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La Gloria Cubana Artesanos Retro Especial Review
9/30/2011 12:03:00 PM


This is an interesting new project coming from Team La Gloria set for release in September of 2011. The La Gloria Cubana Retro Especial has been in the works for almost 8 years now. The brand was inspired by an antique humidor found at the El Credito Cigar Factory. Team La Gloria wanted to replicate the Retro look of the humidor. It took them two years to finally get the retro feel of the packaging just right. Each frontmark has a unique design and a classic name taken from the old days of El Credito. The cultivation of the cross-bred Connecticut seed grown in Honduras to create the beautiful wrapper that encases the cigars. The cigar features a double binder of bold Nicaraguan and Mexican tobaccos and a filler made up of proprietary blend of ligero and Nicaraguan and Dominican tobacco.

Appearance and Construction:

This new cigar from La Gloria Cubana, the Artesanos Retro Especial has a really nice looking, rustic, toothy golden brown wrapper on it.  I am reviewing the Club size which is a 5 3/4" x 47 ring gauge. The cigar is very firm and seems to be packed very well. The band gives the cigar a very Retro feel, which is what they were going for and was executed very well. One clipped the cold draw, while a bit tight, gave off somee nice earthy tobacco flavors.

First Third:

The Retro Especial starts off mild-medium with some welcoming earthy flavors, some spice, and an underlying sweetness. The draw gives off just the right amount of resistance and the burn line while wavering a bit, is pretty official. The ash is very dark and almost black where it meets the cigar. The flavors in the first third are already fairly complex. For some reason this cigar reminds me of Fall as I smoke it. The aroma is an Autumn spice with a young tobacco scent.

Second Third:

The Retro Especial Club is building in strength, body and spice as it moves into the second third. Strength wise this La Gloria Cubana is still medium in body, with clean mouth feel and a long finish. A nutty, dry flavor mixed with something earthy, possibly a woodiness, (cedar maybe?), moves into the cigar's complex array of flavors. There is something here that is reminiscent of some Cuban cigars that I have smoked in the past. It's not that twangy taste, but more of the vegetal youngness, it's enjoyable with this particular cigar because it seems to be very much balanced. I think the La Gloria Retro Especial will have some really great aging potential, even a few months in the humidor could do wonders here.

Last Third:

The earthy cedar flavors are definitely in the forefront as the cigar takes its final stand. In the background is a nice creamy sweetness, kind of like a caramel or coffee flavor. The last third of the Retro Especial is really enjoyable.. The strength of the fillers and binders have ramped up a bit to blend perfectly with the unique flavor of the hybrid wrapper. With a little left than an inch left, the cigar became a little bit too hot for my liking. Usually due to my smoking too fast.. Total time smoking this Corona Gorda was over an hour and a half.

Overall Impressions:

I'm not sure if it's the unique wrapper leaf, the interesting mix of fillers and binders, or all things considered, but this La Gloria has some serious character. Lots of complex flavors matched with an interesting aroma and perfect draw and burn. Team La Gloria definitely has an interesting product on their hands here. I can't wait to see the finished packaging, I think it's going to be a real eye catcher. It's good to see a big company like General Cigar create something with some boutique type qualities to it. While I'm sure they will be making a good amount of these babies, the cigar looks and generally performs like a smaller batch cigar. Perfect for Fall, this one will be arriving in our Retail Stores and online very soon within the next week. Keep your eye's peeled!

*UPDATE: These are now available in our retail stores and online in the Brand page section of La Gloria Cubana Artesanos Retro Especial.

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Tags: La Gloria Cubana Retro Especial, Team La Gloria, cigar reviews, new cigars, General Cigar Co., medium body, connecticut hybrid wrapper
Categories: Product Reviews, What's New
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