Cuba Unveils Romeo y Julieta Wide Churchill Gran Reserva

Cuba Unveils Romeo y Julieta Wide Churchill Gran Reserva

Cuba is continuing its trend of releasing ultra-pricey, limited-edition cigars at the Habanos Festival, the annual gathering of cigar distributors, retailers and lovers of fine Cuban cigars.

The Romeo y Julieta Wide Churchill Gran Reserva Cosecha 2009, a plump cigar adorned with three bands, was previewed to those who attended the opening night party in Havana on Monday, February 23. Like other Gran Reserva cigars, the tobaccos used in the Wide Churchill come from a vintage crop, in this case the 2009 harvest.

The Gran Reserva Wide Churchill measures 5 1/8 inches long by 55 ring gauge and comes in boxes of 15. Only 5,000 boxes, each individually numbered and painted with a piano-black finish, have been created.

The cigar is unlikely to go on sale until the end of the year, and it wouldn't be uncommon for its release to be pushed back to 2016. (The Partagás Lusitania Gran Reserva, which was previewed at the 2013 Festival, didn't go on sale until nearly a year later.)

A sample of the cigar, which was made with an unblemished, tawny brown wrapper, was smoked during the Festival. The draw was spot on, requiring just the right amount of effort. The burn was slightly uneven; the ash was blackish grey, typical for Cuban cigars. The flavor was impressive, with a honeyed peanut note and a sweet, unctuous quality reminiscent of a Sauternes dessert wine.

Romeo y Julieta Wide Churchill Gran Reserva Cosecha 2009.

Preview cigars aren't always the same as the end product that appears on shelves months later, so how the final cigar smokes remains to be seen.

For tasting notes and scores on Cuba's other Reservas and Gran Reservas, visit our tasting database.




"Hey, what's up with the length and ring ? Calling this a Churchill maybe questionable. To each( Cuba) it's own." —March 31, 2015 19:04 PM
"Another attempt to achieve above average returns with an average cigar" —March 24, 2015 23:23 PM
"@ Greg & Tim. No trouble. :) I should have made that more clear. The WC isn't a bad cigar at all but IMO, not worthy of such a prestigious release." —March 24, 2015 15:59 PM
"David, Thank you for this interesting piece Below is my opinion on this vitola as I posted earlier on FB. Damas y caballeros, para mi (y es solo my humilde opinion), la vitola de 'Wide Churchill', anque de una marca respectada como RyJ, todavia no tiene la historia como los vitolas anteriores en la seria de Gran Reservas (Siglo VI; Monte 2 y Lusitanias). Hasta ahora estaba convicido que los vitolas selecionadas en este seria eran los vitolas classicos de Habanos. Entonces, para mi, una vitola como Fundadores, Sir Winston o un HdM Doble Corona era mas en alineada con la historia de las Gran Reservas" —March 24, 2015 10:42 AM
"@ Pancho Nacho I also misinterpreted your post. Got it now. :)" —March 23, 2015 22:09 PM
"Ah. Suggestions. Understood. I misinterpreted your post. " —March 23, 2015 17:25 PM
"Not sure what you're asking. I was making suggestions for GR's that make more sense than an RyJ WC. I know the GR lineup already. :)" —March 23, 2015 16:28 PM
"There was never a Montecristo Especiale No. 1 Reserva nor Gran Reserva. Only a Monte 2 Gran Reserva and Monte 4 Reserva. Nor was there ever an H. Upmann Sir Winston Gran Reserva. Only an H. Upmann No. 2 Reserva. However, the 25-count box was a misprint. It is indeed 15 and has been corrected. Thank you. " —March 23, 2015 16:13 PM
"I was a bit surprised to see such a recent cigar get the GR treatment. It was delicious, however, and I hope the end product lives up to this sample." —March 23, 2015 15:44 PM
"@ Pancho Nacho: ??? The Cohiba GR is a siglo VI/robusto extra The Monte GR is a No.2/pyramid The Partagas GR is a Lusitanias/double corona" —March 23, 2015 15:39 PM
"@ Pancho Nacho: ??? The Cohiba GR is a siglo VI/robusto extra The Monte GR is a No.2/pyramid The Partagas GR is a Lusitanias/double corona" —March 23, 2015 15:38 PM
"Nothing exciting IMO. People aren't exactly stockpiling regular RyJ WC's. How is a Gran Reserva warranted? Seriously. There are so many better choices. Cohiba Esplendido GR, Monte Especiale No 1 GR, Sir Winston GR..etc..etc. Interesting to see this release gets the 25ct vs 15ct treatment though." —March 23, 2015 14:28 PM