It was on Halloween night of 2021 that Drew Newman of J.C. Newman announced that the company’s El Baton line would be undergoing a rejuvenation, getting both a new blend and a new look, and now we know what the cigar will look like.

Gone is the script of the previous version, replaced by a bolder word mark, while the color change has been updated from a blue, silver and white scheme to one that incorporates gold, light blue and what appears to be a dark blue-green. The new bands also add the phrase hecho a mano to the front, Spanish for made by hand, along with Esteli, Nicaragua to indicate where the line is produced.

As for the blend, Newman said that the cigar will still be a Nicaraguan puro but will be “bigger, bolder than ever before.” It is being produced at the J.C. Newman PENSA factory, which also makes the company’s Brickhouse, Perla del Mar, Yagua and Quorum lines, among others.

El Baton is one of the company’s oldest brands, and traces its roots back to 1914 when it was created by Julius Ceasar Newman at the company’s former factory in Cleveland, Ohio. Made with Cuban tobacco, it was a hand-rolled nickel cigar but faded from the marketplace in the 1920s. The line was brought back in 2008 by Eric and Bobby Newman, grandsons of J.C. Newman.

As for when the new bands will start arriving on store shelves, the company has not yet specified a date, though the company has previously told halfwheel that it hopes to have the cigars on display at the PCA Convention & Trade Show in July and that they will start shipping before the end of the summer months.

Overall Score

Avatar photo

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.