Cigar Reveal #69

Illusione - Epernay Le Matin

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Brand Illusione
Cigar Epernay Le Matin
Wrapper Nicaragua
Binder Nicaragua
Filler Nicaragua
Description Illusione founder Dion Giolito is perhaps the single most 'interesting' cigar maker in the world. From his strange ads to cult-like cigar names, whether you like his style or not, you can't deny the brilliance of his cigars. We've wanted to feature Illusione for a while now, and the Epernay is one of our favorite Nicaraguan puros (all Nicaraguan tobacco) of the last 10+ years. Epernay was named for a town in the Champagne region of France, and the cigar is lighter and more subtle than some of his other blends. But the Le Matin, which is French for 'in the morning', is hardly a mild flavored smoke. It begins with black pepper, spice and leather and those flavors hold true nearly throughout. The balance comes in with sweet honey and coffee notes about a third into the cigar and doesn't change a whole lot after that. It's rich and balanced, and though not super complex, is an extremely enjoyable smoke for any time of the day.
Review: Cigar Aficionado The Le Matin is the newest size in this line, released in 2010, and we found it balanced, creamy and medium bodied. When Illusione first appeared in our Top 25 in 2007, we wrote: "Consistency is the tough trick to the cigar business, so the real test is ahead for Giolito—maintaining the impeccable quality of these cigars so they live up to the early ratings." He certainly has.
Review: Halfwheel I have always been a fan of Illusione cigars, and this is no exception. An amazingly well constructed cigar that is a joy to smoke, but falls just a bit flat in the complexity category. One of Illusione’s great strengths (if you will forgive the pun) is the complexity in their blends, but the Le Matin got quite harsh, especially towards the end, and I think that it needs a little down time to really shine. Honestly, while I enjoyed this cigar, and will be purchasing more to put down for a while to see how they age, I still prefer the smaller vitolas in the Illusione line.