Willy Herrera, master blender for Drew Estate in Nicaragua, is going back to his Miami roots. The man who created Drew Estate's highly praised Herrera Esteli brand has tapped El Titan de Bronze, his former employer, to roll a new line extension called Herrera Esteli Miami.
Herrera Esteli Miami will debut at next week's IPCPR trade show in Las Vegas in one size only, a 5 3/4 inch by 48 ring gauge corona gorda. It differs substantially from the original Herrera Esteli line, as it sports a dark, Habano wrapper and Sumatra-seed binder—both grown in Ecuador—with fillers from the Dominican Republic and Nicaragua. The new cigar will retail for $13 and comes packaged in boxes of 10.
"Every limited I try and make it special and different from the regular core line, whether it's a unique size, or a tweaked blend using the same tobaccos," said Herrera.
Before joining Drew Estate, Herrera was the cigar blender for El Titan de Bronze, a small but highly respected factory located on Calle Ocho in Little Havana, Miami. Herrera was recruited by Drew Estate five years ago to create a signature, "Cubanesque" blend, which would launch in 2013 as Herrera Esteli. The brand's Piramide Fino would go on to be named Cigar Aficionado's No. 8 cigar of 2013, and the following year, Herrera added Herrera Esteli Norténo. Earlier this year, the limited Herrera Esteli TAA Exclusive debuted, but is sold only through retailers that are members of the Tobacconists Association of America.
"The journey at Drew Estate has taken me to new countries and almost every state in the union," said Herrera. "After five years, it was time to come home and work on a project where it all began for me. Going back to my roots and in my home where I was brought up has been such a blessing."