Humorist and novelist Mark Twain once said, “a good cigar, is the perfect way to end the week” and, honestly, we couldn’t agree more.
Smoking a cigar is truly a rite of passage in a young man’s life, almost like you’re saying farewell to adolescence. However, knowing the cigar brands, and therefore, the signs of a high-quality cigar is crucial as its strength and volume can be intimidating to a beginner. But, once you find the perfect cigar, it can be a real treat for a special occasion (or just another Friday).
Finding the right cigar comes down to a few intricacies, including the filler, wrapper, shape, body, size, and infusion of flavour. Just like a bold glass of red wine, there are many preferable pairings when it comes to the flavour combination of a cigar. It’s certainly not a case of one size fits all.
So ask yourself, are you after something sweet with creamy flavours featuring chocolate notes, or are you after something a little more potent? A pepper flavour with a nutty finish? Do you want a mild or medium strength? Or would you prefer a full-bodied cigar?
Why are cigars so strong?
The strength of a cigar relates to the priming of the plant - the higher the priming, the stronger the tobacco will be. That's why Ligero is widely considering the strongest priming as it's the highest point in the plant, receiving optimal sunlight. Fermentation also plays a big part in a leaf's strength as the longer tobacco ferments, the weaker it will be.
Why are Cuban cigars banned in the United States?
Cuban cigars are banned in the U.S because of the strict trade embargo to ban all imports of products containing Cuban goods. The policy was established in February 1962 by President John F Kennedy as a way to reject Fidel Castro's Communist regime in Cuba. Bringing in Cuban cigars for personal consumption was temporarily legal a few years ago, however became illegal again in 2020.
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We’ve curated the following list of best cigar brands producing some of the world’s finest cigars. Treat yourself while delving into a world of luxury and enjoy the best-wrapped cigars filled with the most delicious tasting flavours, guaranteed to make you feel like Ernest Hemmingway roaming the streets of Havana.
Today, it's the second most popular cigar manufacturing business in the world, known for its balanced blend and distinguished aroma that appeals to all smokers. Offering the most well-constructed cigars, with multiple flavours available, Montecristo's range includes cigars with rich coffee roasted bean flavours to cigars featuring more of a kick with a peppery aftertaste.
Romeo Y Julieta
These medium-bodied cigars are composed of well balanced, aromatic blends of finely selected tobaccos. Their notable flavour includes a creamy and earthy tobacco taste in the binder and filler, paired with a subtle sweetness.
Cohiba launched in 1966 as a limited production private brand, providing cigars exclusively for Fidel Castro, officials in the Communist Party of Cuba, and the Cuban government. Despite being around for some time, the brand was first released to the wider public in 1982, with its Cohiba Siglo VI cigar now being a popular favourite among smokers.
With an unwavering commitment to craftsmanship and quality, Cohiba is one of the more luxurious brands out there as its tobacco seeds have been handpicked and bred by their team of talented agronomists. With cigars created from the best tobacco leaves picked from the Vuelta Abajo region of Cuba, these leaves are world-class are they undergo a third fermentation in wooden barrels, supplying smooth and subtle flavour to these cigars.
Davidoff Cigars also produce cigar accessories, including humidors, lighters, cigar cutters, ashtrays, cigar cases, pipes, and pipe accessories.
The Perdomo Estate Selección Vintage Limited Edition is among one of their highest selling collections, as it's a curated box of cigars that features rich, bold, and complex flavours. Their Cuban-seed Nicaraguan binder and filler wrappers provide a silky smooth finish while offering a range of tastes from notes of coffee, creamy, chocolate, oak, and cedar. Perfect for pairing with a nice glass of red wine.
Since then, Arturo Fuente has cemented itself as one of the best because they have never strayed away from this initial vision, as they've continued to manufacture products of the highest quality. With their perfect construction, Arturo Fuente cigars provide a long and steady burn with an excellent draw and consistent flavour throughout. Every cigar made under the Arturo Fuente label is carefully crafted and inspected with the highest level of attention to detail.
What makes Padron so unique, and another of the best you should know about, is the nearly flawless construction and unreal consistency for each of their cigars. Offering every type of strength, from mild to full strength, Pardon creates every type of cigar, whether you're after something more full-bodied or subtle.
Make sure you check out their cigars infused with an array of spices, oils, extracts, and herbs that feature a range of wrappers, sizes, and shapes. These cigars are affordable while also packing full flavourful tobacco.
Mostly made up of Honduran tobacco, Baccarat is known for producing cigars with a smooth and creamy flavour while offering lots of tasty notes, finishing with a sweetness, unique to the Baccarat brand. Made to feel incredibly light while you carry them around in your pocket, Baccarat is the perfect everyday cigar, as they are subtle and suitable to those who prefer a mild to medium-bodied strength cigar.
Baccarat cigars are made in Honduras, while it's tobacco is grown in the valley of Rachnos Jamastran - which has the perfect soil and climate conditions for growing tobacco. Baccarat products feature a Jamastran-Habano filler and Dulce Mexican leaf for a binder. Its infusion is mild while incorporating the taste of cocoa and nutmeg, finished with sweet toasted wheat. The mild body is created by blending the Cuban seed filler/binder with a Connecticut shade wrapper.
La Gloria Cubana
Today, it's still one of the top brands, as well as being one of the most sought after, with products also manufactured in Nicaragua. Known for its infamous Nicaraguan puros, La Gloria Cubana's famous Serie R Esteli is available in EMS and dark Maduro wrappers. Like many of their cigars, the Nicaraguan range is created by highly skilled rollers and feature some of the best wrappers printed in bold colours.
Over the years, La Gloria Cubana cultivated a large and loyal fanbase, made up of the most knowledgeable smokers. If you want to keep up with the pros, check out this luxurious brand that makes cigars specifically designed for those seeking a little elegance and refinement in their life.