At this year’s IPCPR Convention & Trade Show, Caldwell Cigar Co. showed off a trio of new cigars, all extensions of existing lines.
The Long Live The King line got a maduro version known as LLTK MAD MF; the Room101/Caldwell/A.J. Fernández collaboration The T. got a Connecticut version; and Eastern Standard got a sun grown version.
Eastern Standard Sun Grown uses a hybrid Mexican/habano wrapper over an Ecuadorian binder and fillers from the Dominican Republic and Mexico. For context, the Eastern Standard is Caldwell’s take on a Connecticut cigar, though the wrapper used for the original line is not a pure Connecticut shade; rather, that cigar uses a Connecticut and Brazilian mata fina hybrid wrapper over Dominican and Nicaraguan fillers.
The new version is offered in four sizes—compared to the original line which is currently offered in six sizes.
- Eastern Standard Sungrown Robusto (5 x 50) — $10.50 (Boxes of 20, $210)
- Eastern Standard Sungrown Toro Extra (6 1/4 x 54) — $11.20 (Boxes of 20, $224)
- Eastern Standard Sungrown Double Robusto (6 1/4 x 56) — $12 (Boxes of 20, $240)
- Eastern Standard Sungrown Magnum (6 x 60) — $12.40 (Boxes of 20, $248)
- Cigar Reviewed: Eastern Standard Sungrown Robusto
- Country of Origin: Dominican Republic
- Factory: Caldwell Cigar Factory
- Wrapper: Hybrid Mexican/Habano
- Binder: Ecuador
- Filler: Dominican Republic & Mexico
- Length: 5 Inches
- Ring Gauge: 50
- Vitola: Robusto
- MSRP: $10.50 (Boxes of 20, $210)
- Release Date: September 2018
- Number of Cigars Released: Regular Production
- Number of Cigars Smoked For Review: 3
I think the wrapper is a bit darker than the original Eastern Standard, though the most notable difference is how much shinier it is compared to the original version of the cigar. Aroma off the wrapper is a mixture of leather, barnyard, some Worcestershire sauce and a bit of a funkiness; cumulatively around medium-plus. The foot is much sweeter and a tick fuller with milk chocolate, sweet coffee, a sweet woody flavor and plums. There’s some cherry cola with a bit of creaminess underneath it. It’s medium-plus and hard to pick it up.
The Eastern Standard Sungrown Robusto starts with creaminess, cedar, some apple sweetness and a bit of a freshly popped popcorn flavor. It’s like the cold draw: the flavors are developed and smooth, but challenging to pick up. Eventually, things develop to some earthiness and plum on the tongue. Through the nose, there’s nuttiness and Worcestershire sauce. The flavor is medium-full, body is medium-plus and strength is medium. Construction is generally fine, though the draw is open on one sample.
There are a few more flavors in the mouth with earthiness, sunflower seeds, apple sweetness and a bit of a generic pepper. The retrohale of the Eastern Standard Sun Grown has some crackers, a deep wasabi-like pepper—particularly on the cheeks—and a finish that has a lot of cinnamon. The flavor is now full, body is medium-full and strength is medium-plus.
While the second third had seen the smoke rate pick up, it slows back down to a barely moving pace for the final third. There’s earthiness, lemon, grapefruit and lime with a burnt caramel on the finish. Through the retrohale there’s a new barbecue sauce thanks to ketchup joining the Worcestershire sauce. Of note, the pepper is completely gone. Flavor returns back to medium-full, while the body remains medium-full and strength is medium-plus.
- This cigar was originally described as the Eastern Standard Habano, which seems like an accurate way to describe the cigar as well.
- I’m a fan of how the boxes look, but not as big as of a fan of the bands.
- The caps on the cigars feature a small pigtail.
- Cigars for this review were purchased by halfwheel.
- The cigar burned slow, particularly in the first and final thirds, and it ended up taking roughly two hours to finish.
- Site sponsors Atlantic Cigar Co., Cigars.com, JR Cigar and Serious Cigar carry the Eastern Standard Sun Grown Robusto.
The Caldwell Sun Grown is a good cigar, but it’s not without some disclaimers. First and foremost, I cannot help but think that this cigar will be better with a few more months of rest. At times the flavors are really developed, but it’s oftentimes difficult in the second half to figure out just what is going on. There’s also a lack of vibrancy that I would expect from the profile, something that hopefully improves with age as the flavors figure themselves out. I’m also led to believe that at this time—and perhaps because it’s due to a larger sample size in my own personal experience—that the regular version of the blend is the better one.