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Black Label’s Benediction Returns as Smokers Abbey Exclusive

One of Black Label Trading Co.’s original core lines, Benediction, is coming back as a store exclusive for Smokers Abbey. The line was part of the company’s portfolio when it debuted in 2013, but was put on hiatus in 2019. Now, the blend and packaging have both been modified as it heads to a retailer that has been a long-time supporter of the brand.

The updated blend is a Nicaraguan puro that uses a habano wrapper.

“We stayed true to the original blend in body, strength and wrapper but added a touch more spice and complexity,” said James Brown, creator of BLTC and partner at Fabrica Oveja Negra, in a press release. It is produced at Fabrica Oveja Negra, the company’s factory in Estelí, Nicaragua.

Benediction will be offered in two vitolas:

  • Benediction Robusto (4 1/2 x 50) — $10 (Box of 20, $200)
  • Benediction Lonsdale (6 1/2 x 42) — $11 (Box of 20, $220)

The initial production run is being limited to 150 boxes of each vitola for each of the three stores, though the company has plans to make this an annual release. The packaging’s artwork has also gotten an update, which Brown said he created to reflect the aesthetics of the shops and which combine perfectly with BLTC’s design style.

“We’ve established a great relationship with the owners of Smokers Abbey over the years and have appreciated their support of our brands since the beginning,” said Brown. “This just felt like a natural fit for our next shop exclusive.”

Smokers Abbey operates locations in Memphis and Nashville, Tenn. as well as Austin, Texas.

Images courtesy of Black Label Trading Co.

Patrick Lagreid

I strive to capture the essence of a cigar and the people behind them in my work – every cigar you light up is the culmination of the work of countless people and often represents generations of struggle and stories. For me, it’s about so much more than the cigar – it’s about the story behind it, the experience of enjoying the work of artisans and the way that a good cigar can bring people together. In addition to my work with halfwheel, I’m the public address announcer for the Colorado Rockies and Arizona Diamondbacks during spring training, as well as for the Salt River Rafters of the Arizona Fall League, the WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury and the Arizona Rattlers of the Indoor Football League. I also work in a number of roles for, plus I’m a voice over artist. I previously covered the Phoenix and national cigar scene for, and was an editor for Cigar Snob magazine.

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