Cigar Review: Alec Bradley Post Embargo Blend Code 815

January 29, 2024 By Dee Pitman
woman's hand holding cigar

Alec Bradley reintroduces the Post Embargo line after a couple year hiatus. The original Post Embargo was released in 2015 and was discontinued in 2021. With a new blend, labeled with a new look, the Post Embargo Blend Code 815 released and hit store in October of 2023. This is not considered a rebrand or relend, but rather a new release paying homage to the original line.

Under the Lid

At first glance this is a very flashy yet earthy looking presentation. With a label combination that takes up nearly the entirety of the cigar body, the label is colorful in a subdued red, cream and blue label. There is a small shaggy pigtail at the head and a densely filled foot with tones that match what can be seen of the body; medium to dark brown with some darker brown mottling. There is a lot going on with the two labels and if it weren’t for the muted colors, might be a little too busy for the eye. However, the choice in using “antiqued” coloring gives the impression that this cigar is from a different era.

  • Wrapper: Honduran Trojes Criollo-Seed
  • Binder: Honduras and Nicaragua: Jamastran Corojo-Seed and Trojes Criollo-Seed
  • Filler: Honduran Jamastran Corojo, Trojes Criollo, Nicaraguan Criollo (Jalapa)
  • Vitola: Robusto (5 x 52), Toro (6 x 52), Gordo (6 x 60)
  • Factory: Raices Cubana, Honduras
  • Release Date: October 2023
  • Number of boxes released: Regular Production
  • MSRP: Robusto $8.99 ($215.76 / box 24), Toro $9.99 ($239.76/box 24), Gordo $10.99 (263.76/box 24)

Removal of the lower label reveals a smooth surface with veins that are evident but delicate and synergistic with the surface of the wrapper. I am reviewing the robusto (5 x 52) which is one of my go-to Vitolas. The shaggy pigtail is small but adds a layer of class to the cigar. I am partial to pigtails as I do believe they can make a run-of-the mill cigar look a bit more aesthetically pleasing.

As is my habit, I carefully pinch the pigtail from head of the cigar before making a straight cut. I am met with notes of leather, hay and a hint of chocolate. The dry draw produces more leather and I also get a small note of coffee mixed in. As I begin my lighting process, I am excited to see if the flavor notes match the aromas. Using a soft flame lighter, I toast and then begin my smoke.

Performance Notes:

First third: The initial draws immediately give a chocolate base that is very pleasant. This is mixed with some leather. About a half inch in there is a mixture of white pepper way in the background. I barely have a tingle on my tongue, but it is there. As the cigar progresses notes of nuts come through. Retro brings the white pepper forward slightly, but it does not linger. This small blast of white pepper balances nicely with the chocolate and leather. As I get to the end of the first third there is a mix of nut and wood that is reminiscent of walnuts. The cigar also takes on a bit of saltiness as I transition into the second third.

Second third: The notes transition to more nutty and woody notes and the pepper is very distant. The cigar has an earthy tone. Mild coffee notes remind me of French Roast, and this helps balance the woodiness of the cigar. Milk chocolate sits at the very back of my pallet. It is not sweet, yet it balances nicely with the earthy tones. The saltiness I experienced at the end of the first third remains on the finish. The leather also remains far in the distance.

Final third: The flavors remain earthy but well integrated, with no one particular note outshining the other. The cigar presents fuller flavored at this point, but well within the medium strength range. As many cigars ramp up in strength in the home stretch, this cigar stays medium all the way through. There is a bit of sweetness coming through at the last part of the smoke. Giving the smoke a nice little surprise flavor at the very end.

Core Flavors:  Leather, French Roast coffee, walnut, milk chocolate

Strength: Medium

Body: Medium to Full

Complexity: Medium

Smokin Experience: This was an interesting cigar in many aspects. I am not traditionally a fan of too many Alec Bradley Cigars. There are a few standouts however, and this for me is one of them. Overall, there was a lot of bang for the buck. At $8.99 a stick, this is flavorful enough to keep my interest. As much as I love the look of the two labels, I did have some difficulty removing them, and the chance of damaging the wrapper improves greatly with the size of them. Definitely take your time removing the labels to be sure not to tear the wrapper. The smoke burns very well, and I did not have to touch it up or worry about it going out. There was a decent amount of smoke produced which I really enjoyed. The draw was consistent and easy without being overly loose. Construction was quality and the wrapper held up nicely with no lifts, tears or cracks. If you enjoy earthy notes, this is a cigar for you. I could’ve used a bit more of the leather, coffee and chocolate in the second third, as the woodiness almost got to be too much. It saved itself for me by transitioning into a more melded blend and handing me a sweet surprise right at the end of the smoke. 

Purchase Recommendation: Grab a Five Pack

Smokin Facts: 

  • Alec Bradley Cigars was acquired by Scandinavian Tobacco Group A/S (STG) effective March of 2023
  • Branding of the Post Embargo Blend Code 815 features the style of packaging that was originally to be used on the first Post Embargo line
  • Alec Bradley Cigars was originally created by Alan Rubin in 1996 and has had sales of $25 million, making approximately 10 million cigars a year

Smokin Wrap

Cigars smoked for the review:  Two

Average smoking time: 65 minutes

Score: 88

Diana (Dee) Pitman – Product Reviewer

Diana Pitman, known in the cigar world as “Dee” or “The Queen Of Cigars”, was born and raised in southern New Jersey. Her lifelong dream of joining the military became a reality at 43 years young. She served in the US Army Nurse Corps as an ER Nurse and deployed in support missions for Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom. It was during her military service in 2004 that she first smoked cigars. Upon her Honorable discharge at the rank of Captain in 2010, she continued smoking cigars and it slowly progressed from a coping tool to a hobby, and finally to a passion. She resides in South Jersey with her Service Dog Finn Ezekiel and looks forward to retirement from her position of Director of the Cumberland County Department of Veterans Affairs and traveling the country visiting cigar lounges and her many friends she has made through the cigar lifestyle.

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