OK, I finally got it out. Just once, in some fun small waves at Malibu. And I love it! Its not really an "easy paddler" per se, because it doesn't have the volume required for that. But it catches waves great - once its in the takeoff position, with the wave lifting the tail, it goes! Which is what I need, with the reduced paddling strength that comes with age.
I need to get some more wave time with this board, but so far I can say it catches waves well, turns and trims well, and looks to be a great, fun board! Got some comments on the beach as well, the wood rails give it a unique look.