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IPCPR 2010

Submitted by Jay Z on August 17, 2010 – 10:54 pmNo Comment

We are finally home from the 2010 IPCPR, fully rested and ready to report on everything that went down at the show. Let me begin this update by saying it was a exciting walking around the convention center and see a giant influx of “new” media (bloggers & website owners) covering the manufactures from a different, non-elitist, perspective. Many manufacturers were actually showing the new media more love than the CA guy that was walking around.  But that is already off track from the real focus of the show: cigars, new cigars, unique cigars and … the cigars.

After hitting every single cigar booth in the hectic 2010 IPCPR week I came to a few quick conclusions: 1. The show seemed smaller and more relaxed that the previous years.  2: It looked like the manufactures were playing it a little safe for this year by releasing an extension of a current line or showcasing something that had already been made public. If I had to pin any type of trend for the show it would have to be that everyone was either lowering prices or creating a cigar that was affordable to smoke. The magic price point everyone was staying around was $7 or less. 2010 was not the year of crazy surprises but there was still plenty at the show to discuss and drool over.

First and foremost we need to start with the biggest of all show stoppers, literally, with the Gran Habano El Gigante. George Rico was on hand displaying the 19 foot, 1620 ring gauge cigar. AZTECA was in full display with the bright orange boxes that mimic ancient pyramids. G.A.R lovers will be happy to hear that the prices will be lowering and you can expect some new extensions on both lines (Gran Habano and G.A.R) but nothing was officially mentioned.

Drew Estate went home with the best large booth award from the IPCPR and created quite a buzz with hundreds of custom airbrushed Drew Estates high-tops. On the cigar side of things the Dirty Rat will now be regular production for everyone to enjoy. They will come in boxes of 12 and carry a retail price of $12. All of the T-52 lovers will be happy to hear that a 3,000 box run will hit the country to make it a little easier for everyone to find that smoke.

J Feugo introduced us to his new product for the show, the 777 Zero. This Ecuadorian Connecticut is Fuego’s solution for the people wanting a “mild” cigar. The 777 Zero is the same blend of the standard 777 line, the only thing that has changed is the wrapper. The retail price point will sit between $5.20 – $5.70 depending on the size and 4 different sizes will be available.  Mr. Fuego also gave me the biggest disappointment for the show because I thought they would release their new, top secrete, no one knows, I can’t repeat it cigar project. At least we will have something to look forward to at the end of the year.

Ashton released a new extension for the La Aroma de Cuba line called Mi Amor. Teaming up with their new best friend, Don Pepin, they have created a box-pressed Magnifico measuring 6 x 52. Mi Amor has a tasty looking Mexican wrapper and a blend that delivers great flavors for a price of about $7.

Illusione brought some excitement to the show with the ~hl~ cigars candela and maduro. Second cigar was the first limited edition Illusione called Singulare. This years size is the Phantom (6 x 50) made at the Raices Cubanas factory in Honduras, the blend is 100% Nicaraguan tobacco. Production was limited to 1,000 boxes of 15 with an MSRP of $12 per cigar.

And now I saved what I heard the most buzz about for last – 7-20-4 by Kurt Kendall. The cigars are made in Honduras with a Brazilian mata fina wrapper, Costa Rican binder, and a filler blend of Nicaraguan, Honduran, Mexican, and Colombian tobaccos. 7-20-4 introduced two new sizes of  Londres and the “Dog Walker” which is almost a petit corona. Kurt, and the company, has a cool story about finding the brand and how it was brought back to life from the dead. On display were even some original marketing items from when the company was first in production.  I am intentionally leaving the description of the cigar and the 7-20-4 company vague as this will be a feature piece in one of the upcoming articles.

So there is my take on some of the cool things of the 2010 IPCPR and I am already looking forward to the 2011 in Vegas.

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