While at the tradeshow we made a point of dropping by the Royal Agio section of the Drew Estate booth to talk to Boris Wintermans about what’s new this year. He spoke of the success Agio has had with Balmoral and talked about the new Balmoral XO vitolas, the Gran Toro, the Corona, and the enthusiast-pleasing Lancero FT. He stressed that consistency itself was a major ingredient in the blend. He also introduced us to Francisco Batista, the man running the show in the Dominican Republic for Agio. Unfortunately this year, we had some technical difficulties involving sound, resulting in the heavily-edited (I did everything I could), and unfortunately noisy video below. To supplement some of the details lost to crowd (and the soundtrack) of the perpetually-bumping Drew Estate booth, here’s official press release:
Royal Agio releases Balmoral Añejo XO Gran Toro, Corona, and Limited Edition Balmoral Añejo XO Lancero FT
DUIZEL, Netherlands – Royal Agio announced today that they would be releasing the Balmoral Añejo XO Gran Toro, Balmoral Añejo XO Corona and the limited edition Balmoral Añejo XO Lancero FT. The cigars will be displayed in Drew Estate’s booth (Booth #2403) at the IPCPR Convention and Tradeshow held July 24 – 28, 2016 in Las Vegas Nevada.
Exactly one year after a wildy successful introduction to the United States Market, the Balmoral Añejo XO Gran Toro (6 x 52 & $10,50) and Balmoral Añejo XO Corona (5 7/8 x 42 & $8.95) join the Balmoral Añejo XO core brand family including the Rothschild Masivo (5 x 55), Torpedo Mk52 (6 ¼ x 52), and Petit Robusto FT (4 ¼ x 48).
In late 2015 Boris Wintermans, CEO of Royal Agio Cigars, assembled the companies first ever International Media Summit in Belgium prior to the Intertabac Tradeshow in Dortmund, Germany. Media included representatives from Cigar Snob Magazine, Cigars & Spirits Magazine, Cigar Press Magazine, Cigars & Leisure Magazine, Tobacconist Magazine, Halfwheel, Cigar Federation, Stogie Guys, and Stogie Review. Boris noted, “This was a historical occasion for our company as we fine tune our craft for the United States market. I think its suffice to say we had a great bit of fun, and that writers and bloggers can really put some Westvleteren down, but I wouldn’t recommend any of their talents at Karaoke for sure.”
The company is extremely excited to announce the Balmoral Añejo XO Lancero FT (7 x 40 & $12.95), which will have a total production of 1,250 boxes of 10 cigars, of which 500 boxes will be allocated to the United States Market. The FT stands for the companies signature Flag Tail, and is encased in a Brazilian Arapiraca wrapper, with Dominican Olor binder, and Nicaraguan, Brazilian and Dominican fillers. When asked about the size and blend, Boris noted, “We took a great deal of feedback during the Media Summit and heard repeatedly that the participants wanted to see a limited edition like a Lancero, but also loved our Flag Tail.
We have currently 4 pairs at our factory in San Pedro de Macoris, in the south of the Dominican Republic. Our roleros and buncheros are extremely versatile working within the Balmoral line at our boutique factory, however to fit the amount of leaves into a 7 x 40 Lancero FT presents a unique challenge to our artisans. If you collect Lancero releases, and love Brazilian tobacco as much as we do you will surely enjoy this limited edition.”
Fans of Balmoral are encouraged to download Drew Diplomat the official mobile application for Balmoral which is now available in the App Store for iPhone®, and iPod Touch® and on Google Play™ for Android™. For more information head to http://drewdiplomat.com
And before we get to the video, I can attest to both our ability to drink Westvleteren 12 (also anything made by La Trappe) and our equal inability to deliver at the Karaoke microphone.