More than a decade ago, I made the move from NYC to Miami where I began working at Miami Cigar & Company. One of my greatest memories was heading down to Esteli, Nicaragua with Jason Wood VP of Miami Cigars and Eddie Ortega who was in the process of launching his own lines. During this trip Jason and I were tasked on creating a cigar for the Nestor Miranda Special Selection line to bring back to Nestor Miranda for his approval. To be honest, I am not sure how I didn’t wind up in a ditch somewhere that trip as I refused to settle going through blend change after blend change at the factory. Eventually we had a sample we really loved, along with a couple of others for comparison. Nestor Miranda, Jason Wood & myself (but I doubt I really had a vote) were unanimous in the choice once back in Miami.
In 2014, Nestor Miranda Special Selection would rebrand to Nestor Miranda Collection and while I had moved back to the Northeast and can’t say for certain the blends changed, I think it was fairly obvious they did. Thankfully, 5 years later Nestor Miranda Special Selection would return and it would become the 2019 Cigar of the Year here at The Cigar Authority.
Fast forward to earlier this year in 2022, Jason Wood let me know on March 3rd that Nestor Miranda Special Selection Connecticut was back. To quote him, “Our baby is back!!!! 😆.”
This cigar like my time in Miami will always be special, and I couldn’t wait to smoke it. However, palates change and tobaccos change with vintage. How would it compare to that magical trip to Nicaragua? Here are my thoughts…
Cigar Review: Nestor Miranda Special Selection Connecticut
Wrapper: Ecuador Connecticut
Fillers: Dominican Republic, Honduras, Nicaragua
Ring Gauge: 54
The Look: At first glance things remain the same. The cigar remains in a wooden boxes with logo branded on the box, along with the name, wrapper and size. The signature burlap is back on the outside of the box just like in the Nestor Miranda Special Selection. Opening the box the band has changed slightly. What was once a gray part of the band is now a royal blue. It gives the cigar more a regal feel and adds some color to it. The blonde looking Connecticut wrapper has some minimal veins to it and a nice oily sheen. In the hand the cigar is firm to the touch and an average weight.
The Notes: The cold draw reveals an abundance of cedar with subtle hints of cream and baking spices. The foot of the cigar is creamier then the cold draw with a subtle cedar in the background. Once the cigar is toasted and lit notes of almonds and brown sugar embrace the palate. I can’t help but feel I have returned home at this point.
As we smoke the first third notes of almond remain strong though the brown sugar begins to pull back some. As we progress through cigar the Nestor Miranda Special Selection Connecticut develops a rich buttery component with a cedar finish. The retrohale is smooth with more buttery richness and wood.
Moving into the second third the almond notes remain dominant with baking spices and a subtle floral component that comes and goes around the half way point. Just after the half way point the almond notes begin to pull back as brown sugar becomes more dominant. The retrohale sees continued notes of wood and the introduction of nutmeg.
The Finish: I found it curious that Miami Cigar & Company would release this in May instead of July at the PCA Trade Show. It makes me wonder if they will be introducing something new at the show. I for one would love to see the Art Deco return, minus the lunchbox it was packed in. Since these came back in stock I’ve been asked, is it the same. It’s a hard question to answer because it’s been about 7 years since I smoked the original release. Close enough is my official answer. I think the tobacco of the original might have had some more age to it, but the taste is pretty spot on. I wrote on Instagram and Facebook, “This cigar reminds me of home. Miami. The 305. How I missed you so!” I expect this cigar to age well, and I have a feeling it will score even higher in a couple of months.
Price: $8.39 / $148.99