There aren’t that many people at this trade show that are actually from Nevada. Dion Giolito of Illusione is one of those people. Though he resides in Reno, if you ever need to know the ins and outs of Vegas, Dion can tell you. Rather than talking about cigars, I spent most of my time in the Illusione booth talking about Vegas restaurants: the current state of reservations at Golden Steer, the personal dish of Thomas Keller that is only served at Bouchon when he’s in town, where to get ripped off ordering Peking duck. While I’m not one to seek out a steakhouse in Vegas, thanks to Dion, Prime at the Bellagio is now on the list of restaurants to check out during my next Vegas trip. And if you ever need recommendations for dining in Reno, go to FUMARE, grab a cigar, and ask for Dion.

As for Illusione, this year is quite a bit different than last year, when Giolito showed off new packaging for every cigar he sells, along with three new lines. Instead, it’s one new cigar, albeit a change of sorts. Shoutout to the Harrisburg Beer and Cigar/Black Lion Luxuries teams, who shamelessly asked to be included again in this year’s booth coverage.

While there may not be as many new things, the booth appears to be the same as last year and maybe even in the same location. Or maybe I’ve been in Vegas too long. When I showed up, it was even more crowded than the picture above.

Illusione PCA Exclusive 2023

There aren’t many new cigars at this trade show I will specifically seek out, but this is one of them. Today, most Illusiones are made in Nicaragua, but this is a new cigar that is coming from Raíces Cubanas, which once produced every Illusione. Raíces still makes Epernay, which remains one of my favorite blends in the portfolio and is the rare cigar designed to be paired with Champagne, a pairing that works quite well. But it feels like it’s been some time since there was a new Illusione from Raíces Cubanas; my quick research says it’s been four years.

This is also a rare Illusione to include Honduran tobacco. In fact, I’m not sure I know if there’s another Illusione that uses Honduran tobacco. It wasn’t on display, but I’m told it should be on shelves in about a month. The cigar uses a mixture of Honduran and Nicaraguan tobaccos.

  • Wrapper: See Above
  • Binder: See Above
  • Filler: See Above
  • Illusione PCA Exclusive 2023 (6 x 50) — $11.95 (Pack of 10, $119.50)

Production: 795 Packs of 10 Cigars (7,950 Total Cigars)

Release Date: August 2023

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Charlie Minato

I am an editor and co-founder of Media, LLC. I previously co-founded and published TheCigarFeed, one of the two predecessors of halfwheel. I handle the editing of our written content, the majority of the technical aspects of the site and work with the rest of our staff on content management, business development and more. I’ve lived in most corners of the country and now entering my second stint in Dallas, Texas. I enjoy boxing, headphones, the Le Mans 24-hour, wearing sweatshirts year-round and gyros. echte liebe.