One of the most anticipated releases for the PCA trade show in 2021 is Steve Saka and Dunbarton Tobacco & Trusts’ StillWell Star. He’s been teasing the new release for month but tight-lipped about the details, even going so far as to say this would be the most controversial release of the year. Now, thanks to a special Facebook Live press release, we know the details.
The background goes that Steve Saka has quietly been a pipe smoker for three decades. Occasionally, in his own personal cigar blends, he would incorporate pipe tobacco. He says he typically used “English” style pipe tobacco but sometimes would throw in a few Aromatics, Orientals, and more. While cigars are of course his main focus, this project allows him to combine these flavors that only pipe tobacco can offer.
When Saka mentioned to Jeremy Reeves, the head blender of the famed pipe tobacco maker Cornell & Diehl, who himself is also a cigar smoker, that he was using pipe tobacco in his personal blends, that when the ideas started spinning and eventually landed on StillWell Star.
This is not the first premium cigar to feature pipe tobacco, but Saka says that he finds the previous entries in the market too sweet, don’t use high enough quality tobacco, or are too heavy-handed in the blends making them unbalanced. StillWell Star, Saka says, is a totally different approach. The company says the cigar and pipe tobaccos used are of the highest quality available, no expense spared. Each of the pipe tobacco recipes is crafted in small batches by Reeves (Cornell & Diehl) using only the best tobaccos and techniques. Each of the cigar blends in the series are tailored by Saka to specifically showcase and enhance the nuances of that specific pipe tobacco.
StillWell Star comes in 4 distinct blends, all in the same 6 x 52 Toro size and boxes of 13: Aromatic No. 1, English No. 27, Bayou No. 32, and Navy No. 1056. They are rolled at Fábrica de Tabacos Joya de Nicaragua, S.A.
Each of the blends uses a high priming Grade A Ecuador Habano wrapper and a San Andres Negro binder. The fillers are different for each as they include different pipe tobacco, and long-leaf cigar tobaccos to compliment.
Aromatic No. 1: The finest of aromatic Black Cavendish, Golden Virginia and Burley pipe tobaccos added to a mild, Nicaraguan puro to provide a delightfully smooth and room pleasing smoking experience. Each cigar is delicately finished with a cabeza dulce. Strength: Mild – Medium.
English No. 27: A quintessential mix of Burley and Turkish leaf with a generous portion of Cypriot Latakia pressed cake paired with Nicaraguan cigar tobaccos. Rich and decadent, this is a Latakia-Lover’s puro worthy of being smoked in an English Manor House. Strength: Medium-Full.
Bayou No. 32: A combination of Bright and Red Virginia leaf with the most select St. James Parish Perique pipe tobacco added to a medium-bodied Nicaraguan puro. It rewards the smoker with a classic yet entrancing, any time of the day relaxing experience. Strength: Medium Plus.
Navy No. 1056: A crumble cake of stoved Red and Golden Virginias with a touch of “Naval Rations” combined with Orientals and Latakia expertly blended with dark air-cured black cigar leaf, this puro rewards the smoker with a unique, aromatic indulgence. Strength: Medium.
The name StillWell Star comes from Saka’s interpretation of his own pipe smoking experiences. “Due to the nature of pipes, they are a contemplative process in which one needs to be ‘still’ in order to be rewarded with the feeling of wellness. ‘Be Still, Be Well’ is the origin of StillWell Star.” The price for each cigar is the same at $15.30 per stick.
Steve Saka Reveals StillWell Star Blended with Pipe Tobacco – Cigar News