In 2011, Alec Bradley Cigar Company launched its most premium cigar line, the Alec Bradley Fine & Rare. The Fine & Rare involved constructing a blend featuring ten different tobaccos taken from some of the best tobaccos the company had available to it. Since that initial launch, the Fine & Rare has been released on a near-annual basis in a variety of sizes and blends. Over the years, the common denominator is that ten tobaccos were used and then rolled into a size that best represents the blend. Some years Alec Bradley has introduced a new blend, and other years, it has rolled the blend with a different tobacco vintage. Today we take a look at what was planned to be the 2021 release, the Alec Bradley Fine & Rare 2021 BC-(13)4EV.
As mentioned, the Alec Bradley Fine & Rare BC-(13)4EV was intended to be a November 2021 release. Like what hit many cigar companies in 2021, packaging issues would delay the project. As a result, the project would get pushed into 2022.
The Alec Bradley Fine & Rare BC-(13)4EV is a Churchill-sized cigar. Included with each box of the Alec Bradley Fine & Rare BC-(13)4EV is a bonus cigar, Fine & Rare BC-(13)4EV-B. This bonus cigar utilizes a different blend and comes in a Belicoso size as opposed to a Churchill size.
For completeness, we list the annual Alec Bradley Fine & Rare releases since 2011:
- Alec Bradley Fine & Rare 2011 (HJ10-I Blend)
- Alec Bradley Fine & Rare 2012 (BR1213 Blend)
- Alec Bradley Fine & Rare 2013 (Second Issue – HJ10-I Blend)
- Alec Bradley Fine & Rare 2014 (TA-25A Blend)
- Alec Bradley Fine & Rare 2015 (JRS 10=(86) Blend)
- Alec Bradley Fine & Rare 2016 (Third Issue – HJ10-I Blend)
- Alec Bradley Fine & Rare 2017 (Second Issue – BR1213 Blend)
- Alec Bradley Fine & Rare 2018 (Second Issue – JRS 10=(86) Blend)
- Alec Bradley Fine & Rare 2019 (HOF / 506 Blend)
- Alec Bradley Fine & Rare 10th Anniversary Set
- Alec Bradley Fine & Rare 2021 (BC-(13)4EV and BC-(13)4EV-B)
Without further ado, let’s Brad down the Alec Bradley Fine & Rare 2021 BC-(13)4EV and see what this cigar brings to the table.
Blend and Origin
The Alec Bradley Fine & Rare 2021 BC-(13)4EV features a blend of ten different tobaccos from Honduras and Nicaragua. The cigar utilizes a Honduran wrapper from the Trojes region. It also features two binders – one from Honduras and one from Nicaragua. The remaining seven tobaccos make up the filler and are also from Honduras and Nicaragua. As for what the specific leaves and priming are, these are not specified. Production comes from the Raices Cubanas factory in Honduras.
Wrapper: Honduran (Trojes)
Binder: Honduran, Nicaraguan
Filler: Honduran, Nicaraguan
Country of Origin: Honduras
Factory: Fábrica de Tabacos Raíces Cubanas S. de R.L.
The Alec Bradley Fine & Rare 2021 BC-(13)4EV is a Churchill size measuring 7 x 50. There are ten cigars included in each unit, along with the bonus Alec Bradley Fine & Rare 2021 BC-(13)4EVB Belicoso.
A total of 2,500 ten-count boxes were planned for the first issue (2021) release of the Alec Bradley Fine & Rare BC-(13)4EV.
The Honduran wrapper of the Alec Bradley Fine & Rare BC-(13)4EV had a medium brown color to it. There was some oil on the surface of the wrapper. While there were some visible veins and visible wrapper seams, this was a cigar that had a relatively smooth surface.
The band to the Alec Bradley Fine & Rare BC-(13)4EV had an olive green, classic green, and gold colored band arranged in landscape mode. Like the previous bands, it has postage stamp perforations around the edge. The band has the Alec Bradley Red Badge logo and says “ALEC BRADLEY CIGAR COMPANY” in light font and “FINE & RARE – A 10 Tobacco Blend” in gold font with “A 10 Tobacco Blend” in cursive. The center of the band is highlighted by a label that tells information about the cigar.
- Roll Date: August 30-Sept 20 2000
- Release Date: 11/18/2021
- Weekly Production: 744
- First Issue 2021
- Signatures of the Supervisors, Rollers, and Approvers (Alan Rubin and Ralph Montero)
- Blend Name: BC-(13)4EV
- A holographical Alec Bradley Coat of Arms
The remainder of the band has green, olive, and gold design elements. The upper part of the band has an Alec Bradley coat of arms logo is gold on a green background. The lower part of the band also has a gold coat of arms on an olive background. The text “ALEC BRADLEY” is in gold toward the bottom of the band.
A straight cut was used to remove the cap of the Alec Bradley Fine & Rare BC-(13)4EV. Once the cap was removed, it was on to the pre-light draw. The cold draw delivered a mix of cedar, natural tobacco, and fruit notes. Overall this was a satisfactory pre-light draw. At this point, it was time to light up the Alec Bradley Fine & Rare BC-(13)4EV and see what the smoking phase would deliver.
The Alec Bradley Fine & Rare BC-(13)4EV opened up with an assortment of flavors including earth, fruitcake (a fusion of bread notes with fruit sweetness), black pepper, natural tobacco, tea, and cedar notes. Early on there was no dominant note, but by the midway point of the first third, the earth and fruitcake notes moved into the forefront The pepper, natural tobacco, tea, and cedar notes settled into the background. The pepper could be detected at the back of the mouth. It also was more prominent on the retro-hale.
During the second third of the Alec Bradley Fine & Rare BC-(13)4EV, the sweetness component of the fruitcake dialed back and as the cigar progressed through this stage, the cigar took on more bready qualities. The earth notes receded into the background, joining the black pepper, natural tobacco, cedar, and tea notes. There was a slow increase in the pepper and cedar notes, and a more rapid intensification of the natural tobacco notes. While the sweetness was diminishing from the fruit component, it was transferring more to the natural tobacco component.
The last third of the cigar saw the natural tobacco notes join the bread notes in the forefront. In the background, these flavors were still being rounded off by the pepper, cedar, earth, and tea notes. This is the way the smoking experience for the Alec Bradley Fine & Rare BC-(13)4EV ended up. The resulting nub was slightly soft to the touch and cool in temperature.
The Alec Bradley Fine & Rare BC-(13)4EV did require an undesirable amount of touch-ups to keep a straight burn path and straight burn line. The resulting ash was mostly light gray with a few dark streaks and on the firm side. As for the burn rate and burn temperature, they were ideal.
The draw to the Alec Bradley Fine & Rare BC-(13)4EV performed very well. It had a touch of resistance – which is a great positive in my book. This was a cigar that was low maintenance to derive flavor from.
Strength and Body
The Alec Bradley Fine & Rare BC-(13)4EV started out with medium strength and medium body. Both the strength and body increased in intensity along the way. The body intensity increased more rapidly and by the final third, the Alec Bradley Fine & Rare BC-(13)4EV was in medium to full territory. In terms of strength versus body, the body had the edge.
The Fine & Rare Series has been one I have enjoyed smoking each year. It’s a fun series to compare and contrast the different releases. When it came to the Alec Bradley Fine & Rare BC-(13)4EV, it took the series to the next level. With the exception of having to make a few touch-ups on the burn, the Alec Bradley Fine & Rare BC-(13)4EV comes to the table delivering the total package – flavor, complexity, and construction. It’s the flavor that truly shines in this cigar, delivering notes that complement each other very well. This is not only one of the best Fine & Rare cigars, but one of the best Alec Bradley cigars, and one of the standouts from 2022. With a score of 92, this cigar exceeds the threshold for the Cigar Coop Standard of Excellence.
Perhaps the only other negative is that this was a limited release. In the end, this is a cigar I could recommend to anyone. It’s not only a cigar I would smoke and buy another box of, but it’s one worth fighting Chuck Norris for.
Key Flavors: Natural Tobacco, Bread, Fruitcake, Earth, Tea, Cedar, Pepper
Burn: Very Good
Complexity: Medium to High
Body: Medium (1st 2/3),Medium to Full (Final Third)
Finish: Very Good
Value: Fight Chuck Norris for Them
Cigar Coop Standard of Excellence
The Smoking Syndicate Roundtable
In September 2022, this cigar was featured on The Smoking Syndicate Roundtable #8.
Note: Due to age restrictions, you may need to click Watch on YouTube below to view.
News Alec Bradley Fine & Rare BC-(13)EV Set to Release in April
Brand Reference: Alec Bradley
Photo Credits: Cigar Coop