Please Note: This is a first impression review. This is typically done on new release cigars that haven’t had time to settle from shipping. An additional review will usually follow within a few weeks with a score. I feel a first impression review provides a fair assessment of a cigar’s potential.
A few days I posted information about a release that was exclusive to New England here. That cigar is based upon two specific releases from Jaime Garcia: Reserva Especial Limited Edition 2011 Connecticut Shade and Reserva Especial regular production cigar. According to Jeremy Soares of My Father Cigar, Jaime Garcia used the Ecuadorian Connecticut Shade wrapper and the Nicaraguan binder/filler from the regular release to make the New England exclusive. I’ve smoked a few cigars with the Connecticut shade wrapper such as the recent release for Federal Cigar which is available for reading here and the Reserva Especial Limited Edition 2011 and thought very highly of them. There were 1000 boxes produced for the New England Exclusive release, 250 of each size.
Toro: 6 x 54
Toro Gordo: 6 x 60
Belicoso: 5.5 x 52
Petite Robusto: 4.5 x 50
Jaime Garcia Reserva Especial New England Exclusive Conn. Shade First Impression Review
Wrapper: Ecuadorian Connecticut Shade
Size: 4.5 x 50
Vitola: Petit Robusto
Smoke Time: 1hr 10min
Location: Tasty Tobacco Shop
- Has the usual Jaime Garcia Reserva Especial Band without any mention of New England Exclusive.
- Beautiful golden colored wrapper that feels well rolled with slight give.
- Construction is excellent with some minor toothiness.
- Veins are barely prominent and there are no teares or holes.
- Wrapper did crack slightly one or two when removing the band.
- Excellent cut with a very smooth cold draw.
- Burn started out slightly jagged and evened up within the first 10 minutes.
- Draw was very impressive and made the experience enjoyable.
- The Petit Robusto gave off amazing amounts of smoke.
- The ash held well for little over an inch at times.
- Wrapper and foot has a delicious honey and cedar smell.
- Tasted notes of wood, leather with a spicy finish on the initial draw.
- The first half brings out the flavors I love in this wrapper as I taste subtle notes of sweetness similar to honey while mixing in with nuts, wood and the long spicy finish.
- Flavors in the second half are similar but very consistent as the notes of honey become more prominent while wood and spice are blending well in a creamy finish
- I tasted some cinnamon, wood with spice on the finish in the last inch which was very pleasant.
- The New England Exclusive has a beautiful appearance with construction that almost matched if not for a slight crack.
- The Ecuadorian Connecticut Shade wrapper has such unique characteristics that it has become of on my favorite wrappers.
- While the cigar displayed signs of medium complexity and medium bodied strength, it had my attention from the initial draw to the end.
- This cigar smoked very well for being just shipped to shops and I certainly believe that a few weeks of rest will truly bring out the best.
- I enjoyed the Petit Robusto a little more than the toro because the smaller ring gauge allowed the wrapper to shine but I most certainly will be smoking the toro gordo and belicoso in the next few days.
- The New England Exclusive is at an excellent price point which makes it a given for a five pack and then a box buy for your favorite size.
This cigar is available at the following locations: