Reinado Cigars were launched at the IPCPR two years ago, and while they have garnered some acclaim since then, they have been very slow in coming to my attention. Why? Certainly they are a small company, one of the growing number of boutique cigar brands that is competing for the smoking time of the cigar enthusiast. Maybe part of it had to do with distribution, too, since many cigars tend to stay regional for several years before going nationwide. Whatever the reasons for them not being on my radar before, they have reached it now. First, their Twitter account became much more active in the cigar circles (follow them @ReinadoCigars) and they reached out to me to ask me if I’d like to review their original cigar (I never say no to an opportunity to review something new and different to me). This cigar is a Nicaraguan Puro and it is noted on both the postcard and the business card that were sent to me along with the cigars that these are “uniquely fermented.” To be specific, the postcard says, “The Reinado blend sets itself apart from any on the market by using an original and closely guarded secret fermentation process employing several types of select premium tobacco.” Antonio Lam was kind enough to send two cigars and I’m smoking my second one for this review.
When I took the Reinado out of the cellophane, I was surprised at how oily it was. It did not look overly oily, but I could feel a ton of it under my fingertips. The band is classy and classic in appearance: a coat of arms and a simple 3 color plus emboss job...definitely not over the top, but not cheap-looking by any means. Looking closer the wrapper had a bit of tooth to it and mostly medium-sized and smaller veins. It was a milk chocolate in color with a bit of darker mottling. Holding it to my nose, I got muted aromas of earth and leather on the wrapper, along with a more pungent earthiness and some cocoa powder on the foot. The cold draw was excellent; I picked up a good deal of chocolate and a hint of coffee prelight.
The Reinado did not light "right up" but it was difficult to light, either...it maybe took a little more patience than average. While I was lighting I noticed maple flavors, which did not immediately go away after combustion was fully achieved. Flavors of cedar, earth and chocolate did join the maple, though. There was a little pepper spice on the tongue and a big spicy hit on the nose. As the first third continued burning, the notes of wood subsided a bit and the base flavor became a more strongly earthy one. There was a bit of a floral note to it from time to time, and also a nice mildly sweet dark fruit every now and then.
The floral note became more pronounced in the second third, making a nice counterpoint to the Nicaraguan earthiness that was still at the core of the Reinado. The construction so far was perfect; the draw was excellent, the burn line was straight with no touch ups and the ash held on easily for over an inch and did not flake into my lap at all.
The same great mix dominated the final third...floral notes over a substantial earthiness, punctuated frequently by pepper spice and raisin flavors. The body was medium to full and the strength hovered in the medium range. I enjoyed the Reinado very much and could easily see it being added to my regular rotation if I could find it locally (I know, there's always online, but I like to support my local shops. Hopefully it will become available at one of them soon.) I don't recommend this to novice smokers, but long time enthusiasts should definitely give this a try and see if the flavor appeals to them.