Room 101 Releasing New Line

Room 101 has another new release hitting shelves, but unlike its most recent offerings, this one is here to stay.

Room 101 San Andrés, which is on sale in some locations now, is the third core line for the brand, which is produced by Camacho and part of the Davidoff group of companies. Room 101 is headed by L.A. jeweler turned cigarmaker Matt Booth, and it has made a name for itself with successful limited-edition releases. (One size from the most recent release, OSOK, scored 93 points in the March 20 of Cigar Insider). But San Andrés will be a core line and is meant to be affordably priced in comparison with the more expensive limited releases.

“It’s a real departure from what we’ve done in the past in terms of taste,” said Camacho head of marketing Dylan Austin. The wrapper is a natural-hued San Andrés leaf grown by the Turrent family in Mexico. Austin says this will be the least expensive line for Room 101. “We want this to be a mainstay line,” said Austin, who called it a great cigar at a highly attractive price.

San Andrés comes in five sizes: the familiar Papi Chulo (4 inch by 42 ring), petit corona (5 1/2 by 44), robusto (5 by 50), Churchill (7 by 48) and a large corona gorda measuring 6 by 60. Suggested retail prices will range from $5 to about $7.50 per cigar.

Austin said the Papi Chulo, which was their most successful size in the limited production Room 101 Namakubi line, is great for smoking in a short period of time. “It’s no commitment,” he said, adding that the size is likely to become a Room 101 staple. It has already been confirmed to be part of the Room 101 Daruma line expected to be released later this year.

“We’re allowed to get really creative. The bulk of the business is limited releases. The only negative is that we need mainstay stuff that is not limited.”

There’s more in production from Room 101 as well. Austin also talked about a project currently in the works called “Some Old Bull----,” an irreverent vintage line that will involve experimental blends stored in Honduras that never went on sale.

“We have about 400,000 cigars that didn’t make it. It’s real small-batch stuff,” said Austin. “We started digging into this stuff.” Austin says some of the cigars are as much as 14 years old. Room 101 plans to do some limited releases of these products, though there are no details yet, nor is there a timetable for the release.

Austin said to also expect the first previews of Room 101 OSOK 2 in the fall. The original was so popular that the company is already at work on the next blend, and says it can be expected as early as October.

This article first appeared in the April 3 issue of Cigar Insider.