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In March, Small Batch Cigars, the online store of Maxamar Ultimate Cigars, announced it would be receiving an exclusive cigar in Caldwell Cigar Co.’s Long Live The King blend. Named the Herem, the 4 x 42 petit corona is the smallest vitola in the line, and there were only 4,050 cigars produced, packaged in boxes of 27 with each cigar retailing for $6.

Caldwell Harem Box

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As with the rest of the Long Live The King line, the Harem is composed of a Dominican corojo wrapper from 2008 covering a Dominican corojo binder from 2009 and a filler blend composed half of Dominican corona ligero, 10 percent pelo de oro and 40 percent Nicaraguan habano tobacco.

With the addition of the Harem, there are now six different vitolas in the Long Live The King lineup:

  • Long Live The King The Heater (5 3/4 x 46) — Regular Production — $11 (Boxes of 24, $264)
  • Long Live The King Petit Double Wide Short Churchill (6 x 52)  — Regular Production — $11 (Boxes of 24, $264)
  • Long Live The King Marquis (6 x 60) — Regular Production — $12 (Boxes of 24, $288)
  • Long Live The King My Style is Jalapeño (7 1/4 x 40) — Regular Production — $10 (Boxes of 24, $240)
  • Long Live The King Lock Stock (5 x 52) — Regular Production — $11 (Boxes of 24, $264)
  • Long Live The King Harem (4 x 44) — 150 Boxes of 27 (4,050 Total Cigars) — $6 (Boxes of 27, $154)

Caldwell Harem 1

  • Cigar Reviewed: Caldwell Long Live the King Harem
  • Country of Origin: Dominican Republic
  • Factory: Caldwell Cigar Factory
  • Wrapper: Dominican Republic
  • Binder: Dominican Republic
  • Filler: Dominican Republic Ligero, Dominican Pelo de Oro & Nicaragua Habano
  • Length: 4 Inches
  • Ring Gauge: 42
  • Vitola: Petit Corona
  • MSRP: $6 (Boxes of 27, $154)
  • Release Date: April 2016
  • Number of Cigars Released: 150 Boxes of 27 Cigars (4,050 Total Cigars)
  • Number of Cigars Smoked For Review: 3

Although small in stature, the Long Live the King Harem makes a statement visually, with a dark mocha brown wrapper, pigtail and a band that makes liberal use of silver foil. The cigar is extremely spongy when squeezed, but not so bad that I think it is underfilled, and the wrapper is silky smooth to the touch with a hint of oil. Aroma from the wrapper is a combination of sweet cedar, dark cocoa, manure, leather and black pepper while the cold draw brings flavors of earth, leather, hay, oak and a touch of spice on the lips.

The Long Live the King Harem lights quickly, and immediately brings forth flavors of dark chocolate and oak, interspersed with notes of gritty earth, ground coffee beans, hay, tobacco and yeast. There is a touch of both floral sweetness and black paper on the retrohale, along with a tiny amount of spice on my tongue. Construction-wise, the draw is fantastic after pulling the pigtail off, and while the burn is far from razor sharp, it is also far from needing to be corrected, at least so far. Smoke production is both copious and dense, and the strength hits a point close to medium by the time the first third comes to a close.

Caldwell Harem 2

The floral sweetness from the first third increases noticeably in the second third, as does the creamy oak note that takes the dominant spot in the profile. Other flavors of grass, dark cocoa, peanuts, espresso and leather flit in and out, and although there is still some obvious black pepper on the retrohale, the spice from the first third is long gone by the halfway point. The burn has evened out nicely, and the draw remains excellent, and the overall strength has increased by leaps and bounds, hitting a strong medium by the end of the second third, while still increasing.

Caldwell Harem 3

The profile of the Harem during the final third still features the same creamy oak and floral sweetness from the second third, but the massive increase in strength turns the flavors harsh every once in a while, and some of the nuance in the blend seems to be lost. In terms of construction, both the burn and the draw continue to impress, and the smoke production remains high. Strength-wise, the Harem easily hitting the full mark by the time I put the nub down with less than a half an inch left, not an easy feat for such a small cigar.

Caldwell Harem 4

Final Notes

  • SmallBatchCigars.com also recently released another exclusive, the Quesada 40th Anniversary Corona Classic.
  • One of the original mentions of this cigar tagged the size of the Harem at 4 x 44, but the final size ended up being 4 x 42.
  • As with quite a few of the cigars I smoke that feature pigtails, I just pulled the pigtail off instead of cutting the cap, which gave me an excellent draw on all three samples.
  • The ash on the Long Live the King Harem is very well formed, and falls off in large chunks with almost no flaking that I could see.
  • Caldwell gives about as much information about the tobacco that makes up its blends as anyone in the cigar industry
  • The final smoking time for both samples averaged 55 minutes.
  • The cigars smoked for this review were sent to halfwheel by SmallBatchCigar.com
  • If you would like to purchase any of the Long Live the King Harem cigars, you can find them at SmallBatchCigar.com, who has them for sale here.
88 Overall Score

I am a big fan of smaller vitolas, and the Harem seems to be well suited to the blend, with a great floral sweetness and a creamy oak note that stuck around for the entire cigar. The construction was virtually flawless, and smoke production was dense and seemingly never ending. In fact, about the only thing I disliked about the cigar was the extreme increase in strength in the final third, which really threw the entire balance of the profile off. However, even with that issue, the Harem is a very good cigar that is well worth trying, especially if you are a fan of smaller vitolas.

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Brooks Whittington
About the author

I have been smoking cigars for over eight years. A documentary wedding photographer by trade, I spent seven years as a photojournalist for the Dallas Morning News and the Fort Worth Star Telegram. I started the cigar blog SmokingStogie in 2008 after realizing that there was a need for a cigar blog with better photographs and more in-depth information about each release. SmokingStogie quickly became one of the more influential cigar blogs on the internet, known for reviewing preproduction, prerelease, rare, extremely hard-to-find and expensive cigars. I am a co-founder of halfwheel and now serve as an editor for halfwheel.

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