cgr pix-la libertad band 150x250Los Angeles, August 27, 2010 – American smokers who are avid readers of the European Cigar Journal are well familiar with the unavailable La Libertad brand from Honduras, which has racked up strong ratings in multiple taste tests. Now, the wait is over . . . sort of.

Villiger Stokkebye debuted a new La Libertad at the IPCPR show in New Orleans earlier this month, made in the Dominican Republic and quite reasonably price. We were eager to try it:

La Libertad:

[Dominican Republic: available in 3 sizes]
After intriguing American smokers for years with high ratings and unavailability in the U.S., the 2010 edition of La Libertad – made in the Dominican Republic instead of Honduras – is heading for U.S. stores. It's a totally new blend, uniquely featuring Peruvian tobacco for the wrapper and binder, with a combination of Dominican ligero and Nicaraguan ligero in the filler.

Very firmly constructed and offering an almost fruit-like aroma before lighting, the new La Libertad is medium in body and has a toasty aroma. The flavor starts off with a caramelized note, backed up by a tingle of spice on the lips at the finish.

The spiced elements come forward fairly quickly and take the lead role, but nicely backed up by a consistently rich tone of dark caramel. The balance is good and the intensity of flavor offers some captivating moments. It becomes less intense toward the end, but with such good flavor and an even burn, this is a cigar of high quality that will be at home either indoors or out.

The three sizes – Churchill, Robusto and Short Perfecto – will all be offered in boxes of 20, with quite-accessible pricing of $5.25 to $5.90 per cigar, not including local sales or tobacco taxes. It's a quality smoke and likely to find quite a few fans on this side of the Atlantic.

Overall grade: : Excellent.

American smokers are always looking for what they can't have – witness the fascination with Cuban cigars for all these decades – and the La Libertad should be one to put on your "to try" list when it comes available in stores later this year.
~ Rich Perelman

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