Size: 5 1/4 x 52
Wrapper: Connecticut Broadleaf
I am a die-hard fan of Don Jose Pepin Garcia and all of the enticingly wonderful blends he has produced over the years. Without invoking much surprise, Pepin's son, Jaime exploded onto the scene in 2008, releasing his first offering - the My Father line; an homage to his father. In 2009, the My Father Fabrica (factory) held its grand opening at the Garcia Family Industrial Park in Esteli, Nicaragua. Since then, many exceptional cigars have been formulated and produced from this factory, such as: My Father, My Father Le Bijou, Tobacos Baez, La Reloba, and Jaime's namesake, the Jaime Garcia Reserva Especial.
Dressed in a dull, veiny, chocolate brown Connecticut Broadleaf wrapper, the Jaime Garcia Reserva Especial is not the prettiest girl at the ball. The band is simplistic, yet alluring, and the construction seems masterful. The scent emanating from the wrapper and foot is that of rich cocoa. It is handsomely capped and consistently firm. Pre-draw reveals sweet and bitter flavors and the draw is airy.
Initial puffs instantly reveal this cigar's body. There are notes of bitter espresso and a faint numbing sensation is present on the tongue. The retro-hale is a bit harsh, though it eases up with progression. The cap is very strong and takes well to the teeth; construction is dead-on. The first third continues with espresso notes as strength builds in intensity. The second third really doesn't differ a whole lot from the first, aside from an increase in strength. There still remains an underlying bitterness amidst the earthy espresso flavors. The burn is exceptionally even and the draw remains open and full of rich smoke. The final third ushers in strong spice, akin to that of red pepper, though the base flavor of espresso and earth are steadily prominent beneath. There is a raisin-like sweetness present when nearing the finish. The finish is dry and remains firm to burnout.
As I have stated in the past, I am a big fan of the cigars offered by the My Father Factory. This was not one of my favorites. The flavor was predictable and one-noted. There lacked the complexity that is normally evident when smoking a Pepin family-produced cigar. An underlying bitterness throughout the entire duration of the smoke dissolved much of my positive expectations and left me wondering what went wrong. Would I smoke it again? Maybe. I'm usually one to give second chances. Do I recommend this cigar? To speak fairly, and with my role as a reputable source for guiding you, my "exceptional cigar seekers" in mind; no I do not. If you want to try a spectacular offering from My Father Cigars, smoke a My Father Le Bijou. (review pending)
- The Reserva Especial is available in five vitolas, Petit Robusto (4 1/2 x 50), Robusto (5 1/4 x 52), Toro (6 x 54), Toro Gordo (6 x 60) and Belicoso (5 1/2 x 52) and features filler tobacco from Pepin’s farms as well as leaf from the Oliva Tobacco Company based in Tampa, Florida.
- Jamie Garcia, President of the company, personally supervises all operations in Esteli to ensure that only the best tobacco is delivered to the consumer. Continuing with the tradition of his father, Jose Garcia also known as “Pepin,” Jaime has created eight lines of cigars and limited editions.
- My Father cigars are “the art, tradition and style of Cuba.” All cigars bearing the Garcia name incorporate traditional Cuban characteristics, from the entubado style bunching (folding the filler tobaccos in an accordion fashion) to the triple caps used at the head of each cigar.