In 2018, Tobacco Haven, a family run retailer out of Brookline, New Hampshire is celebrating 30 years in business. Earlier this year, the retailer announced it was teaming up with Aganorsa Leaf for a special limited edition shop exclusive to commemorate Tobacco Haven’s 30th anniversary, Casa Fernandez Miami Tobacco Haven 30th. The blend was a 100% Nicaraguan puro featuring Aganorsa Leaf’s signature tobaccos highlighted by a Nicaraguan Corojo ’99 wrapper. However, that wasn’t going to be the end of commemorating the occasion. This past July Tobacco Haven and Aganorsa Leaf announced a second cigar for Tobacco Haven’s 30th anniversary. This one features an Ecuadorian Connecticut Shade wrapper and is appropriately called the Casa Fernandez Miami Tobacco Haven 30th Connecticut. Like the Corojo offerings, the Tobacco Haven 30th Connecticut cigar is a 7 x 52 Double Corona. Today we take a closer look at the special commemorative cigar.
Aganorsa Leaf is a part of a tobacco conglomerate owned and operated by Eduardo Fernandez. This conglomerate includes the world-renowned Aganorsa Farms in Nicaragua, two factories (Tabacos Valle de Jalapa S.A – better known as TABSA and Sabor Aganorsa S.A. – better known as SABSA) and the Casa Fernandez Miami in the United States. The conglomerate also owns and operates a U.S. based distribution company. While it is the 30th anniversary of Tobacco Haven, it is also technically the 40th anniversary of the cigar brands that make up the Aganorsa Leaf operation. In 2002, Fernandez purchased Tabacalera Tropical, the company founded by the late Pedro Martin in 1978 and this became the foundation of what would be Casa Fernandez.
Aganorsa Leaf is known for using its Nicaraguan-grown wrappers or San Andres Maduro wrappers on the cigars it produces. Occasionally, the operation has worked in other wrappers such as Ecuadorian Habano and Ecuadorian Connecticut Shade. In 2016, Aganorsa Leaf released its own Connecticut Shade cigar originally called the Aganorsa Leaf TABSA Connecticut, but now known simply as the Aganorsa Leaf Connecticut. That cigar is a box-pressed offering while the Casa Fernandez Miami Tobacco Haven 30th Connecticut is a rounded parejo.
Without further ado, let’s break down the Casa Fernandez Miami Tobacco Haven 30th Connecticut and see what this cigar brings to the table.
The Casa Fernandez Miami Tobacco Haven 30th Connecticut features an Ecuadorian Connecticut wrapper over signature tobaccos from Aganorsa Leaf’s farms.
Wrapper: Ecuadorian Connecticut Shade
Country of Origin: United States (Casa Fernandez Miami)
The Casa Fernandez Miami Tobacco Haven 30th Connecticut is available in one size – a 7 x 52 Double Corona. The cigars are packed in 12-count boxes.
The Ecuadorian Connecticut Shade wrapper of the Casa Fernandez Miami Tobacco Haven 30th Connecticut had a light to medium brown color to it. There was some oil on the surface. I found the surface of the wrapper to have a slightly bumpy feel. There were some visible wrapper seams and veins that were both on the thin side.
There are two bands on the Casa Fernandez Miami Tobacco Haven 30th Connecticut. The primary band features a modified design of the old Casa Fernandez Miami (which the Tobacco Haven 30th Corojo used). This band has a red oval sitting on a pale yellow field. On the red oval is the text “AGANORSA” in gold font. There is an outer gold ring surrounding the red oval. In between the ring and the red oval is the text “FABRICA DE TABACOS” and “CASA FERNANDEZ” in black font. On the left and right side of the band is a thick brown stripe. Just above the brown stripe is a thin pale yellow stripe with a gold chicken-wire-like design on it. Finally, the top and bottom of the band have gold and black trim.
The secondary band is black in color with gold trim across the top and bottom. On the center of the band is the text “Tobacco Haven 30th” in gold cursive font. Just below that text is the text “CASA FERNANDEZ” in a smaller gold font. On the left and right side of the band are a series of gold leaf designs.
The Casa Fernandez Miami Tobacco Haven 30th Connecticut also features a pale yellow ribbon around the footer.
I commenced things by first removing the ribbon that surrounded the footer of the cigar. I then opted to use a straight cut to remove the cap of the Casa Fernandez Miami Tobacco Haven 30th Connecticut. Once the cap was removed I took a pre-light draw. The dry draw delivered a mix of cream, citrus, and a slight amount of black pepper. While I don’t consider this to be a radically different pre-light draw for a Connecticut Shade cigar, I still considered this to be an excellent pre-light draw.
The Casa Fernandez Miami Tobacco Haven 30th Connecticut started out with a mix of cream and citrus with notes of black pepper in the background. The cream notes took control early on, but as the Casa Fernandez Miami Tobacco Haven 30th Connecticut moved through the first third, the citrus notes started to fuse with the cream notes in the forefront. By the middle of the first third, the fused cream and citrus combination remained in control. There was also a caramel sweetness that joined the pepper in the background. Meanwhile, there was an additional layer of black pepper on the retro-hale.
During the second third, the pepper notes slowly increased. The creaminess in the forefront started to subside earlier, giving way to some earth notes. Just past the midway point, the earth notes took a slight edge in the flavor profile. The cream, citrus, and pepper notes remained secondary. The fusion between the citrus and cream was now pretty much gone. There also were touches of caramel, but this note was now pretty much infrequent.
By the last third of the Casa Fernandez Miami Tobacco Haven 30th Connecticut, the pepper notes closed in on the earth notes. While there still were notes of cream and citrus, they played a minimal role in the flavor profile. The caramel notes were now gone. This is the way the Casa Fernandez Miami Tobacco Haven 30th Connecticut came to a close. The resulting nub was soft to the touch and cool in temperature.
The burn to the Casa Fernandez Miami Tobacco Haven 30th Connecticut performed excellently. This is a cigar that had no problem maintaining a straight burn path and keeping a relatively straight burn line. The resulting ash was mostly silver gray. The ash was skewed on the firmer side. As for the burn rate and burn temperature, both were ideal.
The draw performed well with the Casa Fernandez Miami Tobacco Haven 30th Connecticut. There a pleasant slight resistance to it. At the same time, this is a cigar that was low maintenance to derive flavor from.
Strength and Body
When it comes to Connecticut Shade cigars, there are the traditional ones that are skewed toward the milder side, and then there are the more contemporary ones that try to move beyond the mild zone. The Casa Fernandez Miami Tobacco Haven 30th Connecticut is one that falls into the latter category. This is a cigar that falls into medium range for both strength and body. I did find both attributes increased in intensity. Toward the end of the cigar experience, the strength and body had closed in on medium to full intensity, but fell just a little short of crossing the threshold.
In terms of strength versus body, I found both attributes to balance each other nicely with neither attribute overshadowing the other.
During the first two thirds, I found the Casa Fernandez Tobacco Haven 30th Connecticut fired on all cylinders in terms of flavor. While not an overly complex cigar, the flavors delivered were excellent. As the cigar moved into the last third, I did find things fell a little flat. The cigar lost some of the sweetness and creaminess that I felt were the key components of the first two thirds. However this is a 7-inch cigar, so there was quite a bit of time where this cigar really hit the mark. While this is a bolder Connecticut Shade cigar, it’s one that I would still recommend to either a novice or experienced cigar enthusiast. As for myself, this is a cigar I would smoke again – and it’s one definitely worthy of buying multiples of.
Note: The Casa Fernandez Miami Tobacco Haven 30th can be ordered here.
Key Flavors: Coffee, Earth, Natural Tobacco, Pepper, Cedar, Mineral, Cream
Burn: Very Good
Complexity: Medium to High
Strength: Medium (1st 2/3), Medium to Full (Final Third)
Body: Medium (1st Half), Medium to Full (2nd Half)
Value: Buy Multiples
News: Casa Fernandez Tobacco Haven 30th Anniversary Connecticut Launched
Source: Tobacco Haven
Brand Reference: Casa Fernandez
Photo Credits: Cigar Coop