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Alec Bradley Orchant Seleccion. For the last few years, the British cigar retailer Cgars Ltd has been creating limited editions under the name Orchant Seleccion. It started in 2007 as a collaboration with Habanos distributor Hunters & Frankau. They approached Orchant with the idea to hand-select boxes of cigars that he thought were outstanding. Then add an ‘Orchant Seleccion’ ring and sell them exclusively through his C. Gars Ltd shop. Up till today, approximately 20 different Cuban cigars are part of the Orchant Seleccion. But all in a limited number of boxes, and gone is gone. But it’s not limited to Cuban cigars anymore.

In the last few years, Orchant found several producers of New World cigars to create a limited edition exclusively for Cgars Ltd and Turmeaus Tobacconist. Davidoff created one. Regius did an Orchant Seleccion, just like Oliva. Alec Bradley did one and last year Drew Estate created three different sizes under the Orchant Seleccion name. Those are the lightweight, middleweight, and heavyweight. But recently the Alec Bradley Orchant Seleccion made a comeback. Not as a rerun of the old version, but the same blend of Nicaraguan and Honduran tobaccos. Yet in three different, smaller, sizes. Including a rare, unique twist on the Culebra. Shorter and thicker than a regular Culebra, and with the name Twisty. The other two sizes are the Orchie and the Pointy. Ministry of Cigars smoked all three of them for this review.

Name: Alec Bradley Orchant Seleccion Orchie
Country: Honduras
Factory: Raices Cubanas
Size: 3¾x46
Vitola: Half Corona
Wrapper: Honduras
Binder: Nicaragua, Honduras
Filler: Nicaragua
Price: £ 7.69
Cutter: Xikar X2
Lighter: single flame
Smoke conditions: indoors with ventilator
Smoke time: one hour forty-five minutes
Purchased at Cgars Ltd

The review

The Colorado Maduro colored wrapper has a spot on the wrapper. A green spot, which happens when a drop of water hits the leaf while drying. It does not change the flavor of the cigar but it just alters the look. There is one long, thin vein running over the cigar. The wrapper has a leathery look. The smell is amazing, sweet with spices. Cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice. The cigar feels good, evenly packed. The head is well rounded, with a nice triple cap. The ring is dark, with lots of details.

The cold draw is great. The raw tobacco flavor is spicy and strong. The first flavors are charred wood, spice, and leather. The spices include cumin, cloves and more. It’s delicate, subtle yet the cigar quite strong and in your face. There’s also a little sweetness and acidity. After a few puffs, some coffee shows up. Overall the flavors are a bit charred, burned. The flavors remain dark in the second third as well. Wood, soil, coffee. In the final third, there is more pepper, a little salt, and a strong earthiness with some coffee. The pepper grows and there is a hint of very dark chocolate.

The draw is great. There is enough smoke, it is quite thin though. The ash is white with some black smears. The burn is straight as an arrow. The cigar is medium-bodied, medium flavored. In the final third, the cigar becomes stronger, both in body and in flavor. The smoke time is one hour and forty-five minutes

Strength: medium-full
Flavor: medium

Ministry of Cigars - Alec Bradley Pointy

Name: Alec Bradley Orchant Seleccion Pointy
Country: Honduras
Factory: Raices Cubanas
Size: 4½x46
Vitola: Petit Belicoso
Wrapper: Honduras
Binder: Nicaragua, Honduras
Filler: Nicaragua
Price: £ 10.99
Cutter: Xikar X2
Lighter: single flame
Smoke conditions: indoors with ventilator
Smoke time: two hours twenty minutes
Purchased at Cgars Ltd

The review

The wrapper looks quite similar to the Alec Bradley Orchant Seleccion Orchie. Colorado Maduro colored, leathery with a long thin vein. But the green waterspot is missing. That makes the cigar ecstatically a little more pleasing. The dark, detailed ring is exactly the same. The O on the ring does have similarities with the Oliva logo. The aroma of this short, pointy cigar is darker than of the Orchie. More manure and barnyard than spices.

The cold draw is flawless, with a raw tobacco flavor. Once it, the cigar is salty with soil, coffee, and green herbs. There is a slight white pepper on the palate as well. The flavor then turns to something best described as black licorice with some dry leather and a little bit of coffee. The mouthfeel is chewy. The flavors are dark and become even darker with a burnt flavor. Burnt barbecue wood, pepper, green herbs. But a little evasive to the back of the throat. The cigar becomes more approachable, less burnt. More wood with dark roast coffee and pepper. The cigar then turns to earthiness, dark roast, pepper, and a little bit of a nutty flavor. The nutty flavor disappears as quickly as it showed up though. The pepper gains strength. A little sweetness shows up too. Near the end, it is dark wood, dark roast coffee, and very strong pepper.

The draw is good. The smoke is good, enough in volume yet it could be a tad thicker. The burn had to be corrected a few times. The ash is darker than the ash on the Orchie. The cigar is not balanced in the first third but balances out in the rest of the cigar. It’s a medium-full to full smoke. Full-flavored. Dark flavors, something we call a ‘winter’ cigar as it fits with the mood that comes with the shorter, darker days. The smoke time is two hours and twenty minutes.

Strength: medium-full to full
Flavor: full

Ministry of Cigars - Alec Bradley Orchant Seleccion

The review

Name: Alec Bradley Orchant Seleccion Twisty
Country: Honduras
Factory: Raices Cubanas
Size: 5×39
Vitola: Twisty
Wrapper: Honduras
Binder: Nicaragua, Honduras
Filler: Nicaragua
Price: £ 24.99 per Twisty (3 cigars)
Cutter: Xikar X2
Lighter: single flame
Smoke conditions: indoors with ventilator
Smoke time: one hour forty-five minutes
Purchased at Cgars Ltd

The three cigars are intertwined, but not as much as a regular Culebra. That’s impossible because of the length and the thickness of the cigar. The Alec Bradley Orchant Seleccion Twisty is shorter and thicker than any other Culebra on the market. The wrapper is dark and oily. A little rustic too, with some veins and bumps. But the shine makes the cigar look tasty. The cigar feels well constructed. The aroma has hints of hay with some acidity. It’s quite mild.

The cold draw is good. Spicy raw tobacco, a little harsh but in a pleasant way. After lighting there’s an explosion of coffee with some dark chocolate and pepper. The coffee and dark chocolate get accompanied by some marzipan sweetness. There is also a little salt and licorice. At the end of the first third, there is some harshness. Wood, earthiness, dark bitter chocolate, herbs, and pepper are on the palate. There is also a slightly burned flavor, something all three cigars have in common. The final third has the complexity of dark chocolate again. It’s coffee, wood, leather, and pepper. But now with a mild sweetness as well.

The draw is fantastic. And the smoke is thicker and fuller than on the other two Alec Bradley Orchant Seleccion. The burn needed a touch-up or two. The white ash is firm and dense, but flaky. Even though this is the most accessible cigar of the three, it is also the least balanced. But it has character. The cigar is medium-full bodied, full-flavored. The smoke time is one hour and forty-five minutes.

Strength: medium-full
Flavor: full

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