Alec Bradley’s Fine & Rare are a highly sought after line of cigars by the innovative New World manufacturer. Initially released in 2010, the Fine & Rare would continue to release annually in small runs of only a couple thousand of boxes. This was a sure fire way to make them a hot topic among cigar smokers. Each year’s Fine & Rare would have a cryptic code name such as TA-25A.
These initials and numbers would be enough to inform those workers ‘in-the-know’ as to what blend they were, when they were rolled and other specifics that were considered sensitive knowledge. These measures are taken to help to prevent damaging information leaks and industrial sabotage.
The original Fine & Rare was a special blend consisting of 10 different tobaccos. After the initial success founder Alan Rubin was intent on making sure that each year’s release was as special as the previous. From 2014 onward he would take to storing a select number of each Fine & Rare release and set about aging them in an aging room dedicated to this specific project.
When housed in an aging room at the ideal temperature and humidity for many years a cigar is given the chance to mellow out,
bolstering many of the important characteristics that make a high end cigar so rewarding. This results in an extra layer of nuanced complexity that is favoured by cigar connoisseurs. By 2019 the collection was complete and allowed to age until they were deemed ready to be compiled into this very special, limited edition cabinet of 25 cigars.
In the following section we will introduce you to each of these cigars and break down the key points of each.
2014 – TA-25A
RING GAUGE: 56
LENGTH: 7 Inches
The TA-25A was where it all started. This figurado was truly the result of expert craftsmanship and deep knowledge of the intricacies of different tobaccos. From within the company only two rollers were selected for this task on the merits of their superior skills. From here ten tobaccos were carefully selected to be masterfully blended into the TA-25A. The results were out of this world and the limited supply could not meet the demand. There were only 32,500 of these cigars produced.
2016 – HJ10-i
RING GAUGE: 52
LENGTH: 6 Inches
2016 saw the second launch of a Fine & Rare cigar, the HJ10-i. Alec Bradley was determined to make this stand on its own, differing from the TA-25A but meeting the same high quality. Anticipation was at an all-time high as fans had to wait through 2015 with no sign of another Fine & Rare. When its launch in 2016 came around, fans agreed unanimously that the wait had been worth it. A toro, the HJ10-i is composed of seven select, choice tobaccos that remain undisclosed by Alec Bradley. Medium to full-bodied, these cigars give off great notes of raisin and dark chocolate to name but a few. The Nicaraguan binder has an alluring golden brown appearance and is atop a Nicaraguan and Ecuadorian wrapper. Just as previously with the 2014 release, these cigars were quick to sell out. There were only 20,000 of these cigars produced.
2017 – BR12-13
RING GAUGE: 52
LENGTH: 6 Inches
The first distinctive difference that one will notice when compared to previous years’ releases is that the BR12-13 is a soft (or blunt) ended torpedo. When constructing the 2017 edition of the Fine & Rare, the company set about developing a blend that showcased the incredible evolving of flavours one encounters when enjoying an Alec Bradley cigar. The BR12-13 is on average a two hour smoke, this allows the cigar to mature from subtle notes of dates and grapes in the initial first third of the cigar to a more prominent creamy pepper. The final third mellows out and provides sumptuous hints of hay and earth tones that are extremely pleasant. As with all Fine & Rare cigars construction here is unparalleled. There were only 20,000 of these cigars produced.
2018 – JRS10=(86)
RING GAUGE: 52
LENGTH: 6 1/2 Inches
2018 saw the release of the JRS10=(86) a toro that boasted seven different filler tobaccos from two countries. The Honduran wrapper tantalises the eyes, below a binder consisting of both Nicaraguan and Ecuadorian leaves encases the terrific blend within. As with all the Fine & Rare cigars each is individually dated and numbered on the band. When smoked the JRS10=(86) starts out with a sweet fruitiness that is quick to develop into a rich earthiness. This finally crescendos into a complex mix of spicy peppers and a almond/nougat sweetness. There were only 20,000 of these cigars produced.
2019 – HOF/506
VITOLA: Box Pressed
RING GAUGE: 54
LENGTH: 6 1/4 Inches
To Alan Rubin the 2019 HOF/506 is the Fine & Rare that holds the most importance. Late in 2018 Rubin’s father and business partner sadly passed away. For Alan there was only one fitting tribute to the man that meant so much to him and so he set to work on creating the most special cigar possible. The HOF/506 is the first box pressed cigar to be released as a part of the Fine & Rare line and were released just shy of a year after David’s passing. The wrapper is noticeably lighter than previous releases akin to the colour of fudge. As with all Fine & Rare cigars it utilises a number of different tobaccos. The filler, as with previous blends remains undisclosed although we know the tobaccos are from Nicaragua and Honduras. When smoked the HOF/506 can give off notes of pecan, white pepper and a healthy dose of cedarwood. There were only 20,000 of these cigars produced.
The Fine & Rare 10 Year Anniversary Cabinet will only be released once with an ultra limited quantity of only 500 being produced. As stated all 25 cigars within are originals, not replications. The cabinet is expertly designed with separate drawers designated for each release.
On top of all this it comes with a unique Alec Bradley leather carry case. This is truly a one of a kind release that is destined to become a serious collectors piece along with a legend in the cigar community.