There is no brand quite like Cohiba. For whatever reason, the brand has garnered a cache that is unrivaled. While most of that is intended for the Cuban version of the brand, the non-Cuban version remains one of the most popular cigars in the U.S. market. Now, for the first time ever, there’s an American-made Cohiba.
Not only is the Serie M the first time that a Cohiba release has been made in the U.S., but it also happens to be the first time that General has worked with the El Titan de Bronze factory. Located in Miami’s Little Havana neighborhood—thus, the M in Serie M—El Titan de Bronze is home to many of the cigars enthusiasts would recognize, most notably the La Palina Goldie.
General Cigar Co. shipped the 6 x 54 Serie M to retailers on April 12 packaged in 10-count boxes. Each cigar has an MSRP of $29.99 and there were only 50,000 cigars rolled.
“I am honored that we were chosen to craft the first American-made Cohiba cigars,” said Sandy Cobas, owner of El Titan de Bronze, in a press release. “For this important collaboration, we created a cigar using only the most exquisite tobacco, working together with the Cohiba team at General Cigar. Unlike in other countries where cigar makers work in teams, our cigarmakers at El Titán de Bronze personally create each cigar from start to finish, and we put their name on every single box they make.”
The blend making up the Serie M also includes a first for General, as it is the first time the Cohiba brand has incorporated a Nicaraguan corojo wrapper into one of its creations. Rounding out the blend is a Nicaraguan binder as well as the filler which is made up of Dominican piloto cubano tobaccos, as well as tobaccos from Estelí and Jalapa, Nicaragua.
- Cigar Reviewed: Cohiba Serie M
- Country of Origin: U.S.A.
- Factory: El Titan de Bronze
- Wrapper: Nicaragua (Corojo)
- Binder: Nicaragua
- Filler: Dominican Republic (Piloto Cubano) & Nicaragua (Estelí and Jalapa)
- Length: 6 Inches
- Ring Gauge: 52
- Vitola: Toro
- MSRP: $29.99 (Box of 10, $299.90)
- Release Date: April 12, 2021
- Number of Cigars Released: 5,000 Boxes of 10 (50,000 Total Cigars)
- Number of Cigars Smoked For Review: 3
I have to say, the presentation is gorgeous, with the 1920’s inspired motif on the box lid opening to reveal 10 cigars, each nestled in their own individual cutout. The wrapper that adorns this cigar is a milk chocolate brown color and feels quite a bit like parchment, with very little tooth or oil present. Both the fantail cap and covered foot are well presented and the cigars are nicely firm when squeezed. The aroma from the wrapper includes notes of sweet almond paste, barnyard and tea leaves and the foot smells strongly of earth and dark chocolate while the cold draw brings flavors of leather tack, gritty earth, pine, generic nuts, espresso beans and slight peppermint.
Starting out, the Cohiba M features not only some significant spice on my tongue but also noticeable black pepper on the finish, the latter of which almost overwhelms a very slight mint note that is also present. Flavors of creamy almonds and leather take the top spots on the palate—and the profile only gets creamier as the third burns down—followed by additional notes of cocoa nibs, hay, tea leaves, earth, pine and a slight floral flavor. There is a very nice caramel sauce sweetness on the retrohale that combines nicely with some white pepper, both of which seem to be getting stronger. In terms of construction, both the burn and draw are giving me no issues so far. The strength ends up well on its way to medium by the time the first third comes to an end.
There is more of just about everything in the second third of the Serie M, and that is a very good thing: more creaminess in the profile, more almonds and leather as the main flavors, and more caramel sauce sweetness on the retrohale as well. Secondary notes of pine, earth, dark chocolate, roasted espresso beans, hay, floral flavors and toast flit in and out in various amounts. Although the spice that was present in the first third has waned quite a bit, it is still strong enough to make an impact on the profile. Construction-wise, the draw continues along its excellent path while the smoke production is copious off of the foot. Although I have to touch up the burn once very quickly just after the halfway point, there are no issues after that. In terms of strength, the Cohiba has no problems reaching a solid medium by the end of the second third but seems to stall out there.
Although the main flavors of creamy almonds and leather do not change in the final third of the Cohiba Serie M, there are a few other aspects that are quite different from the previous thirds. The caramel sauce sweetness on the retrohale recedes a bit from its high point around the halfway mark. Additionally, there are some new secondary flavors as well, including lemongrass and salted potato chips, both of which mesh together nicely with the already existing notes of cocoa nibs, earth, generic wood and espresso beans. Thankfully, the burn line evens up while the draw continues to be excellent. The strength makes enough of a surge near the end of the cigar to place it firmly between medium and full marks.
- It is not rare to taste any number of different types of wood when smoking cigars—usually, cedar, oak or mesquite—but pine is not one I can recall writing down very often.
- With the Serie M, General’s Cohiba cigars have been produced in four different countries: the Dominican Republic, Honduras, Nicaragua and the U.S. There’s also of course the Cuban-made Cohiba, which is produced by a different company.
- As mentioned above, the packaging is gorgeous and very well designed, with one fairly major exception: as you can see in the photos above, the boxes have cutouts for each individual cigar and the cigar flag in an attempt to make sure they are not damaged while in transit.
- Unfortunately, those did not seem to work as planned, and at least half of the caps on the cigars in the box we photographed from a brick and mortar store had various amounts of damage that were easily visible. After asking around to some other stores in the area, it seems like this is a fairly common issue, so if you are buying any of these cigars, make sure to inspect each cap before you purchase them, if possible.
- Another interesting note about the packaging involves the cellophane used on the cigars in the boxes: instead of having the cellophane closed on both ends as is the normal practice, the cellophane used for the Cohiba M cigars is basically an open-ended sleeve that is open on both sides.
- The draw was quite tight at first for each of my samples, but that is a very normal thing when smoking a cigar with a closed foot, as the tobacco covering the foot tends to prohibit airflow. Once the tobacco covering the foot burned off, the draw was excellent for the rest of the smoking time and I had very few issues with the burn.
- The cigars smoked for this review were sent to halfwheel by General Cigar Co.
- General Cigar Co. advertises on halfwheel.
- Final smoking time for all three samples averaged one hour and 58 minutes.
- If you would like to purchase any of the Cohiba Serie M cigars, site sponsor STOGIES World Class Cigars has them in stock here.
In the past few years, I have become increasingly impressed with the blends being released by General’s Cohiba brand, including the Cohiba Spectre CS19, Cohiba Silencio and Cohiba Connecticut—and the Serie M is another notch in the company’s belt. Refined, complex and extremely well-balanced, the Serie M features top flavors of creamy almonds and leather along with a persistent caramel sweetness that plays nicely with the white pepper that is also present. Anytime you put the Cohiba name on a cigar the expectations for that blend are going to be a bit inflated—and the $30 price point won’t help matters in that regard—but the Serie M is a great addition to General’s lineup.