When Nick Melillo, owner of Foundation Cigar Co., introduced Menelik in 2016, it was a single size of Robusto only available at special events, but in 2019 he upgraded the cigar to a production version. limited. Now it’s coming in a Toro size, which will be available for pre-order next month at the PCA show.
Topped with a pigtail cap, the gently pressed Menelik Toro measures 6 inches by 52 rings. The mix consists of a San Andrés black wrapper from Mexico, a Nicaraguan Corojo ’99 binder from Jalapa and a mix of Nicaraguan fillers from Estelí, Condega and Jalapa.
Made at the Aganorsa Leaf factory in Estelí, Nicaragua, the cigar has a suggested retail price of $16.50 each and ships in boxes of 12.
Like the Robusto, the Toro will be released in batches of 1,000 boxes.
For Menelik, Melillo again turned to biblical and ancient history: the cigar is named after Menelik I, the first claimed emperor of Ethiopia, and is believed to be the son of King Solomon and Makeda , the Queen of Sheba.
Melillo further emphasizes this regal connection in the packaging with a band of gold foil as well as touches of Ethiopian iconography used throughout. Menelik also translates to “son of the wise”, a subtle connection to the brands of Melillo, El Güegüense and The Wise Man Maduro. Its Tabernacle rows show an image of Haile Selassie, the 225th Emperor of Ethiopia.
Melillo said cigar lover that retailers can expect the Menelik Toro to begin shipping in late summer or early fall of this year.