Illusione ~eccj~ is often considered the company's finest work, showcasing superior refinement and complexity. The name originates from the European Cigar Cult Journal (now simply known as Cigar Journal), with the original blend being made as a limited edition cigar to commemorate the publication's 15th anniversary in 2008.
The cigar was such a hit that Illusione later tweaked the blend and converted it to a regular production cigar, known as Illusione Epernay. In 2015, Illusione returned ~eccj~ with a new limited edition size, this time being made to celebrate Cigar Journal's 20th anniversary (albeit a couple years late). Finally, in 2016, company owner Dion Giolito gave in to consumer demand and released ~eccj~ as a full-time offering within the Illusione portfolio -- showcasing the original two sizes and an added third vitola for good measure.
Illusione ECCJ represents Giolito (and his pitch-perfect palate) at his best, incorporating extremely select, low-priming tobaccos to display a delicate, nuanced, supremely complex smoking experience for the experienced palate. The cigars are blended with Nicaraguan Criollo '98 and Corojo '99 tobaccos in the filler, a Nicaraguan binder, and a special AAA Grade Cafe Rosado Corojo wrapper.
Fans of ~eccj~ often describe the blend as an Epernay on steroids (there's got to be a better analogy...). The profile is mild to medium, showing deep flavors of citrus, roasted nuts, white pepper, Cubanesque musk, a touch of salt, and long-lasting butter and vanilla. This is a thrilling combination that rises, falls, dips and dives, progressing and unveiling new complexities from start to finish.