In December of last year, Stogies World Class Cigars in Houston, Texas took delivery of a lancero made exclusively for their store, the Room101 Namakubi Ecuador H-Town Lancero. Since then, a second cigar has emerged under the H-Town name and according to Jorge Ahued, there will be at least eight more between now and late 2015.
The second release in the H-Town series is the Alec Bradley Nica Puro blend in a 7 x 40 format. It joins six other regular production vitolas and one other limited edition size in the Nica Puro line, which as its name implies uses Nicaraguan tobacco for the wrapper, filler and binder.
There have now been two different releases in the H-Town series so far.
- Room101 Namakubi Ecuador H-Town Lancero (7 x 38) — December 19, 2013 — 500 Boxes of 20 Cigars (10,000 Total Cigars) — $9.50 (Boxes of 20, $190)
- Alec Bradley Nica Puro H-Town Lancero (7 x 40) — August 2014 — 500 Boxes of 20 Cigars (10,000 Total Cigars) — $7.95 (Boxes of 20, $159)
With the addition of the H-Town Lancero, there are now eight different releases in the Nica Puro line. They are:
- Alec Bradley Nica Puro Bajito (4 1/4 x 52) — Regular Production
- Alec Bradley Nica Puro Robusto (5 x 50) — Regular Production
- Alec Bradley Nica Puro Toro (6 x 52) — Regular Production
- Alec Bradley Nica Puro Torpedo (6 1/4 x 54) — Regular Production
- Alec Bradley Nica Puro Churchill (7 x 50) — Regular Production
- Alec Bradley Nica Puro Gordo (6 1/4 x 60) — Regular Production
- Alec Bradley Nica Puro H-Town Lancero (7 x 40) — 10,000 Total Cigars (500 Boxes of 20 Cigars)
- Alec Bradley Nica Puro Diamond Rough-Cut (6 1/2 x 54) — 48,000 Total Cigars (3,000 Boxes of 16 Cigars)*
*The Diamond Rough-Cut is expected to begin shipping in November.
- Cigar Reviewed: Alec Bradley Nica Puro H-Town Lancero
- Country of Origin: Nicaragua
- Factory: Plasencia Cigars S.A.
- Wrapper: Nicaragua
- Binder: Nicaragua
- Filler: Nicaragua
- Size: 7 Inches
- Ring Gauge: 40
- Vitola: Lancero
- MSRP: $7.95 (Boxes of 20, $159)
- Date Released: August 7, 2014
- Number of Cigars Released: 500 Boxes of 20 Cigars (10,000 Total Cigars)
- Number of Cigars Smoked: 4
Covered in a dark and mottled espresso brown wrapper, the Alec Bradley Nica Puro H-Town sports a small pigtail on cap as well as a foot band that features many of the same details as the main band. The cigar is slightly more firm when squeezed than I expected for a lancero and the wrapper has a parchment like roughness to it when touched. Aroma from the wrapper is a combination of strong barnyard, sweet oak and hay, while the cold draw brings a sharp metallic note coupled with some sweet oak and leather.
The first third of the Alec Bradley Nica Puro H-Town features a strong bitter espresso as the dominant flavor, with other notes of oak, sweet grass, leather and almonds in various positions underneath. The metallic note that I picked up in the cold draw is extremely obvious on the finish as the first third burns down and actually detracts quite a bit from the rest of the flavors in the profile. I am picking up some very faint sweetness on the retrohale, as well as a nice amount of pepper, but there is no spice to be had. Construction-wise, the draw is excellent after a dickman cut, and the burn is quite good as well, while the smoke production is well above average so far. The strength is quite mild barely hitting the midpoint between mild and medium by the end of the first third.
The metallic note on the finish is still present during most of the second third of the Nica Puro H-Town, although it does seem to be fading a bit after I pass the halfway point in the smoke. The flavors in the profile remain essentially the same: strong espresso, grass, leather, wood and barnyard, while the sweetness remains a very small part of the overall experience. The draw is still excellent, but the burn has started to waver a bit, albeit not bad enough to actually have to correct in any major way. The black pepper on the retrohale is still present, but much reduced, and the strength has stalled out very close to the medium mark, not quite making it over the line yet.
The final third of the Alec Bradley Nica Puro H-Town stays on par with the former two-thirds, although the metallic note is much reduced by this point in the cigar. The dominant flavor remains a dark and bitter espresso bean, and other flavors of barnyard, leather, dark cocoa, tobacco and oak flit in and out as well. The generic sweetness in the profile is long gone, as is the black pepper on the retrohale, but the smoke production has remained at a very high level. The strength finally hits the medium mark by the end of the cigar, and both the burn and draw continue to not be an issue until I put the nub down with a little more than an inch left.
- This is the second time the word “lancero” and the state of Texas have been linked by Alec Bradley this year. The company recently released the Alec Bradley Texas Lancero, a 7 x 70 cigar made under the premise that everything is bigger in Texas. How someone could name a 7 x 70 sized cigar a lancero—even in the context of the overused and slightly insulting “Everything is bigger in Texas” slogan—is beyond me.
- If you are unfamiliar with Ahued’s store, you are likely in the store that sells more lanceros per capita in the U.S., quite possibly the world.
- I have heard some rumors of other releases in the H-Town series, and if they come to fruition, there are going to be some very happy cigars smokers in the near future.
- The cigars for this review were provided by Stogies World Class Cigars.
- The average smoking time for all four samples I smoked was just under one hour and 25 minutes.
- The Alec Bradley Nica Puro H-Town Lancero is available exclusively from Stogies World Class Cigars in Houston. Phone orders are accepted at 713.783.5100; be sure to tell them halfwheel sent you.
I have smoked a couple of other vitolas in the Nica Puro line, and while the lancero is easily better than either of those, that is unfortunately not saying much. The profile is extremely monotonous with very few changes in the base flavors, and the underlying metallic note that is present for much of the smoke is fairly off-putting. Fans of the Nica Puro line should definitely give it a try, but anyone else should buy the far superior Room101 Namakubi Ecuador H-Town Lancero, which incidentally, is still for sale at the store.