last month that I tucked away for over a year, was one of the best cigars I've ever had. I feel that Illusione as a whole has gone downhill lately. The 88, 888, and MJ12 all taste horrible now and they were always staples in my humidor. After I had that HL I've been VERY tempted to buy a box, but don't want the same disappointment at a box price tag! Anyone else notice this or is it just me?
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Old 05-21-2013, 06:39 AM   #13
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Default Re: Illusione MK Corona

Gabe,
I've been going back and forth on this lately. I've been experiencing increasing construction issues the past year. I posted a complaining thread on another board a few months ago and had several agree. But, Dion stepped right up and posted that he was taking a copy of the thread straight to the factory and would personally look into recent construction. That kind of personal feedback is part of what keeps me coming back. In fact, I had a CG4 last night that was incredible. Perfect burn, flavor, finish....absolutely great cigar.
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Old 05-21-2013, 09:02 AM   #14
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Default Re: Illusione MK Corona

Just bought a fiver of the MK's after reading they'd be discontinued. Waiting to see if they have the right bands before I pull the trigger on a box.
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Old 05-21-2013, 09:48 AM   #15
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Default Re: Illusione MK Corona

According to Dion, the blend didn't change, just the band. That being said, that dark wrapper doesn't look anything like the older mks I've seen. (I'll check mine). So is the new band release just not as good as the older release? Guess I'll have to smoke one to find out. Brandon sure did like it and his review is fairly close to my own experience with these, although I didn't think they were as strong and the floral and asian spice flavors lasted longer.

I've been an Illusione fan since '08 and those sticks from '08 have aged great. I still have a couple left, but my favorite sticks are the box pressed Eperneys.
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Old 05-23-2013, 11:53 AM   #16
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Default Re: Illusione MK Corona

OK, I've compared wrapper color on these and my gold and white banded mk from 2011 is actually darker than the black and white band and the Ultra, go figure.

I also smoked one of the black and white banded ones, and I must say Brandon really nailed this review. This stick is stronger than what I remember in the past, but still excellent and tasting the same/similar to the older ones. I didn't really care for the ultra, so I don't think this blend changed, just the variations in harvest years.
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Old 05-23-2013, 11:59 AM   #17
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Default Re: Illusione MK Corona

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gabe215 View Post
I smoked an HL (not maduro) last month that I tucked away for over a year, was one of the best cigars I've ever had. I feel that Illusione as a whole has gone downhill lately. The 88, 888, and MJ12 all taste horrible now and they were always staples in my humidor. After I had that HL I've been VERY tempted to buy a box, but don't want the same disappointment at a box price tag! Anyone else notice this or is it just me?

Try giving more of the smaller ring guages a try.
MK
F9
68

I love the smaller ones and dont really care for the 88, 888, MJ12 etc.
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Old 05-23-2013, 02:23 PM   #18
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Default Re: Illusione MK Corona

I've had all them too, I think the whole line went to sh*t, flavor of smokes just aren't the same, obviously different crops but damn the last 2 I had the cg4 and f9 were very bad!
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