Epernay is a line of Illusione cigars by Dion Giolito that are made with Nicaraguan tobaccos. The filler is a blend of Corojo and Criollo tobacco, and the wrapper is a Cafe Rosado leaf. The Le Ferm size that I sampled for this review measures 5¼ inches in length with a ring gauge of 48. The "Epernay" line of cigars was named after a town located in the Champagne region of France. An Epernay cigar in the Le Matin (6 1/2 x 46) size was rated #7 by Cigar Aficionado in 2010.
Illusione Epernay is a medium bodied cigar that began with the taste of subtle spice, which gradually evolved into a very pleasant smooth and creamy smoke during the first 15 minutes. After an additional 15 minutes, the notes of spice had faded a bit, and the smoke became even more creamy and buttery. At the 45-minute mark, I thought that I detected a hint of caramel. The cigar was very well balanced and enjoyable all the way down to the last puff.
Draw and Construction
The Illusione Epernay Le Ferm was well made and had a good draw, but the cigar needed a couple of touch-up lights to keep the burn even. No relights were needed, and the cigar held a medium-to-long ash. It took me a full hour to smoke the cigar down to 1½ inch remaining, which was a pretty good length of time for a cigar of its size.
The price of a single Illusione Epernay Le Ferm cigar was $8.50 (plus tax) at my local tobacconist. Boxes of 50 cigars are available online in the range of $390 to $425, but 5-packs and 10-packs were also advertised for approximately $40 and $80, respectively. I would not recommend buying an entire box of these cigars without trying a few first. Although Epernay cigars are good tasting and well made, they are a bit pricey to smoke on a regular basis. However, you may want to give one a try with your next bottle of French Champagne.