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Staff Reviews

H. Upmann 1844 Reserve Robusto Staff Review

Tom O. O's picture

Tom O.

Here we go again. Next up for review, is one of the very first premium cigar brands to come into existence, H. Upmann. The brand dates back to 1844 in Havana, Cuba and is known today for both its Cuban and Dominican-made blends. Throughout its history, this heralded brand has had its ups and downs along with some iconic fans. For an in-depth introduction to H. Upmann, check out our article on the brand’s historic reputation. 

Today, I am reviewing H. Upmann 1844 Reserve in a classic 5 x 50 Robusto. The blend is produced in the Dominican Republic by Altadis U.S.A. Inc., makers of well-known Cuban-legacy brands Montecristo and Romeo y Julieta, as well as Cigar Aficionado’s current ‘#1 Cigar of the Year,’ Aging Room.

When you pick up an Upmann 1844 Reserve you’ll notice an oily Ecuador Habano wrapper that is smooth to the touch with a nice medium-brown color. After cutting the cap and taking a few cold draws and a quick sniff of the foot, spicy notes of earth, hay, and pepper reveal a hint of sweetness. Thick clouds of smoke fill the room with excellent aromas of cedar and cocoa as I toast the end and fire it up. 

The well-aged Dominican fillers and spicy Nicaraguan binder deliver a balanced, medium-to-full bodied blend. As the first third develops, it’s easy to understand why H. Upmann 1844 Reserve has scored numerous 90+ ratings. As with many Robusto-shaped vitolas, the burn is even but requires a few minor touch-ups. 

At the half-way point, the ash maintains a firm shape as is expected with a true premium cigar. A crucial factor that sways a cigar from average to excellent is the draw. H. Upmann delivers a consistent, easy draw with little resistance and effortless smoke production.

The second third reveals a few transitions in the flavor profile which offer a more complex smoke. The initial tasting notes of earth and hay meld with a honey-like sweetness and notes of nuts and coffee beans as the cigar progresses. Heavier notes of pepper enter the picture but do not interrupt the subtle nuances of the blend. 

During the final stretch, the cigar’s initial notes weave a consistent impression down to the last inch. A clean, toasty finish resonates as the nub of H. Upmann 1844 Reserve draws to the end. This classic Cuban-heritage brand offers a satisfying marriage of value and name brand recognition.

Although it’s been a while since I last indulged in H. Upmann, I was pleasantly surprised by its savory taste and aroma. The Robusto met most of the expectations on my personal checklist for a fine cigar, including construction, burn, flavor, and room note. I think it’s fair to classify H. Upmann 1844 Reserve as a solid recommendation when you’re seeking an affordable old-world brand. Explore the blend in a well-made collection of traditional shapes to discover the cigar in your favorite format. Enjoy!
 

89rated

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