The first of the four blends from Felix Assouline Cigars that I will be reviewing is the Havana Sunrise Reserve. This cigar is made in collaboration with Benny Gomez. Benny is the man behind Casa Gomez and the original Havana Sunrise cigars.
The cigar is box pressed and is available in 5 vitolas: Ray (44 x 5.5), Prelude (52 x 4.75), Blaze (54 x 6), Brilliance (54 x 6.5) and Beacon (56 x 6.5)
I received two samples of the Blaze for this review.
The cigar’s blend is comprised of a Habano 98 wrapper, an Indonesian binder and a mix of Nicaraguan and Honduran tobaccos.
The cigar’s band is very ornate, festooned with medallions of the company logo, a large red ribbon and in the center of the colorful cigar band, there is a scene of a sunrise over tobacco fields.
Moving along, the wrapper has a very smooth feel. The cigar has no soft spots and in fact feels very firmly packed. There is a faint tobacco aroma from the wrapper and a sweet / earthy, hay scent coming from the foot.
Once I clipped the cap, the pre-light draw is very smooth with only a slight resistance.
It’s now time for business, so I torch the foot of the Havana Sunrise Reserve and pair it with water while I enjoyed a couple of beautiful Florida days.
Right up front, during the first few puffs, I pick up on a large amount of spice through my sinuses during the exhale. The cigar also produced a great amount of smoke.
The spice sensation mellows out as I moved into the second third of the cigar and I also tasted rich tobacco flavors on my palate.
The final third of the cigar had coffee and spice notes along with a small amount of bitterness on the finish. The spice sensation picked up a bit and lingered in the sinuses. On the other hand, the finish on my palate was short.
The burn characteristics of the cigar were a flakey ash during the first inch and a wavy burn line. The burn had some inconsistencies that required a few touch ups on the wrapper to catch it up. The touch ups were minor and did not affect my experience with the cigar.
The Havana Sunrise Reserve is a definite change from the original Havana Sunrise blend. The Reserve has a good, complex flavor profile and is much bolder than its predecessor. I really enjoyed the new blend and I would certainly add more of these cigars to my collection.