The Gran Reserva series debuted in 2009 and includes cigars rolled exclusively with tobacco that has been aged a minimum of five years. By many it is considered to be at the top end of Habanos S.A.’s portfolio. Although the official line is that the cigars are only released when there is enough tobacco as opposed to being released on a fixed schedule, a new addition in the series has been announced every two years for the past 10 years. In those years when a Gran Reserva hasn’t been announced, there’s been a Reserva release, which is made up of tobacco aged for at least three years.
Each release sees Habanos S.A. take a specific regular production cigar from a global brand—Cohiba, H. Upmann, Hoyo de Monterrey, Partagas, Romeo y Julieta and, although seemingly unlikely, José L. Piedra—and create a special vintage release. This is different from series like Edición Limitada or Edición Regional, where the cigars created are vitolas that aren’t offered as regular items for those brands.