There is no doubt that in 2013, General Cigar Company was the leader in terms of releasing new products – and in particular new blends. The Richmond, Virginia based company kept things under lock and key before the show and then opened the show with a bang. Of all of the brands under General, the most activity was around the Foundry brand (now actually being called Foundry Tobacco Company as it is beginning to operate more as its own entity) Foundry was launched last year. This year we highlighted a new line called War of Currents that featured two blends and six frontmarks. However it was yet another new line for 2013 called Compounds, Elements, and Musings that would perhaps would make the most noise. This is perhaps the most ambitious line launch the cigar industry has ever seen. This new line launches 12 new offerings – containing a total of 18 distinct blends. These offerings will be split between brick and mortar exclusives and internet / catalog exclusives. True to General Cigar Company form, these offerings will feature some of the most unique packaging ever seen in the cigar industry. In this preview, we take a look at 6 new offerings containing 9 distinct blends that will be geared toward the brick and mortar retailers.
The inspiration for Compounds, Elements and Musings comes from the Periodic Table of (chemical) elements. Each offering is represent by either an element name or a compound (combination of elements). There will be two blends that will be regular production, but the remaining 16 will be small batch, limited production. Foundry is keeping much of the details around the blends under wraps, but we do know these are not your run of the mill tobaccos.
In terms of the small batch, limited production, we were told “once they are sold out, they are sold out”.
At a glance, let’s take a look at the six offerings and nine blends under the brick and mortar offerings for Compounds, Elements and Musings. In terms of the blend profile, Foundry is keeping things very abstract and only throwing hints of some of the tobacco origins on a “blend card” included with the offering.
Note: Some blend origins are being listed as “mysterioso” and “smoke it”. We considered these more as mystery tobaccos.
Carbon: The Diamond
Blend Origins: Nicaragua, Lower 48, “Smoke It”
Vitola: 5 1/2 x 60
This is one of the two core line offerings under the Compounds, Elements and Musings line. The Carbon offering consists of a single blend.
The Carbon is packaged in a 77 count wooden box with ventilation holes. The top and front of the box is made of frosted plexiglass (kind of an “L” shape). The plexiglass opens upwards.
H20: The Compound
Blend Origins: Costa Rica, Mysterioso
Vitola: 4 x 49 x 48
This is a small batch, limited production offering. This offering is a “compound” and it actually contains three distinct blends in the packaging. The three is indicative of the number of elements that make up this particular compound (3).
There are a total of 36 in the H2O offering – 12 cigars per blend. Each blend is in a separate section of the package. There is a white frosted plexiglass lid that sits on a recessed lip.
Hydrogen: The Gremlin
Blend Origins: Nicaragua, Ecuador, Mysterioso
Vitola: 6 1/2 x 46 x 56
Hydrogen is a small batch, limited production offering. The Hydrogen offering consists of a single blend. This cigar was described as “very spicy” to us.
Hydrogen will consist of 20 cigars per box. While the box is a rough cut wooden box, in some ways it is a more traditional package in the Compounds, Elements and Musings line. The lit sits on the box and lifts straight up to remove it.
Uranium: The X-Ray
Blend Origins: Honduras, Nicaragua, Mysterioso
Vitola: 7 x 70
Uranium is the second core line, regular production offering in the Compounds, Elements, and Musings series. It brings a 7 x 70 vitola into the brick and mortar offerings of the line. Uranium consists of a single blend.
Uranium will be a large box, but it will only contain 18 cigars. The box will be a large natural wood box. The top is a clear plexiglass lid that sits on top of the box with a recessed lid. There is a skeleton on the box making an interesting hand gesture.
Helium: The Burning Airship
Blend Origins: Honduras, Nicaragua, Mysterioso
Vitola: 6 1/4 x 54
Helium is a small batch, limited production offering. The Helium offering consists of a single blend.
Helium will consist of 20 cigars per box. Like Hydrogen, the Helium packaging is more traditional. It consists of a natural wood box with a exploding airship on the lid. This is a play on the Hindenburg which actually used Hydrogen and not Helum The lid has hinges on the back and a clasp on the front.
Titanium: The Diablo Tail
Blend Origins: Nicaragua, Smoke It
Vitola: 6 x 52, 5 1/2 x 46
This is a small batch, limited production offering. This offering consists of two distinct blends. One blend is a a 6 x 52 and the other blend is in a 5 1/2 x 46
There are a total of 20 in the Titanium offering – 10 cigars per blend. Each blend is in a separate section. The box is a natural wood box. The top is a meta piece that sits on a recessed lip.
The following are the Internet Only offerings. We will cover these in more detail at a later date:
Plutonium (4 blends)
Europium (1 blend)
Gold (1 blend)
Argon (1 blend)
Xenon (1 blend)
Vanadium (1 blend)
Source: Photo credits from www.foundrytobaccocompany.com