This year marks Espinosa Premium Cigars’ first year as an associate member of the Tobacconists’ Association of America (TAA) and the company is celebrating that fact by releasing a new limited edition called Murcielago de Oro as an exclusive to the retail members of the TAA.

The cigar is described as being a reworked version of the company’s Murcielago blend, using a Mexican San Andrés claro wrapper over a Nicaraguan binder from the Jalapa region, while the filler is made up of Nicaraguan tobacco. Hector J. Alfonso Sr., operations director of Espinosa Premium Cigars, told halfwheel that he considers the Murcielago de Oro to be a bit more nuanced version of the Murcielago blend, adding that it has more body but not necessarily more strength and that he doesn’t find it has the sweetness of the regular production Murcielago line, which uses a Mexican San Andrés maduro wrapper.

It will be offered in a 6 x 54 toro gordo vitola that has gotten an oval press, with production handled by AJ Fernandez’s San Lotano Factory in Ocotal, Nicaragua.

The company is releasing 1,500 boxes of 20 cigars, a total run of 30,000 cigars, making it a relatively large production for TAA releases. Pricing is still being finalized, but the company expects to have the cigars ready to ship either by the end of May or possibly early June.

The 2023 Tobacconists’ Association of America’s annual meeting takes place March 26-30 at Casa de Campo in the Dominican Republic. The TAA is a fairly small group of some of the country’s top tobacconists, about 80 retailers, as well as 40 or so manufacturers. The association gathers annually to discuss issues facing the industry and retailers, as well as to have its annual trade show, a unique event that works on a group buying format in order to secure exclusive deals for these generally high-volume merchants.

Espinosa joins Gurkha, Tatuaje and Villiger as companies to announce their cigars as exclusives to the retail members of the TAA this year.

Update (March 8, 2023) — Espinosa Premium Cigars clarified that it will be making 1,500 boxes not 2,000 boxes.

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Patrick Lagreid

I strive to capture the essence of a cigar and the people behind them in my work – every cigar you light up is the culmination of the work of countless people and often represents generations of struggle and stories. For me, it’s about so much more than the cigar – it’s about the story behind it, the experience of enjoying the work of artisans and the way that a good cigar can bring people together. In addition to my work with halfwheel, I’m the public address announcer for the Colorado Rockies and Arizona Diamondbacks during spring training, as well as for the Salt River Rafters of the Arizona Fall League, the WNBA's Phoenix Mercury and the Arizona Rattlers of the Indoor Football League. I also work in a number of roles for, plus I'm a voice over artist. I previously covered the Phoenix and national cigar scene for, and was an editor for Cigar Snob magazine.