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Staff Review: ADVentura The Royal Return Queen’s Pearls Corona



Our staff review today takes a look at the ADVentura The Royal Return Queen’s Pearls Corona. This is a mellow to medium-bodied cigar from one of the hottest boutique cigar makers operating currently – and the first Connecticut offering from the brand.

First time reading our reviews? Feel free to skim the quick hits or dive deep into any section below and find the full details on this cigar. Let’s go.

The Quick Hits:

  • A duo release for the 4th chapter of the Adventura & McKay story, along with the King’s Gold
  • The first Connecticut wrapped blend in ADVentura’s profile
  • Features a unique, metallic band
  • Tasting notes: cream, toast, nuttiness, slight hints of pepper
  • Recommended For: those who want a little more flavor out of a traditional Connecticut wrapped cigar
  • A great value within the ADVentura portfolio

The Story:

ADVentura is a brand with a lot of backstory, but let’s start with the story of the cigar maker: Henderson Ventura. Operating a boutique factory in the Dominican Republic, Henderson has been influential in the market for the last ten years through his collaborations.

First, Henderson began working with Robert Caldwell to develop the first Caldwell Cigar blends. A few years later Henderson met Tony Bellato and the two collaborated on some blends for La Barba. Through Caldwell, Henderson also met Matt Booth from Room101, and the trio collaborated on the Hit and Run line.

The point being, Ventura is not a newcomer to the game. But ADVentura, relatively speaking, is. This is Henderson’s personal brand, co-owned and operated with Marcel Knobel. The brand carries a strong story about two explorers (Adventura and McKay) traveling the world and exploring new lands.

Queen’s Pearls is part of Chapter 4 of this story, referred to as “The Royal Return.” Technically this chapter contains a duo of releases, both titled Royal Return. The King’s Gold is a Connecticut Broadleaf wrapped blend that packs a heavy amount of flavor and power. The Queen’s Pearls is the mellower cigar of the duo, poised to offer a rich, luxurious experience for the Connecticut cigar lover.

The Build:

ADVentura The Royal Return Queen’s Pearls was billed as a Connecticut cigar that would “change the way you look at shade-grown tobacco.” For the blend, ADVentura employed tobaccos aged four to five years before rolling. The Ecuador Connecticut Shade wrapper leaf shines atop an Ecuadorian binder and fillers from the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, and Nicaragua.

The Look:


Many ADVentura cigars feature experimental, over-the-top packaging. With the Royal Return line, you’re going to find a presentation much closer to your standard box of cigars.

The box is built like many modern cigar boxes, presenting the blend in two rows of 10. On the outside, the box is styled similarly to a cargo crate you may find on a pirate ship. There are a few extra slabs of wood bolted up top to add to this look, and there are rope handles on the side to give the whole thing a nautical feel. Beyond that, you’ll find the Boveda seal and the standard guarantee seal. The inside of the box is fairly standard, with the artwork from the band stamped on the interior.

The band is simple upon first glance. Each ADVentura features the same logo in a different color – here, it’s in white and gold. The band is crafted with a unique material though, a malleable metal that gives it a very different look and feel.

The Experience:


If you aren’t aware, I really love Connecticut wrapped cigars. However, I do not like the trend of “new age Connecticuts” – the spicier, zippier Connecticut blends that have been popularized over the last few years. I want a classic Connecticut experience. Something creamy, maybe a little sweet, and easy to enjoy first thing in the morning.

ADVentura The Royal Return Queen’s Pearls Corona straddles a line between these two extremes. Lighting up, it’s clear to me that this is going to be slightly fuller-bodied than some of the more classic Connecticuts on the market. Those who don’t like mellow cigars would likely describe the experience as light and airy, or at the worst, flavorless. That is absolutely not the case here – every puff of the Queen’s Pearls delivers a ton of flavor and smoke output.

Flavor wise, Queen’s Pearls is hitting a lot of the notes I want. You’ve got the classic creaminess layered over a rich profile instead of an airy one. There are notes of natural sweetness, nuttiness, and just the slightest hints of spice. As the cigar burns, the creaminess actually fades a bit to get some more toasty notes and pronounced pepper. In the end, the cigar returns to cream and an earthy core.

In terms of burn and construction, Queen’s Pearls is pretty much perfect. The only slight complaint I’d levy against the cigar – the glue that they use on the band is incredibly strong. You need to wait for the burn to get close enough to heat this up or you risk damaging the wrapper as you take it off.

The Value:

The Queen’s Pearls Corona comes in at around $12.00 MSRP per cigar before taxes. This places it in the more affordable end of ADVentura’s offerings, especially compared to the other half of the Royal Return. King’s Gold is around $2-$3 more expensive.

For my money, this cigar is an excellent value from ADVentura. As an entry point into the brand, you’re getting an incredibly complex cigar with loads of flavor. For over $10 a piece, I’m not going to be smoking this cigar every morning. But I certainly think it’s worth having around and savoring.

Final Thoughts:

I won’t mince words here – the Queen’s Pearls may be my favorite cigar in ADVentura’s line-up, and I certainly prefer it to the King’s Gold. But again, this is a style of cigar I personally really enjoy. If you are not a fan of Connecticut blends traditionally, I’d still encourage you to give this one a shot, particularly in these skinnier sizes. As it is, the Queen’s Pearls will be a part of my humidor for the foreseeable future.