Quesada Cigars will be debuting a limited edition version of their popular Casa Magna Colorado in July. Celebrating 15 years since the line’s inception, just 3,500 boxes of the Casa Magna XV Anniversary have been produced. Of those, only 3,000 are destined for the U.S. market. In place of the Cuban-seed, shade-grown Wrapper from Jalapa, Nicaragua that Quesada traditionally uses for the Colorado? Habano 2000, grown in Ecuador, that serves to add another level of character and strength to the blend. Packaged 15 cigars to a box, each 6 x 54 Toro will be priced at a suggested $15. Expected to start appearing on shelves and sites this summer – after the Premium Cigar Association trade show in Las Vegas – the storied brand will start accepting pre-orders from your favorite shops on June 1st.
“We were looking for specific flavors, something richer and with a more complex taste but in the same Casa Magna blending style.” explains Raquel Quesada. “Raquel and I started working on this project with the factory team last summer. We knew since day one what we wanted but took us a while to figure it out. Sometimes a project comes to life as fast as the first blend thought in mind, and this was not the case,” says Manolo Quesada.
Fresh off of the success of their limited edition Factory Blend VHS release, Favilli Trading and MBF Cigars have teased the next installment of the popular Factory Blend series. Expected to drop next week, this new edition’s theme is loud: steroids. Potentially being packaged in what can best be described as pill bottles, a brief teaser includes images of DECA 5550 and TREN 5550 labeled containers beneath a booming voiceover that bellows “Legalize Anabolic Steroids.” Before the over the top video ends, the viewer is offered sounds of gun parts moving and then a single shot being fired. It’s a wild video but it’s going to be talked about. For companies looking to stand out in a crowded market, the ability to get talked about is a priority 2nd only to having the quality work to back it up with.
Nashville’s Crowned Heads have revealed new details about the 10th iteration of their Las Calaveras project. The Las Calaveras Edición Limitada 2023 continues the to be produced at My Father Cigars S.A. and will feature a Connecticut broadleaf wrapper. Representing a celebration of those lose over the past year, the Las Calaveras line launched in 2014 and has been released annually ever since. Launching in 4 sizes, the 2023 edition will be packaged in boxes of 24 cigars each. In addition to 3,000 sampler boxes, assumed to contain all four vitolas, just 1,500 boxes of each size will be made available. Ranging from $12.95 to $14.95 each, depending on the size, the sampler will sell for $54.95.
Jon Huber, Crowned Heads co-founder, shares that “I’ve held My Father Cigars and the Garcia family in such high regard, especially when it came to their use of Connecticut Broadleaf wrapper and the resultant blend expressions. The 2023 Las Calaveras blend has so much going on in terms of what you’d expect from a My Father Broadleaf blend, everything from pepper to chocolate to earth, all impeccably and consistently balanced. We’re also featuring a first in the 2023 Las Calaveras Sampler, as this will be the first time we’ve featured a Belicoso Fino as the Sampler-exclusive vitola, and the first time we’ve produced that vitola with My Father Cigars.” This will be the first time that the annual release has utilized a broadleaf wrapper since 2016.
Scandinavian Tobacco Group and their General Cigar Company subsidiary have announced a new regular production line: Bolivar Gran Republica. The newest addition to the heritage brand’s portfolio features an Ecuadorian Habano wrapper leaf, Brazilian Arapiraca binder, and a combination of filler tobaccos from Colombia, Brazil and Nicaragua. Available within the next two weeks, the new blend is launching in 3 sizes – Robusto, Toro, and Gigante. Ranging from $7.99 to $8.49 depending on the format, each vitola will be packaged in 20-count boxes.
Director of Marketing with STG, Steve Abbot, shares that “With Bolivar Gran Republica, we are continuing to build the legacy of this important brand. This is a bold blend for the initiated smoker, one that not only deepens the range of offerings from Bolivar but that also highlights the best of South American tobacco. We’re confident that Gran Republica will be a strong addition to the growing Bolivar portfolio.”
Announced back in March, the third release from Ozgener Family Cigars is on it’s way to brick-and-mortar shops across the country. Aramas is crafted by Ernesto Perez Carrillo in the Dominican Republic and balances a Mexican San-Andres wrapper with an Ecuador-Sumatra binder. The combination of filler tobaccos includes Connecticut Broadleaf and leaves from Nicaragua and the Dominican Republic. With origins far more meaningful than just names on a list of potential brands, Mount Ararat and and Masis represent the same mountain in the two different languages of Tim Ozgener’s parents – Turkish and Armenian. Combining both names to create something entirely new, Ozgener created Aramis. Available in boxes of 20, each cigar ranges from $12.75 to $15.75 MSRP depending on which of the 4 vitolas you’re obtaining.
Villiger Cigars officially opened their new factory in Estelí, Nicaragua in late 2021. The facility, known as Villiger de Nicaragua – is a joint venture with the respected Joya de Nicaragua. Nearly 33,000 square feet in size, the factory took a year to construct. Revealed last year to segments of the European market, the Villiger 1888 Nicaragua holds the distinct honor of being the very first regular production cigar ever produced at Villiger de Nicaragua. Making its domestic debut in Las Vegas in July, the blend is expected to be made available to the U.S, before August. Launching in 3 sizes – Coronita, Robusto, and Toro – the latest addition to the 1888 series boasts an Ecuadorian Sumatra wrapper, Nicaraguan binder, and a combination of filler tobaccos from Nicaragua and Pennsylvania. Offered in 20-count boxes, MSRP on these will range from $8.00 to $9.20 each depending on the vitola.
Lifestyle journalist Nick Hammond published Around the World in 80 Cigars: The Travels of an Epicure in December of 2019. Launched at the same time that nearly everyone in the world was asked to stay inside, Hammond’s collection of cigar related travel stories has reached far beyond the confines of the cigar community. Embraced even by those who have never so much as seen a cigar in real life, it’s the special kind of work that benefits the entire cigar culture. Since the original run, a podcast of the same name was also started and is now in its second season. Downloaded tens of thousansds of times already, the series spans 36 episodes so far.
The more people that know about the magic of cigars and understand what is involved in crafting them, the better it is for all of us who love premium tobacco. To that end, we draw your attention to the crowdfunding page for Hammond’s sequel: Around The World in 80 Cigars – There and Back Again. At just shy of $25,000 currently pledged, the project needs to make it to $30,903 (£25,000 GBP) to get started. With less than 2 days remaining as of this roundup going live, the campaign has made it nearly 80% of the way to its goal – and only gets the funds if it reaches 100%.
More than merely funding the project, each pledge helps students pay for courses and materials at Autèntico Learning Centre in El Tamarindo, a small village outside León. Follow the glowing recommendations from industry insiders like Eddie Sahakian and Nick Perdomo and get your own copy of the original book/audiobook so that you’ll be all caught up when the sequel comes out!
Wishing you all another great weekend full of your favorite cigars and your favorite people. Keep on sending in your favorite cigar related news stories, posts and video. If anything from this roundup catches your attention, let everyone know in the comments below!