|Headlines 1st Edition Page 3|
The Headlines First Edition is one of two cigar blends offered by Headlines Cigars. Headlines Cigars is owned by Dee Aguasvivas and Ulises Delgado of Fusion Cigar in Clearwater, Florida. Last year, the company announced it was entering into a distribution agreement with Antillian Cigar Corporation – best known as the parent company of Sosa Cigars. Earlier this year, the company announced it was rebranding and reblending its lines using all Dominican tobaccos. This resulted in two new versions of the Headlines 1st Edition and the Headlines 2nd Edition. Today, we take a look at the Headlines 1st Edition in the “Page 3” (Toro) size. Overall I found this cigar an absolute flavor bomb and one of the more underrated releases in 2015.
Headlines Cigars leveraged being a part of the Antillian Cigar family working with Sosa Cigars’ Arby Sosa to blend the cigar. For the 1st and 2nd Edition releases, these would become the first Dominican puros that Sosa blended. When the revamped Headlines cigar lines were released, Arby Sosa commented in a press release, “I’ve never been a part of creating an all-Domincan Puro, so this was an exciting project for me. It took over 6 months to perfect both blends, but we are all impressed with the final result. I believe in this cigar and hope all cigar fans will venture out and try this one, and I know they will be happy.”
Without further ado, let’s take a closer look at the Headlines 1st Edition in the Page 3 size and see what this cigar brings to the table.
As mentioned, Headlines 1st Edition is an all Dominican blend highlighted by the Dominican grown Pennsylvania seed wrapper.
Wrapper: Dominican Grown Pennsylvania Seed
Binder: Dominican Olor
Filler: Dominican Criollo 98 Ligero, Dominican Piloto Cubano Ligero, Dominican Criollo 98 Seco, Dominican Olor Seco
Country of Origin: Dominican Republic (Tabacalera Real)
The other cigar, the Headlines 2nd Edition is also a Dominican puro, but features an Dominican Habano Oscuro wrapper with Andullo tobacco incorporated into the filler.
The following sizes are available in both the Headlines 1st Edition and Headlines 2nd Edition:
Page 1: 5 1/2 x 60
Page 2: 6 x 54 (Torpedo)
Page 3: 6 x 50
The wrapper to the Headlines 1st Edition Page 3 had a dark coffee bean color with some colorado red mixed in. Upon closer examination there is some darker marbling on the wrapper. The wrapper itself had a decent amount of oil. There were some visible wrapper seams and some visible veins.
The band has a newspaper like design to it. The name “Headlines” is at the top in the center of the band providing a newspaper banner effect. To the left is the text “ORIGINAL” in red font with a black line over and under it. To the right is the text “1ST EDITION” – also in red font with a black line over and under it. Below the black line on the right side is the text “By Fusion Cigars” in small black font. To the far left on the upper banner is the text “DOMINCAN REPUBLIC” and “HAND MADE” in small black font. Below the banner is the headline “FUSION CIGARS AND TABACALERA REAL CREATES THE PERFECT DOMINICAN SMOKE”. There is some actual text below it written in the style of a newspaper article. To the right of the text is a black and white photo of a man and woman. There is also newspaper text to the far left and far right. On the lower far right is the text “LET TASTE BE YOUR JUDGE”.
Preparation for the Cigar Experience
Before lighting up the Headlines 1st Edition Page 3, I went with my usual choice of a straight cut. Once the cap was successfully removed, I moved on the pre-light draw. The dry draw delivered some notes of rich coffee along with some cedar and generic wood notes. Overall I considered the pre-light draw to the 1st Edition Page 3 to be outstanding. At this point I was ready to light up this cigar and see what the smoking phase would have in store.
The rich coffee notes I detected on the pre-light continued right out of the gate with the Headlines 1st Edition Page 3. There was also a nice combination of black and red pepper that was a close secondary note. These pepper notes were also present on the retro-hale. Further in the background I detected some earth notes.
Later in the first third, the coffee notes continued in the forefront, but now some dark chocolate notes were mixed in – providing a nice amount of sweetness. Some cream notes now surfaced in the background – countering the black / red pepper combination very nicely. The earth notes remained a little further back. This flavor pattern continued throughout the second third, but the red pepper flavors now seemed to increase.
By the last third, the red pepper notes joined the coffee and dark chocolate notes. The cream, earth, and black pepper were a little more distant. This is the way the flavor profile held until the end. The resulting nub was soft to the touch and cool in temperature.
Burn and Draw
Overall I found the Headlines 1st Edition to be a well-made cigar and this was reflected nicely on both the burn and draw. The burn path remained straight from start to finish. I found the burn line to be jagged, but not uneven. The cigar was never in danger of tunneling or canoeing. Any touch-ups were more cosmetic than anything. The resulting ash was not overly firm, but not not super loose either. There ash itself had a salt and pepper color. The burn rate and burn temperature were ideal.
|Burn of the Headlines 1st Edition Page 3|
The draw was excellent. It was not too tight nor was it too loose. This was a low maintenance cigar to derive flavor from.
Strength and Body
From a strength perspective, I found the Headlines 1st Edition to start out medium strength. There was a gradual increase in strength and by the last third the strength had progressed into medium to full strength territory. As for the flavors, they had some nice weight on the palate. I assessed this as being on the upper end of medium to full-bodied, falling just a little short of full-bodied. In terms of strength versus body, I found the body had the edge throughout the smoking experience.
My first reaction was that this cigar smoked as Un-Dominican as Dominican cigars come. This should not be considered a negative. Arby Sosa, Fusion Cigars and the team who worked on this have put together a blend that really showcases the versatility of Dominican tobacco by putting together one of the most unique Dominican puros I have smoked in some time. I was definitely impressed by the flavors produced by this cigar. This is a cigar I’d recommend to an experienced cigar enthusiast. I’d also recommend this to a novice looking to “graduate” to something “medium plus”. As for myself, this is a cigar I’d definitely smoke again. It’s easily a box worthy selection.
Strength: Medium, Medium to Full (Last Third)
Body: Medium to Full
Assessment: 4.0 – Box Worthy
News: Headlines Cigars Rebranded and Reblended for 2015
Source: Cigar Provided by Manufactuer
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