#17 2023 Cigar of the Year

#17 2023 Cigar of the Year: La Palina KB Part Three


Wrapper: Honduran Corojo ’99 Rosado
Binder: Honduran Criollo ’98 (Double binder)
Filler: Nicaraguan Corojo ’99 and Criollo ’98
Country of Origin: Honduras
Factory: Fábrica de Tabacos Raíces Cubanas S. de R.L.
Part Three: 5 x 52
Price: $10.25

Sponsor: No
Samples Provided for Initial Review: No
Review: La Palina KB Part Three (12/7/22)
Appearances on Countdown (By Year/Company): 6 (2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2022, 2023)

The Details

The #17 2023 Cigar of the Year is the La Palina KB Part Three. The story of La Palina’s KB is quite interesting from both the La Palina end and the Cigar Coop end.

In 2011, La Palina Cigars introduced its second line, El Diario. La Palina positioned El Diario as an everyday smoke and was one meant to be more affordable than its ultra-premium Family Series. El Diario went on to capture Cigar Coop’s #1 Cigar of the Year for 2011. The following year, La Palina unveiled a 4 1/4 x 40 petit corona line extension with a more robust tweaked blend known as KB. KB stands for “Kill Bill,” and it was named because the prototype of the sample given to La Palina owner Bill Paley was so strong that it threw him for a loop. Later, La Palina released a second KB size in the form of a 6 x 40 vitola, the KB II.

Fast forward to 2021, and La Palina decided to discontinue the El Diario line while launching a new line around KB. In addition to the KB and KB II sizes coming over, La Palina added two new sizes: Part Three (5 x 52) and Part Four (6 x 54). It’s the Part Three vitola that lands on this year’s Countdown. There was a significant change with the packaging – moving from ultra-classic to ultra-contemporary. Gone were the bands featuring Goldie Paley that adorned the original El Diario KB releases. The artwork on the boxes and bands is now a cross between Asian and Pulp Fiction artwork and features an image of Bill Paley with his eyes crossed out.


La Palina KB Part Three

The La Palina KB features a Honduran Corojo wrapper, a double binder of Honduran Criollo and Nicaragua Corojo ’99, and Criollo ’98 for the fillers. On paper, the tobaccos of the La Palina KB line appear the same as El Diario, but the ratios were adjusted to achieve a stronger blend (much like the original El Diario KB that threw Bill Paley for a loop). The La Palina KB is produced in Honduras at the Raices Cubanas factory. This is the same factory that produced El Diario.

The La Palina KB Part Three delivered natural tobacco, earth, fruit, pepper, and baker’s spice. This cigar is a powerhouse in terms of boldness. It started out with medium to full-bodied flavors and medium to full strength. By the second third, the strength of the KB Part Three progressed to full territory, and by the midway point, the body became full. By the time this cigar reached the later stages, it was in full-throttle mode.

For La Palina, this is the sixth appearance on Countdown – including the past two years. This gives Honduras its first appearance on the Countdown for 2023.


Photo/Media Credits: Cigar Coop