When it comes to the Trinidad brand in the Altadis U.S.A. portfolio, it’s been one that hasn’t quite had the impact of other Cuban brands that Altadis U.S.A. sells in the U.S. such as Montecristo, Romeo y Julieta, and H. Upmann. Over the years, there have been several releases. Most recently in the past ten years, there has been the Trinidad Paradox, Trinidad Lost Blends, and the Trinidad Santiago. Even with these releases, Trinidad has still very much been a brand in the background for Altadis U.S.A. That would change in 2019, when Altadis U.S.A. would launch the Trinidad Espiritu line. The launch of Trinidad Espiritu got a major push from Altadis U.S.A. just prior to the 2019 IPCPR Trade Show. Today we take a closer look at that release, the Trinidad Espiritu Series No. 1 in the Toro size.
The timing of the Trinidad Espiritu comes while the brand is celebrating its 50th anniversary of the Cuban brand. To produce the Trinidad Espiritu, Altadis U.S.A. turned to AJ Fernandez, who has partnered with Altadis U.S.A. on many of its other Cuban heritage brands. The packaging of this Trinidad was given a more contemporary look, incorporating a Caribbean theme paying homage to Trinidad’s roots in regions of Cuba and the Dominican Republic.
This release is also called the Trinidad Espiritu Series No. 1 and it is the first of several releases planned under the Espiritu line. Without further ado, let’s break down the Trinidad Espiritu Series No. 1 and see what this cigar brings to the table.
Blend and Origin
It’s not just the packaging that got a different look, the blend is also something different for Trinidad. It’s an all-Nicaraguan blend produced at AJ Fernandez’s factory in Estelí, Nicaragua.
Country of Origin: Nicaragua
Factory: Tabacalera AJ Fernandez
There are four regular production sizes as well as the Fundador, a lancero vitola that has been made available for events. Each is packaged in 20-count boxes.
Robusto: 5 x 52
Toro: 6 x 52
Belicoso: 6 1/8 x 52
Magnum: 6 x 60
Fundador: 7 1/2 x 40 (Event Only)
The Nicaraguan wrapper of the Trinidad Espiritu Series No. 1 Toro had a caramel color to it. There was a light sheen of oil on the surface of the wrapper. There also were some thin visible veins and thin wrapper seams present. While the wrapper had a smooth look, when touched it had a slight rough feel when held.
There are two bands present on the Trinidad Espiritu Series No. 1. There is a blue square field on the center of the band. The classic Trinidad logo in gold font sits on the field with the text “TRINIDAD” (also in gold font) below it. The left and right side of the band contain a tropical-styled multi-colored design.
There is a secondary band resting just below the primary band. This band has a thick blue stripe with gold stripes bordering it on the top and bottom. The edges of the band are adorned with the tropical-styled multi-color design. Sitting on the blue stripe is the text “ESPIRITU” in gold font. On the lower gold stripe is the text “SERIES NO. 1” in dark font.
The cigar experience of the Trinidad Espiritu Series No.1 Toro commenced with using a straight cut to remove the cap. Once the cap was removed, it was on to the pre-light draw ritual. The dry draw delivered a mix of earth and a subtle fruit sweetness. This was a satisfactory pre-light draw. At this point, it was time to light up the Trinidad Espiritu Series No.1 Toro and proceed with the smoking phase.
The Trinidad Espiritu Series No.1 Toro started out with notes of nut, earth, natural tobacco, red pepper, and fruit sweetness. The nut and natural tobacco notes quickly moved into the forefront while the pepper and fruit notes settled in the background. During the first third, the earth notes floated between the forefront and background. Meanwhile, there was an additional layer of pepper on the retro-hale. In addition, some of the fruit sweetness was present on the retro-hale early on.
Late in the first third of the Trinidad Espiritu Series No. 1 Toro, a gradual increase in the pepper started. This continued into the second third. The early stages of the second third saw the earth notes take sole control as the primary note. The nut and natural tobacco settled into the background. The fruit sweetness also started to diminish and by the midway point, it had just about dissipated from the flavor profile.
Just past the midway point, the natural tobacco re-emerged in the forefront with the earth notes. There was an inherent bitterness that was present with the natural tobacco. The pepper continued to increase gradually. In the more distant background were the nut notes.
The last third remained the same, but the increase in pepper leveled off. The natural tobacco and earth remained in the forefront with the pepper and nut in the background. This is the way the smoking experience of the Trinidad Espiritu Series No. 1 Toro came to a close. The resulting nub was soft to the touch and cool in temperature.
Strength and Body
From a personal standpoint, I was very happy to see the Trinidad brand get some love from Altadis U.S.A. – and I like the direction Altadis U.S.A. took with the Trinidad Espiritu Series No.1. As for my experience with the Toro size, it falls into the category of “tale of two cigars.” The cigar started out with a lot of promise, but as some of the bitterness emerged in the second half, it took away from the overall cigar experience. In the end while I would still say this was more of a positive than a negative experience, the fact that this cigar is priced around $10.00 leads me to make more of a “Try a Sample” recommendation as opposed to a “Buy One” recommendation.
Key Flavors: Nut, Natural Tobacco, Earth, Pepper, Fruit
Burn: Very Good
Body: Medium to Full
Value: Try a Sample
News: Altadis U.S.A to Release Trinidad Espiritu
Brand Reference: Trinidad
Photo Credits: Cigar Coop