Cigar Review: Jaime Garcia Reserva Especial


The first time I smoked these cigars were at the launch event over at Cigar Inn. Sadly the cigar that was released that night is different then the current version and I have this on good authority. It seems following the success of the My Father cigar that Jaime put together as a tribute to his father he was “allowed” to create the Jaime Garcia Reserva Especial. The story goes that at the Cigar Inn event Pepin smoked the cigar for the first time and wasn’t very excited about it. So when back at the farm the cigar went under a reblend of sorts and this is the cigar we have today.The cigar features 2 different kinds of Nicaraguan tobacco with one grown by Jaime and the other Pepin. Also the cigar features tobacco grown at the Oliva farm giving us a different more complex cigar then previously smoked.

Cigar: Jaime Garcia Reserva Especial
: 5 x 50 (Robusto)
Connecticut Broadleaf

Jaime Garcia Reserva Especial

Jaime Garcia Reserva Especial

Appearance and Construction: The cigar’s filler is made from Nicaraguan tobaccos, while the binder is Ecuadorian and the wrapper is Connecticut Broadleaf. In the hand the cigar is beautiful to look at and offers a distinguished look  despite some veins of medium size. The cigar feels great in the hand with a nice weight and no soft spots.

Flavor & Notes: Once the cigar is clipped and I go through the pre-light ritual the notes are spice, cedar and toast on the foot. the cold draw serves up some notes of earth and chocolate. Once lit The Jaime Garcia Reserva Especial isn’t much different then most Pepin smokes with the signature blast of pepper which is especially strong through the nose.  first third offers up notes some notes of pepper that are especially potent through the nose. As the pepper slowly subsides the first third has notes of earth and a slight chocolate. As we breach the 2nd third of the cigar the pepper remains as a subtle reminder in the background and the primary notes are cinnamon with chocolate and a touch of earth. the final third of the cigar the chocolate begins to stand alone with a slight spice on the finish. To sum it up, This smoke tastes of earth, spice, with a sense of sweetness and a note of chocolate thrown in for good measure.

Smoking Characteristics: The cigar which features a great draw burns a bit uneven and slightly wavy but for me I’ve come to expect this from a broadleaf wrapper. the medium grey ash hold on well despite having some flake to it. the smoke which is ample has nice classic aroma to it.

Conclusion: I personally would of been happy with the original version of the cigar. However, the retail version fits more of the My Father cigars and the perfect construction and chocolate sweetness combine to make the Jaime Garcia Reserva Especial a go to cigar without a doubt.

Rating: 91
Price: $6.80 MSRP

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  • dmjones1009

    Tried the belicoso version the other day and wasn’t terribly impressed. I’ve got another to try with a different beverage (sipped some Maker’s Mark 46 with it) and maybe in a different frame of mind (was extremely tired at the time). You are showing $10.75 as the MSRP for the robusto, but I was able to get my belis for $7.65 each; is the $10.75 the price you paid in NYC or is that the price My Father actually wants these to retail for? I find the price I paid to be about right for the experience; the price you’re showing would be far too much IMO.

  • thetobaccophile

    Interesting, I didn’t get the ‘Pepin’ pepper blast at all on this stick. Darn it, now I’ll have to smoke some more to check.

    Nice review, always enjoy them!

  • Israel

    I absolutely LOVE this cigar. I’m surprised you liked the original blend from last year more than this one, Barry. For me, it’s the exact opposite.

  • Barry

    Tobaccophile, exhale through the nose. It’s there for sure :)

  • Chris McCann

    Thanks for the review, Barry. I keep hearing great things about this smoke and can’t wait to try it!

  • Chuck

    Didn’t have the original blend for comparsion, but I do like the released blend. In fact, I’m almost ready for another box of belis!

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  • Patrick

    I am an admitted Pepin whore….but this cigar was a total disappointment to me. I received one at a cigar event in Texas before it was released. I found it very bland throughout the smoke. Construction and burn was fine though. Just not my cup of tea.

  • scratch

    I didn’t think the flavors were too special, but for some reason I really liked the aroma of the smoke. I’d smell it and want to take another puff.

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