EPISODE 464 – (Originally Aired 6/11/22)

Dion Giolito Teams Up with General for Illusione of Excalibur

General Cigar Company has announced it is teaming up with Illusione Cigars’ Dion Giolito to roll out a collaboration under the Excalibur brand known as Illusione of Excalibur. It’s a cigar that Giolito blended with Justin Andrews, and it will also mark the first time an Excalibur is being produced in Nicaragua.

In a press release, Justin Andrews said, “Dion Giolito and Illusione’s success in the premium cigar category has been driven by his rigorous standards for tobacco and his ability to create cigars that wow the market. So when it came to developing a blend for Excalibur, Dion was our hands-down first choice. I’m very proud of how this project came together. My only regret is that we couldn’t make this a full-time launch.”

Dion Giolito added, ““When GCC asked me to do a collaboration and offered up Excalibur, I immediately jumped at the opportunity. In college, the Excalibur #1 Maduro was my go-to when I could afford them on a college budget. My buddy George and I would enjoy them after class or band practice. They were a real treat back then, and they still are to this day. For my part, I wanted to make a cigar in the spirit of Excalibur with a bold character and packaging that pays homage to the brand’s origins. I believe this blend really hits the mark.”

Handcrafted in the TABSA factory in Nicaragua, the Illusione of Excalibur is a Nicaragua puro featuring a Nicaraguan Corojo ’99 wrapper from Jalapa, a 2012 Nicaraguan Corojo binder from Jalapa and a blend of Criollo and Corojo tobaccos from 1998, 1999 and 2006 grown in Estelí. The cigar is being produced in one size – a 7 1/4 x 54 known as “No. 1.” According to General Cigar, the size was chosen that best represented the aged tobaccos in the blend.

Illusione of Excalibur will be pressed in ten-count boxes. A total of 4,960 boxes are being released. The cigars are expected to ship on July 4. Pricing is set at $19.99 per cigar. It will be distributed by General Cigar Company

Foundation Cigar Company Announces El Güegüense and Wise Man Maduro Perfectos

Foundation Cigar Company has announced it is adding two perfectos under its El Güegüense and Wise Man Maduro lines. Dubbed “Macho Raton,” the two perfectos are expected to be showcased at the 2022 Premium Cigar Association (PCA) Trade Show.

Both perfectos come in 4 3/4 x 60 formats. The El Güegüense Macho Raton is a modified blend from the original El Güegüense line. It features a Nicaraguan Corojo wrapper over a San Andrés Mexican binder and filler tobaccos from Estelí, Condega, and Jalapa. The blend can be considered analogous to the El Güegüense 5 Year Aniversario, which was a perfecto that also featured the Corojo wrapper and Mexican binder.

The Wise Man Maduro Macho Raton features a San Andres wrapper over a Nicaraguan Corojo binder and fillers from Jalapa, Estelí, and Condega.

The El Güegüense and Wise Man Maduro Macho Raton are presented in 12-count boxes. Production comes from the TABSA factory in Estelí, Nicaragua where both the El Güegüense and Wise Man Maduro core lines are produced. Pricing is set at $14.00 per cigar for each of the perfectos. Foundation Cigar Company says Macho Raton will be produced in limited quarterly quantities and distributed to Foundation customers carrying El Güegüense and The Wise Man Maduro.

As for the name Macho Raton, it was the name of the main character from the satirical Nicaraguan drama of El Güegüense, to which the El Güegüense and Wise Man Maduro lines pay homage.

El Güegüense is a transcendent satirical drama that embodies several facets of the Nicaraguan experience. Nicholas Melillo, the owner of Foundation Cigars, wanted to pay tribute to the country through this cigar’s name & blend. The brand’s legacy continues with Macho Raton for El Güegüense Corojo & The Wise Man Maduro.

“Our 5yr anniversary cigar was such a hit that I had to release line extensions in this beautiful perfecto. 12ct boxes make these an easy buy,” says Nicholas Melillo, owner of Foundation Cigars in a press release.

The PCA Trade Show opens July 9 in Las Vegas Nevada. The cigars are expected to ship later this summer.


Dunbarton Tobacco & Trust Ships Muestra de Saka Bewitched

Dunbarton Tobacco & Trust has announced it has started ship its latest installment in its Muestra de Saka Bewitched line.

The cigar consists of a Grade 1 Ecuadorian Habano wrapper over DTT’s exclusive Cultivo Tonto San Andres Negro binder and a combination of Nicaraguan and US grown fillers. The cigar comes in one size – a 6 5/8 x 50 Prensado. It is packaged in individual coffins with a total of seven coffins per box. Pricing is set at $138.35 per box.

Bewitched is the sixth installment in the Muestra de Saka series. Muestra de Saka is described as a line of unique blends and vitolas made in extremely limited quantities that reflect Saka’s blending  machinations. The other releases include:

La Gloria Cubana Serie S Announced

Next month, La Gloria Cubana will introduce the La Gloria Cubana Serie S.  It’s a regular production offering that will be the first regular production from La Gloria Cubana to feature a Mexican wrapper.

In addition to the Mexican San Andres wrapper, the La Gloria Cubana Serie S will feature a Nicaraguan binder and a combination of Nicaraguan and Dominican fillers. It’s being released in three sizes that keep to the brand’s reputation for large ring gauge: Robusto Gordo (5 1/2 x 56), Gigante (6 x 60), and Presidente (7 x 56). Each is presented in 24-count cabinet boxes. Production comes from the El Credito Cigar Factory, a factory within the General Cigar Dominicana factory located in Santiago, Dominican Republic.

In a press release, Steve Abbot, director of marketing for La Gloria Cubana said, “Serie S combines large-ring formats, expert blending and fine craftsmanship in a medium-to-full-bodied smoke. We believe this new collection will be a well-received addition to the brand portfolio.”

The cigars are expected to ship in mid-July, 2022. Distribution will be handled through Forged Cigar Company.