H. Upmann Herman’s Batch Cigar Review

October 3, 2022

H. Upmann Herman’s Batch

With the famous H. Upmann brand recently celebrating its 175th anniversary, Altadis USA has created a flurry of new brands to celebrate the occasion. Paying tribute to the brand’s original founder all those years ago, H. Upmann Herman’s Batch harkens back to the original H. Upmann cigar. Before we get into the review, let’s take a look at some of the histories behind H. Upmann that this cigar honors.

Founded in 1844, H. Upmann was started by the German banker Hermann Upmann shortly after he arrived in Cuba. Initially intending to set up a bank to finance cigar makers and tobacco farmers, Upmann instead invested in a cigar factory, and the historic H. Upmann brand was born. It is said that Upmann was also among the first to package cigars in cedar boxes, a practice that is commonplace today.

Almost 80 years later following World War I, the H. Upmann brand was embroiled in controversy and ultimately folded into bankruptcy. In the 1930s, the brand ended up in the hands of the fledgling Menendez, Garcia y Cia Company which had just found popularity with its, at the time, new Montecristo brand.

When Castro’s revolution took over Cuba in 1960 and cigar makers, Menendez and Garcia among them, fled the island, they brought their brands with them, including H. Upmann. Finding new life with Altadis USA, H. Upmann remains one of the industry’s most popular brands.

To capture the essence of those old-timey Cuban smokes from long ago, Altadis enlisted their most skilled blenders and rollers for the task: the Grupo de Maestros and master blender Rafael Nodal. They selected a blend of Dominican and Nicaraguan long-fillers, a Dominican binder, and a twice fermented and four years aged Ecuadorian Habano wrapper.

Now that you have a background on the prestigious H. Upmann brand, let us get into the nitty gritty of reviewing H. Upmann Herman’s Batch.

Cigar Specs

Country of Origin: Dominican Republic

Wrapper: Ecuadorian Habano

Binder: Dominican Republic

Filler: Dominican Republic/Nicaragua

Strength: Medium

Smoke Time: 120-130 minutes

Sizes Available:

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Cold Draw Impressions

For this review of the H. Upmann Herman’s Batch, I selected the Toro vitola for this review, rolled in a classic 6×52 size. The wrapper has a deep brown shade, though not quite dark enough for me to call it a Colorado Maduro. The cigars are also finished with a stunning pigtail cap, a demonstration of top-notch construction that will hopefully translate to the rest of the cigar.

Aromas from the wrapper include leather, hay, and chocolate, and from the foot, I can also pick up some hints of earth and coffee. Upon delivering two V-cuts to the cap, cold draws reveal notes of earth, leather, cream, barnyard, and touches of spice. The draw is a little tight, but I do not see it causing any issues down the road.

First Third Impressions

Within the first couple of puffs, coffee quickly took over the profile leading to secondary notes of leather, cedar, earth, and baking spice. The draw, while slightly tight, allows for a satisfying level of smoke production.

As the burn line progresses, the flavors settle into more of a woody, earthy profile with the coffee sharing the spotlight. Some tobacco sweetness also enters the fray, and retrohales reveal tinges of pepper that tickle my sinuses but do not overwhelm me in the slightest. Firmly in the realm of medium-bodied, this smoke started out with an elegant and balanced first third.

As the first third comes to a close, I knock off the first chunk of grayish-white ash. The burn line is deviating slightly to one side, but no touch-up is needed to keep the cigar burning relatively evenly.

Second Third Impressions

Coming into the second third, the spice is building and taking on a warm, cinnamon-like characteristic. The cinnamon spiciness has also taken control of the reins but not by much, with secondary notes of coffee, leather, cedar, and tobacco sweetness following closely behind, unified by a slight creaminess.

The pepper is still relegated to retrohales, however, its prominence is starting to build over a background of some nuttiness. The body remains around medium, though the pronouncement of the flavors is slightly more intense than the first third.

The lean of the burn line not only rectified itself in the second third but also started leaning to the other side. Still, the burn remains well-behaved enough that a touch-up is unnecessary. The ash still holds on strong, with me knocking it off in 1.5-inch increments.

Final Third Impressions

Entering the final third, black pepper moves beyond the retrohale to join the coffee, which has now taken on more of a mocha flavor, in their narrow dominance over background flavors of leather, baking spice, cedar, and sweet tobacco. The creamy texture of the smoke also remains as the primary base that the flavors lie on, providing me with a smooth yet rich and balanced smoke.

When performing a retrohale in the final third, the black pepper is accompanied by hints of cinnamon, earth, and cedar. I also pick up on touches of leather and dried fruit, almost like an orange bitters-type of liqueur.

Despite the wavy and meandering burn line, the cigar burned all the way through without any need for a touch-up, living up to the expectations signaled by the pigtail cap.

In the closing puffs, the sweetness surprisingly builds along with the more expected build of the pepper, providing a uniquely sweet and spicy finish to the experience that lasts on the palate. Moving into the final inch, the smoke reaches its end, and the smoking time ended up being a lengthy 2 hours and some change.

Pairing Options

H. Upmann Herman’s Batch is solidly medium-bodied with core notes of pepper, baking spice, coffee, chocolate, and tobacco sweetness, and I believe a cup of creamed coffee or a mug of hot chocolate would pair well with the flavor profile. One of my favorite drinks to pair with cigars recently, a Dr. Pepper Cream Soda, would also be a fantastic pairing.

If you favor a more adult beverage, an amber lager, spiced rum, or tequila would also make a solid pairing, as well as a smoother whiskey. Honestly, with the balanced medium body with many points on the flavor wheel hit, there are a few drinks that would not pair well with the H. Upmann Herman’s Batch.

Final Thoughts

While not the most complex, flavorful, or modern cigar out there, the H. Upmann Herman’s Batch will deliver a balanced smoking experience loaded with classic flavors. If you want a smoke that will bring you back to yesteryear, Herman’s Batch is the blend for the job.

Ranging from just over $8 to just shy of $9.50 per cigar, and with a more welcoming profile that is not heavy on the pepper and spice, this is smoke I would recommend any aficionado get for their humidor at least once. You will not be disappointed. Make sure you check out our other reviews, articles, and helpful tips provided for you right here at The Blending Room!


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