La Riqueza cigars came out in June 2008 and were created by Pete Johnson and Don Pepin Garcia in his Tabacalera Cubana S.A. factory. The cigar uses Connecticut broadleaf wrapper that was purchase from the Oliva family. The binder and filler are both from Nicaragua. It’s the first cigar with a Connecticut broadleaf wrapper for either Johnson or Garcia. This medium bodied smoke comes in 5 sizes:
- No. 1 6 ½ x 42
- No. 2 5 ½ x 52
- No. 3 5 5/8 x 46
- No. 4 5 x 48
- No. 5 4 3/8 x 42
Let’s see how it smokes
The cigar has a dark chocolate brown color on the wrapper. The wrapper is fairly oily to the touch as well. My favorite aspect of the cigar is the Cuban box press that Pete Johnson and Don Pepin Garcia gave the line. The wrapper is really smooth as well. No large veins and there are no soft spots to be found. I really like the label as well. It’s not over garish. Its smaller like the Tatuaje bands, but with gold foil and a red background.
The pull on the cigar is perfect. No too tight, not too light. The initial flavors on the draw are mostly cedar and leather with emphasis on the cedar. The smell of the cigar is like a barnyard surrounded by cedar trees. There is a sweet floral note as well.
On the first third, I get hints of cedar, coffee and some dark chocolate. I get a strong leather note on the retrohale. The retrohale, for me, is strong so I have to blow out half my smoke before I can do it. The pepper that you would expect from a Pepin cigar using Nicaraguan tobacco is there too and it’s strong, but not overbearing. The volume of smoke this cigar is putting out is amazing. LOADS of smoke.
The second third is much sweeter than the first. The coffee note is still there but it more like a café au lait flavor (official coffee of New Orleans, BTW…except with chicory). There are sweet spices on the draw, clove notes and flavor that I can best describe as a “Christmas cookie” flavor. The flavors just keep getting better and better. The stronger pepper note I was getting earlier is completely gone now.
The sweetness is still there, but the coffee note has gotten stronger. The flavors have merged into a bitter, sweet flavor. I’m getting toasty nuts now on the retrohale that reminds me of buttery cashews. The bitterness is picking up the further I get into the last third now. There is still an enormous amount of smoke also.
This cigar is one of the best I’ve had all year. Pete Johnson and Don Pepin nailed it on this one. Great flavors and the cigar is not too powerful nor too light. Great medium bodied cigar that will give it a wider appeal. The box press is a really nice touch as well and gives the cigar a great look. With the box press and the flavors, you almost want to just take a bite out of it. I highly recommend this cigar. Do yourself a favor and get some of these or a box or two.