Written by Puff Staff

Friday, 12 October 2007

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premium smokesreserva decadencia
silson creek winerytorano
wine and spirits

Toraño’s Reserva Selecta CigarTwo family-owned and operated companies, Toraño Cigars and Wilson Creek Winery, have combined their expertise to create a product that pairs one of each of their award-winning products. As President Charlie Toraño states, “Judging by the popularity and awards earned by our Reserva Selecta cigar and Wilson Creek Winery’s Decadencia Chocolate Port, our new Carlos Toraño Reserva Decadencia promises to be nothing less than spectacular. The cigar is blended with just a hint of the port wine, which in turn receives ‘just a pinch’ of natural chocolate, to enhance the wine’s innate chocolate undertones.”

The Toraño and Wilson families worked for almost three years to perfect the Reserva Decadencia, so named for its hedonism-satiating performance. Explains Mick Wilson, responsible for marketing at the winery, “I thought winemakers were perfectionists until I saw the Toraños working through test after test to get Reserva Decadencia just right. Even after 175 of our Wine Club members tasted, reviewed, and loved an earlier version of the cigar, the Toraños wanted to make it even better. And, they did. The challenge of marrying alcohol with tobacco, once solved, creates a cigar that mellows with age far better than most cigars.”

The Reserva Decadencia shares the same blend as Toraño’s Reserva Selecta, which has won cigar-media ratings that average 90 points. It includes a Connecticut-grown shade wrapper; Indonesian binder; and a Dominican, Honduran, and Nicaraguan filler. According to Toraño, “The Dominican tobacco is a descendant of the original variety my grandfather introduced to the Dominican Republic in 1962, pioneering the dark tobacco industry there.” The Wilson family, whose vineyards stretch back to 1900, produce their old-vine Zinfandel wine that is the basis for their brandy-fortified Decadencia Chocolate Port. The combination of the high (18%) alcohol content with extra sweetness from residual sugars creates a port that has a “wonderful balance,” according to Wilson. The port retails for $36.95 per 500ml bottle.

Wilson Creek’s large winery is situated near San Diego in Temecula, a significant and increasingly popular southern California growing region, producing unique and consistently top-quality champagne, dessert, and premium table wines. The Wilson family’s Decadencia Chocolate has won “Best of Class,” the Chairman’s Award, and several Gold medals at the California State Fair, and several other renowned international wine competitions.
Both Toraño and Wilson assert that this is not a flavored cigar. Says Wilson, “I typically do not like either flavored wine or flavored cigars ... too often they are overdone, covering up the base wine or tobacco flavor.” Instead, they say the success of the cigar is the subtlety of the chocolate nuances in the port, and the resultant subtlety of the chocolate port in the cigar. The cigars’ aroma is likened to smoking a cigar and sipping a port, with the bonus of the chocolate undertone. The tobacco is aged 3-5 years, and the cigars are aged in the same French oak barrels that aged the wine, allowing a gentle, uniform melding of the tobacco and port’s essences. The actual blending process is secret, unique, and proprietary. The cigar’s aging process is labor intensive, requiring a long period of time and frequent testing to monitor the progress.

Reserva Decadencia is offered in a 7-1/4" x 48 Churchill ($12 MSRP) and a 5 x 50 Robusto ($10 MSRP). The cigars are presented in crystal tubes, 20 to the box, in traditional Cuban-style “dress-up” (paper-covered cedar) boxes.
Reserva Decadencia was introduced at this year’s tobacco retailers’ trade show, to wide acclaim by attendees. Only 60,000 cigars will be initially available, in the two shapes. The two families will share promotional efforts, with coordinated materials and joint events. Wilson Creek Winery will host a major launch party on November 4, which Charlie Toraño plans to attend. “Cigar lovers and wine connoisseurs often indulge in both luxuries,” Toraño states, “so the turnout should be a fitting event for a cigar this unique. Our two families are satisfied we have the perfect blend of tobacco, chocolate, Zinfandel, brandy and oak to make the Reserva Decadencia a global hit.”





Reserva Decadencia


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