Assessment Updates will be posted on this web-site to: 1) Assess “pre-review” cigars that were not given a rating or score (typically pre-release cigars); 2) Provide numeric ratings to cigars previously assessed prior to the implementation of the numeric scoring system; 3) A re-assessment and re-score of a previously assessed/score cigars. Today, we provide an assessment rating and score for the Alec Bradley Fine and Rare HJ10-i Second Issue.  This is a re-release of the original Alec Bradley Fine and Rare (2011) blend .  We assessed the 2011 verson back in December, 2011.

Alec Bradley HJ10-i Second Issue

In 2011, the first Alec Bradley Fine and Rare was released.  This was a project started when a team of rollers blended a cigar with ten different tobaccos.  According to Alec Bradley president Alan Rubin, he believes this is the only cigar that used ten different tobaccos in a cigar.  The cigar was intended as a more ultra-premium offering by Alec Bradley The boxes of the cigars feature a level of personalization as it contains the signatures of the rollers, factory supervisor as well as Alan Rubin and Rafael Montero from Alec Bradley.  At the time, the main release was a toro, but there were limited torpedoes, and very limited perfectos made.  A total of 1,111 blend boxes were made.  The blend for the 2011 version of the Fine and Rare was known as  HJ10-i.   In 2012, the Fine and Rare returned with the Alec Bradley Fine and Rare 2012.  This time the blend was different (it was called BR1213) and that cigar was made in a torpedo.  For the 2013 edition, Alec Bradley decided to return to HJ10-i blend in a Toro.  Today we look at that cigar – the Alec Bradley HJ10-i Second Issue.

Alec Bradley Fine and Rare HJ10i (2011 Edition)

While the blend has ten tobaccos, Alec Bradley only discloses the regions.  The wrapper is from Trojes, Honduras.  The binder is a double binder from Honduras and Nicaragua.  The filler is not diclosed, but it contains seven tobaccos.  The HJ10-i Second Issue is a 6 x 52 toro (one of the sizes from 2011).  There were 2,000 boxes of ten produced.

While there were parallels, I found the HJ10-i Second Issue to deliver a somewhat different flavor profile than the original.   The HJ10-i Second Issue starts out with notes of natural tobacco, pepper, and cinnamon.  The spice developed into more of a baker’s spice.  By the second third, the flavor profile had more of an earthy profile with some diminished spice. In the last third, the baker’s spice and pepper re-emerged with a little citrus.  While the Second Issue had much more in the way of complexity, the flavors seemed a little less wow factor than the 2011 edition.

The flavors start out medium-bodied and progressed to medium to full in the second half.  The strength balanced the body very nicely – medium strength in the first half and medium to full strength in the second half.  This differed from the original as it remained medium strength and medium-bodied throughout the whole smoke.

The construction to the Alec Bradley HJ10-i Second Issue was very good – it produced an excellent burn and excellent draw.

While I didn’t assess the HJ10-i Second Issue Memorable this time, it still very much is a Nice to Have cigar.  I’d still pick up five or so of these to have around.

Assessment: Nice to Have
Score: 91

Source: The cigars for this Assessment Update were purchased from Outland Cigars in Charlotte, North Carolina.