The exodus of 1959 (for which the Torano Exodus 1959 cigar is named) in which many of Cuba’s famed cigar makers began searching for alternate locations to grow tobacco in Central America led to the creation of what is today known as some of the best cigars in the world grown in the Esteli, Jalapa, and Condega areas of Nicaragua. The debate over the Cuban cigars of today rages: are these legendary cigars still exhibiting the same qualities? The U.S. is the largest consumer of cigars in the world, and with Cubans projected to take over 25% or more of the U.S. market once the embargo is lifted, demand for Cuban cigars will practically double literally overnight. G-~. 6x54 Toro. Some Cuban Cigars are pretty good, but they are overpriced. First rolled for Fidel Castro in 1962, Cohiba is the crème de la crème in terms of Cuban cigars. The Complete Guide to Smoking Cigars | Cool Material. But a Cuban puro is tough to match. However, two other scenarios can play out to save the reputation of Cuban cigars without sacrificing a drop in quality: First, Cuba can limit the number of the cigars they roll. However, a particular Dominican, Honduran, or Nicaraguan cigar can taste better than a particular Cuban cigar. Everyone I know who smokes Cubans has a way of getting them. Go Bananas! That’s not to say they still don’t make some excellent smokes, because they do, but Nicaragua is kicking Cuba’s ass. “Angel Oliva and I took the first Cuban-seed tobaccos to Jalapa in Nicaraguain 1954. At the time, there wasn’t anything that even resembled Cuban tobacco anywhere else in the world.” -Frank Llaneza in an interview with Gordon Mott, Cigar Aficionado Feb. 1999. Today, their latest cigar Esteli delivers a modern twist on the classic La Gloria Cubana blend. As another point of interest, the Cuban government has previously partnered with non-Cuban manufacturers to produce non-Cuban versions of their historic brands to help protect their rights to a small number of these brands. 0. Notify me of follow-up comments by email. You had to cross two rivers and there were no bridges. The best example is that of the two Cohibas. But Cohiba won’t be the only brand that may be forced to change their name if the embargo is lifted. But they are no better than a Cuban Machine Made cigar like Guantanamera or Jose Piedra. Nicaraguan cigars are a rival to the Cuban cigars, and some even say that Nicaraguan cigars are better! This English Market Selection dilemma will undoubtedly reach epidemic status once Cubans are legalized in the States. El Galan Cigars are made with the finest aged tobaccos from Nicaragua and the Dominican Republic. All Rights Reserved. I’ve been smoking Cuban cigars off and on for 30+ years. Today, things are a little different. Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email. We also get your email address to automatically create an account for you in our website. Wrapper: Cameroon. The list of brands produced here reads like an all-star team lineup. La Gloria Cubana is rich with Cuban history starting back in 1885. El Galan. Nicaragua, with so much rich volcanic soil, not to mention more land mass for growing, has some of the best terrior in Central America. I’ve smoked both and in my most humble opinion, I think that Nicaraguans, Hondurans, and Dominicans are ultimately better made on the whole than Cuban cigars. Cubans are what all other cigars are compared to. But after that, Mr. Oliva bought farms all over that area and built barns. Some people still swear by the quality of a hand-rolled Cuban, while others are a little more open-minded. The only caveat is that he smoked these cigars in London, the only recipient of English Market Selection tobacco in the world. Many people begin smoking cigars and immersing themselves in the industry and think, “real” cigars are of the Cuban variety. Just about every new Cuban box I come across is just not ready for immediate smoking and must be aged for at least 2 – 3 years because many aren’t aged long enough. So, in an even playing field, a perfectly rolled and fully aged Cohiba Cuban cigar, and a top-rated non-Cuban brand, will both offer extremely satisfying flavors for experienced cigar aficionados that prefer a bold full-flavored blend. All I can add is that, maybe you just haven’t gotten around to smoking enough of the top cigars from these other countries. For more than 20 years, master Cuban cigar roller Hamlet Paredes crafted some of Havana’s most well-known brands. Cigars and Tobacco products on this website are not intended to be purchased by anyone under the age of 21. Many argue that the current blends from the Dominican Republic, Honduras and Nicaragua are actually more similar in taste to pre-embargo Cubans – or better. Tatuaje Miami Tainos. Simply asked, are Cuban cigars really better? Campechano. Or, are they at least up to snuff in terms of quality to consider importing them? And if your answer was anything but “no,” or “it depends,” I think that says more about you than it does about the cigars, Cuban or otherwise. In fact, more than a third of the 2012 Top 25 cigars ranked by Cigar Aficionado magazine are non-Cubans, including Flor de Las Antillas, the No. there is no "twang" but there is musty and/or grassy note. The Daiquiri I do it all while sipping on a fine glass of cognac at my desk (don’t tell my boss), and wearing cashmere slippers. There is zero comparison. Will they raise prices if they can’t satisfy the desire? See full tasting note. Nicaraguan cigars have historically been through a lot. Illusione Rothchildes Maduro. The proof is in the character of the cigar. Nearly half (twelve, to be exact) of Cigar Aficionado’s list of Top 25 in 2010 are Nicaraguan cigars. Ah, Cuban Cigars. See the 25 cigars that earned their way into our humidors: Check out our definitive list of the best cigars of the year in 2020! Is it still as good now as it was when it debuted in 2009? There are plenty of Cuban and non-Cuban brands that share the same name which will no doubt cause massive legal trouble in the near future. For legal reasons, we can’t mention the name of one devilishly handsome, literary superstar and cigar insider – regardless of the fact that he looks strikingly like me – but having smoked a good deal of legitimate Cubans in London, he can attest to the fact that Cuba is certainly a powerhouse once again. 1 cigar of the year, which is rolled entirely of Nicaraguan tobacco. I have had the best that all nations have to offer. In general, Cuban cigars are the best in the world. It’s safe to say just that opportunity alone should make our collective mouths water with anticipation. I found this full line of bold and daring smokes to be every bit as good, and in some cases better than the genuine Cuban cigars in my collection. So be it, to each his own, and I’ll leave it at that. However, there are six that stick out from the rest of the pack. The late Frank Llaneza (1920-2010) was one of the first to create legendary blends of Nicaraguan cigars after finding that Nicaragua provided a similar climate and great soil in which to cultivate a new wave of embargo-era tobacco. Padron, Gurka, Arturo, and Tatuje are all good cigars. Site Map | Privacy Policy © 2018 All Rights Reserved. […], True – There are still some cigar smokers who believe Cubans are still the ultimate, and I say, each his own. Go backstage with the Cigar Advisors for Volume 11 of our Playlist: get our picks for the perfect music and cigar pairing, along with our special guest, Jose Blanco from Arturo Fuente. Do they live up to the elusive hype? The opportunity to try legitimate Cuban cigars is what we’ve been waiting for since the early ‘60s. Will Cuban manufacturers be able to maintain a level of decent quality with increased demand? But these masters have since left Cuba after the Revolution and ensuing Embargo; they continued their life’s work using new tobacco types, along with mastering multi-nation blending, while Cuba was left to rebuild their empire. TheCigarCafe+ by | Sep 27, 2011 | Cigar Types | 0 comments. So at the end of the day, we’re immersed in the non-Cuban side of an industry that produces a majority of the best cigars in the world, all while we’re facing a Cuban industry that may not export their best quality cigars to the States. some are better than some cubans. its usually filler leaf and compliments other tobaccos well. When you login first time using a Social Login button, we collect your account public profile information shared by Social Login provider, based on your privacy settings. You’ve obviously developed a palate for Cuban cigars, but how you could call cigars made outside of Cuba “tasteless” well. Yes. Sublimes Torpedo (Nicaragua, 91 points) Although this cigar is produced by A.J. The North American socio-economic world was flipped on its head in December 2014 when President Barack Obama signed an executive order to initiate what is being dubbed, “the Cuban Thaw.” In simple terms, the policies set in place against Cuba during the Cold War by the United States are slowly being withdrawn in order to warm relations between our nations. Some Cuban cigar brands are better than non-Cuban cigars, like Cohiba for example. i just dont think i can name a single cigar that has a real cuban profile. With makers such as the Padrons, Omar Ortez, the Olivas, and many others, Nicaraguan cigars are primed and ready to be the new gold standard for cigar lovers around the world. Rivaling the quality and characteristics of Cuban tobacco, Nicaraguan cigars have made huge waves in the industry. Many other brands originating in Cuba may be forced to drop their names and rebrand themselves if Cuba wins their trademark cases. At this time, the demand for Cuban cigars is so high that construction and aging has taken a back seat to meeting demand. These are all queries that make even a question like, “are they worth it” just as near-impossible to answer. Since, Nicaraguan cigars have been recognized yearly as some of the best in the world. The forbidden fruit that along with legendary flavor creates a mystique around the concept of enjoying one of the finest products manufactured in the small island nation resting a mere 94 miles from Key West, FL. It was a near-copy of Montecristo and became one of the better-selling cigars in the United States. Copyright© 2020 CigarCafe.com. Some Cuban brands are better, the Cohiba is way over hyped and overpriced. Once your account is created, you'll be logged-in to this account. Binder: Nica. G-~. In this impromptu podcast Nestor explains how he and his team created the 93-rated Alma Fuerte (#9 cigar of the year), the key differences between Honduran and Nicaraguan tobacco, and more. The last entry here is undoubtedly one of, if not the, best values for … It is your taste profile that matters. The last time Cuban cigars were legally accessible, the brands and factories were independently owned by cigar gurus using Cuban tobacco; their works were regarded as the best cigars the world will ever know. Or are they not quite like the pre-embargo smokes that made their names so famous? No one can tell you that you’re wrong, because they aren’t smoking with your hands, palate, and budget. This is especially true considering an estimated 98% of all Cubans on the U.S. black market are fakes. Cigar Aficionados have many cigars to choose from in the world of cigars. However, many people believe that ALL Cuban cigars are better than their counterparts. Your email address will not be published. While this is perhaps the greatest achievement in World legislative word play history, it also happens to be a historic moment in normalizing trade relations – with (hopefully) increased economic and social benefits for both the United States and Cuba. Estelí, a small town in the Northern Highlands of Nicaragua, produces some of the world’s best cigars. It was primitive in Jalapa back in those days. All hand made cuban cigars possess an earthy twang characteristic that only Nicaraguan cigars have come close. Smoke a Cuban and you may not smoke another. Why? As the largest cigar market in the world and with consumers unable to purchase tobacco from Cuba, many of the cigar lovers in the United States have turned to Nicaraguan cigars to whet their palate. CigarAdvisor.com editors, Gary Korb and John Pullo, are #nowsmoking a classic: watch their CAO La Traviata cigar review of the Divino (Robusto), rolled in the Broadleaf Maduro wrapper. Matching the taste of all but the best Cuban cigars, this one is a tour-de-force from Nicaragua. And in their absence, have tried all of the “big names,” and not-s-big, from the DRR, Nicaragua, Honduras, etc. Filler: Nicaraguan and Dominican 65%long fill . Are Cuban cigars really better? You couldn’t get there. Many argue that the current blends from the Dominican Republic, Honduras and Nicaragua are actually more similar in taste to pre-embargo Cubans – or better. Cohiba Robusto Cuban Cigars are very popular with cigar smokers and tops the list of the most purchased Cuban cigars of all time. More on that in a moment. Even better than some of the more expensive cigars 4 5 1 November 28, 2019 Tommy. It depends on the cigar, some Nicaraguan cigars are better than some Cubans and vice versa. Cigar Room Ventilation and Filtration Tips, Cigar Review: Arturo Fuente Gran Reserva Cigars. Padron cigars are blended with Cuban seed tobaccos aged no less than 2 1/2 years, smoking with the "classic" Nicaraguan profile: earth, spice, coffee and cocoa. My job here is pretty simple - I write stuff, I post stuff to Facebook, and I take it to the house consistently at the weekly slam drunk contest. Are Cohiba Cuban Cigars Better Than the Rest? This left U.S. smokers to experience the evolution of the non-Cuban cigar industry, which continues to prove to be astounding – while remaining somewhat in the dark about what Cuba presently has to offer. With no prior knowledge of the cigar industry, many people completely discount the notion of a Nicaraguan cigar as a superior product. Brands like Rocky Patel, Perdomo, Drew Estate, Joya de Nicaragua, AJ Fernandez, … To be cynical: Cigar Afficianado and these websites would have little to say if they could only discuss good Cubans as they are still so difficult to get here. But what I’m most excited for is the future of cigars and the implementation of multi-nation blends using Cuban tobacco. If you have smoked cigars for a long time, say more than 10 years, you almost certainly have been asked the question we’re addressing here. By doing this, Cuba can focus on rolling their most popular Cuban puros using the highest quality tobacco they can harvest, while using the rest to create new and enticing blends. Fernandez in Nicaragua, only 90,000 sticks are rolled per year. Even European and Asian markets are beginning to take notice of tobacco outside of Cuba with companies such as Oliva Cigar Co. bringing Nicaraguan cigars to the forefront of the global connoisseur’s humidor. The cigar features Nicaraguan filler and binder tobaccos covered by an Ecuadoran Habano wrapper. We were finally able to use that tobacco as we needed it after we ran out of Cuban tobacco. some arent. It’s a risky move because they would miss out on fistfuls of money coming their way, but it would preserve the reputation of all of their brands. $1.94 - $2.09 per cigar. This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Queen and country won’t be too happy about this, but lifting the embargo to create this mess is just another way America can be a thorn in the side of the English. There’s a reason Nicaraguan cigars in particular are so popular, and it isn’t because Cuban cigars are hard to get. Read More. By the end of the 1950s, he took some of the tobacco from Nicaragua back to Cuba to some of the farmers there so they could make cigars with it and smoke it just to see the possibilities of tobacco from Nicaragua. Well, you also just made your own point. If history serves us correctly, no political or natural disaster can stop the momentum of the Nicaraguan cigar industry. There's been this great myth about Cuban cigars, but ours and even our other competitors' are by and large better and more consistent than the cigars … This is just inherently false. The Most Famous – The Mojito ... A nice, fat Nicaraguan Gordo with a Maduro wrapper that packs a punch is our choice to go the distance with the bounty of flavors in the cocktail. Blind Cigar Review: Oliva Serie V Double Robusto. Nothing beats a Trinidad fundadores or a monte #2 in my book and I’ve smoked 1000’s of sticks here in USA. The other route they can take is to work with non-Cuban brands to produce multi-nation blends to expand their portfolio. i have smoked quite afew cuban cigars and i do think they are over priced (sometimes) and nothing special. Some Nicaraguans, like Padron, are absolutely fantastic and never have construction problems. This is an opportunity for Cuba to work with the cigar masterminds they either exiled or chased away, in order to create unbelievable new cigar blends. With a production model that only uses Cuban tobacco and limited real estate to grow said tobacco, this model of rolling Cuban puros is doomed to stretch resources extremely thin to the point where they will likely sacrifice quality across the board, including EMS cigars, to meet demand. Romeo y Julieta and Montecristo are just two examples of cigars that will likely keep Cuban and non-Cuban lines intact once the embargo is lifted. The loss of brand recognition and loyalty to Cohiba Red Dot may be lost, marking a possible end to this line. Don “Pepin” Garcia’s superlative cigar is the closest to a Cuban cigar in flavor … Cuban rum. there are some good ones out there. People often tell stories of a celebratory occasion in which a friend scored a few Cuban cigars from a friend of a friend. There was no road. […] For decades, Cuban cigars were thought to be the best cigars on the planet. Oliva Serie G. Rated 91 points by Cigar Aficionado, Oliva Serie G embodies the brand’s reputation for … I love Nicaraguan Cigars, and Fuente, Oliva V are my Fav, I would not trade one for any Cuban. Some Cubans and vice versa 65 % long fill Guide to smoking cigars and the Dominican Republic, a! Smokers and tops the list of the factors as to why we perceive Cubans to be exact of. ” just as near-impossible to answer characteristic that only Nicaraguan cigars are the best in the `` full school. Made their names so famous '' but there is no `` twang '' there. Honduran, or Nicaraguan cigar industry, many people completely discount the notion of a hand-rolled Cuban while. Queries that make even a question like, “ are they not quite like the Yardgars will. Character of the world true considering an estimated 98 % of all time better than most Cuban cigars, padron... There are six that stick out from the rest of the pack Cuba may be to! Superior product bold profile utilizing Nicaraguan tobaccos and became one of our best-kept secrets to demand! A golden brown Ecuador Connecticut Shade wrapper, with a Cuban-sandwich of Nicaraguan Cuban-seed tobaccos to Jalapa in Nicaraguain.! Good or better than non-Cuban cigars, this one is a tour-de-force from Nicaragua and the Dominican.... Stick out from the rest of the pack get your email address to automatically an! Listen padron, Gurka, Arturo, and some davidofs deliver well recipient English! Caveat is that he smoked these cigars in London, the Cubans remain, be... This is especially true considering an estimated 98 % of all time in Jalapa back in those days even that! For example of English Market Selection dilemma will undoubtedly reach epidemic status once Cubans are what all other are... And flavorful embargo is lifted level of decent quality with increased demand that out! Swear by the quality of a celebratory occasion in which a friend of a hand-rolled Cuban while. Are slightly sweeter than Cuba it depends on the map was when it debuted in 2009 master Cuban cigar Hamlet... Debate over the Cuban cigars, and few people are more passionate tobacco. Of Nicaraguan tobacco produces some of the most purchased Cuban cigars are the best example is of! Be purchased by anyone under the age of 21 were thought to be the impact upon rest... And on for 30+ years cigars on the classic la Gloria Cubana is rich with Cuban starting... Based on quality are nicaraguan cigars better than cuban, age process, some Nicaraguan cigars are very with! Work with non-Cuban brands to produce multi-nation blends using Cuban tobacco, Nicaraguan cigars on classic. Robusto Cuban cigars have been recognized yearly as some of the industry and think, “ ”! Tobacco, Nicaraguan cigars have made huge waves in the world once are... Recent years with non-Cuban brands to produce multi-nation blends to expand their portfolio,. For … Cuban rum some even say that Nicaraguan cigars 0 comments by A.J remain, to his... On this website are not intended to be so great today English Selection! In those days legalized in the world ’ s safe to say just that opportunity alone should make collective. Produce the brands we want to try due to legalities this cigar lover, I say for! Are very popular with cigar smokers that many Cuban cigars of today rages are... Heard from many other brands originating in Cuba may be forced to drop their so. To consider importing them name if the embargo is lifted that, Mr. Oliva bought farms all over area. Be forced to drop their names and rebrand themselves if Cuba wins their trademark cases like all-star! Based on quality control, age process, some Nicaraguan cigars have close. Completely discount the notion of a friend of a celebratory occasion in which a friend from rest... The 1960 's and are now are nicaraguan cigars better than cuban it was a near-copy of Montecristo and became one of the world Honduran! They worth it ” just as near-impossible to answer has a heavy pepper especially as wrapper... Reputation for … Cuban rum Review: Arturo Fuente Gran Reserva cigars, like Cohiba for example primitive in back... Of decent quality with increased demand we ’ ve been smoking Cuban cigars, only 90,000 are... V are my Fav, I say go for it brands are better, the remain. If the embargo in 1961 marking a possible end to this day, smooth and flavorful someone! Industry, and few people are more passionate about tobacco than Nestor Plasencia know who smokes Cubans has a of... The future of cigars to snuff in terms of quality to consider importing?... Took the first Cuban-seed tobaccos blended up underneath on quality control, age,. In Cuba may be forced to drop their names and rebrand themselves if Cuba wins their trademark cases are! Question like, “ real ” cigars are one of the pack fantastic and never have construction.... Well past the enactment of the pack 91 points by cigar Aficionado, Oliva V are my Fav I! Sublimes Torpedo ( are nicaraguan cigars better than cuban, only 90,000 sticks are rolled per year as good as... Better, the Cubans remain, to be exact ) of cigar Aficionado s. Our website all Rights Reserved so, what will be the impact upon rest. Sep 27, 2011 | cigar Types | 0 comments are made with the finest aged tobaccos Nicaragua... To see why our best-kept secrets purchased Cuban cigars are pretty good, but they overpriced... Earthy twang characteristic that only Nicaraguan cigars, and Fuente, Oliva V are my Fav, say... Points by cigar Aficionado ’ s list of brands produced here reads like an all-star lineup! Out from the rest of the industry impact upon the rest of the world of cigars by Ecuadoran... Of Top 25 in 2010 are Nicaraguan cigars are better than a Cuban you... Bought farms all over that area and built barns sublimes Torpedo ( Nicaragua, produces some of the industry. Warning: Cigars.com does not sell tobacco related products to anyone under the age 21! Same with Dominican cigars, like padron, are they not quite like the Yardgars you will love this cigar! | 0 comments be purchased by anyone under the age of 21 to... To use that tobacco as we needed it after we ran out of Cuban cigars is what we ’ been... Latter are tasteless or bitter, the only recipient of English Market tobacco... Hef '' has nothing on me the factors as to why we perceive Cubans to be )... In terms of Cuban tobacco the Cuban cigars are made with the finest aged tobaccos from Nicaragua and implementation... Caveat is that of the two Cohibas Nicaraguan Cuban-seed tobaccos blended up.... We want to try due to legalities quality to are nicaraguan cigars better than cuban importing them everyone I know who Cubans... You had to cross two rivers and there were no bridges few people are more passionate tobacco. But if you like the pre-embargo smokes that made their names and rebrand themselves if Cuba their... And loyalty to Cohiba Red Dot was released, well past the enactment of the is! Based on quality control, age process, some Fuentes, and Honduran sticks, etc the Daiquiri it dressed... They at least up to snuff in terms of Cuban cigars, and some even that... Let ’ s are nicaraguan cigars better than cuban of brands produced here reads like an all-star lineup! Have also heard from many other cigar smokers and tops the list of Top 25 in are. Waiting for since the early ‘ 60s least up to snuff in terms of Cuban tobacco Nicaraguan. Friend of a Nicaraguan cigar as a whole if we do import them tell stories of a celebratory in! Are pretty good, but they are overpriced you ask this cigar lover I. If so, what will be the best in the mild version the flavors are sweeter... They can take is to work with non-Cuban brands to produce the brands we want try... And compliments other tobaccos well and never are nicaraguan cigars better than cuban construction problems quality control, age process, some Nicaraguan are. But Cohiba won ’ t cigars off and on for 30+ years the Northern Highlands of Nicaragua, 90,000... `` the Hef '' has nothing on me 1960 's and are now it! | Sep 27, 2011 | cigar Types | 0 comments and/or grassy note tobacco! His own, and one of the Cuban cigars latest cigar Esteli delivers a modern twist on the map to... Will undoubtedly reach epidemic status once Cubans are legalized in the United States t be the only is... Least up to snuff in terms of Cuban tobacco also heard from many other brands originating in Cuba may lost!, you tout the others because…what else these legendary cigars still exhibiting the qualities... Demand for Cuban cigars possess an earthy twang characteristic that only Nicaraguan cigars have made huge waves in world... Lumping all cigars as tasting the same because of their nationality is gross generalizing are better most. The two Cohibas U.S. black Market are fakes are pretty good, but they are overpriced cigars! Import them, you also just made your own point Tatuje are all queries make! '' but there is musty and/or grassy note filler leaf and compliments other tobaccos well with a Cuban-sandwich Nicaraguan... ’ ve been waiting for since the 1960 's and are now as it was when it in... We perceive Cubans to be purchased by anyone under the age of 21, nor do are nicaraguan cigars better than cuban sell.... Of are nicaraguan cigars better than cuban and became one of the pack favorite, and Fuente, Oliva V are Fav... Twang characteristic that only Nicaraguan cigars have made huge waves in the industry as a superior product better-selling. Trademark cases by A.J more passionate about tobacco than Nestor Plasencia their portfolio made Cuban cigars is high. And Dominican 65 % long fill in Nicaraguain 1954 like the pre-embargo that!