At Tobacco Plus Expo (TPE) 2022, La Aurora Cigars would introduce a new offering known as the La Aurora Especiales. This was the culmination of what La Aurora Cigars has described as a six-year project working with some of its key retail partners. During this project, La Aurora solicited input from about 100 retailers who visited the La Aurora factory. The end result would be the La Aurora Especiales. La Aurora has described this cigar as a limited edition offering. Shortly after TPE 2022, the La Aurora Especiales line began arriving at retail stores. Today we take a closer look at the La Aurora Especiales in the Corona Gorda size.
As many know, La Aurora is the oldest factory in the Dominican Republic. Founded in 1903, the factory will be celebrating its 120th year in operation next year. The company was founded by Eduardo León Jimenes and today his grandson Guillermo León runs the company. In addition to producing its own brands, La Aurora makes cigars for many other third parties including Miami Cigar & Company. Miami Cigar & Company handles its distribution for La Aurora in the U.S. The La Aurora Especiales was blended by La Aurora’s Manuel Inoa.
Without further ado, let’s break down the La Aurora Especiales Corona Gorda and see what this cigar brings to the table.
Blend and Origin
The blend for the La Aurora Especiales consists of a Cameroon seed wrapper grown in Ecuador. There are Dominican tobaccos used for the binder and filler. The filler also incorporates U.S. tobaccos.
Wrapper: Cameroon Ecuador
Filler: Dominican Republic, USA.
Country of Origin: Dominican Republic
Factory La Aurora S.A.
The La Aurora Especiales is available in four sizes. Each size is presented in a 20-count box. A total of 1,000 boxes per size were produced.
Robusto: 5 x 50
Toro: 5 3/4 x 54
Corona Gorda: 6 x 47
Gran Toro: 6 x 58
The Ecuadorian-grown Cameroon wrapper of the La Aurora Especiales Corona Gorda had a medium brown color with a rosado tint. The surface of this wrapper had some oils on it. In addition, there were both visible veins as well as visible wrapper seams on the surface of this wrapper.
The band of the La Aurora Especiales Corona Gorda has the brand’s signature portrait of a lion on it. The portrait is surrounded by a gold frame. Above the lion is the text “LA AURORA” in a large red font. Below the line is a red-ribbon design with the text “ESPECIALES” in gold on it. The upper portion of the band is mostly red with white and gold trim. On the far right of the band is the text “REPUBLICA DOMINICANA.” The lower part of the band has a pseudo-secondary band. The upper portion of the pseudo band is a gold foil with the text “EXCLUSIVO” embellished in a repeating fashion on it. The lower portion of the pseudo-band is mostly red. The text “EXCLUSIVO” appears in large gold font on the red background with a pinstripe above and below it.
Prior to lighting up the La Aurora Especiales Corona Gorda, a straight cut was used to remove the cap of the cigar. After the cap was detached, it was on to the pre-light draw phase. The dry draw produced a combination of natural tobacco, wood, cedar, and earth. This was a straightforward and satisfying pre-light draw. At this point, it was time to light up the La Aurora Especiales Corona Gorda would have in store.
The La Aurora Especiales Corona Gorda opened with notes of natural tobacco, wood, cedar, orange peel, and earth. Early on the orange peel notes became the primary notes. There was a lot of sweetness early on from these notes. Meanwhile, the wood, cedar, natural tobacco, and earth settled in the background where they were joined by some black pepper notes. Midway through the first third, the sweetness from the orange peel started to diminish. On the retro-hale were additional layers of black pepper and orange peel.
The second third of the La Aurora Especiales Corona Gorda saw the earth notes join the orange peel in the forefront. The orange peel now had a balance of sweetness and bitterness. Meanwhile, in the background notes of black pepper, natural tobacco, and cedar remained. The classic wood notes found earlier had dissipated. By the second half of the smoking experience, the black pepper increased on the tongue and retro-hale.
Entering the final third of the cigar, the orange peel and earth notes remained grounded in the forefront. In the background, the pepper was the most prominent of the secondary notes. There still were notes of natural tobacco and cedar rounding out the flavor profile. This is the way the La Aurora Especiales Corona Gorda continued until the cigar came to a close. The resulting nub was slightly soft to the touch and cool in temperature.
While the burn path remained a straight burn path and burn line, it did require many touch-ups along the way. The touch-ups did the trick, but there were more touch-ups required than I prefer. The resulting ash had a salt and pepper color. The ash wasn’t overly firm, but it wasn’t a loose or flaky one either. The burn rate was ideal. The cigar’s burn rate was ideal. As for the burn temperature, it was slightly on the cool side and on one sample, it did require a re-light, but this was more of an exception than a norm.
The draw of the La Aurora Especiales Corona Gorda was on the open side. Normally I prefer a little more in the way of resistance on the draw. This didn’t result in any adverse effects on the smoking experience.
Strength and Body
The La Aurora Especiales Corona Gorda started out as a medium strength, medium to full-bodied smoking experience. Along the way, there was a slight increase in the intensity levels of both attributes, but in the end, the cigar remained medium strength, medium to full-bodied. In terms of strength versus body, the body maintained the edge from start to finish.
While I wouldn’t call the La Aurora Especiales Corona Gorda a revolutionary smoking experience, it produced some nice flavors. While sometimes the last third of a cigar is the least enjoyable, I found the flavors to stay enjoyable right until the end. Over the years, I have found the Corona Gorda size to be one that La Aurora delivers an excellent expression for its blends. I’m definitely intrigued to see how these cigars smoke in the 50+ ring gauge sizes. While it’s a bit on the pricey side ($13.00) the La Aurora Especiales Corona Gorda is still a cigar I’d recommend to any cigar enthusiast. As for myself, it’s one that I would buy and smoke again.
Key Flavors: Orange Peel, Earth, Natural Tobacco, Wood, Cedar, Pepper
Burn: Very Good
Draw: Very Good
Body: Medium to Full
Finish: Very Good
Value: Buy One
Photo Credits: Cigar Coop