12 Fine Cigars Worth Smoking Right Now
Every stogie smoker should sample these.
But while there are some great new products on the market, we still find ourselves going back to some of our old favorites. With that in mind, prepare to get fired up for this list of 12 cigars worth smoking right now.
La Palina is the lovingly created brainchild of Bill Paley, recreated from a brand his family produced years before. The cigarmaker (and son of CBS legend William Paley) has had a few hits, but we can honestly say our favorite is still the Mr. Sam, an Ecuadoran and Nicaraguan blend that goes great with your morning (or evening) espresso. We like the long, pencil-like Lancero best. Nutty and earthy. $10
The Padilla brand is treasure trove of hidden gems, partly because there have been so many products. Ernesto Padilla created his brand nearly 15 years ago to honor his father Herbert, a Cuban expat and poet tortured under the Castro regime. The 8 & 11 Blend has come and gone for more than a decade, from different factories and different countries. It’s back as a Nicaraguan puro in 8 sizes, and we couldn’t be happier. Nutty and a bit spicy. $10-15
Alec Bradley founder Alan Rubin is one of the nicest guys in the industry, and while we’re happy to see him rewarded for his hard work, we’re the ones winning with the release of Fine & Rare BR12-13. It’s a remake of one of our favorite smokes he ever produced back in 2012. It comes in a single torpedo size, made with ten types of tobacco. Another thing that makes it special: all 2,000 boxes of 10 cigars are made by just two very experienced rollers. Earthy with a touch of sweetness. $18
While the Montecristo line is one of the most revered in the Cuban portfolio, it’s often the larger No. 2 that takes all the fame. We’d like to take this opportunity to disagree. Times have changed. People have less time to smoke. While the No. 2 is a great cigar, the Petit No. 2 is just as enjoyable in a shorter time span. Cutting 20 minutes off your commitment doesn’t make you enjoy the cigar any less–it just means you’ll enjoy it the same amount in less time. Nutty and earthy. Price Varies by Country
A gold standard in the world of Nicaraguan tobacco, Padrón and its Serie 1926 line have long been the favorites of veteran smokers–especially the maduro line. The Cuban exile patriarch and his family have spent decades creating the best the world has to offer in nutty, spicy, delicious cigars. We like all the sizes, though we prefer the thinner ring gauges. From $10
We’re never champions of infused cigars but we think even Sir Winston himself would approve of this blend. The normally full-bodied Davidoff Winston Churchill line’s wrapper leaf spends six months in emptied single malt barrels before the cigar is rolled, imparting extra layers of oak and smoke flavor. Smoke the Churchill size, obviously. $20
Pete Johnson has made hundreds of cigar blends in his more than 10 years since founding Tatuaje. Despite that, his favorite smoke (and one of ours too) is the Havana Cazadores: a deliciously simple, narrow-ring smoke that always seems to be just the right length. It’s a great gatway into a great brand’s portfolio. $10
Most cigar smokers will tell you that the stripe-patterned barber pole cigar is gimmicky, but done well it can be a delicious and flavorful smoking experience. Case in point: 7-20-4’s Hustler line, which comes in a variety of sizes. We like the smallest size (the Dog Walker), where the striped wrapper leaf makes up more of the blend, but all of them are a sweet and spicy blend of contrasting but complementary tobaccos. $6
Four Kicks was the impressive first release from the Crowned Heads company: a partnership of veteran cigar makers striking out in a new direction. While we’re huge fans of the Seleccion No. 5, the Piramide is easily the most beautiful cigar in the line, with the same woody, nutty sweetness of its brethren. $9
The Partagás series is one of the more full-bodied and potent Cuban smokes on the market. While they have a variety of sizes, we like the small and chocolatey, cocoa-heavy spice bombs like the Serie D. No. 6. It’s a smaller smoke, so it’s not going to fill an afternoon, but it’s a great cap off to a long meal, or a solid break when the party gets too loud and you need an excuse to step outside. Price Varies by Country
Camacho is Davidoff’s most adventurous brand, and the adventures have taken them in some pretty innovative directions. Most recently, they aged the wrapper leaves for one of their newest blends in ex-rum barrels. The added sweetness is a delicious departure from a brand known for powerful, full-bodied smokes. Start with the toro, and explore from there. $11
The Fuente family has made great cigars for decades, with Carlito taking the reins years ago. His father Carlos, however, still has a thing or two to teach him. We grab any Don Carlos Personal Reserves we find; the blend is the first from Carlos Sr. in decades and, we must say, pretty damn amazing. Start with the Robusto. $20