JR Pure Origin Gran Vulcano Cigar Review

September 20, 2022

JR Pure Origin Gran Vulcano

We have provided in-depth reviews on many cigar brands here at The Blending Room, yet possibly no other cigar is as close to our hearts as the one we will be reviewing today.

JR Cigar has a slew of exclusive house blends, including the popular JR Alternatives, which have been pleasing frugal aficionados for decades. But the cigar for this review goes further than anything JR has done before. Today we will take an in-depth look at the JR Pure Origin Gran Vulcano.

Curated by yours truly, JR Pure Origin is a new series of blends that will explore the world’s finest and rarest top-shelf tobaccos. This series seeks out the origins of premium tobaccos by procuring leaves from farms unique to their country of origin. These tobaccos are grown with sustainable practices that elevate the tobaccos, respect these one-of-a-kind environments, and provide a pure smoking experience.

For the first entry to the JR Pure Origin series, Gran Vulcano sets its sights on Nicaragua’s island of Ometepe. Ometepe lies at the center of Lake Nicaragua, and the tobaccos that grow there are unlike any other. Created by two ancient volcanos that tower above the lake, the island’s volcanic soils are extraordinarily fertile and are host to Nicaragua’s most prized tobaccos.

These Ometepe tobaccos are accented by a top-quality Habano wrapper from Nicaragua’s Jalapa Valley. They are rolled into three popular sizes by the famous Plasencia cigar-making family, who have an extensive history of dedication to quality tobaccos and construction.

There has been a buzz around the office about just how good these new smokes are, so I am more than excited to finally give them a try and share my experience with you all. Enjoy this closer look at the all-new JR Pure Origin Gran Vulcano!




Cigar Specs

Country of Origin: Nicaragua

Wrapper: Nicaragua (Jalapa Habano)

Binder: Nicaragua (Ometepe Habano)

Filler: Nicaragua (Ometepe/Jalapa)

Strength: Medium

Smoke Time: 80 minutes

Sizes Available:

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Cold Draw Impressions

Out of the three sizes available, I selected the 5×50 Robusto. A popular size for countless blends, the Robusto vitola provides a balance between the fillers and the wrapper. With the Ometepe tobaccos in the fillers and a Jalapa wrapper, I expect a good balance between these two tobaccos.

The wrapper is incredibly smooth and silky to the touch. There are minimal veins, and the wrapper is flawlessly applied without any seams. It has a rich chocolate-brown shade that plays well with the ornate dark blue bands with silver highlights in the design. The silver highlights are also slightly raised, giving the bands a texture to match the intricate design.

Aromas from the wrapper are faint, but I can discern some hints of leather, earth, and touches of spice. From the foot, I get a bit more of the earthiness with some tobacco sweetness behind it.

After making two V-cuts to the cap, cold draws present notes of leather, chocolate, tobacco sweetness, cream, and hints of baking spice. The draw is perfect, providing just the right amount of resistance with each pull.

First third Impressions

With the first couple of puffs, chocolate and white pepper come out of the gate leading the profile, with leather, coffee, earth, and hints of cream following behind. Once the burn passes the first quarter inch, the pepper quickly mellows out and shares the profile, with the creaminess rising in prominence.

As I move deeper into the first third, the smoke has settled into a balanced and rich medium body. The creaminess, melding with the chocolate and leather, leads the flavors ahead of some earth, cedar, and tobacco sweetness.

With retrohales, the flavors largely remain the same. However, I can also pick up on a subtle floral note that rounds out the smoke into something beautiful. On top of it all, the construction is top-notch, with an almost razor-sharp burn line and the ash holding on tight through the entire third.

Second Third Impressions

Just as the second third begins, I knock the ash off into the ashtray so it does not accidentally end up in my lap. The ash is solid and has a grayish-white color to it.

The transition into the second third also brings a transition in flavors. Leather has overtaken the creaminess and chocolate, but the creaminess is not too far behind. Baking spice is also starting to gain some traction in the profile. Nearing the halfway mark, I remove the secondary band, which depicts “Gran Vulcano” in a stylized script, which comes off incredibly easily without taking any wrapper with it.

While a secondary note with regular puffs, the aforementioned baking spice comes to the forefront on retrohales. Leather, chocolate, baking spice, cream, and tobacco sweetness are the leading players thus far, but they all take turns in the spotlight and balance each other very well.

The burn and draw continue to be flawless, with no need for any touch-ups or corrections. Body and flavor remain planted in the medium-body realm; thus far, the smoking experience has been excellent and shows no signs of changing course.

Final third Impressions

Chocolate takes command as I move into the final third, with leather and baking spice following closely behind. I am also getting notes of earth, cream, cedar, sweet tobacco, and a faint floral aroma in the background. After a few more puffs into the last third, the chocolate gives way for the earth to move back into the fray.

The ash is still holding firm from the second third, and the burn line is so sharp it could probably cut a tomato. It has been a little while since I’ve had a cigar with such a flawless burn.

Retrohales are now reintroducing a flavor from the first few puffs of the cigar: white pepper. The black pepper that I experienced in only the first couple of puffs has also returned in the final third, bringing the whole smoking experience full circle. Behind the black pepper of the retrohales remains a medley of earth, baking spice, leather, chocolate, and touches of floral notes.

With little over an inch and a half left in the cigar, the second chunk of ash finally falls off into my ashtray after holding on since the second third. Along with the perfect draw and flawless burn line, it’s apparent this cigar is made with quality and care.

The leather and baking spice begin to linger on the front of my palate as I cross into the final inch, long after I’ve taken a puff. Leather, earth, chocolate, and pepper continue to build in aggression until I eventually put the cigar down when the burn reaches the nub.

At the finish, the flavors were medium-full, while the body remained at a constant medium from the first puff to the last. The total smoking time was a lengthy 80 minutes.


Pairing Options

With a cigar this good, your pairing options are almost endless. I would not suggest pairing this cigar with white wine or a pilsner beer because the flavors from those drinks tend to be on the mellow side and will not add much to your experience.

Personally, I would enjoy a Tequila Blanco or reposado, a spiced rum, or a scotch whiskey as pairings with the JR Pure Origin Gran Vulcano. I am not much of a beer guy, but an amber lager, stout, and some IPAs would also be suitable pairings.

If you want to keep with the Nicaraguan theme, black coffee would also be an excellent match. Nicaragua is the fourth largest exporter of coffee in the world and is grown in many of the same regions as tobacco, especially Ometepe and Esteli. Brew yourself a cup of Nicaraguan coffee to enjoy with this cigar, and you are sure to have a pure Nicaraguan experience.

Final Thoughts

The JR Pure Origin Gran Vulcano is nothing short of exemplary. The cigar showed balance, richness, and complexity from beginning to end, making for an exceptionally enjoyable smoking experience. Highlighting the complexity of tobaccos from Ometepe with some of that sweetness from the Jalapa wrapper, this experience has been pure Nicaraguan through and through.

With core notes of chocolate, leather, cream, and baking spice, along with its medium-bodied profile, I would recommend this cigar to just about any enthusiast. The cigars are a bit pricey, with a box of 10 ranging from around $110 to $130, but they are worth every last cent.

Don’t believe me? Try them for yourself. Only available from JR Cigar, order your preferred size of JR Pure Origin Gran Vulcano today. If you’d like to hear our CEO Davide Moro sit down with Nick Libretti to discuss the Gran Vulcano on the latest episode of the Long Ash Podcast, check it out here today!



2 responses to “JR Pure Origin Gran Vulcano Cigar Review”

  1. Lawrence Lightfritz says:

    Been eyeballing these, good info !

  2. T says:

    Placed my order over the weekend, now waiting for my order to be shipped to me.

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