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While you can’t go wrong with a classic, this new kid on the block is not a cigar to be trifled with. The tobaccos that are used to create this magnificent creation come from the Oliva Tobacco Company. This is the same Oliva Tobacco Company that supplies tobacco leaves for some of the biggest and best brands in the industry such as Ashton, Davidoff, and Montecristo to name a few. This medium to full-bodied habano-wrapped cigar utilizes a blend of Nicaraguan long-fillers along with a Nicaraguan binder. Notes of pepper, cedar, spice, and cream greeted the palate with every puff from start to finish. For me, I love pairing the prominent spice of a habano wrapper with the crisp citrus notes from an IPA. Even though this cigar is brand new and might not carry the same weight as other brands, this is one that really gets people talking. In all honesty, there was a lengthy debate between our experts as to whether this cigar belonged in the number one spot. It just barely got edged out and was eventually awarded the number two. Check out this cigar here: Latitude Zero
For Thompson Cigar Company’s 100th Anniversary, we knew we had to do something special. We wanted to have a cigar dedicated from one of the most prestigious blenders in the industry, and our first choice was Padrón. This legendary company utilizes top-of-the-line tobaccos in coordination with one of the highest standards of construction in the industry. The Padrón 1964 Thompson 100th Anniversary Natural is filled with a blend of 4-year-aged Nicaraguan long fillers and wears a light, natural wrapper giving the cigar a medium-bodied profile. From the moment you take a flame to the foot, until you take your final puff, you will be greeted with thick and creamy smoke that is rich in notes of almonds, oak, and leather. This is a cigar for an occasion, whether it’s a birthday, wedding, or anniversary, celebrate the Thompson way with the 1964 100th Anniversary! Check out this cigar here: Padrón 1964 Thompson 100th Anniversary
If you’re ever looking for a truly premium Nicaraguan handmade cigar, look no further than Tabacalera Perdomo. The 20th Anniversary line is available in Connecticut, Maduro, and Sun Grown wrappers, but the Sun Grown really takes the cake. This blend is medium to full-bodied with delicious hints of wood, earth, and coffee. Filled with Cuban-seed long-fillers from the dark volcanic soils in Estelí, Condega, and the Jalapa Valley, this Nicaraguan puro points the real focus of this cigar to the wrapper. An 8-year-old Cuban-seed Nicaraguan wrapper-leaf is then aged for an additional 10 months in bourbon barrels before being seamlessly draped over a Nicaraguan binder. Given the bourbon-barrel aged wrapper, I paired this with a bourbon sidecar and let the flavor notes from the cigar compliment the citrus notes of the drink and the pairing was astounding! Check out this Perdomo cigar here: Perdomo 20th Anniversary Sun Grown
The flagship line for Toraño is the Exodus 1959, which is one delicious cigar, but for their 50-year anniversary, the Toraño family put out a shining star- Exodus 1959 ’50 Years.’ Toraño has been known for blending cigars with an incredibly diverse array of tobaccos. Some lines include tobaccos from 5 different countries, but for the perfection that is Exodus 1959 ’50 Years’, only 3 were required. The ’50 Years’ starts out with an opulent Brazilian Arapiraca wrapper, which produces an abundance of delicious flavors ranging from cocoa and pepper, to molasses and leather. Beneath the wrapper is a blend of Nicaraguan long-fillers from Estelí and the Pueblo Nuevo region. The result is a tremendous medium to full-bodied profile that fills your palate with rich smoke and a balanced, complex mixture of flavors. Despite being medium to full-bodied, you can expect a smooth smoking experience from start to finish. There’s no wonder why this cigar has been given 90+ ratings and Top 25 Cigar of the Year honors! This cigar is perfect to smoke after dinner with a nice glass of brandy. Check out this cigar here: Toraño Exodus 1959 '50 Years'
The Rocky Patel Vintage series is one that really helped put Rocky Patel on the map when he launched Rocky Patel Premium Cigars back in the late 90s, but the Vintage 1979 might be one of Rocky’s best cigars. This masterpiece utilizes a tri-nation blend of long-fillers from the Dominican Republic, Nicaragua, and Honduras, along with a Mexican binder. An African Cameroon wrapper that was first cultivated 40 years ago is draped over these tobaccos. This wrapper is luscious and silky-smooth, giving the cigar a pristine appearance. You can expect a medium-bodied profile with rich notes of cream, sweet fruit, pepper, and a buttery undertone. This is what I like to call an “anytime, anyplace cigar” because you can never go wrong with this one. I vividly remember the first time I smoked the 1979 Vintage; I was outside on a cold night standing around the fire. Every puff from this cigar warmed me up and delivered an even burn, and smooth smoking experience. Check out this Rocky Patel cigar here: Rocky Patel Vintage 1979
If you are looking for big and bold cigars, there is a clear place to look in the cigar industry- AJ Fernandez. San Lotano by AJ Fernandez has a wide variety of blends and profiles, but the San Lotano Oval Habano has been awarded numerous 90+ ratings along with a Top 25 Cigar of the Year honor. A habano 2000 wrapper seamlessly sits over a delectable blend of Nicaraguan and Honduran long-fillers. This cigar is pressed in a rather distinct manner to make the cigar appear in the shape of an oval. The construction is immaculate with a perfect draw that fills the palate with thick and robust smoke on each puff. When you light up, you will immediately be greeted by a medium-bodied profile, which gets fuller as you continue to smoke. Every puff is filled with nuances of pepper and leather with subtle and delicious notes of spice. While I’m not much of a wine drinker, I once paired this cigar with a blackberry noir and the spice from the smoke was balanced perfectly with the semi-sweet nature of the wine. Check out this cigar here: San Lotano Oval Habano
Out of all of the Cuban blends around, Cohiba was once the cigar of choice for Fidel Castro, and now they are one of the most well-known names in the industry. Cohiba Connecticut is one of their shining achievements in their long and storied history in the cigar world. This cigar wears a vibrant gold and white band overtop of a khaki-colored Ecuadorian Connecticut wrapper and a Mexican San Andres binder. The long-fillers include an impressive and versatile blend of Dominican Piloto, Brazilian, and Nicaraguan Jalapa tobaccos. The wrapper leaf conceals any seams, giving this cigar a perfect appearance. As you smoke this cigar, you will notice the even burn and draw, which speaks to Cohiba’s top-notch construction. You will experience tasting notes of toast, nuts, and cream. This is the perfect cigar to pull out on a Saturday morning and smoke on the front porch while enjoying a cup of coffee. Trust me, I’ve done it more than once! Check out this cigar here: Cohiba Connecticut
Nicaraguan cigars have been on the rise for quite some time, with some people claiming Nicaragua to be the new Cuba. If you’re looking to experience what all the fuss is about- Nica Libre by AGANORSA is the Nicaraguan Puro that you must try! Both Nica Libre and AGANORSA are heavy hitters in the cigar market, so to have these two collaborate to make one blend is something special. This cigar utilizes a Nicaraguan Corojo wrapper over a Nicaraguan binder and a blend of 100% Nicaraguan long-fillers. Sporting a medium to full-bodied profile, this cigar will greet your palate with notes of spice, molasses, and dried fruit. To pair with the subtle sweetness of the smoke, a well-made Manhattan can really enhance the flavors on the palate. Overall, this simple, yet delicious blend, truly raises the bar for Nicaraguan cigars! Check out this Nica Puro here: Nica Libre by AGANORSA
Diesel might be relatively new to the market, but in a short time they have made quite the name for themselves in the industry, especially among full-bodied cigar smokers. Diesel wanted to create one of their boldest blends to date, so they reached out to one of the best blenders of full-bodied cigars- AJ Fernandez. Together, they used Nicaraguan tobaccos to create one of the fullest blends on the market, and it goes by the name of Diesel Estelí Puro. This cigar uses a blend of long-fillers from all over Estelí, which are adjoined by a binder from AJ’s San José plot, and draped with a wrapper from his La Lilia farm. This full-bodied blend will engulf your palate with rich and complex notes of wood and pepper with undertones of espresso and cocoa. These complex flavors can overpower any pairing option, like it did for the IPA I drank while enjoying this cigar. It wasn’t terrible, but it also wasn’t great. There were a lot of dominant flavors, some of which were overwhelming. With that in mind, I would try this cigar again and pair it with a simple lager or glass of scotch. Check out this cigar here: Diesel Estelí Puro
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