Early in 2016, Regius Cigars unveiled its third blend under its Exclusivo U.S.A. series, the Regius Exclusivo U.S.A Oscuro Especial. Regius Cigasrs is owned by Akhil Kapacee. With the Regius Exclusivo U.S.A, Kapacee sought to create a line of cigars not only exclusive to the U.S. market, but a line created with the American consumer in mind. Known for his Cuban-styled cigars, the Exclusivo U.S.A. Oscuro Especial is the completion of a challenge for Kapacee – namely introducing an dark-Oscuro blend into his lineup. Recently I’ve had an opportunity to smoke the Regius Exclusivo U.S.A. Oscuro Especial in the Robusto format. Overall, Kapacee responded to this challenge brilliantly delivering yet another excellent release.
It was back in 2014, the company released its first Exclusivo U.S.A. offering the Regius Exclusivo U.S.A. – better known as the “Red Label” (for the color band). Later that year, the company followed up with the Regius Exclusivo U.S.A. Claro Especial – better known as the “White Label”. The new Regius Exclusivo U.S.A. Oscuro Especial is the third release and gets the name “Blue Label” – thus completing the “Red, White, and Blue” trifecta. Kapacee has said the Exclusivo U.S.A. Oscuro Especial is the final release of the Exclusivo U.S.A. series.
Without further ado, let’s break down the Regius Exclusivo U.S.A. Oscuro Especial Robusto and see what this cigar brings to the table.
The Regius Exclusivo U.S.A. Oscuro Especial utilizes a San Andres Mexican wrapper. While this is the first regular release to use this wrapper, Kapacee did a very limited release back in 2014 called the Regius Damaris which also made use of a San Andres wrapper. The remainder of the Oscuro Especial blend consists of Nicaraguan tobacco and is made at the Plasecnia factory.
Wrapper: San Andres Mexican
Country of Origin: Nicaragua (Plasencia SA)
There are six sizes to the Regius Exclusivo U.S.A. Oscuro Especial. These are the same sizes as found on the Red and White Label, but the difference is that the Blue Label (Oscuro Especial) is all box-pressed with the exception of the Fat Perfecto.
Robusto: 4 1/2 x 52 (20 Count boxes)
Toro: 6 x 52 (15 Count boxes)
Pressed Perfecto: 6 1/2 x 56 (10 Count boxes)
Toro Extra: 6 1/2 x 56 (10 Count boxes)
Fat Perfecto: 5 3/4 x 60 x54 (10 Count boxes)
Lancero Extra: 7 1/2 x 42 (15 Count boxes)
The San Andres wrapper of the Regius Exclusivo U.S.A. Oscuro Especial Robusto has a dark roasted coffee bean color to it. Upon closer examination some darker marbling can be seen on the wrapper. There wasn’t much in the way of oil on the surface and the wrapper had a slightly rugged look. While there were some visible wrapper seams, there weren’t many visible veins on the cigars I smoked. The box-press itself is a sharp box-press – a contrast to what was seen on other Regius releases such as the softer press on the Regius Limited Edition Corona Gorda Cuban Box Press.
The Regius Exclusivo U.S.A. Oscuro Especial has two bands. The primary band is a (as mentioned earlier) blue and silver colored version of the band found on many other Regius lines. The background color of the band is blue. On the center of the band is the text “REGIUS” – in silver font. Below the text is a silver ribbon with the text “ARBITER ELEGANTE in blue font. The remainder of he band has silver trim and adornments.
The secondary band is red, white, and silver. The center of the band has a thick red stripe with the text “EXCLUSIVO U.S.A” in white font. The red stripe has white pin-striping across the top and bottom. There is a white and silver stripe above and below the red stripe. There secondary band also has silver trim across the top and bottom.
Preparation for the Cigar Experience
Prior to lighting up the Regius Exclusivo U.S.A. Oscuro Especial Robusto, I went with my usual choice of a straight cut to remove the cap. After the cap was removed I moved on to the pre-light draw phase. The dry draw delivered a mix of chocolate, earth and a slight maduro sweetness (a cross of natural tobacco and dried fruit). Overall I considered this to be an excellent pre-light draw experience. At this point I was ready to light up this Blue Label Robusto and see what the smoking phase would have in store.
The Regius Exclusivo U.S.A. Oscuro Especial Robusto picked up where the pre-light draw left off as it delivered more notes of earth, chocolate, and maduro sweetness. Throughout the smoking experience was an underlying creamy texture to these flavors that created a degree of smoothness. The chocolate notes moved to the forefront quickly with the earth and maduro sweetness settling in the background. Meanwhile on the retro-hale, I detected some black pepper.
During the first half, the maduro sweetness at times crept into the forefront alongside the chocolate notes. This continued throughout the first half. Toward the midway point, I detected some other black pepper on the tongue.
During the second half of the Exclusivo U.S.A. Oscuro Especial Robusto, the maduro sweetness receded into the background. At the same time the earth notes joined the chocolate in the forefront. The pepper on the tongue slightly increased, but this was still more of a complementary note. This is the way the flavor profile remained until the end. The resulting nub was firm to the touch and cool in temperature.
Burn and Draw
The burn of the Regius Exclusivo U.S.A. Oscuro Especial Robusto scored quite well. The Robusto maintained a straight burn path and a relatively straight burn line from start to finish. This was not a cigar that required any excessive touch-ups. Meanwhile the resulting ash was on the firm side with a light gray color. Meanwhile the burn rate and burn temperature were ideal.
The draw to the Regius Exclusivo U.S.A. Oscuro Especial Robusto was open, but not loose. This cigar was a low maintenance cigar to derive flavor from.
Strength and Body
When it was announced the Regius Exclusivo U.S.A. Oscuro Especial was positioned as the strongest blend in the Exclusivo U.S.A. line. However, this didn’t seem to be the case at all for at least the Robusto size of the Oscuro Especial. Turns out that this wasn’t a negative at all as I liked how the flavors meshed with the strength and body level of this cigar.
The Exclusivo U.S.A. Oscuro Especial Robusto started out mild to medium in strength. the strength did build up gradually and by the second half the Exclusivo U.S.A. Oscuro Especial Robusto the strength level had increased enough to go medium. Meanwhile the body held at a medium level from start to finish.
In terms of strength versus body, I gave the edge to the body throughout the smoking experience.
For folks who know me, they know I have been overly critical of San Andres wrappers. My big gripe with the wrapper is how it often overpowers the blend with a pungent spice. With the Regius Exclusivo U.S.A. Oscuro Especial Robusto, no such problem here. Kapacee succeeds in delivering a smooth and flavorful cigar that extends a great body of work he has done to date. This is a cigar that is perfect for the novice or experienced cigar enthusiast. As for myself, this is easily a cigar I would smoke again – and it’s one worthy of a box purchase.
Strength: Mild to Medium (1st Half), Medium (2nd Half)
Assessment: 4.0-Box Worthy
News: Regius Exclusivo U.S.A. Oscuro Especial Coming in February
Stogie Geeks Podcast: Episode 208
Stogie Feed: Regius Exclusivo U.S.A. Oscuro Especial Robusto
Brand Reference: Regius