Coprova, France’s distributor of Cuban cigars, has celebrated its 50th Anniversary by releasing 600 boxes of Quai d’Orsay Robusto Diplomaticos, Regional Edition cigars for France originally issued in 2015.
Those five-year-old Quai d’Orsays are being sold as a Coprova Vintage Selection, distinguished by the gold seal on the box lid. According to the company, every 10-count box is stamped with a 2015 box code. The cigars, which went on sale in late November, retail for 27.50 euros, or about $33.35 each.
Tomorrow, Coprova will also be releasing more boxes of the Juan Lopez Punto 55 (94 points, Cigar Insider), another French Regional Edition from Cuba, this one released in 2018. Most of this production will have a 2019 box code. It’s the most recent French Regional and retails for 21.50 euros, or about $26 per cigar.
Coprova is France’s official distributor of 27 brands from Habanos S.A., including Quai d’Orsay, a cigar created just for France in the 1970s. Although SEITA previously controlled distribution of Quai d’Orsay and Jose L. Piedra, Coprova took over those brands in January.
Quai d’Orsay came about nearly five decades ago when France’s minister of finance Valéry Giscard d’Estaing declared that his country needed an emblematic cigar to match its other epicurean products such as Cognac, Champagne and foie gras. The brand is named after the wharf along the river Seine in Paris.
Giscard d’Estaing, who eventually became France’s president, died last week, but he lived long enough to see Coprova turn 50 and to witness Habanos transform Quai d’Orsay from a local smoke into a global brand. The reblended version of Quai d’Orsay has done well in Cigar Aficionado blind tastings, with the No. 54 scoring 93 points and being named Cigar Aficionado’s No. 11 cigar of 2018.