When Rafael Nodal released Aging Room Bin No. 1 in 2014, he blended it around Cuban-seed tobaccos harvested in the Dominican Republic from 1999 to 2001. Now, Nodal is turning to Nicaragua.
Set to come out in March, Aging Room Small Batch Bin No. 2 is based around aged tobacco grown by the Plasencias in Nicaragua from the volcanic soils of Ometepe.
“This tobacco has a great aroma and a unique, sweet, earthy taste,” says Nodal, brand owner and head of product capability for Tabacalera USA. According to Nodal, the blending process for Bin No. 2 started nearly a year ago after he tried some of the Ometepe tobacco in Nestor Plasencia’s inventory.
Ometepe is a volcanic island near Lake Nicaragua where a small amount of tobacco is grown. The nutrient-rich volcanic soil is known to give the tobacco a sweet, earthy taste, although the area is not as widely used as the other three major Nicaraguan growing regions: Condega, Jalapa and Estelí.
“As soon as I tasted this rare tobacco, I knew it had to be the start of a blend,” Nodal says. “Just like a composer creates a concerto for orchestra and a specific instrument.”
Made at Plasencia Cigars S.A. in Nicaragua, the cigars contain only Nicaraguan leaf. The binder, however, is from Ometepe, as is most of the filler. The rest of the tobacco is from Estelí and Jalapa.
Aging Room Small Batch Bin No. 2 comes in three sizes: C Major, measuring 5 3/4 inches by 54 ring gauge; B Minor, at 5 by 52; and Grande, 6 by 60. All are packaged in 20-count boxes. The cigars will range in price from $11.50 to $12.50 each.
Last year, the Aging Room portfolio was consolidated and divided into four categories. Bin No. 2 falls under Aging Room’s Specialty Line category.
While Nodal owns the brand, it is distributed by Altadis U.S.A., a subsidiary of Tabacalera USA, which is owned by Imperial Brands PLC. Altadis began distributing Aging Room after Nodal began working for the company in 2017.
See a future issue of Cigar Insider for a vertical brand tasting.