In 2022, online and catalog retailer JR Cigars would launch a new limited edition line of cigars known as JR Pure Origin. For many years, JR Cigars has produced its own cigars under the JR name with most of these being valued-priced and bundled offerings. When JR Cigars celebrated its 50th anniversary a couple of years ago, it released a cigar known as the JR Ultimate 50th Anniversary. With the Ultimate 50th anniversary, JR would introduce a more premium offering. Now with JR Pure Origin, the company appears to be building on that concept. In addition to featuring more luxurious styled packages, the Pure Origin series also includes more premium and in some cases exotic tobaccos. Today we take a closer look at the first release of the JR Pure Origin series, the JR Pure Origin Gran Vulcano in the Toro size.
The JR Pure Origen Gran Vulcano is a project developed by Tabacalera USA Director of Product Capability Rafael Nodal and the Plasencia family. Tabacalera USA is JR Cigars’ parent company and Nodal has worked on many projects with the Plasencias. The Gran Vulcano is an all-Nicaraguan cigar made in Nicaragua. Nicaragua is known for its volcanoes and volcanic soil. In the middle of Lake Nicaragua is an island known as Ometepe. It was formed from two volcanoes that still exist there today (Volcán Concepción and Volcán Maderas). Ometepe is also a place where tobacco is grown, and the Plasencias have been known for the tobacco that comes from this region.
For now, let’s turn our attention to the JR Pure Origin Gran Vulcano Toro, break down this cigar, and see what it brings to the table.
Blend and Origin
The JR Pure Origin: Gran Volcano features 100% Nicaraguan tobaccos including a Habano wrapper from the Jalapa valley over an Ometepe binder, and both Ometepe and Jalapa fillers.
Wrapper: Nicaraguan Habano (Jalapa)
Binder: Nicaraguan (Ometepe)
Fillers: Nicaraguan (Ometepe, Jalapa)
Country of Origin: Nicaragua
Factory: Plasencia Cigars SA
The JR Pure Origin: Gran Volcano is offered in three sizes. Each is presented in ten-count boxes. Production numbers were not disclosed.
Robusto: 5 x 50
Toro: 6 x 50
Toro Grande: 6 x 56
The Nicaraguan Habano wrapper of the JR Pure Origen Gran Vulcano Toro had a strong Colorado tint that actually had a very slight orange-like shade to it. Upon examination, some mottling could be seen on the surface of the wrapper. There also was a slight amount of oil on the surface of the wrapper. There were some thin visible veins as well as some visible wrapper seams.
A straight cut was used to remove the cap of the JR Puro Origin Gran Vulcano Toro. Once the cap was removed, it was on to the pre-light draw ritual. The cold draw delivered a mix of sweet citrus, earth, and cedar. To me, this was a satisfactory pre-light draw. At this point, it was time to toast up the footer of the JR Puro Origin Gran Vulcano Toro and move on to the smoking stage.
The sweet citrus, earth, and cedar notes continued once the JR Pure Origin Gran Vulcano Toro was lit up. In addition, there was some black pepper moving in. During the first third the citrus and earth notes were primary. Meanwhile, the cedar and black pepper notes were secondary. In addition, there was an additional layer of black pepper on the retro-hale.
In the second third of the JR Pure Origin Gran Vulcano Toro, there was a slight increase in the pepper on the tongue and on the retro-hale. Meanwhile, the citrus notes transitioned to more of a basic natural tobacco note. The earth notes remained grounded in the forefront, but the natural tobacco joined the black pepper and cedar notes in the background.
During the last third, the earth notes still were the primary notes. The pepper notes now closed in on the forefront but didn’t quite make it over the threshold. Notes of natural tobacco and to a lesser extent cedar would round out the flavor profile. This is the way the JR Pure Origin Gran Vulcano Toro came to a close. The resulting nub was soft to the touch and cool in temperature.
While there was a slight amount of waviness on the JR Pure Origin Gran Vulcano Toro, this was a cigar that maintained a straight burn path. There wasn’t a large number of touch-ups needed. Most of the touch-ups were cosmetic in nature. The resulting ash was mostly light gray. This was an ash that was skewed toward the firmer side. Meanwhile the burn rate and burn temperature were both ideal.
Overall the draw to the JR Puro Origin Gran Vulcano Toro performed quite well. This was an ash that had a touch of resistance. Readers of Cigar Coop know full well my personal preference for a slight amount of resistance on a draw. Overall this was quite a satisfying experience.
Strength and Body
The JR Puro Origin Gran Vulcano Toro started out as a medium-strength, medium-bodied cigar and remained that way for the duration of the smoking experience. Both cigars slightly increased in intensity, but kept to the medium range of the spectrum for strength and body. In terms of strength versus body, the body had a slight edge.
BANDING AND PACKAGING NOTES
One thing worth noting is the box used for the JR Puro Origin Gran Vulcano is made from 100% recycled, sustainable materials. The box itself is quite nice, but personally, I didn’t like the cardboard insert that was used to keep the cigars in place. The packaging has a mostly blue and white color scheme. There was more in the way of blue on the bands, while the box had more in the way of white. There was a time that blue was considered taboo for cigar packaging. On the Gran Vulcano, the blue is quite nice and it reaffirmed to me how far cigar packaging has come. Today blue is no longer taboo on cigar packaging and seems to have become quite the trend these days.
I found the JR Pure Origin Gran Vulcano Toro to deliver a nice smoking experience. When it comes to Ometepe in a blend, typically I prefer it in small doses. Too much of it can throw off the balance of the cigar. I was a little concerned when I saw it was in both the binder and filler, however in the end I found this to be a total non-issue with this blend. At $13.00, this is a slightly pricey cigar, but it’s still one I could recommend to any cigar enthusiast. As for myself, this is one I would buy and smoke again.
Key Flavors: Earth, Citrus, Natural Tobacco, Cedar, Pepper
Finish: Very Good
Value: Buy One
News: JR Cigar Adds Private Label JR Pure Origin: Gran Vulcano
Source: JR Cigars
Brand Reference: JR Cigars
Photo Credits: Cigar Coop