Cigar Reviews

Jaime Garcia Reserva Especial Toro

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As requested by quite a few of our loyal readers, this week’s review is of Jaime Garcia’s Reserva Especial.
This is a cigar I have grown to really enjoy lately. I have meant to review this cigar for sometime now, but every time I light one of these bad boys up I keep resisting the urge to write a review along with it. Finally this day has come.

Jaime Garcia Reserva Especial

The Good Stuff: The Jaime Garcia Reserva Especial is the second cigar blended by the legendary Don Pepin Garcia’s son, Jaime Garcia (My Father being the first). The Reserva Especial is a blend consisting of two different Nicaraguan tobaccos. One grown by the Pepin family, the other grown by the well known Oliva Tobacco Company wrapped in my personal favorite wrapper, the Connecticut broadleaf.

Jaime Garcia Reserva Especial

The size I am doing a review of is the toro. You can easily order these from the great team over at Bonita Smokeshop, along with just about any other Pepin product.

Size: 6 x 54 – Wrapper: Connecticut Broadleaf – Binder/Filler: Nicaraguan – Body: Medium/Full

Jaime Garcia Reserva Especial

Prelight: The Jaime Garcia Reserva Especial is a toothy little beast. The cigar is wrapped with a beautifully, very dark chocalatey brown. The wrapper gleams from the massive amount of oils from the foot, all the way to the rounded off, triple wrapped cap. The Reserva Especial is firm to the touch near the head of the cigar, but quite softer then most cigars movie down to the foot. There aren’t any real soft spots, but the softness of this cigar almost worries me. It does have a good weight to it though. There is only one, very small vein on the underside of the cigar. The band stays true to form with most of the my father cigars we see coming out of that factory. Its an off-white with a full brown, gold, and blue crest stating “Jaime Garcia” and “Reserva Especial”. The underside of the band simply states “My Father Cigars”. The wrapper gives off a very sweet, chocolate and mocha type aroma where as the foot of this cigar has a more pronounced oat and tobacco scent with cocoa undertones. The cigar was clipped with ease by my Cuban Crafters Perfecto double blade cutter. The cold draw was very firm with rich tobacco, cocoa, and lots spice.

Jaime Garcia Reserva Especial

First Smoke: As I have come to expect from most cigars produced in the My Father factory the Reserva Especial starts off with a boom of spice and pepper. This initial hit pairs seamlessly with the sharp spice of the New Belgium Biere De Mars that I have decided to pair this cigar with. Once the pepper begins to wear off, subtle notes of cocoa and coffee become present over stronger notes of sweet tobacco, leather, and wood. The burnline is razor sharp but has developed a bit of a wave pattern early into the cigar. The draw is very loose, and produces a very thick, cedar scented cloud of smoke. The Reserva Especial gives off little to no stationary smoke, and what little bit of smoke that does is escape is pleasantly scented with a strong cedar aroma as well. The ash is a very light grey and very tightly packed in most places. The ash held tight for about an inch and a half before falling.

Jaime Garcia Reserva Especial

Halfway There: The pepper introduction to this cigar was just that, and is not longer present. The dominating flavor is by far the woodsy, grassy flavor that began as just an afterthought in the first third backed by the sweet tobacco, and a strong, almost espresso coffee. There retrohale on this cigar is to die for. Almost pure cedar, and in credibly smooth. I’m impressed thus far with how just perfectly smooth this cigar is. The burnline did a heck of a job fixing itself, and has burned perfectly and still razor sharp all the way through the second third. Up until this point I still have yet to feel any signs of nicotine.

Jaime Garcia Reserva Especial

Finish: What a smooth finish, and I can’t stress that enough. This cigar is definitely @KightRid acceptable with no signs what so ever of nicotine. The Reserva Especial finished off very clean and smooth with the dominant flavor still being wood and grass, backed up by cocoa and lots of strong coffee notes. The burn went a little wavy into the final third, but cleaned itself up and there was no need for any types of relights or touch ups. The pepper did make a slight come back deep within the last inch or so, but it was more of just a reminder of how this cigar started out. All in all it took only about an hour and a half to take down this Toro sized cigar.

Jaime Garcia Reserva Especial

Overview: Overall I was VERY impressed with this cigar. I am a Pepin love through and through and this cigar didn’t fail in any way shape or form. The woodsy, sweet, soft cocoa and coffee flavors preformed brilliantly with one another. Near perfect burn, medium body, and great aftertaste. And with the affordable price point? You really couldn’t ask for me. Perfect for a beginner cigar smoker, and everyday cigar for the aficionado, This cigar will be in my regular rotation from this point forward. Box worth by far.

Jaime Garcia Reserva Especial

Pairing: The Jaime Garcia Reserva Especial was paired with one of my favorites, New Belgium’s Lips of Faith Series Biere De Mars. New Belgium has a knack for coming up with some of the best traditional brews, and as of late some of the better non traditional. They save these brews for the Lips of Faith collection. Very sought after, and VERY hard to come by these brews are more expensive to produce, and require a more skillful team making them so rare. The Biere de Mars I drank was picked up on my latest trip to Denver Colorado. I ventured north to the New Belgium brewery in Fort Collins and picked up a few beers to take back with me.

Biere De Mars is a Celestial collision of orange – hued ale, citrusy lemon verbena, and unidentified flying brettanomyces.

I don’t know exactly what that means, but its good stuff. 6.2% citrus, bready, spicy beer. It was just an absolute perfect match for this cigar. I would recommend something of the sort for pairing, or even a hefty stout, iced tea or apple juice. Something citrusy, and sweet.

New Belgium - Lips of Faith - Biere De Mars - Jaime Garcia Reserva Especial

New Belgium - Lips of Faith - Biere De Mars - Jaime Garcia Reserva Especial

Tony Casas is a 32 year old Creative Managing/Webdesigning/Craft Beer Drinking Cigar smoker from El Paso, Texas. When he isn't loving his wife he is either sleepy, hungry, or suffering from a headache.


  1. Shawn

    June 28, 2010 at 7:58 am

    Man i gotta tell you guys. I went from the every now and then reader to really looking forward to these reviews. Seriously, they’ve helped me in finding some good smokes.

  2. Tony Casas

    June 28, 2010 at 7:59 am

    Im glad Shawn. Thanks for your constant kind words. That’s why we do this! Just simply to share our experiences in hopes that people may find them interesting and/or helpful

  3. DaByrdman33

    June 28, 2010 at 9:54 am

    Just saw the Garcia ad in my latest issue of CA & wondered where I could find these sticks. Your review was right on time because I am definitely going to try these now. Love the beer glasses too. You have quite a collection. Great job bro.


  4. Tony Casas

    June 28, 2010 at 9:58 am

    Thanks man! I got these in a while ago and couldnt stop smoking them long enough to get a review. I REALLY enjoy them. It’s a different spin on things, but at the same time similar enough not to throw you off. Much smoother. Hopefully you can get your hands on some, if not, let me know!

    As for the beer glasses, thanks man. I have TONS upon TONS. I just haven’t used them all for reviews yet. The right glass for the right beer 🙂 I’m a collector.

  5. The Champ

    June 28, 2010 at 10:09 am

    Awesome review brotha!! This sounds like a must-find smoke!!

    • Tony Casas

      June 28, 2010 at 10:13 am

      It is man. Think about a My Father Le Bijou, only much milder and smoother. Good stuff!

  6. Jerry @ Stogie Review

    June 28, 2010 at 10:21 am

    You need to fire up the video camera. Your Spanglish can’t be that bad…LOL…

    Very nicely done. I haven’t tried these yet but the reviews around the blog seem to unanimous. Pics are awesome as usual too.

    The Don

  7. Dalamscius

    June 28, 2010 at 10:34 am

    Great Job Tony, I kept hearing you bragging about these sticks so it’s nice to finally read some good thoughts on them. I really enjoyed the My Father so this one sounds like it’s right up my alley!

  8. Tony Casas

    June 28, 2010 at 10:39 am

    Jerry, I do. Cigarnut, and Daniel and even Danny P have been trying to get me on the video train for quite sometime. I just like being mysterious. I hate cameras, always have. I’m such a coward.

    Thanks for the compliments man, these are really badass sticks in my opinion. Let me know if you have any problems finding them, I can send a few your way.

    Daniel – I’ll throw a few in th package I have going your way. If you liked the My Father you’ll really like this one.

  9. Jared

    June 29, 2010 at 10:03 am

    I can NOT wait to try this cigar. You have been so enthusiastic about this it scares me a lil bit. I really don’t need another awesome stogie to crave. Great review, as always. Hope you don’t mind I’ve been spreading the word about your site on BOTL.

  10. Tony Casas

    June 29, 2010 at 10:53 am

    I hope you like it man, it’s been a favorite among my regular rotation as of late. Thanks man, and we are MORE than happy to hear ya spreading the love!

  11. Dan

    July 23, 2010 at 6:21 pm

    Thanks for the great review Tony… I love everything Pepin (Cuban Classic and My Father… both selections.. and countless others he makes for different companies) and I will smoke this soon…

    • Tony Casas

      July 25, 2010 at 9:02 pm

      This Cuban Classics are damn good sticks! Keep your eyes out. They are popping up all over the place!

  12. Dan

    September 29, 2010 at 4:36 pm

    What’s up Tony…. I’m smoking a J. Garcia Toro now and this is a beautiful thing…. I didn’t get the pepper beatdown that I normally get.. and enjoy from most DPG cigars, but after the first few minutes it settled into a clean and very tasty smoke… definitely box worthy… thanks and keep up the good work… while I’m writing I have to give the Ambos Mundos Habano (another My Father production) some praise… I’ve gone through 3 boxes within the last few months… damn.. writing that just confirmed that maybe I should chill out.. oh well… movin on… that is one hell of a powerful, yet smooth smoke… IMO.. a bit like the Cuban Classic, yet another level… I’m curious to get your take… be easy

  13. Tony Casas

    September 30, 2010 at 6:26 pm

    Man I am really glad the census is positive on this cigar Dan. I thought it hit a home run. 3 boxes of Ambos Mundos? You’re a beast! I like those cigars a whole lot, pretty much anything with from the Pepin/Pet Johnson dynamic duo is rock solid. I do enjoy those quite a bit, I found them to be similar to the cuban classics but not as much power/pepper. A Much smoother experience. Which is your favorite wrapper?

    Ps. I picked up some of the tempus as you requested 🙂 It may take me a bit to get to them, but as promised, I’ll get ya a review up.

  14. Dan

    October 1, 2010 at 1:34 pm

    Thanks Tony… your comments on the Ambos/Cuban Classic flavor profile are right on point! I don’t have a favorite wrapper.. it all depends on when I smoke and how I’m feeling… when I’m relaxed a lighter Connecticut or Habano wrapper will do… if I’m watching boxing or am a bit amped up I go for something stronger like a Ligero, San Andreas, PA Broadleaf, Corojo, etc… Be easy and looking forward to the Tempus review…

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