While relatively rare over the years, there have been examples of cigar blends made exclusively with one type of tobacco.
During the 2018 IPCPR Convention & Trade Show last month, JRE Tobacco. Co. officially released another cigar in that vein: the Aladino Corojo Reserva, a single vitola puro that—as the name suggests—is composed of 100 percent corojo tobacco from Honduras. The new cigar debuted in just one size—a 5 x 50 robusto—that is packaged in a unique diamond-esque shaped box that features a piece of art printed on the inside of the lid.
While it is an ongoing production cigar, brand owner Justo Eiroa told halfwheel that only 400 boxes are being made per month, all of which are being shipped to “stores by exclusive allocation only.” Each cigar carries an MSRP of $12 and they are being produced at the Las Lomas Factory in Honduras.
Charlie wrote about the Eiroas in a post after visiting the company’s farm in Honduras:
Eiroa is best known for his decades owning the Camacho brand before selling it to Oettinger Davidoff AG in 2008, but like many that sell their companies, he kept the fields. And after briefly retiring—for a third time—he’s back in Honduras overseeing the farm and factory, best known in the U.S. under the JRE Tobacco Co. banner.
The older Eiroa is a farmer, an old Cuban farmer and probably the last one of his generation left in Central America. With the exception of Nestor Plasencia Sr., no one has close to the decades of experience growing tobacco and rolling in Central America like Eiroa. As he remarked to me, his peers—Llaneza, Padrón, Oliva—have left this earth.
- Cigar Reviewed: Aladino Corojo Reserva
- Country of Origin: Honduras
- Factory: Las Lomas Factory
- Wrapper: Honduras (Corojo)
- Binder: Honduras (Corojo)
- Filler: Honduras (Corojo)
- Length: 5 Inches
- Ring Gauge: 50
- Vitola: Robusto
- MSRP: $12 (Boxes of 20, $240
- Release Date: August 2018
- Number of Cigars Released: Regular Production
- Number of Cigars Smoked For Review: 3
The Aladino Corojo Reserva is covered in a cinnamon brown wrapper that is quite smooth to the touch, despite the lack of any noticeable oil. There are a number of extremely prominent veins running down the length and the cigar is extremely heavy in my hand, almost shockingly so. Aroma from the wrapper is a combination of distinct hay, espresso beans, dark chocolate, cedar and toasted coconut, while the cold draw brings flavors of cocoa nibs, aged cedar, bitter coffee, barnyard, leather and dark fruit sweetness.
The Aladino Corojo Reserva starts off the first third with a very strong combination of creamy cedar and freshly roasted coffee beans, interspersed with notes of leather, hay, powdery cocoa, gritty earth and almonds. There is a noticeable amount of black pepper on the retrohale for the first 10 puffs or so as well as some spice on my tongue, but both remain strong enough to be a major part of the profile. In addition, I taste the same dark fruit sweetness on the retrohale carried over from the cold draw, a note that seems to be getting stronger as the first third progresses. In terms of construction, the smoke production is massive off of the foot, while the burn and draw are excellent so far, giving me no major issues whatsoever. Strength-wise, the Aladino starts off strong, ending up well on its way to the medium mark by the of the first third.
Coming into the second third of the Corojo Reserva, the profile retains the creamy cedar and freshly roasted coffee beans as the dominant combination, but adds an interesting cinnamon note on the finish that is quite distinct without being overwhelming at any point. There are other flavors flitting in and out, including gritty earth, hay, bitter dark chocolate, toast and a touch of licorice sweetness. Thankfully, both the black pepper and the spice on my tongue are down a bit compared to the first third, allowing the dark fruit sweetness to shine a bit more. Both the burn and the draw continue to impress, while the smoke production continues to come off the foot with abandon. The strength easily hits the medium mark early on in the second third and blasts past that, making it about halfway to the full mark by the time the second third ends.
The final third of the Aladino Corojo Reserva retains the creamy cedar and roasted coffee bean notes that have been dominant for pretty much the entire cigar, followed by additional flavors of floral, gritty earth, powdery cocoa, barnyard, leather, almonds and very slight citrus. The cinnamon note from the second third is long gone, and both the dark fruit sweetness and black pepper on the retrohale have receded a bit compared to their high points in the second third. The draw remains excellent while the burn wavers quite a bit, forcing me to touch it up multiple times. Finally, the overall strength easily hits the full marks few puffs in the final third and remains there until I put the nub down with about an inch left to go.
- If you are wondering about the lack of a secondary band and tissue covering the foot of the cigar, the Corojo Reserva smoked for this review were prerelease versions given to us before the IPCPR Convention. You can see what the regular production versions look like by reading our IPCPR coverage of the JRE Tobacco. Co. booth here.
- As mentioned above, I was shocked by how heavy this cigar felt in my hand and would have sworn it was at least 50 percent heavier than other cigars of the same size. Curious to see if I was correct, I compared the weights of both the Aladino Corojo Reserva and a Camacho robusto I took off of the shelf at Elite Cigar Cafe, and surprised to see that there was a difference of only two grams.
- Construction was excellent overall, although one sample did need to be touched up multiple times in the final third.
- The cigars smoked for this review were given to halfwheel by JRE Tobacco. Co.
- Final smoking time for all three samples averaged a very long one hour and 46 minutes.
- If you would like to purchase any of the Aladino Corojo Reservas, site sponsor Corona Cigar has them in stock.
I had been told by a couple of people before I smoked it that this was a strong blend, and while it certainly features some significant strength to it—especially in the final third—the idea that it will knock you on your ass as one person put it, is not totally accurate. In terms of profile, the flavors that are present are bold and distinct, but not overly complex at any point other than the blast of cinnamon on the finish that was very apparent to me on each sample around the halfway point. Having said that, the strength does get strong enough to throw the balance off in the final third and this will go to the top of my list to do a redux review on in six months to see how it has changed and to see if the strength and flavors in the blend have melded a bit more.