100 years ago, there were all kinds of cigars made in America. There were 150 factories in Tampa alone creating almost 500,000 cigars a year. Now today, almost no cigars are made in the United States because of labor costs, cost of goods, and competition from other countries that can make cigars much cheaper. In 2019, Drew Newman, 4th Generation in J.C. Newman, set out to make a cigar made completely from American resources, not just the tobacco and the rollers, but the materials for the bands, and boxes and every component of the cigar. The result is the The American.
This cigar was reviewed blind (no bands) by a panel of at least 4 reviewers. They did not know what they were smoking beforehand. The scores are an average of all the reviewers' scores with outliers removed.
The American is rolled at J.C. Newman’s El Reloj cigar factory located in Tampa’s Ybor City National Historic Landmark District. It comes in four sizes: No.1 (7 x 47) – $19, No.2 (6 x 54) – $18.50, No.3 (4 1/2 x 50) – $16, and No.4 (6 1/8 x 52 Torpedo) – $21. All sizes come in 20 count boxes. The blend uses Florida Sun Grown wrapper grown at Corona Cigar Co. owner Jeff Borysiewicz’s tobacco farm in Clermont, Fla, Connecticut broadleaf binder from the Foster Farm in Windsor, Ct., and Connecticut Havana-seed filler grown at Foster Farm as well as Pennsylvania tobacco grown on Amish farms.
“This cigar is a nice little short robusto vitola. It has a very dark colored wrapper with a thick triple cap. A couple deep veins run the wrapper, but it is still very smooth and sharp looking.” –Steve (ThaGreatWazoo)
“I’m getting a dry woodiness, tobacco, and red pepper from the foot and pre-draw.” –Jeff (ExpendableYouth)
Flavor: 92 Strength: Strong Body/Complexity: Full
“Just out the gate with oily red pepper and ginger. There’s an old leather and cedar hidden in the background but this is a super spicy profile. After about an inch a burnt woodiness starts to take over, the leather switches to more of a new car leather, and the pepper starts to back down just a bit.” –Jeff (ExpendableYouth)
“Cigar draw is very nice. Starts out with a big leather note. Walnut wood most notable on the retro. Not much spice to speak of. Burn becoming a little wavy but I am not caring about that with this profile. A sweetness begins to play off the leather I will call it plum it is quite difficult to find. Medium-plus in strength.” –Ryan H. (Ryan H.)
“The berry flavors have left this one and the coffee flavor has remained. The coffee has grown a bit stronger but not by much. I am please that the peppery burn is still present which is really the only lingering aftertaste. The only downside is it is moving towards the bitter side in the flavor.” –Eric (smalls29)
“The second third is just as full flavored as the beginning. Lots of pepper is coming through. The profile has a lot of fruit flavors and a predominant plum note was leading the way. This cigar is very smooth and full. Definitely not for the faint of heart.” –Steve (ThaGreatWazoo)
“Cigar losing more strength down to light medium. Walnut wood earth and leather being the consistent notes. Burn was great except for the end of the first third. An ok cigar better than I had anticipated.” –Ryan H. (Ryan H.)
“The oily red pepper and burnt woody notes just kinda take over at the end. My mouth taste a bit like ashes.” –Jeff (ExpendableYouth)
“The draw was a little tight with the straight cut. It would have made it way more interesting if the draw was more open. I could only imagine how much more flavor and boldness might have come out.” –Steve (ThaGreatWazoo)
“The burn was good through most of the cigar, but did begin to run off towards the end. The ash was tight and solid white and let off a ton of smoke and aroma.” –Steve (ThaGreatWazoo)
“I really liked the build of this cigar. It was made to be a quick smoke, but came with a lot of flavor and strength. There was a real nice look to the cigar and wrapper and I would not change any aspect of the build.” –Steve (ThaGreatWazoo)
“This just wasn’t for me. The flavors weren’t great, the burn was always a little wonky, and the strength and body was just too much.” –Jeff (ExpendableYouth)
“My initial ideas of this cigar were quickly squashed. I went in thinking this was a quick border line smoke with possibly moderate flavors. Once I started, the boldness and flavors put me back. From being very bold, full and strong flavored, I did not think this cigar would lead me down this road. The balance of strength coupled with the fruit and sweet notes was very delightful. I truly enjoyed this cigar and recommend it to all that like full flavored sticks. Enjoy.” –Steve (ThaGreatWazoo)
“The aroma of berries and chocolate were very inviting and promising. However, upon lighting, the chocolate turned to a coffee flavor with hints of berries. It was a pleasant cigar int he beginning. As I approach the second third, the berries slowly diminished and the coffee flavor took over. The one plus was the pepper flavors that left a nice tingle on the lips. As time went on, the coffee turned bitter like the bottom of a pot that had been sitting on the burner far too long. Eventually I was left with a bitter taste with only the peppery tingle keeping me going. Not sure if I would want this one again.” –Eric (smalls29)
“I was amazed starting out the first third but I feel I was short changed as the review proceeded to the following thirds consistently losing things I loved about the cigar.” –Ryan H. (Ryan H.)
"The aroma of berries and chocolate were very inviting and promising. However, upon lighting, the chocolate turned to a coffee flavor with hints of berries. It was a pleasant cigar int he beginning. As I approach the second third, the berries slowly diminished and the coffee flavor took over. The one plus was the pepper flavors that left a nice tingle on the lips. As time went on, the coffee turned bitter like the bottom of a pot that had been sitting on the burner far too long. Eventually I was left with a bitter taste with only the peppery tingle keeping me going. Not sure if I would want this one again." -Eric (smalls29)