Shortly after splitting with Wynwood Cigars, Robert Caldwell announced his return to the cigar industry with the Caldwell Collection at IPCPR 2014. The Caldwell Collection included three new blends: the Eastern Standard, the King is Dead and Long Live the King. Originally, the line was only going to be the King is Dead and Long Live the King – the two-part series was meant to be smoked back to back, complementing each other’s flavor. The Eastern Standard was later added when Caldwell was given a special Connecticut leaf to try – the blend worked so well that he decided to add it to the lineup.
Caldwell strives to set themselves apart in the industry with an edgy, modern style and cigars aimed for the boutique cigar enthusiast – this is the hip, micro craft brewery of the cigar scene. Partnering with Henderson and William Ventura of Tabacalera Ventura, Caldwell makes use of rare tobaccos and aged vintages throughout his portfolio, highlighting this by showcasing each tobacco percentage and its vintage directly on the cigar’s packaging.
Long Live the King Breakdown
- Wrapper: Corojo Dominicano 2008
- Binder: Corojo Dominicano 2009
- Filler: 50% Corojo Ligero dominicano 2006 – 10% Viso Pelo De Oro Peruno 2008 – 40% Habano Ligero Nicaraguense 2007
- Factory: Tabacalera Ventura (Dominican Republic)
- Production: Regular Production
- Vitola: 7.25 × 40 “My Style is Jalapeño”
- Price: $9
The artwork on this cigar is straight-up dope! It looks like a pencil sketched drawing of a young kid with an oversized golden crown sliding halfway down his face, having a “hip hop meets children’s book” feel, à la Maurice Sendak’s Where the Wild Things Are. In the center of the crown is the word “King”. The band is white with a red outline. On the left side, it reads, “Long Live,” and on the right side, “The King”. The wrapper is flawless and has a milky brown color with a little pig tail cap.
I snip the cap and toast. The aromas are of sweet tobacco and cinnamon. The first draw is an explosion of flavors, including cedar, leather, light white pepper and a slight sweetness, similar to chewing on a piece of sugar cane. As I smoke, the draw is perfect, not to loose, and it has just a little resistance. Clouds of chewy, white smoke pour out with every puff. I test the retro-hale and my mind is blown! Creamy, peppery, robust, habano flavors explode on my palate. The burn is razor sharp and the ash is light and white.
About a third of the way through, I notice the body and strength start to amp up a bit. This is definitely a medium to full (leaning on full side) cigar. The flavors remain the same: leather, cedar, and aged tobacco with a hint of sugar cane. The age of the blends really dominates the flavor profile and results in a luxurious and sophisticated smoke.
Finishing up the final third, I do not want this smoke to end. Aside from not being super complex and having to relight it a few times, everything else is top notch on this cigar. Personally, complexity is a bit overrated anyway – don’t get me wrong, I enjoy the complex nature of the posh, ultra-premium cigars from time to time, but finding such complexity on a sub-$10 smoke is so rare, I almost don’t expect it.
Would I smoke this cigar again?
Absolutely! This is a great cigar. Every aspect of it makes my mouth water. I can’t wait to get my hands on a few more and I most definitely have to try it as it was originally intended – back to back with the King is Dead.
- Outstanding balance of flavors
- Good strength and body
- One of the best retrohales I've encountered
- Could not keep it lit/Minor touch ups throughout
- Not a lot of complexity