Nica Rustica (Pre-Release Sample Photo)

Drew Estate Chairman Jonathan Drew and Executive Vice President Nicholas Melillo took to the social media airwaves on July 4th, 2013 and confirmed that the company will launch its new Nica Rustica at the 2013 IPCPR Trade Show.

Update (7/21/13): We learned a the 2013 IPCPR Trade Show that Rustica tobacco was not included in the final blend, but we are including the following for reference purposes as this talks through some of the origins and iterations of what went into the blend:

Back in May, we provided a feature story in which Drew Estate CEO Steve Saka discussed some background on the project.  In that feature story Saka explained the blend utilizes a Nicaraguan grown strain out of the rustica family.  The Rustica (or Nicotaina Rustica) is considered one of the most potent tobaccos in the world as it has a higher concentration of nicotine. He also described the cigar as “rough” and “rustic” cigar – and the name is “apt for what the product is”. Saka had indicated in the story that the blend had been selected and that it would be regular production.

On his Twitter account, Drew announced that the Nica Rustica would be released in one size – a 6 x 52 toro and carry a wallet-friendly price point of $6.95.

Melillo also provided the blend breakdown on his Instagram account.  The Nicaraguan tobaccos used in the filler are surrounded by a San Andres Negro binder and a Connecticut Broadleaf wrapper.  Both Drew and Melillo posted information indicating the cigar is a tribute to the people of Esteli, Nicaragua.  On Drew’s Facebook account, he showed a photograph of the packaging of the cigar.  On the box it says “HECHOS CON ORGULLO POR LOS ARTESANOS DE ESTELI, NICARAGUA” – which translates to “made with pride by artesians of Esteli Nicaragua”.

On the packaging is the term “EL BRUJITO”.   Melillo displays a packaging photo of the inside cover that ties in what this means.  This ties in to the theme of the tribute to the people of Esteli – as well as its ties to tobacco.  On the photo was the following verbage:

Con argullo (with pride) is embedded deep within the people and culture of Esteli, Nicaragua.  Estelianos have embraced the image of ‘El Brujito’ as a sign of pride and display it throughout their city in iron works , graffiti, and sculpture.  Carved into stone over 2,000 years ago by a flourishing pre-Columbian civilization, ‘El Brujito’ means ‘Witch Doctor’ or to the locals ‘the Shaman’.  Early Shamanic practices included the use of tobacco in ceremonial and medicinal rituals.”

Here is a view of Nica Rustica at a glance:

Blend Profile

Here is the blend breakdown from the packaging photos.

Wrapper: Connecticut Broadleaf  Mediums
Binder: Mexican San Andres Negro
Filler: Nicaraguan (Esteli and Jalapa)

Vitolas Available

As mentioned the cigar will be made in one size – a 6 x 52 toro-sized cigar. On an instagram photo, Melillo indicated the packaging has 2 – 25 count trapezoid bundles.

Update 7/21/13: Updated information on the Rustica blend