H. Upmann 1844 Special Edition Barbier

H. Upmann 1844 Special Edition Barbier Toro

Today, we look at the H. Upmann 1844 Special Edition Barbier in the Toro size. This was the second time Altadis U.S.A. created a barber-pole offering from its core lines. Barber-pole cigars are trendy cigars that involve taking two different wrappers and intertwining them, much like a barber-pole.

The name Barbier pays homage to brand founder Hermann Upmann’s German roots, as it is the German word for barber. The cigar debuted at TPE 2023 but was also prominently featured when Altadis U.S.A. returned to the Premium Cigar Association (PCA) Trade Show in 2023.

The following are the three barber-pole projects that Altadis U.S.A. has created over the past couple of years:

Let’s break down the Barbier Toro without further ado and see what this cigar brings to the table.

H. Upmann 1844 Special Edition Barbier Toro – Cigar Review


Blend and Origin

The H. Upmann 1844 Special Edition Barbier’s barber-pole wrapper uses a dark Ecuadorian Sumatra and a light Ecuadorian Connecticut. The binder is from Indonesia, and the fillers include both Dominican Broadleaf and Nicaraguan leaves. The Special Edition Barbier was blended by the famed Grupo de Maestros team and produced out of Tabacalera de Garcia in La Romana in the Dominican Republic.

Wrapper: Ecuadorian Sumatra/Ecuadorian Connecticut
Binder: Indonesian Java
Filler: Nicaraguan, Dominican, Broadleaf
Country of Origin: Dominican Republic
Factory: Tabacalera de Garcia

Vitolas Offered

Presented in 25-count boxes, the H. Upmann 1844 Special Edition Barbier is offered in five sizes. The cigar is a regular production line for Altadis U.S.A.

Corona: 44 x 5
Robusto: 50 x 5
Belicoso: 52 x 6
Toro: 54 x 6
Churchill: 50 x 7


As mentioned, the 1844 Special Edition Barbier Toro has a dark wrapper and a lighter Connecticut wrapper. The two wrappers brilliantly contrast each other. The cigar’s cap is finished with the Sumatra wrapper. The wrappers did not have much oil on their surfaces, and there were some visible veins on the cigar.


Pre-Light Draw

Before lighting up the H. Upmann 1844 Special Edition Barbier Toro, a straight cut was used to remove the cap. The dark cap makes removing the cap on the cigar relatively easy. Once the cap was clipped, it was time to begin the pre-light draw experience. The cold draw delivered a combination of coffee, cream, and wood. Overall, it was a satisfactory pre-light draw experience. With the pre-light draw out of the way, it was time to toast up the Special Edition Barbier and see what the smoking experience would have in store.

Tasting Notes

The initial smoking experience of the 1844 Special Edition Barbier Toro picked up where the pre-light draw left off with notes of coffee, cream, and wood. The one difference was that some black pepper notes were present on the tongue. Early on, the coffee and wood notes moved to the front. The coffee and wood notes began alternating in intensity—something that would be a trend throughout the smoking experience. Meanwhile, an additional layer of wood was on the retro-hale, along with a slight black pepper note.

During the second third of the 1844 Special Edition Barbier, the pattern of the coffee and wood notes continued. The creamy notes slowly diminished, and by the midway point, these notes had exited the flavor profile. At the same time, pepper notes slowly increased near-linearly on both the tongue and the retro-hale.

By the final third, the wood notes had a slight edge over the other notes. The coffee notes were still present, and the pepper notes were a close secondary. Toward the final puffs, there was a slight underlying harshness to the flavor profile, so as I reached the nub of this cigar, it was time to put it down. This is how the Special Edition Barbier Toro came to a close. The resulting nub was cool in temperature but soft to the touch.


On each of the samples I smoked, the burn started low maintenance during the first third. By the second third, the burn became quite jagged and required multiple and frequent touch-ups. While the touch-ups did the trick, more than I preferred were needed. The resulting ash had a salt and pepper color scheme. The ash was skewed toward the firm side. As for the burn rate and burn temperature, both maintain ideal levels.

Burn of the H. Upmann Special Edition Barbier Toro


While there was no issue deriving flavor, I found the 1844 Special Edition Barbier Toro draw on the open side. I usually prefer a little more resistance to my draw. Meanwhile, this cigar generated ample layers of smoke.

Strength and Body

The 1844 Special Edition Barbier Toro started out on the lower end of medium for strength and a more centric medium for body. The intensity of both strength and body slightly increased as the cigar progressed. In the end, both attributes remained in the medium range of the spectrum. At the same time, the body had a slight edge over strength.


Everything fires on all cylinders regarding the banding and packaging of the H. Upmann 1844 Special Edition Barbier. The red and gold bands look nice against the barber pole. The primary band denotes the cigar is an H. Upmann 1844 Special Edition, while the secondary band denotes it is the Barbier. I also think the old-school wrap boxes really shine in the overall packaging scheme.

H. Upmann 1844 Special Edition Barbier Toro Box; Photo Credit: Altadis U.S.A.


Final Thoughts

I have liked what Altadis U.S.A. is doing: creating contemporary interpretations of some classic lines. The recent series of barber-pole cigars is an excellent example of one way Altadis is implementing this concept. Regarding the H. Upmann 1844 Special Edition Barbier Toro, I found the first two-thirds quite enjoyable. When some of the harshness entered the equation toward the final third, this is where the 1844 Special Edition Barbier Toro lost points. Still, to get a hand-rolled premium Toro-sized Barber-Pole for under $10.00 is a good deal. In the end, there was still enough going on to recommend this cigar to an experienced or novice cigar enthusiast. As for myself, it’s also a cigar I would buy and smoke. It’s a blend I would also want to try in the other sizes.


Key Flavors: Coffee, Wood, Cream Pepper
Burn: Very Good
Draw: Very Good
Complexity: Medium Minus
Strength: Medium
Body: Medium
Finish: Very Good


Value: Buy One
Score: 88


News: H. Upmann 1844 Special Edition Barbier to Debut at TPE 2023
Price: $9.62
Source: Altadis U.S.A.
Brand Reference: H. Upmann

Photo Credits: Cigar Coop, except where noted.