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Weekly Cigar News Sampler: Alec Bradley Announces Medalist, J.C. Newman Shakes Up Marketing Team, and More

9 Mar 2018

As we have since July 2006, each Friday we’ll post our sampling of cigar news and other items of interest from the week. Below is our latest, which is the 570th in the series.

1) Yesterday, Alec Bradley announced the release of Medalist, an affordable, mild cigar line that will begin shipping globally in April. “With Medalist, we are looking to remind people of our company’s past,” said Alec Bradley founder Alan Rubin, who started selling mild cigars in the mid-nineties but has since been focused on medium- to full-bodied cigars. “We are also asking milder cigar smokers who have shied away from us to give us a chance.” Medalist sports a shade-grown Honduran wrapper, Honduran binder, and filler tobaccos from Honduras and Nicaragua. Four vitolas will be available, each presented in ten-count boxes: Robusto (5 x 52, $6), Toro (6 x 54, $6.50), Churchill (7 x 50, $7), and Gordo (6 x 60, $7).

2) J.C. Newman, the oldest family-owned premium cigar maker in America, announced this week major changes to its marketing structure. Cristal Blackwell-Lastra (pictured), formerly the vice president of sales, has been promoted to vice president of sales and marketing, where she will be responsible for “setting the strategic sales and marketing direction for J.C. Newman’s international sales network and promotional program.” In addition, Kara Guagliardo and Monica Foster have been promoted to co-directors of marketing, where they “will work to develop and execute all marketing strategies while also managing the company’s communications and media program.” Guagliardo and Foster will report to Lastra. “The new structure will enhance the synergy between sales and marketing toward a more focused vision of J.C. Newman Cigar Company to our retailers and consumers,” said Lastra in a press release. “This is a pivotal new chapter for our company, comprised of a capable and creative team ready to take us to the next level and beyond.” J.C. Newman’s handmade cigar portfolio includes Diamond Crown, Maximus, and Julius Caeser (made by Tabacalera A. Fuente in the Dominican Republic), as well as Brick House, Perla del Mar, El Baton, and Quorum (made at Newman’s El Reloj factory in Tampa).

3) Davidoff is launching its newest Vault release today, the Limited Edition Gusto Toro. Vault selections include what Davidoff describes as “factory reserves, vintage classics, and private and rare collections.” The Gusto (6 x 52), a creation from Eladio Diaz, features an Ecuadorian Sumata wrapper, Ecuadorian Habano 2000 binder, and filler from the Dominican Republic. It will be sold in bundles of 10 for $320.

4) Inside the Industry: Altadis will unveil next week the latest in the seemingly never-ending expansion of its Romeo y Julieta line. This one is the Romeo San Andrés, a collaboration between Rafael Nodal and A.J. Fernandez. In addition to the Mexican wrapper, it features a Nicaraguan binder and filler from the Dominican Republic and Nicaragua. The cigar will be available in four sizes packaged in boxes of 20.

5) From the Archives: Wedding season (and bachelor party season) is around the corner. If, as the best man or resident cigar expert, you are responsible for purchasing cigars for the event, we have a few pieces of advice.

6) Deal of the Week: Fancy humidors can be great, but when it comes to functionality and value you’d be hard-pressed to beat an acrylic jar like this one, which is currently on sale for $12.50 (with free Amazon Prime shipping).

The Stogie Guys

photo credit: Alec Bradley / J.C. Newman

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