On March 16, 2012, the Casa Fuente Series 5 Special Selection arrived in the Las Vegas store, the first new line for the retail store since its 2005 opening. Very little is known about the new cigars at this time, but there are some facts that we found out after talking with the salesperson at the store. There were three different vitolas released all at once and use an Ecuadorian Rosado wrapper instead of the normal Cameroon wrapper that appears on the regular Casa Fuente line. While the blend on the regular Casa Fuente line is still not completely known, the Casa Fuente Series 5 Special Selectionwas hinted as being the same sans wrapper.
For those unfamiliar with Casa Fuente itself, Charlie did a pretty lengthy history during his review of the Casa Fuente Double Robusto:
Casa Fuente is a cigar line that is made for the namesake Casa Fuente retail store, which is located in the Forum Shops at Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas, NV. The shop itself, which you can see in all its glory here, opened in the summer of 2005 and is a partnership between Michael and Robert Frey of FreBoy Tobacco/CigarBox and Robert Levin of Holt’s/Ashton. It is the only cigar bar officially licensed by the Fuentes who are also closely associated with the aforementioned Holt’s and Tampa Sweetheart’s.
In addition to the famous mojitos, apparel and accessories, Casa Fuente features a collection of unique cigars that can be divided up into two groups.
The first is just rare and hard-to-find Fuentes, most branded under the Forbidden X line, they include: Don Arturo Destino Al Siglo 13 ($125.00), FFOX Forbidden X BBMF ($125.00), FFOX Forbidden X Chili Pepper ($75.00)*, FFOX Forbidden X Cigar in the Bottle ($60.00), FFOX Forbidden X LBMF ($80.00), FFOX Forbidden X Non Plus Ultra ($85.00) and FFOX Forbidden X Phantom (Lancero) ($65.00).
Nearly all of these cigars are available in identical form (blend/size) in different packaging in other forms, largely in theOpus 22 gift sets from Prometheus. However, the only place the black-banded versions are sold is Casa Fuente.
The other set of exclusive cigars is the aforementioned Casa Fuente line. Introduced at the 2005 opening, Casa Fuente now features eight sizes:
- Belicosos Finos — 5 5/8 x 52 — $23.00 (Boxes of 25, $575.00)
- Churchill — 7 x 47 — $25.00 (Boxes of 25, $625.00)
- Corona Gorda — 5 5/8 x 46 — $18.00 (Boxes of 25, $450.00)
- Double Corona — 7 5/8 x 49 — $28.00 (Boxes of 25, $700.00)
- Double Robusto — 5 3/4 x 52 — $22.00 (Boxes of 42, $924.00)
- Phantom (Lancero) — 7 1/2 x 41 — $22 (Bundles of 25, $550)*
- Pyramid #2 — 6 3/8 x 52 — $26.00 (Boxes of 25, 650)
- Robusto — 5 x 50 — $21.00 (Boxes of 25, $525.00)
*The Casa Fuente Lancero is not officially offered in any quantity other than singles.
The blend is still not entirely known, but the filler is alleged to be a tweaked version of the Opus X blend with a Dominican binder. What’s more intriguing is the wrapper, which is alleged to be an original Cameroon seed wrapper that was grown by the late Rick Meerapfel of CETAC S.A.
The launch of the Casa Fuente Series 5 Special Selection saw three vitolas at the debut:
(photo by @jrcleav —used with permission)
- 806 — Robusto — $21.00
- 807 — Double Robusto — $22.00
- 808 — Unknown — $24.00
The boxes that the new Casa Fuente Rosados come in look like this:
(photo by @jrcleav —used with permission)
- Cigar Reviewed: Casa Fuente Series 5 Special Selection 806
- Country of Origin: Dominican Republic
- Factory: Tabacalera A. Fuente y Cia
- Wrapper: Ecuadorian Rosado
- Binder: n/a
- Filler: n/a
- Size: 5 Inches
- Ring Gauge: 50
- Vitola: Robusto
- MSRP: $21.00 (Boxes of 25, $525.00)
- Date Released: March 16, 2012
- Number of Cigars Released: n/a
- Number of Cigars Smoked For Review: 1
The Casa Fuente Series 5 is like all of the Casa Fuente releases, an impeccable looking cigar. The wrapper is smooth to the touch, a wonderful milk chocolate brown color with minimal veins. It is extremely firm when squeezed, but far short of rock hard. Aroma from the wrapper of the 806 smells very sweet, like sweet leather, chocolate and wood.
The Casa Fuente starts out the first third as sweet as the wrapper smelled, quite sweet, almost like rock sugar. Other flavors include grass, chocolate, wood, coffee and a light fruit note, which reminds me of citrus, but not as strong. There is a little bit of bitterness underneath as well, and while the strength ebbs and flows, it never really makes much of a difference in the profile. There is also a very tiny amount of spice on the tongue at the start of the smoke, but it slowly fades away to almost nothing after about 15 puffs or so. Some pepper makes an appearance on the retrohale late in the first third, but never that strong. The draw is perfect, and the burn is a bit wavy. Strength is a non-issue at the end of the first third, but does seem to be getting stronger.
The second third of the 806 changes with a much more creamy note becoming dominant. As the third progresses, the sweetness dies down, nowhere as strong as it once was. The main flavors are a bit different as well: cedar, chocolate and a nice floral note that really goes well with the rest of the Fuente. The bitterness from the first third sticks around, and seems to be getting a bit stronger. Draw is great, burn is fine, and strength is slowly increasing ending the second third at a solid medium.
Coming into the final third and there is a nice sweet nuttiness emerging in the Casa Fuente. The bitterness actually increases a little, but it is still just in the background, i.e. not strong enough to be a main note. Other than the nuttiness, the flavors present remain pretty much the same as the second third: wood, chocolate and floral. The strength also increases quite a bit until it is at a solid medium plus by the end of the cigar. Construction remains wonderful in all aspects, and it is an easy cigar to nub.
- Interestingly, there is almost no way to tell the regular Casa Fuente blend from the new Ecuadorian Rosado blend outside of the boxes, which haves names on them. The bands are exactly the same, the orange ribbon on the foot is exactly the same, and the size is exactly the same. In fact, really the only way you could tell them apart if you were to mix them up is to compare the actual wrappers of the cigars. Although quite similar in color, the regular Casa Fuente’s Cameroon wrapper is quite a bit rougher to the touch, has more veins present and is just not as smooth overall as the new Ecuadorian Rosado wrapper. The photo below is of a Casa Fuente Lancero (bottom) and a Casa Fuente 806 (top) to compare.
- Fuente has been putting a Rosado wrapper on quite a few new releases in the last year. There have been Rosado versions of the 858 and Hemingway lines, as well as a brand new line, the AF Magnum R44, R52 and R54.
- As of this moment, visitors to Casa Fuente in Las Vegas are only able to purchase only one single of each of the new Casa Fuente Series 5 Special Selections, although some reports say guests are now able to purchase two of each size.
- Fuente almost always has reasons for their names, it’s unclear what Series 5 or 806, 807 or 808 mean.
- Although there are only three vitolas released so far, there are more sizes presumably coming in the future, perhaps two more?
- In the beginning of the cigar, the wrapper seemed almost impervious to fire, and it took a few times with the torch to get it started. After that, the burn was perfect.
- The ash is a light grey, and perfectly formed, almost seamless.
- The Rosado wrapped version is definitely stronger then the Cameroon version, especially in the final third.
- The final smoking time was one hour and 10 minutes.
- As with all Casa Fuente cigars, if you would like to purchase any of them, you will have to either go to Las Vegas to the store, or bribe someone who is going.
I liked this cigar and I enjoyed the profile. But honestly, I did not like it more than the original Casa Fuente, which I love. The addition of the rosado wrapper seems to be joined by an increase in strength over the Cameroon wrapped version, which I do not necessarily think is a good thing. The construction was fine after the first inch or so and the draw was great, but the ever present bitterness really showed the youth of these cigars and blend, although that will presumably get better with rest. The price is always an issue as well, but it is Las Vegas after all. I think these will sell well, but if you buy any anytime soon, I would let them rest for a month or so before smoking them.