Headlines First Edition Page 3
Headlines cigars are the brainchild of Dee Aguasvivas and Ulises Delgado, owners of Fusion Cigar Lounge, an upscale lounge and bar in Clearwater, Florida. In August 2014, Fusion Cigar Lounge entered into a distribution agreement with Antillian Cigar Corp., the parent company of Sosa Cigars, for the Headlines brand. This announcement was followed by another major story at the start of 2015. William Cooper of Cigar Coop reported the story:
Headlines Cigars will be doing an overall to its existing offerings. The brand has reblended and rebranded its current cigars. The new offerings include two Dominican made cigar lines Headlines First Edition and Headlines Second Edition. Both cigars are being done in collaboration with Arby Sosa.
According to Arby Sosa, “I’ve never been a part of creating an all-Domincan Puro, so this was an exciting project for me. It took over 6 months to perfect both blends, but we are all impressed with the final result. I believe in this cigar and hope all cigar fans will venture out and try this one, and I know they will be happy.
Headlines cigars are produced in Tamboril, Domincan Republic at Tabacalera Real, S.A., located approximately 40 miles from Santiago. Headlines cigars are currently available in two blends, First Edition and Second Edition. Both blends are Dominican puros and are made in the same three vitolas: Page 1 (5 1/2 by 60), Page 2 (6 by 54 Torpedo), and Page 3 (6 by 50). The cigars range in price from $7.50 to $8.50
Samples Provided by Antillian Cigar Corp.
Vitola: Page 3 (Toro)
Size: 6 by 50
Wrapper: Dominican (Pennslyvanian Seed)
Binder: Dominican Olor
Filler: Dominican Criollo ’98 Ligero, Dominican Piloto Cubana Ligoro, Dominican Criollo ’98 Seco, and Dominican Olor Seco
Smoke Time:1 Hour and 45 Minutes
The Dominican grown Pennsylvanian seed wrapper on the Headlines First Edition is medium to dark brown with a mottled appearance, covered with veins, color imperfections, and a fine tooth. To the touch, the wrapper leaf feels like a fine grade sand paper. The minerals and oils found on the wrapper glisten in the light. The foot appears under-filled, but when pinched, it feels firmly packed from head to foot.
On the wrapper, I find notes of wet earth and a faint pungency, while the foot give off some woodsy notes and cinnamon spice. A shallow cut through the double cap opens up a perfect draw. A rich clove like spice is leaving some heat on my tongue and there is a Jolly Rancher strawberry sweetness.
I am really surprised by the spice I am getting right off the bat of this Dominican puro. Under the spice, there are notes of cedar, earth, and dusty cocoa. A richness shines through on the retrohale accompanied by a medium spice. I was a bit hesitant to retrohale due to the level of spice on the palate, but it is not at all overwhelming. The burn, which was performing well early on, veered off track with one side burning noticeably faster than the other. A quick hit with the flame got it back in-line. The nice looking ash decided to fall off unexpectedly on my keyboard just short of an inch. The first third I characterize as medium in flavor and strength.
The earthy notes are developing to more dirt like, while the woodsy cedar is becoming more dry-pencil shavings in flavor, and the dusty cocoa is holding strong with some additional sugar sweetness. The spice is in full force, and the flavors and strength are creeping up as the cigar progresses. As a result of a couple of touch-ups, the ash is not nearly as pretty looking in its black appearance.
The spice is beginning to taper off as I enter into the last third of this cigar. The smoke is rich, the finish is very earthy, and some bread-like toasted notes have arrived. The sugar cube sweetness continues to build in the final third of the Headlines First Edition Page 3. The strength is definitely full at this point and I may need a sugar cube after this smoke to counter the nicotine!
After smoking three First Editions for this review, I found myself enjoying the cigar more and more each time. The core flavors are dark and heavy, but the sweetness cuts through bringing a nice balance to the smoke. I would recommend smoking this cigar after a full meal due to its strength and richness making it a nice after dinner smoke. I never had the opportunity to smoke the original Headlines, but based solely on these three cigars, the reblending is working in its favor. Priced reasonably at $8.00, the Headlines First Edition is a solid smoke worth your time and money.