In the course of the eight years that Cigar Dojo has covered the IPCPR/PCA trade show, it seems that virtually every other year Illusione arrives sans cigars. Such was the case for PCA 2021, with the company displaying a simple banner and room for retailers to place orders.
However, company owner, Dion Giolito, was available, with his unique tobacco insight being more impactful than the visual of new product. Despite the lack of visuals, there were plenty of new products to discuss, including new sizes, spinoff brands, limited editions, and exclusives.
The first two are the OneOff +53 (a super-premium version of the standard OneOff cigar) and a sister brand dubbed Allegria. The OneOff +53 will expand to include three sizes (Super Robusto, 5″ x 52, and 6″ x 56). The sister brand, Allegria (Italian for Cheerfulness), uses two tobaccos not common to Illusione’s cigars: Corojo 2006 viso and Corojo 2012, the latter being somewhat of a new selection among the AGANORSA tobaccos that make up virtually all Illusione cigars. The brand will launch with five sizes (corona, robusto, toro, Churchill, and lonsdale), priced from $8 to $12 MSRP. Giolito describes the profile as having a signature Illusione sweetness, with Chinese-like spices and black licorice.
Also of particular emphasis was a project with actor Jeremy Piven, a proclaimed cigar fanatic (who has appeared on the cover of Cigar Aficionado) and Illusione admirer. A collaboration of this nature has never been seen from Illusione before, with the cigars set to launch during the Big Smoke Las Vegas event later this year (with Piven in attendance). The cigar is the PIV Robusto, debuting with 3,000 boxes of 10 cigars, though additional sizes and perhaps a maduro variation will follow if demand is strong enough.
Giolito mentioned the Illusione TAA 2021 release, the company’s first TAA cigar. This is a 6¼” x 54 box-pressed toro that makes use of two tobaccos not typically seen in the wheelhouse of Illusione’s blends. Finally, Illusione was one of a handful of manufacturers to offer something exclusive to retailers that attended the event. The cigar was the Original Documents CG:4 Candela, offered in 25-count boxes of 5⅝” x 46 corona gorda cigars.