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Staff Reviews

Fuente Fuente Opus X BBMF Staff Review

Shane K. K's picture

Shane K.

It’s not every day I get to smoke a cigar as astonishing or elusive as a Fuente Fuente Opus X BBMF, but somebody’s gotta do it – to review it. BBMF stands for “Big Bad Mother F*#%&r,” and, as the name implies, it’s no ordinary Opus X. BBMF is easily one of the most unique cigars you’ll encounter.

World-renowned cigar-maker Carlito Fuente unveiled the first Fuente Fuente Opus X cigars in 1995 following years of trial and error planting a perfect wrapper crop in the Dominican Republic. Dozens of other cigar-makers scoffed at the idea because they had tried and failed. The Fuentes invested significant resources, and Carlito simply didn’t give up. What started as a small 37-acre farm for cultivating Opus wrapper has blossomed into the illustrious Chateau de la Fuente estates, christened The Birthplace of a Dream – where tobacco for the rarest Fuente cigars is grown, including top-rated gems like Ashton ESG.

The hard-to-find BBMF is an impressive and bulbous 6.5 by 64 Figurado handmade from exclusive reserves of the Fuentes’ oldest tobaccos. A special rolling gallery in the Fuente factory is dedicated to Opus X production. And, to achieve the highest possible standards for quality, Carlito trains the rollers to make Opus X and nothing else. That way bad habits from rolling other cigars cannot invade the Opus room.

In case your mouth is watering, the best way to score an Opus X BBMF is by buying one of a handful of annual Fuente Fuente Opus X Assortments or the Opus X 22 Sampler. A percentage of the proceeds is donated to the Cigar Family Charitable Foundation, an organization started by the Fuentes to uplift the impoverished Dominican families in the Bonao region where Arturo Fuente cigars are made. Otherwise, the BBMF is available in limited quantities at the Ashton Cigar Bar in Philadelphia and the Casa Fuente lounge in Las Vegas where they command between $150 and $200 per cigar, depending on whether you get the Natural or the Maduro wrapper. Because the Maduro is even rarer, it’s more expensive.

Today, I am indulging in an Opus X BBMF in a Natural wrapper. The oily Shade Grown Dominican cover leaf embraces an alluring interior of premium Dominican binder and filler tobaccos matured for many years.

Unsheathed from the cellophane, the lustrous complexion of the wrapper radiates as much as the ornate detail on the Opus X cigar band. A secondary band identifies the year the cigar was made on some BBMFs. Besides the cigar’s extravagant dimensions, the head is topped with a shaggy pony tail of loose tobacco, and both the head and the foot of the cigar are finished with a Maduro wrapper at very tip. The attention to detail is unsurpassed.

The BBMF captures your senses with luxurious aroma before it’s even lit. Notes of fresh coffee, pepper, cedar, and sweetened leather emanate from the wrapper. I’m hesitant to cut the cap because it’s been placed so beautifully, but once it’s removed and I spin the cigar between my lips a few times, the classic zest you only get from Opus X cigars awakens the palate as I light up. Tangy, rich notes of dried fruit and baking spices weave in and out while woody, peppery aroma exhilarates the nose. Because the BBMF is a Figurado, you only need to light the very tip. Don’t try to incinerate the entire end of the cigar, or you will encourage an uneven burn. Large Figurados can be finicky at first, so be patient.

The draw is flawless, and plumes of creamy white smoke perpetuate an unmistakably milky and smoky room note. BBMF is a slow, cool-burning cigar in the beginning due to its swollen ring gauge. Notes of leather, cocoa, and figs contribute to the cigar’s zesty character. For some, Opus X is a very strong cigar. It’s made with an abundant blend of premium aged Ligero tobaccos – stronger leaves from the upper portion of a tobacco plant that receive more sunlight. If you’re accustomed to smoking Opus, or stronger cigars in general, the BBMF is likely less intense than other sizes, at least throughout the first half.

The ash is firm and after a briefly uneven detour, the burn self-corrected and a delicious transition of nougat, cedar, and smoked meat drapes the palate with a chewy and tangy impression. The spice is especially savory when you push the smoke through your nose. Because the BBMF burns for a long time, it is a special occasion cigar. Relish it slowly, and smoke it when you’ve got plenty of time to relax.

Hints of cinnamon and mesquite sneak in as the draw narrows beyond the band, and an hour has passed. I can tell if I smoked at a faster pace, the nicotine would kick in quickly, but I am taking measured draws. Opus X deserves a really good bourbon or scotch. The refined profile of a vintage single malt like Balvenie 21 Year Port Wood would be high on my list. Vibrant notes of almond, oak, cocoa, and leather create a tangy crescendo with a touch of hickory as the nub of my BBMF sadly but satisfyingly reveals itself.

You’ll find so many opinions about this cigar. Some adore it, even worship it. Others declare it’s overhyped. I have yet to be disappointed with a BBMF, so I’m not shy about recommending it. But, it’s expensive and hard to find. My advice is splurge on one at least once, and smoke it. Treat yourself. Take in its taste and aroma, but don’t overanalyze it or expect a borderline religious experience. Just know that you probably won’t enjoy two hours of your week more than the two you spent smoking a Fuente Fuente Opus X BBMF.