I’ve never smoked an Upmann from outside of Cuba before so I decided to finally give these sticks a try. On the recommendation of a friend I decided to purchase a couple Legacy Toros on a recent visit to the US. The following was my experience.
First and foremost, a little background on these cigars with the “Rare Corojo” double band. These smokes are released each year in March and are only available until the annual supply is depleted, which is why they are given the secondary "Rare" band. I was able to pick mine up while in Chicago over the July 4th holiday weekend and the cigar shop I was in had ample supply. Also, the Punch Rare Corojo Champion may appear to be a maduro cigar but I assure you it is not. The company brands this cigar as a natural but it is one of the darker naturals I have come across.
The cigar is made by J Fuego Cigar Company and owner Jesus Fuego promotes it as their top of the line brand. It uses aged tobacco in the entire blend and at 6 years old, the binder is the youngest tobacco in the cigar. With such a mix of aged tobacco I was expecting something packing a lot of flavor. This particular line “The Connoisseur” is a very new release that only started shipping to stores this past April 2013 and, according to my research, most stores started receiving their batches in May and June. I’ve never tried a cigar from this manufacturer so while in Chicago recently I happened to come across it and decided to give it a shot. It’s always good to venture out of one’s comfort zone in the hopes of finding something new.
Given the high honor of Cigar Aficionado’s 2011 #1 Cigar of the Year, the Alec Bradley Prensado line could easily be considered an “overlooked” brand until the beginning of 2012. No, I certainly do not agree with most of the C.A. Top 25 choices however every now and then they do strike a gem (but don’t rate it high enough). However, I can actually say I was pretty excited to get this long Churchill lit up. Let’s see how she did…
A little back history on the Alec Bradley brand. Formed in 1996, the Alec Bradley Cigar Company is named after owner Alan Rubin’s two sons, Alec and Bradley. The Prensado brand hit the markets in 2009, just two years after the infamous Tempus line. The cigars are rolled at the Raices Cubanas Factory in Danlí, Honduras and are available in six different vitolas all packaged in boxes of 20.
Introduced in 2011, the Alec Bradley Black Market line is handmade in Danli, Honduras and sports a Jalapa-grown Nicaraguan wrapper "cured to a dark, shimmering patina". The cigar is a blend of Honduras and Panama-grown Jamastran tobaccos.
This is the first blend and cigar made under the CAO label since the brand was taken over by General Cigar. It is currently being manufactured in Honduras.
Appearance : The CAO Osa Sol has a Colorado shade wrapper with veins and an overall rustic look but it has tight seams and a nice sheen. As noted in the photos though, there were some construction issues that affected the overall appearance of the cigar. The colourful band is nice and refreshing but I could not take my eyes off the manufacturing flaws that were clearly visible.
Origin : Honduras Wrapper : Viso Habano grown in the Jalapa Valley, Nicaragua Filler : Columbia, Viso Jalapa Nicaragua, Ligero Esteli Nicaragua, Ligero Honduras Binder : Honduras Hand-Made Price : $7-9
Doc James Cigars & Golf
We have received the honor of writing the first review of a brand new cigar from one of the most respected cigar store/lounges in Westchester County, NY. Doc James Cigars. With 2 locations in the county, their flagship in Shrub Oak and another in Mamaroneck, they are easy to get to and carry an incredibly wide line of sticks. There are even a few rare gems in their vintage humidor that you will have a hard time finding anywhere else, if you are able to at all.
Both locations have fantastic lounges that were designed to be both luxurious and fun. They are very inviting and provide exceptionally well for the hundreds of members who enjoy all sorts of recreational activities there including darts, cards, watching sporting events and the many conversations centering on their love of cigars. A feeling of camaraderie that we cigar smokers enjoy so much is always felt there, and Adam DeSiena, owner of the establishment is always there to enhance the experience in any way that he can. Go visit them at Doc James Cigars & Golf, 952 East Main Street, Shrub Oak NY 10588.
Today's review comes courtesy of Philip a.k.a. Katmancross who blogs at Kohnhed.com. Enjoy!
Well, here I am sitting in the cat bird’s seat. I have a cigar to review that the wonderful, and lovely, Abe Dababneh, of Smoke Inn sent me; 2 months before they go on sale.
And even better, is that they are Matt Booth’s latest incarnation made exclusively for Smoke Inn, called Big Delicious; which is Abe’s nick name around the shop. This is the 6th installment of their Microblend series. The previous releases are the Tatuaje Anarchy™, Padrón SI-15™, My Father El Hijo™, Arturo Fuente Solaris™, and the Tatuaje Apocalypse™. I’ve reviewed all but the Padron.
The official national launch is scheduled for April 26th, 2013, at Smoke Inn’s new Boynton Beach location. An already sold out fancy schmancy dinner will occur on February 15 as sort of a sneak peek for those attending. Pre-release orders will be taken on April 5, 2013.
The cigars are to be made in one size – a 6 1/4 x 42-54 torpedo with a shaggy, closed foot. The cigars will sell for $8.95 and be packaged 15 per box. A box will go for $134.25.
The cigar is to be produced at the Tabacos Rancho Jamastran in Danli, Honduras. At the moment, the binder and filler are somewhat of a mystery as information about what is what is still a secret. But it’s been disclosed that the wrapper is a very high grade Habano 2000.