I started the week off right with Alan Rubin, owner of Alec Bradley cigars. He came by the office Monday morning to give me a sample of his newest brand, Alec Bradley Tempus, which goes on sale next week. He handed me a dark lancero, which I quickly clipped and lit.
Alan told me he built the cigar around the outer leaf, which is grown in Honduras near the border of Nicaragua. “It all started because of the wrapper,” he said. The wrapper is nice and dark, with a dryish texture to it, not seeping with oils but promising big flavor. You can’t always judge a cigar by its wrapper, but this one delivered as promised—from the first puff, it was gutsy and strong. Here’s Alan in my office talking about the brand.
The cigar had a red meat flavor, lots of minerals, roasted nuts, and good old-fashioned strength. I lit it up around noon, before lunch. I’d recommend waiting until after a meal to fully enjoy it.
The cigar is from the small Raisas Cubanas in Danlí, Honduras, and it’s excellent. Rubin originally wanted this blend to be his Maxx cigar a couple of years ago, but at the time he was concerned with getting a consistent product from that factory. He’s confident it can be done now.
I’m a big fan of lanceros, and more and more cigarmakers are making them. This is Alec Bradley’s first. Alan originally wanted to make it the classic lancero ring gauge of 38, but at that thickness the cigar was too powerful. “The wrapper has a lot to it,” he said. “We needed to put one more leaf [of filler into the blend.] We were concerned with being over the top strong.”
Adding that one more leaf meant no more 38 ring gauge. The end results is a 7 1/2 inch long, 41 ring gauge lancero that is strong, but has a good amount of balance to it. That’s just one of the little quirks about making handmade cigars.