There are two great achievements that set great cigar makers apart from everyone else. The first is being able to produce the same blend consistantly over the period of years and even decades. With the infinite variations in naturally grown tobacco, it’s a rare blender that can create cigars that produce the same flavors with constantly changing stacks of tobacco.
The second great achievement is creating extremely small batches of cigars that are constantly coveted — batch after batch after batch — over and over and over again year in and year out.
While Ezra Zion produces some great regular production cigars, that are consistently well rated, they have carved out a niche of producing EXTREMELY small batch cigars that are mostly SOLD OUT within a half an hour of release on almost a weekly basis. They take a limited amount of tobacco, have the rollers create whatever cigars can be made from that small stack of leaves and then, when the cigars have matured, announce via text, email and social media that they have 480 or 372 or 260 of a new cigar (not boxes, but cigars) for sale on their website. These cigars sell out so fast that you might lose what’s in your cart while fishing your credit card out of your wallet. (Seriously, this has happened to me more than a few times.)
It’s not often that I’ll buy cigars completely blind. I typically insist on smoking one or two of a blend BEFORE I pull out my credit card and spend money on new cigars. But, there are one or two manufacturers that I will buy completely blind. Ezra Zion is one of those very rare manufacturers.
To understand why Ezra Zion has garnered my unconditional respect and admiration, you have to know about the roots of the company. Founded by Kyle Hoover and Chris Kelly in 2012, Ezra Zion blends some of the industry’s most flavorful boutique cigars. Each one of their cigars uses specially selected tobaccos from Nicaragua to create a memorable smoking experience.
Ezra Zion is a small, family owned business. The company’s unyielding commitment to excellence stems from an emotional and extremely touching story behind the name ‘Ezra Zion’. Kyle lost his son, Ezra, at a very young age and Chris lost his daughter, whose middle name was Zion, just two hours after her birth. They wanted to come up with a great name that was personal to their families, hence the name Ezra Zion. To honor their children, their names live on through the company’s unprecedented values and promise.
Kyle and Chris didn’t start out blending fantastic cigars. “We didn’t learn to blend quickly. We made what seemed like hundreds of horrible practice blends,” said Kyle. “We did have people we looked to as mentors and still do. The desire to learn and continuing to learn is something that we will always put at the forefront of our cigar making.”
The partners attribute an OCD-esque level of perfection to success in their craft. They also have created a niche where they can take advantage of very small batches of raw tobacco that the bigger companies pass by because there’s just not enough of it for them to leverage on the scale they need to make enough cigars to even release a Limited Edition.
Another interesting fact about Ezra Zion’s Small Batch releases is that they “manufacture” eclectic names for each release. Names like Cookies & Creme, Chicken & Waffles, Blessed Leaf Shiloh LTD., All My Ex’s (live in Texas, where the company’s headquarters are), etc…
Through my unique relationship with Ezra Zion, I receive 20 (4 packs of 5) cigars from each of their small batch releases — that’s essentially ONE BOX. Rather than resell them online, to the highest bidder, I have begun to break down these fairly unobtainable cigars into samplers that I’ve come to name, in the spirit of their playful naming system, “Ezra Zion Bagged Lunch”.
With their system of periodic releases, the occasional pairing experience I may have at the shop on the spur of the moment and a couple of each I may or may not smoke myself, each Ezra Zion Bagged Lunch is usually going to include different blends. These aren’t grab bags, because you’ll know what you’re getting when you pick up the package. The only guarantee is that each Bagged Lunch will almost certainly be a group of Ezra Zion small batch cigars that were sold out long before they make their way to Annapolis.
So, if you’re game to try an ever changing parade of great small batch cigars, our Ezra Zion Bagged Lunch packages are perfect for you!
*Because of the nature of this package, no one gets a discount, regardless of membership, public service or winning personality, but you still get Rewards points on each dollar spent. Our Ezra Zion Bagged Lunch packages are ONLY available at our brick & mortar shop in Annapolis, MD — no online / phone sales.