H. Upmann Connossieur A Cigar Review

H. Upmann Connossieur A Cigar Review

by Nick Hendry

When Hermann Upmann left his native Germany to combine his career in banking with his love of Cuban Cigars he may not have even dreamt of how popular the cigars carrying his name would become.  For over 150 years smokers around the world have enjoyed their light-to-medium strength in many shapes and sizes, and it is now one of the 6 Global brands in the Habanos portfolio.

The Connossieur A was first released in 2013 in boxes of 25 handmade cigars.  It measures 52 ring gauge by 5 ½ inches – the Genios vitola first used by Cohiba for the Maduro Genios – and will offer around 80-90 minutes of smoking pleasure.  It was the first cigar to feature the “Cuban” spelling of ‘Connossieur’ (as opposed to the traditional ‘Connoisseur’) which is now seen on the bands of Connossieurs A, B and No. 2.

Up to 90 minutes of enjoyment from the H Upmann Connossieur A

The Connossieur A will bring around 90 minutes of smoke

Construction: 10/10

  • There was an extremely fine grain to the wrapper on this cigar, with a texture verging on silky. No blemishes, troublesome veins or sunspots and an even, generous fill along the body.

Draw: 10/10

  • The draw on this stick was fantastic; no effort required to extract the smoke, but at the same time my palette was never flooded by too much.

Combustion: 9/10

  • The occasional deviation from straight in the burn line, but these were never enough to impair enjoyment and always corrected themselves with no help from my ST Dupont lighter.

A quality cigar deserves a quality lighter; the ST Dupont Ligne 2 pairs with the H Upmann Connossieur A

A quality Connossieur A with a quality ST Dupont Ligne 2

Ash: 3/5

  • The ash was solid and hung on well, rolling gently off around every 1 inch, but did have a darker grey tinge than could be considered perfect.

Smoke: 4/5

  • Perhaps not as fragrant as I would have liked, but certainly plentiful.

Flavour: 19/25

  • I very much enjoy H. Upmann cigars, and was looking forward to this review. By my tastes, the body remained light throughout – exactly as I prefer and expect from the brand – and buttery, creamy notes were apparent.  Unfortunately, the slight bitterness of youth underpinned the whole smoke; not enough to ruin the experience, but enough to be noticeable.  This particular stick would have benefit from a little more time to rest, but was still an enjoyable smoke.

Overall: 29/35

  • The excellent construction and physical properties of this cigar gave an excellent first impression, and made me excited to light up. The flavours were good, but not great, and sadly marred by the sharp tang often associated with a cigar not quite ready to be smoked.  This was a great shame, as the initial hopes for the burn and smoke production proved to be well-placed and the notes were detected over the youthful bite were enjoyable.  Far from ruining the enjoyment, this informed me that my current batch are to be laid down in the humidor, and filled me with optimism for the tastes to come in 6 months or so.

An initial spelling mistake on the cigar band of the Connossieur A has since been embraced by Habanos SA for the rest of the line

The spelling quirk on the band for the Connossieur A has been replicated on all the sister cigars in the portfolio 

Final Score: 84/100

  • It is for good reason that H. Upmann are one of the world’s, and my, favourite brands. There are a great many cigars in the range, suitable for all times of day and lengths of break.  The flavours in this example were in keeping with my previous enjoyment – a first third of butter, cream and vanilla complemented my double espresso.  As time rolled by and I entered the middle third of the cigar the soft, creamy noted gave way to sweet cedar, with a touch of fresh grass on the finish.  It was at this point the youth of the stick was most apparent, tangy on the front of the tongue but never veering into unpleasant.  Biscuit and butter notes returned as the final third began – a slight deepening of the strength, without raising above light body, accompanied them – and the cigar came to an enjoyable finish.  Were it 6 or 12 months older this cigar would have scored much higher, and I look forward to enjoying those I have put away to age.

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published