H. Upmann Noellas (LCDH Exclusivo)

H. Upmann Noellas (LCDH Exclusivo)

Origin : CubaH. Upmann
Format : Corona (Cosacos)
Size : 5.3 x 42 (135 x 17 mm)
Ring : 42
Hand-Made
Price : ~$20 CAD
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Now that the warmer weather is melting away the snow, I have had the chance to smoke the last of three sticks I wanted to have before writing this review. Without risking frostbite of course. The H. Upmann Noellas were discontinued some time in the 1980s, but at one point were regular production cigars. They were sold in beautifully presented glass jars of 25. In 2009 they were re-released as a LCDH Exclusivo. I have read they were not actually available until 2010 and some places didn't see them until 2013. I am not sure when they were released in Canada, I just know I purchased mine at the LCDH Toronto in May of 2014.

I am a big fan of the H. Upmann marca. I can't say I have smoked every stick in the line-up, but I have yet to have one that was not to my liking. One of the first Cubans I ever smoked was an H. Upmann Corona Junior. Although it is a bit pedestrian as far as Cubans go, it was with this that I realized what all the fuss was about with cigars. So let's see how the Noellas stacked up for me.

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Ramon Allones Specially Selected Robusto Corto (Regional)

Ramon Allones Specially Selected Robusto Corto (Regional Edition Netherlands)

Ramon AllonesOrigin : Cuba
Format : Petit Robusto
Size : 102 x 20 mm (4 x 50)
Ring : 50
Released in : 2013
Hand-Made
Price : ~9 EUR each
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Ramon Allones is a brand we see quite a lot when it comes to regional releases. On October 25th, 2013, the Netherlands was granted a Petit Robusto called the Specially Selected Robusto Corto. This was a limited edition with just 2,000 slide-lid cabinets produced, each containing 25 stogies. Price is quite reasonable; if you can get your hands on one of these, you’ll pay about 9 EUR per cigar.

I bought my sampler in Amsterdam quite some time ago, let's see what these 14 months in humi did to this smoke.

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Punch Serie d’Oro No. 2 (2013 Limited Edition)

Punch Serie d'Oro No. 2 (2013 Limited Edition)

Origin : CubaPunch
Format : Pyramid
Size : 140 x 20 mm (5.5 x 52)
Ring : 52
Release : 2013
Hand-Made
Price : 14 EUR each
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The Punch Serie d'Oro 2013 Edicion Limitada was a highly anticipated release from Habanos S.A. As usual, the wrappers for this limited edition come from tapado (shade-grown) leaves, which is the reason why they have such a dark and oily appearance. The tobacco used in these cigars was aged for two years. Again, no surprises here. What's quite surprising on the other hand is that this is the first ever Edicion Limitada from Punch (the Serie d'Oro No. 1 was a regional edition for the UK that we reviewed... five years ago! this makes me feel old) — and as with any Edicion Limitada, my expectations are high.

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Montecristo Colección Habanos 2005

Montecristo Colección Habanos 2005

MontecristoOrigin : Cuba
Format : Maravillas No. 1 (Double Robusto)
Size : 7-1/8" (182 mm) x 55
500 “books” of 20 produced in 2005
Box Date : FIM – September 2005; Box #150 of 500
Hand-Made
Price : Market Value roughly $1,600/book or $80/cigar
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The Montecristo Colección Habanos 2005 commemorated the 70th anniversary of the brand. It is the fifth “volume” of the Habanos Collection Series which began in 2001. The Colección releases are notable for both quality and the unique presentation (see photographs).

Montecristo Colleccion, a fireplace and gin martini

I meant to smoke and review this in the summer, but just never got to it. I purchased this “book” at initial release and have smoked a few. I recall enjoying these, but not being blown away. Now that we are into its 9th year, I thought it was a good time to see how they are developing. Reviewing this on a cold, rainy night while sitting next to an aromatic fire, paired with a very dry, gin martini (my preferred libation with Montecristos and Cohibas).

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Quick Smoke: Bolivar Super Coronas 2014 Limited Edition

Bolivar Super Coronas 2014 Edicion Limitada

Origin : Cuba
Format : Grand CoronaBolivar
Size : 140 x 18 mm (5.5 x 48)
Ring : 48
Intruduced in : 2014
Hand-Made
Price : £17 each (in the UK)
More info about purchasing Bolivar cigars...

Bolivar Super Coronas is a Habanos edicion limitada released this year, it just started hitting the shelved in the UK. Its factory name is Hermosos No. 3 which corresponds to a 5.5 x 48 size.

Pre-light: Slightly earthy smell, well-packed but pliant, excellent draw through the largest of my Victorinox Cigar Penknife hole punches. Fresh "green" taste; tobacco, moss, grass.

1/3: Very mild (hence ideal following a light meal or earlier in the day). Slight spiciness (fruit cake) mingled with chocolate, very cool. Excellent & even burn with a nice ash stack formation.

2/3: The cigar warms up pleasantly releasing stronger chocolate flavours together with milky coffee (continuing the mild theme) and also some woody hints (as if from a log fire) - possibly oak. Ash holds to a good 2", keeping straight with a superb even burn. Wrapper stays perfectly intact and the draw remains pleasant and "warm".

3/3: A slight bite becomes evident during the last phase; white pepper and dark chocolate mingle with a stronger burnt wood taste, but the smoke remains velvety and can safely be passed round the sinuses to deliver the full flavour.

Bolivar Super Coronas is an overall mild to medium bodied cigar with clear but uncomplicated flavours. Coffee or a light drink complement it well and it can be enjoyed at lunchtime, despite its size (mine took around 90 minutes). The construction is excellent and price wise it compares very favourably with something like a Partagas D4.

Construction : ★★★★½
Flavour : ★★★½☆
Overall : ★★★★☆

Bolivar 108 (Regional Edition Spain)

Bolivar 108 (Regional Edition Spain)

Origin : Cuba
Format : Corona GordaBolivar
Size : 142 x 18 mm (5.6 x 46)
Ring : 46
Intruduced in : 2010
Hand-Made
Price : $20+ each
More info about purchasing Bolivar cigars...

Bolivar is one of the most prominent brands for Cuban cigars. The Bolivar 108 Regional Edition Spain (2010) is not the best known release from this brand, but that is because its release was extremely limited and exclusive. These came out in 2010, and were targeted to the Spanish market. 108 in the name refers to 108 years, a celebration of Bolivar’s anniversary. Only 4,000 were made in total, sold in boxes of 10. These cigars seem to receive almost universal acclaim, and my own experience with the Bolivar 108 has been just as excellent.

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Bolivar Fabulosos (Regional Edition Benelux)

Bolivar Fabulosos Regional Edition Benelux

Origin : CubaBolivar
Format : Edmundo
Size : 135 x 21 mm (5.3 x 52)
Ring : 52
Intruduced in : 2009
Hand-Made
Price : $20+ each
More info about purchasing Bolivar cigars...

The Bolivar Fabulosos 2009 Regional Edition Benelux was a special limited edition which was created by Habanos for the Benelux region, which refers to Luxembourg, Belgium, and the Netherlands. Only 2600 boxes were made, each with 25 stogies. So these cigars can be pretty tough to get a hold of. This Bolivar is a full-bodied smoke with plenty of flavor. Unfortunately, it also seems to suffer from some serious construction problems.

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Bolivar Colosale (Regional Edition Germany)

Bolivar Colosale (German Regional Edition)

Origin : CubaBolivar
Format : Dobles (Robusto Extra)
Size : 155 x 20 mm (6 1/8 x 50)
Box Date : POS – August ’06
Intruduced in : 1,200 cabinets of 50 produced in 2006 exclusively for the Habanos distributor in Germany, Fifth Avenue Products Trading.
Hand-Made
Price : 700 € / 50 (original price fixed by distributor); roughly $17/cigar in 2006
More info about purchasing Bolivar cigars...

Today we're publishing a cigar review submitted by one of our readers, Matthew B. Enjoy!

Why review a special release cigar which is no longer available for purchase, and yet not old enough to be considered vintage? Because it’s there. I typically smoke two cigars a day and have been for nearly twenty years. While I enjoy each and every cigar, the process of reviewing them provides me unique focus and delivers conclusions beyond simply “good” or “bad”.

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