Two long-awaited Regional Edition Cuban cigars made for Phoenicia Trading A.A. will finally make it to market after a two-year delay. The Lebanese Regional Edition Quai d’Orsay Baalbeck and Ramon Allones Phoenicio 40 will be released on Wednesday via a virtual event held by Phoenicia Trading, which is headquartered in Cyprus. Both cigars were supposed to hit the market in 2019, but civil unrest in Lebanon followed by the Coronavirus pandemic put the launches on hold.
The Quai d’Orsay Baalbeck measures 5 1/2 inches by 54 ring gauge. Known as a Duke in Cuban factories, it’s the same size as the Partagás Serie E No. 2. The Baalbeck is unusual because it’s one of the few Regional Edition cigars that comes in 50-count cabinets. It will retail for $19.80 per cigar ($990 per box) when it goes on sale Thursday at the duty-free shops in Beirut.
The Ramon Allones Phoenicio 40 is a more elaborate release. Phoenicia Trading has put these 6 1/2 by 54 smokes in limited-edition, decorative humidors made by Elie Bleu, each holding 40 cigars. There will be five different humidor editions, all with different colors and designs, and the company says they will retail from $17,800 to $23,800 when they go on sale on Thursday. Only 440 humidors are being produced—100 each for four of the lines and 40 humidors for the fifth line. Standard boxes of 10 and 20 are expected to go on sale in a month.
According to Phoenicia Trading, the tobacco for the Ramon Allones Phoenicio 40 comes from the farm of Hector Luís Prieto and the cigars were rolled at the Partagás factory in Havana. This follows previous Regional Edition anniversary releases such as the Ramon Allones Phoenicio 30 and the Phoenicio 35.
The virtual event will be hosted by many industry heavyweights including Mohamed Zeidan, chairman of Phoenicia Trading; Phoenicia CEO Walid Saleh; Habanos S.A. co-presidents Inocente Núñez Blanco and Luis Sánchez-Harguindey; Habanos commercial vice president Leopoldo Cintra González; and Habanos vice president of development José Maria Lopez Inchaurbe. Antoine Bathie, CEO of French distributor Coprova, is expected to speak as well.
Phoenicia Trading A.A. is the official distributor of Cuban cigars for more than 40 countries, including Lebanon, Cyprus, the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and nations in the Middle East.