As the Cohiba brand continues to dominate the Cuban tobacco industry for Habanos S.A., its Dominican rival fights for more shelf space on behalf of General Cigar. As stated from General Cigar, they plan to put more emphasis on their Cohiba brand moving forward, in hopes of solidifying their Dominican roots against Cuba.
With last year’s release of the Cohiba Luxury Selection receiving fairly positive reviews, Cohiba has come back again to Luxury with a new vitola: the LS No. 2. Being the same exact blend as the original No. 1, the No. 2 is another exquisite blend of rare, aged tobacco from the Meerapfel family.
Those not familiar with the original release, the blend uses African Gold tobacco, a special Cameroon wrapper grown by the Meerapfel family. The tobacco is grown in the African forest of Kadei, and then aged for five years. After the cigars are blended and rolled, they receive additional maturation in Cohiba’s special aging cases, covered in cedar shavings and tobacco for added nuances.
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Cohiba Luxury Selection No. 2 Breakdown
- Wrapper: Meerapfel African Gold Cameroon (aged 5 yrs)
- Binder/Filler: Undisclosed (proprietary 4-month fermentation + 6 months rum barrel-aged)
- Factory: General Cigar Dominicana S.A.S. (Dominican Republic)
- Production: Limited edition (1,000 boxes of 10 cigars)
- Vitola: 6″ x 52 “No. 2” toro
- Price: $38
Along with its luxury price tag, the Cohiba LS No. 2 comes packaged in a presentation of equal prestige. Placed in individual, clear, acrylic coffins, resting in sets of 10 in very nice cedar-hued boxes, the presentation is fit for a king. Cohiba has even designed these ultra-premium boxes to lift the display of 10 cigars as the box is opened, moving them into a more upright position—you’ll half-expect vapor mist to pour out of the box upon opening, just like the movies…
The Cameroon wrapper has a medium brown tan to it, with a little yellow hue as well. As is expected with rare and aged tobacco, a medium tooth has developed around the golden wrapper. Each cigar is completed with a silver, metallic band, with the Cohiba Luxury Selection branded on. Overall, the appearance is appealing, especially counting the packaging, but there are two, small, yellow stripes on the band that take away from the entire look, leaving the band a bit off-putting.
As is expected from a $38 cigar, the construction looks and feels flawless—a very tight and even roll, with a perfect triple cap surrounding. The cap also cuts marvelously, with only a touch of loose tobacco falling off. Once lit, the construction continues to shine through onto the draw, with beautiful amounts of smoke proceeding from each puff. On the flavor side of things, the No. 2 starts off a bit slow, with a mild-medium body and soft notes of spice and cayenne pepper.
About an inch down, things start to pick up to where I expect a cigar of this caliber to be. Medium-full body now, with a heavy earth note dwelling on the finish. There is also a somewhat bitter fruit flavor, an amped up grapefruit, if you will. The initial flavor is decent, but doesn’t seem to jive well with the more heavy earth now developing.
Towards the middle of the cigar, I began to pair it with a Tennessee-style Whiskey, in hopes of livening things up. The pairing is decent, but the Luxury Selection just doesn’t have enough body to stand up to the flavor from the whisky. It does help bring out a sweeter note, somewhat of a honey, which is a needed palate addition to the Cohiba. Overall, I recommend pairing with something a little less heavy on flavor, as the LS No. 2 simply can’t compete—stick with your teas, coffees, saisons, and cream sodas.
Down to the nub, the flavors remain very similar. Hardly any complexity, with just a medium body of earth and spice left on the palate.
Would I smoke this again?
Honestly, no I wouldn’t. For one, I would never pay $40 for this cigar (or near-any cigar). And even if I was gifted (unlikely) this, I would sooner re-gift it to someone who would be able to enjoy the ‘luxury aesthetic’ of it.
- Appealing Packaging
- Great Construction
- Weak Complexity