|Cohiba Luxory Selection LS No. 1|
The Cohiba Luxury Selection LS No. 1 is a an ultra-premium cigar that was launched by General Cigar Company’s Cohiba brand at the 2014 IPCPR Trade Show. While in 2014 General Cigar led the way in terms of the most new cigar releases, the Cohiba Luxury Selection LS No. 1 looked to be one of the standout offerings. The Luxury Selection had some impressive packaging, but from my point of view, this cigar was of interest because of the renewed focus on the Cohiba brand by General Cigar. While I had been extremely impressed with the Cohiba Comador, it also had me very interested in Cohiba’s offerings (including the Cohiba Nicaragua). With the cigar making it to stores, I recently have had an opportunity to smoke this cigar. While this cigar is a well-made cigar that had its moments, ultimately this cigar came up short for me.
While the Cohiba brand has made some of the more ultra-premium offerings, this one takes things to a new level. It is priced at $40.00 and definitely ranks as one of the more expensive offerings in the General Cigar portfolio. The cigar is impressive looking, with a flawless Cameroon wrapper. Each cigar is packaged in an individual clear acrylic coffins. The coffins are packaged in boxes of ten in very sleek packaging.
Without further ado, let’s break down the Cohiba Luxury Selection LS No. 1 and see what this cigar brings to the table.
The Cohiba Luxury Selection LS No. 1 uses a special Cameroon wrapper grown by the Meerapfel family called Meerapfel African Gold. The Meerapfels have been growing tobacco in Africa for over five generations. The wrapper itself uses a rare tobacco varietal grown in the African forest of Kadei (which is the second most densely populated forest in the world). The tobacco is then aged five years.
The rest of the blend details have not been disclosed, however each leaf in the Cohiba Luxury Selection is rum fermented for a minimum of six months. The rest of the blend details have not been disclosed.
Wrapper: Cameroon Meerapfel African Gold
Binder: Not disclosed
Filler: Not disclosed
The Cohiba Luxury Selection is available in one vitola known as LS No. 1. This is essentially a 7 1/4 x 52 Double Corona.
The Meeraphel African Gold wrapper has a unique medium brown color that almost resembles almond butter. The wrapper has a slight amount of oil on it. The wrapper itself is quite smooth. It does have visible wrapper seams and visible seams, but they are on the thin side.
|Cohiba Luxory Selection No. 1|
There are two bands on the Luxury Selection LS No. 1 with one band overlaying the other. The lower band is platinum in color. On the lower section of that band is the text “LUXURY SELECTION” in chrome colored font. Another platinum band sits over that lower band. On that overlaying band is faded gold striped trim across the top and bottom. . In between the gold stripes is the Cohiba logo in chrome colored font featured the famed Cohiba red-dot inside the “O”.
Preparation for the Cigar Experience
Prior to starting the smoking experience, I went with a straight cut to remove the cap of the Cohiba Luxury Selection. Once the cap was successfully clipped I moved on to the pre-light draw. The cold draw provided a mix of natural tobacco sweetness and citrus spice. Overall I considered the pre-light draw of the Cohiba Luxury Selection to be satisfactory. At this point I was ready to light up the Cohiba Luxury Selection and see what the smoking phase would deliver.
The start to the Cohiba Luxury Selection produced a mix of red pepper, wood, and lemon. There were some salt notes early on, but they dissipated rather quickly. The lemon notes had both a sweet and acidic components. These components interchanged throughout much of the cigar experience. The retro-hale produced a combination of red pepper and citrus.
As the Luxury Selection moved through the first half, the lemon notes moved to the forefront. Earth notes replaces the word and joined the lemon in the forefront. Meanwhile the red pepper was a close secondary note.
As the Luxury Selection moved into the second half, some of the acidic qualities of the lemon diminished, but the sweet qualities remained. While there was sweetness from the lemon notes, the earth notes were definitely more prominent.
During the last third, the red pepper notes were on par with the earth notes. The lemon notes were a close secondary. This is the way the flavor profile held until the end. The resulting nub was firm to the touch and cool in temperature.
Burn and Draw
In terms of construction, the Cohiba Luxury Selection LS No. 1 is an extremely well-made cigar. The construction is one that I would expect a cigar with a $40.00 price point to have. The burn and draw also reflect this construction as they score extremely well. The burn line remained on the straight side from start to finish. There was a little curivness from time to time, but this still proved to be a cigar that did not require many touch-ups. The ash was mostly white in color. It was a tight and firm ash that came off the cigar in nice clean chunks. The burn rate and burn temperature were ideal.
|Burn of the Cohiba Luxury Selection LS No. 1|
The draw was excellent. It was not too tight and not too loose. While I normally like a touch of resistance on the draw, I consider that more of a bonus. Overall I considered this a low maintenance cigar to puff on.
Strength and Body
The Cohiba Luxury Selection LS No. 1 is not going to be a nicotine bomb. I found this cigar to be a medium strength cigar. As for the flavors, I also found this to be a medium-bodied cigar. I did both the strength and body did increase as the cigar experience progressed, but overall it didn’t increase enough to move into what I consider medium to full territory. Both the strength and body balance each other nicely with neither attribute overshadowing a lot.
As mentioned in the beginning of this assessment, General has put some focus on the Cohiba brand over the past 12 months. With both the Cohiba Comador and Cohiba Nicaragua receiving some high accolades, I really had high hopes for this cigar. Unfortunately, this wasn’t the case. Yes the Luxury Selection had its moments, but it fell short in terms of delivering any “wow” factors with its flavor profile. It also came up short on complexity.
It is worth noting that our numerical score is price independent but our assessment rating now factors price in. Add the $40.00 price point and this just isn’t a cigar I’m willing to stick my neck out. While this cigar wasn’t young, I do think some longer term aging will help down the road. In the meantime, this cigar gets our Angler rating – meaning its not bad and you might want to smoke it on the golf course. However, a cigar at $40.00 that isn’t exactly my golf course cigar.
Assessment: 2.0 – The Angler