Aladino is a 100% Authentic Honduran puro that comes from JRE Tobacco Company. JRE Tobacco Company is an operation that was founded by Julio R. Eiroa and his son Justo M. Eiroa. Julio and Justo are the father and brother of Christian Eiroa, who is best known for running Camacho Cigars before founding CLE Cigar Company. JRE Tobacco Company is a fully vertically integrated operation as it grows tobacco at the Eiroa Tobacco Farm, produces its cigars at Julio Eiroa’s Las Lomas factory, and handles its own distribution. Last year, we took a look at the Aladino Elegante – a lancero offering. It was a cigar that was quite impressive and it earned the #2 Cigar of the Year on the Cigar Coop countdown. Today, we look at another size in the Aladino in the Robusto size. Like the Elegante, the Aladino Robusto is an excellent cigar – and one that has plenty of magical qualities as well.
Just prior to the 2015 IPCPR Trade Show, CLE Cigar Company announced the Aladino along with the Rancho Luna and Tatascan brands. The common denominator to the three brands was that they were all projects spearheaded by Julio Eiroa. Following the trade show, CLE would do a soft-launch for the brands. Earlier in 2016, it was announced that a new company headed by Julio and Justo Eiroa called JRE Tobacco Company would now be handling distribution. This essentially would become a logical extension to Julio Eiroa’s factory and farm.
Following this announcement, the Aladino, Rancho Luna, and Tatascan brands underwent some changes in terms of blends and packaging. While the packaging remained the same with Aladino, the blend was slightly changed to incorporate a higher priming wrapper and three new sizes were introduced.
Aladino’s name can be traced back to the 1970s. There was a historic movie theater in Danlí, Honduras known as El Cine Aladino. This theater was operated by Christian and Justo Eiroa’s grandfather. Today, Christian owns the Aladino factory, which is in the theater’s former location. Aladino is also the name that Julio Eiroa chose to name one of his brands.
As mentioned the Aladino features 100% Authentic Corojo from Honduras. The goal of this cigar was to deliver a classic, “old-fashioned” cigar experience reminiscent of those during the “golden age” between 1947 and 1961.
Without further ado, let’s break down the Aladino Robusto and see what this cigar brings to the table.
As mentioned, the Aladino consists of 100% Authentic Corojo tobacco grown in Honduras at the Eiroa Family Farms.
Wrapper: Authentic Corojo (Honduras)
Binder: Authentic Corojo (Honduras)
Filler: Authentic Corojo (Honduras)
Country of Origin: Honduras (Las Lomas)
The Eiroas grow what is referred to as Authentic Corojo. Corojo tobacco traces its origins to Cuba and eventually made its way outside the island nation. The Corojo plant is one that has been susceptible to fungus and blue mold and as a result, it has often has had lower yields. As a result, the Corojo seed fell out of favor with many growers. Many other growers have worked with hybrid versions of the Corojo plant to mitigate this fungal and mold problem – most notably Corojo ’99. In 1997, Julio began to work with the Authentic Corojo seed at his Honduran farm and by the year 2000, he reintroduced the tobacco into the U.S. market with Camacho. Julio Eiroa has continued to grow Authentic Corojo and today the crops produced on his farms are considered one of the best varietals in the world. It’s something the whole Eiroa family is very proud of.
There are twelve sizes of the Aladino. Nine of these sizes have under a 50 ring gauge.
Santi: 5 1/2 x 32
Elegante: 7 x 38
Petit Corona: 4 x 40
Palmas: 6 x 43
Corona: 5 x 44
Cazador: 6 x 46
Rothschild: 4 1/2 x 48
Churchill: 7 x 48
Robusto: 5 x 50
Patton: 9 x 48
Toro: 6 x 50
Gordo: 6 1/2 x 60
All are packaged in 20-count boxes. The Palmas, Rothschild, and Churchill are also available in 3-count packs. The Petit Corona is available in four count packs. The Santi is available in a 50-count single pack while the Patton is packaged in a coffin, with 10 coffins per box.
The Authentic Corojo wrapper of the Aladino Robusto has a medium brown color. Depending on how the light shines on it, it may give off a rosado tint. There wasn’t much in the way of oil on the surface of the Aladino Robusto. The Corojo wrapper also had a smooth surface with only some thin visible veins and minimally visible wrapper seams.
There is one band on the Aladino. The front and center of the band features a brown circular field with silver trim. On that field is a large silver “A” with the text “ALADINO” arranged in a curved fashion above it. To the left of the circle is the text “1947” while to right is the text “1961” – both in silver font sitting on a background consisting of a combination of brown and maroon. Sitting on that same row to the far right side is the text (also in silver font). “HECHO A MANO”. The lower portion of the band almost looks like a pseudo-secondary band. It is yellow in color with silver trim. The text “JULIO R. EIROA” appears in maroon font on that yellow background.
At the recent 2017 IPCPR Trade Show, JRE Tobacco unveiled a packaging change to Aladino. The inside of the Aladino boxes received new art work.
The newer box incorporates the Aladino name into the artwork (the one below it did not have that name on the inside cover).
Preparation for the Cigar Experience
Prior to lighting up the Aladino Robusto, I used a straight cut to remove the cap. Once the cap was removed, I proceeded with the pre-light draw. The dry draw was pretty much in line with the Elegante size as I detected notes of baker’s spice and natural tobacco. While it was a simple pre-light draw, I found it to be quite satisfying. At this point, I was ready to light up the Aladino Robusto and see what the smoking experience would deliver.
The Aladino Robusto started out with a mix of white pepper and earth. There was a slight amount of baker’s spice and mixed fruit notes in the background. I also found a nice creamy texture in the flavor profile. There was also a subtle spice on the retro-hale which eventually became more of a white pepper varietal.
As the Aladino Robusto moved through the first half, there was an increase in sweetness. The fruit notes moved into the forefront and were joined by notes of caramel and natural tobacco. The fruit, caramel, and natural tobacco alternated in intensity. In addition, the creamy texture remained present. In the background, the white pepper and earth were present. Meanwhile, the baker’s spice was also present in the distant background.
At the start of the second third, Aladino Robusto transitioned to more of an earth profile in the forefront. The trifecta of fruit, natural tobacco, and caramel was still present, but this started to recede; thus reducing the amount of sweetness. As the Aladino Robusto moved into the later stages of the second third, the fruit remained in the background with the natural tobacco and caramel dissipating. It was around this time that the pepper and baker’s spice began to increase.
By the last third, the Aladino Robusto still maintained an earthy profile. There was less creaminess by this point. Meanwhile, the white pepper and baker’s spice had now eclipsed the fruit sweetness. Overall there still was a nice balance of flavor. This is the way the cigar experience of the Aladino Robusto came to a close. The resulting nub was cool in temperature and slightly firm to the touch.
Burn and Draw
The burn of the Aladino Robusto performed quite well. While there was some occasional jaggedness, for the most part, this cigar maintained a straight burn line. The burn path remained straight and there was never a danger of this cigar meandering on its burn. The resulting ash was light gray and skewed toward the firm side. The burn rate and burn temperature were both ideal.
The draw to the Aladino Robusto was flawless. It had a touch of resistance – which is something that I like. This was as good a draw as I have had – for that it earns our “exceptional” rating.
Strength and Body
Overall I found the Aladino Robusto to be on par with its Elegante counterpart when it came to strength and body. This was a cigar that started out medium strength and medium body. For the most part, I found the strength and body levels to remain constant throughout the smoking experience.
In terms of strength versus body, I found both attributes to balance each other nicely, with neither one overshadowing the other.
When I assessed the Aladino Elegante, I called it “nothing short of a masterpiece”. Now that I have smoked the Robusto (and some of the other sizes), it is clear to me that the Aladino line is worthy of that title. This has great flavor, great balance, great construction, and plenty of complexity. Like the Elegante, the Robusto can appeal to those who prefer either a classic or contemporary styled cigar. It’s also a cigar that can appeal to both novice and experienced cigar enthusiasts. As for myself, this is a cigar that I would smoke again – and it’s one worthy of a fight with Chuck Norris.
Key Flavors: Earth, Natural Tobacco, White Pepper, Baker’s Spice, Mixed Fruit, Caramel
Burn: Very Good
Complexity: Medium to High
Finish: Very Good
Assessment: 4.5-Fight Chuck Norris for Them
News: JRE Tobacco Showcases Aladino at 2016 IPCPR Trade Show
Brand Reference: JRE Tobacco Co.
Photo Credits: Cigar Coop