Last week I was hanging out at Sir Stogies when one of the regulars walked in. We exchange pleasantries and he made his way from the private lounge into the retail space to talk to the shop owner.
I’m not one to eavesdrop but when I heard “Have you tried the new Hererra Esteli TAA Exclusive?” it piqued my interest. The shop regular was massively impressed by the cigar that he had smoked while away on vacation. So impressed, in fact, that he called in an order for a box after he got home.
Leading up to this little exchange I was mildly familiar with the new Hererra Esteli. Our friends over at Drew Estate were kind enough to send two my way. I had smoked one but hadn’t read the press release to learn more about them. With the cigar already coming up as a topic of discussion in my local shop, I figured that I’d better stop procrastinating and write something up.
The makeup of the new cigar includes a Connecticut Broadleaf wrapper, Brazilian Mata Fina binder, and Nicaraguan fillers. This TAA Exclusive is only available in one size – 52 x 6.00 and is priced at $12.00 per single ($144.00 per box of 12). As the name implies, it is blended by Willy Hererra.
Generally speaking, when I think of the Hererra Esteli, I think of a buttery smooth cigar that goes wonderful with a cup of coffee early in the day. This new TAA Exclusive though, it has a bit more pep behind it. While it goes well with a cup of coffee, it might be better suited as an afternoon smoke.
The initial few puffs hit the palate with a wave of dryness and wood flavors. It doesn’t make the best first impression but it quickly settles out and the heavy-handed wood tones subside. The deeper I smoked into the cigar, the more interesting it became. The focus seemed to drift among flavors of wood, earth, pepper, and sweetness.
I’ve heard a couple of people say that this cigar is like a combination between a Hererra Esteli and a Liga Privada. Others have said it is more like a combination of a Hererra Esteli and a Nica Rustica. If pressed, I would agree more with the latter.
The only gripe that I have with this new smoke is the finish. I find myself craving the silky-smooth buttery texture of the original. It just doesn’t exist in the new version. That isn’t to say it isn’t a smooth smoke, it just isn’t as smooth as the original.
Would you spend $12 on the new Hererra Esteli TAA Exclusive? That is the big question…
Personally, I wouldn’t make a habit out of it but it is a damn impressive cigar. Unfortunately, I can’t think of a single TAA Shop in my area so I don’t see very many of these in my future.