If we were to play a little word association game – one where I said What comes to mind when I say “Cigars and Coffee”, I think, for the most part, we would all be on the same page. For me, I think of Connecticut cigars.
Of the short list of cigars, one of my favorite morning smokes is the EP Carrillo New Wave. In fact, it has been near and dear to me since I first smoked it way back in 2011. It is a cigar that hasn’t seemed to change much over the years and maintains a wallet-friendly price point.
Due to a change in Jobs for both my wife and I, I don’t get to enjoy many morning cigars these days. As a result, I don’t buy nearly as many Connecticut Wrappers as I used to.
Earlier this week, while attending a Blending Seminar with Jose Blanco – I came across the EP Carrillo Elite Series New Wave Reserva. I tend to be a little skeptical when it comes to “Upgraded Cigars” but with an event special of 20% Off, I thought I would pick one up to smoke with an early morning cup of coffee.
As I sit here in the Gilbertsville Cigar Factory – typing up this article on Black Friday, I’m smoking my very first New Wave Reserva.
The first couple of puffs were rather potent, filled with a spicy punch. The spice is almost a bit overwhelming and is reigned in just enough by a creamy finish. Compared to the Classic Series New Wave Connecticut – the Reserva strikes me as being sharper with less creamy notes.
Comparing the Classic Series to the Elite Series, on the EP Carrillo Website – the big difference between the two seems to be the Binder. The Classic uses a Nicaraguan Binder while the Elite Series uses a Connecticut Broadleaf – which explains some of the price difference between the two.
The more I smoke this New Wave Reserva, the more it is growing on me. The spicy punch from early on has settled down and the creamy notes have increased. With the flavor being less in your face, I’m finding it to be more complex and aromatic than I thought in the beginning.
I can’t say for sure that this is leaps and bounds better (or nearly twice as good – in terms of price point) as the original New Wave but I can say that the Reserva is a damn fine cigar. It has been effortless to smoke with a beautiful burn and excellent construction.
I’ll be smoking more of these in the future, however, it hasn’t replaced the Classic New Wave as one of my favorite cigars to pair with coffee.