As I opened my laptop and lit up a Rancho Luna cigar on this beautiful June afternoon, I thought it only fitting to introduce my first blog post on RealityFred.com with a bit of background on the cigar brand that has earned my loyalty, JRE Tobacco.
This article is written based on my personal experience with the JRE brand of cigars and what I’ve learned about the company from the internet over time and minor personal interactions. The information is put together as I understand it, and I apologize to the reader and the Eiroa family for any errors or incorrect information. Please feel free to leave a comment below if you believe any of the information to be incorrect, or if you’d simply like to share your experience with JRE cigars or if you have any questions for me.
My aim in this blog post is to educate the reader about the company, family, and their line of cigars and not meant to be an in depth review on any of the cigars. I may provide reviews in future updates, but for now I will provide some great reviews in the resources section below.
About JRE Tobacco
JRE Tobacco is the father and son business of Julio (father) and Justo (son) Eiroa. Originally a tobacco grower from Cuba, Julio moved his family and business to Honduras and has become a legend in the cigar world over the past several decades.
While the Eiroa family has had its hand in the cigar world for decades, many cigar enthusiasts may have first learned of the Eiora family tobacco with the popularity of the Camacho brand cigars and the popularity of Justo’s brother Christian Eiora of CLE Cigar Company.
While very loyal to the JRE brand, I’m also a big fan of Christian and many of his CLE cigars. Christian’s “CLE – The First Twenty Years” cigar is absolutely incredible. Christian enjoys a fuller body cigar while his father Julio focuses more on medium body cigars.
Initially, the three JRE cigars were brought to market under Christian’s CLE brand. It’s my understanding that this was done so the cigars could be grandfathered in and beat the deadline for the 2016/2017 FDA restrictions. Once JRE was officially established, the cigars were moved back to Julio and Justo’s company where some changes to the cigars were made.
As you begin to learn more about the JRE Tobacco brand and their Honduran tobacco farm, you’ll probably hear or see the phrase “authentic corojo” more and more. This is very important to JRE Tobacco and certainly something that separates their cigars from the rest of the pack. Corojo, at one time, was the king of Cuban tobacco leaves but eventually became prone to disease over time. Julio brought corojo back to prominence from his Honduran farm with the original corojo seed designed to be reintroduced to the market. From that time until today, the corojo seed has been has been modified over and over (by other growers), but JRE’s authentic corojo is the closest thing to the glorious Cuban era of cigars.
While Julio does prefer the medium bodied cigars, I recently saw a video interview between Justo and The Stogie Geeks where Justo did hint that his father was working on a cigar blend with a fuller body. Julio likes to take his time when creating new blends, so who knows if or when this cigar will hit the market, but I’m sure when it does it will be fantastic!
As of writing this article, JRE Tobacco features 3 lines of cigars:
- Rancho Luna
It is only appropriate to begin by mentioning the Aladino, the premier cigar in the JRE Tobacco line. One could say the Aladino cigar is the crown jewel cigar representing Julio Eiroa’s legacy in the cigar industry. The cigar band bares his name and also includes the dates 1947 and 1961. Julio believes this era, 1947 – 1961 were the prominent years of amazing quality Cuban corojo tobacco. Julio would say the Aladino cigar, while Honduran, is the closest representation of a fine Cuban cigar from this era. The cigar is ‘authentic corojo’ all the way through; filler, binder, and wrapper.
The Rancho Luna
The Rancho Luna has absolutely become my go-to cigar. This is one I must always have available in my humidor. It is my understanding that when Julio convinced his son Justo to join him in the JRE business, Justo specifically wanted to tackle this cigar. Upon joining his father, Justo reimagined the Rancho Luna cigar, working on both the blend and rebranding it. The howling wolf graphic on the band is an image that reminds Justo of his youth on the Eiroa family farm when he recalls the sound of the wolves howling at night. The cigar is available in both maduro and habano. While they are both incredible, the maduro is my go-to.
The name means “The Big Boss” or “The Big Chief” and bares the image of a cowboy hat on the band. Once JRE Tobacco was officially established, the makeup of the cigar was adjusted to include a nice, sweetened tip. This is a great every day cigar and is a good smoke at any time of day. The cigar is available in both habano and Connecticut wrappers.
Once JRE Tobacco was established and the cigars moved back from CLE to JRE, the blends did change. Some of the CLE versions still exist on the market, so if ordering online or in your local store, make sure you know which versions you’re getting. To my knowledge the CLE versions of the Tatascan did not have the sweetened tips and the Aladino was given just a bit more body under JRE. The easiest cigar to distinguish between the versions would be the Rancho Luna as the band changed. If you’re looking at the Rancho Luna with the howling wolf band, you know you have the updated JRE version.
Further Resources for JRE Tobacco and the Eiroa Family
Below are some great resources to learn even more. I highly recommend watching all 4 parts of the “An Afternoon with Christian Eiroa” as you will learn so much about the history of the Eiroa family.
- JRE Tobacco official website
- CLE Cigar Company official website
- An Afternoon with Christian Eiroa – Part 1 of 4
- Aladino – Cigar Coop #2 Cigar of the Year
Interview – Stogie Geeks and JRE Tobacco
Enjoying a Rancho Luna on the kayak
My Review – The Aladino
My Review – The Rancho Luna
My Review – The Tatascan