Staff Picks

Our hard-working staff is busy smoking dozens of cigars, so you don't have to! Each week, they choose their favorite stick from the bunch.
Luz Normand
TASTE:Earthy, Pepper
HOBBIES:Cooking, Reading, Traveling
STRENGTH:Medium

FAVORITE BRANDS
Arturo Fuente
Tatuaje Black Label
La Aurora Preferidos Cameroon Platinum
Montecristo Espada
Crowned Heads Headley Grange

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Casa Fernandez Aganorsa Habano Toro 6 * 52
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Previously known as the TABSA Habano, the Aganorsa Leaf Habano from Casa Fernandez has undergone a makeover to align with the other Aganorsa line offerings in Corojo, Connecticut, and Maduro wrappers. The cigar uses Corojo 99 and Criollo 98 tobacco from Nicaragua in the blend, combined with a Habano wrapper. A quick look at this cigar and you notice it is immediately appealing: beautiful medium brown habano wrapper with tiny veins and oily sheen. The cigar offers a sweet aroma once toasted and lit and the first puffs are peppery but sweet. Construction is superb and the cigar is firm to the touch with a great draw and burn. One of my favorite things about this cigar is the long finish. Even though we officially rank this cigar at a medium, this Habano seemed more medium to full bodied to me. I highly recommend it as it offers plenty of spice at a great price. Picked on 05/15/2019
Joaquin Ortiz
TASTE:Natural
HOBBIES:Diving, tennis, the beach, boating, music & computers
STRENGTH:Medium-Full

FAVORITE BRANDS
La Galera 1936 Box Pressed
Arturo Fuente Hemingway Natural
Alec Bradley Tempus
Partagas
Acid Yellow
Romeo y Julieta Reserva Real

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Alec Bradley Coyol Gordo 6 * 60
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According to the Alec Bradley website the inspiration for the Coyol line came from La Vega Coyol, which “is one of our exclusive farms in Honduras, named after the majestic Coyol palm tree that stands at its entrance. Sharing the same fertile soil of the palm, the tobaccos cultivated from La Vega Coyol exhibit great flavor and wonderful aromatics. I blended Alec Bradley Coyol for the cigar enthusiast who appreciates rich flavor and aroma.” The Alec Bradley Coyol Gordo is a medium-strength toro that is handmade at the world-famous Raices Cubanas factory in Honduras. The Coyol features a Honduran wrapper that is deftly draped over a binder and long-filler tobaccos from Nicaragua and Honduras. This unique blend gives the Coyol its distinctive taste and pays to tribute to the tobacco that is grown in the La Vega Coyol farm. The Coyol I smoked had an appealing light-brown wrapper with barely visible seams, minimal veins, and it was a little bumpy. In the first third, the level of pepper initially was pretty aggressive, but at about a quarter of an inch in, the pepper took a back seat and allowed the leather and cedar notes to shine. There was an occasional nuttiness that popped in, which added an unexpected but pleasant dimension. The retro-hale had a nice floral note that wasn’t overpowering. In the second third, there was a nice transition from the leather and cedar to a slightly bitter black tea that I found surprisingly enjoyable. There was still a hint of pepper in the back of the throat, and the retro-hale had a bright blast of pepper. In the last third, the leather began to dominate as the cedar pushed out the toast. The draw was perfect, with a nice good burn line and a solid light-gray ash. Overall, I enjoyed the Alec Bradley Coyol so much that I added it to my favorites list. Enjoy. Picked on 05/09/2019
Jose Alonso
TASTE:All
HOBBIES:Watching movies, listening to music, spending time with family, reading, writing, photography
STRENGTH:Any

FAVORITE BRANDS
Romeo y Julieta Reserva Real
Davidoff 702 Series
Liga Privada Unicos

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El Viejo Continente Maduro Robusto 5 * 52
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The El Viejo Continente comes in two wrappers. The Classic, which has an Ecuadorian Habano wrapper, and the Maduro, which has a Mexican San Andres wrapper. I am a little fond of Mexican San Andres tobacco so I chose the Maduro for this review. The El Viejo Continente Maduro has a silver head band with an Old World-style map. The top edge of the band has a burned or worn look to it. The brand’s name is placed over the map and “from Nicaragua by Daniel Guerrero” is written on the bottom. This stick also comes with a silver-colored, cloth foot band, which gives it a classy look. The El Viejo Continente Maduro has a dark, rugged, veiny wrapper with clearly visible wrapper seams. There was not much give when I performed a squeeze test. A pre-light sniff of the foot revealed some subtle flavors. The cold draw was very smooth. The first third revealed a muted tobacco flavor accented with a sweet herbal note. The draw was effortless. This cigar produced a lot of billowy white smoke. Strength-wise, the El Viejo Continente Maduro was mild from beginning to end. During the second third, the draw got a little tight, but it wasn’t too bad. By gently squeezing the body a little, I was able to fix the draw issue. The El Viejo Continente Maduro’s flavor profile did not change throughout the second and final third. Overall, I would recommend the El Viejo Continente Maduro for the cigar aficionado who likes a mild smoke. Picked on 05/07/2019
Aladino Corojo Reserva LE Robusto 5 * 50
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This new Aladino Corojo Reserva is a beautiful Honduran puro made with 100% corojo tobaccos –the binder, filler and wrapper. The appearance of the cigar caught my attention immediately and drew me right in. The wrapper is a beautiful brown and has a very smooth, rich look. Upon first light, notes of cedar, coffee, earth and some spice are upfront. I also tasted a nice fruit sweetness. The smoke output is intense and the draw and burn are perfect at this point. Into the second third, I am still experiencing creamy cedar notes and coffee notes but also a nice cinnamon note pops in which makes for a very interesting and delicious balance. Chocolate notes and almost a licorice note are spiraling around as well. The spiciness has calmed down – the burn and draw are still spot on. The final third continues with the same notes along with a slight citrus note jumping in. The overall strength definitely goes from a medium to a full body by the end but very smooth and creamy! I was very impressed with this Aladino Corojo Reserva as I have already smoked three!! This smoke will definitely make its way as a staple in my humidor. Definitely a must try. Enjoy. Picked on 05/06/2019
Curtis Yap
TASTE:Spice, Sweetness, Oak, Roasted nut, Coffee
HOBBIES:Smoking excellent cigars, Cooking, Going to new restaurants and bars, Playing badminton, Muay Thai, Always enjoy a good whiskey, scotch or tequila
STRENGTH:All

FAVORITE BRANDS
Illusione "Original Documents"
Illusione Maduro
Davidoff Winston Churchill Late Hour
Davidoff Nicaragua
Arturo Fuente Fuente Opus X
El Gueguense

The Wise Man Maduro Robusto 51/2 * 50
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If you have not tried the Wiseman Maduro Robusto and you are a fan of medium to full-bodied cigars, then you are doing yourself a disservice - this 5 1/2 by 50 is a gem. The cigar is wrapped in Mexican San Andres, with a Corojo binder and Nicaraguan filler, giving this cigar a complex flavor profile. As you smoke the cigar, you will pick up notes of black pepper, some sweetness, nut and earth. The cigar is not overwhelming so it's a nice one to smoke, especially for anyone who is trying a medium to full-bodied blend for the first time. Picked on 04/28/2019
Adam
AGE:39
TASTE:All
HOBBIES:Music, Reading, Art, Nature, Craft Beer, Slacking
STRENGTH:All

FAVORITE BRANDS
Tatuaje Black Label
Liga Privada No. 9
Joya de Nicaragua Antano 1970
Arturo Fuente

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Cornelius & Anthony Senor Esugars Gordo 6 * 60
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Sometimes, one selects a cigar based on its appearance....something about it reaches out, grabs your attention and pulls you in. Other times we select cigars based on familiarity....tried and true. I selected this one, full disclosure, because I am a dog person and this cigar is named after the owners beloved Dachshund. Yep.... it is as simple as that. Moving forward... I am glad that I did! The Senor Esugars is a reddish brown cigar that is packed well, and sports two of my preferred tobaccos as wrapper (Mexican San Andreas) and binder (Connecticut Broadleaf) that are draped over Nicaraguan fillers. It is produced in the La Zona factory. The stick starts off full of spice and zest, yet maintains a creaminess at the same time. The smoke is thick in the mouth and full of flavor.... earth, cinnamon, cocoa, macadamia nut and molasses... perhaps a hint of anise or allspice. As the cigar burns, the spiciness seems to tapper off a bit allowing the other flavors to come to the forefront. I did have to correct the burn once or twice on this one....but the smoking experience was so unique I am inclined to overlook that. If you are looking for something a little different.... I suggest you give one of these a try. I paired mine with a can of Stone "Arrogant Bastard" ale and found it to be an excellent match. Cheers. Picked on 04/21/2019
Michael Diaz-Silveira
AGE:24
TASTE:Wood, Leather, Nut, Maple
HOBBIES:Guitar, Investing, Travel
STRENGTH:Full

FAVORITE BRANDS
Herrera Esteli Habano
Eiroa CBT Maduro
Liga Privada No. 9
Perdomo Double Aged 12 Year Connecticut
CAO Amazon Basin


BONUS
Adrenaline Junkie!
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Onyx Reserve Toro 6 * 50
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At first glance, the Onyx looks like a chocolate treat. Its Broadleaf wrapper is aesthetically pleasing and oily. At first puff I encountered a pleasant nutty taste with hints of espresso. Quickly the cigar produced a sweetness that in my mind took over, but a superb sweetness accenting the espresso. The sweetness lasted pretty much the whole cigar and was quite doting. The ash of the cigar held up and burned quite well. For the money this cigar should be in everyone's portfolio as its different from the usual spicy woodiness of most cigars and will add a nice in between to your tedious routine. Picked on 04/13/2019
michael Perez
TASTE:ALL
HOBBIES:Motocross, fishing , cooking, smoking a good cigar
STRENGTH:Mild to Full

FAVORITE BRANDS
CAO Flathead
Arturo Fuente Hemingway Natural
Padron 1964 Anniversary Natural
Rocky Patel Vintage 2006

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La Galera Habano El Lector Toro 6 * 54
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The Galera Habano El Lector is a great cigar made by Jochy Blanco a 4th generation cigar maker. This Cigar has an Ecuadorian Habano wrapper and has a Corojo binder and Dominican Filler. This cigar has a beautiful golden wrapper with minimal veins. This is a great medium body cigar that is packed with so much flavor. Once I lit the cigar I got notes of wood with some sweetness in the back ground with a mild hint of cinnamon. The second third was very creamy with some sweetness and spice towards the end. The final third of this cigar gave me hints of wood and chocolate notes with a hint of black pepper. This is a great cigar to enjoy that is made by a cigar maker who has a passion for growing tobacco. I strongly recommend this cigar. Enjoy and keep smoking Picked on 04/11/2019
Leonardo Segura
TASTE:Cedar, Dark Chocolate, Coffee, Hydrating/Refreshing, Oaky, Earthy, Creamy
HOBBIES:Golf, Long walks on the beach, Smoking cigars, Traveling, Learning
STRENGTH:Mostly Full, Some Medium

FAVORITE BRANDS
Ambos Mundos Habano
Brick House
La Flor Dominicana Double Ligero
Casa Fernandez Aganorsa Leaf
San Lotano Habano
La Galera Habano

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Alec Bradley Black Market Esteli Robusto 5 * 52
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If you’re looking for a cigar that you can enjoy without scrutiny, look no further than the Alec Bradley Black Market Esteli. This robusto is unapologetically consistent in flavor all throughout. While this lack of complexity might traditionally discourage a cigar connoisseur from picking this stick up, it is not a detrimental quality. This is a valuable characteristic for the smoker looking for a cigar that they can pay little mind to as they relax on a poolside. Furthermore, this stogie also has a peculiar feature in its smoke. The smoke one draws is heavy and lingers on one’s tongue until it is all expelled. This lets one enjoy the rich grassy and earthy flavors this cigar carries to its fullest extent. This is a stick to pick up on your way to an all-inclusive beach resort vacation, where you might want to smoke a cigar with simple good flavors rather than nuanced notes. The Alec Bradley Black Market Esteli Robusto: a cigar for someone with a drink in their hand, on a beach, without a care in the world. Picked on 04/04/2019
George P.
TASTE:All. Except soft
HOBBIES:Smoking good cigars, watching movies, Jazz music, spending time with family
STRENGTH:Medium , Medium to full, Full

FAVORITE BRANDS
New World
Espinosa Habano
CAO Flathead
La Flor Dominicana Limited Edition
Oliva Serie V
Asylum 13 Ogre
La Galera Habano
CLE Prieto

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Kristoff Vengeance 660 6 * 60
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I believe it is hard to bring a cigar back to life once it is off the market. Kristoff has changed my mind completely about that. I present to you the Kristoff Vengeance! This is a great cigar for those looking for a great medium to full-body smoke. The changes they made to this cigar compared to the original are all in the right direction. They gave it a nice, oily Connecticut Broadleaf wrapper. The pigtail cap makes it intriguing also, making it easy to just twist off instead of cutting the cigar in the traditional way (And yes, you still get the same amount of smoke.) They also gave it an Indonesian binder and the mixture of Dominican and Nicaraguan long-fillers. This combination gives it a great, complex taste. You are introduced to some hints of espresso upon the first light. As you get to the half way point of the cigar, a nice hint of creamy cocoa makes its presence known. That combination kept me wanting to smoke more of the cigar and see what else would unfold. Toward the end of the cigar, the espresso is still present, along with the cocoa, with hints of earth and leather making their way in. Overall, very consistent. Anyone searching for a great medium to full-bodied smoke, I will definitely recommend the Kristoff Vengeance. Picked on 03/29/2019
Marianela Mena
TASTE:All
HOBBIES:Reading, running and smoking good cigars
STRENGTH:Medium-Full and Full

FAVORITE BRANDS
Liga Privada T52
Eiroa Classic
Tatuaje Miami Seleccion del Cazador
Aging Room Quattro F55
Ashton VSG
Joya de Nicaragua Antano Dark Corojo

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Flor de Selva Toro 6 * 52
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Maya Selva has been in the market for more than 20 years now. The company is named for its owner, Maya Selva. Maya Selva Cigars has had a presence in Europe for quite some time and has starting to create a fan base in the USA market. I’m not a fan of Connecticut wrappers but this cigar is one of the few ones I love and enjoy the most. The beginning of this cigar is great. Flor de Selva Connecticut Toro filled my palate with a blend of cream, wood, a hint of pepper, and a wonderfull sweetness that makes the cigar flavor rich from the first puff. One can feel the cream and the sweetness on as the cigar burns through the first 2-3 inches, the other notes move into the background. The pepper lingered quite a bit on the tongue but is never too much, just the right amount. For the second third, I found the cedar mixes with the cream notes in the front line. With some almost unnoticed natural tobacco and mild pepper notes in the background, the sweetness is still there but like the perfect companion of the overall flavor. The last third, I would say is my favorite part. The pepper increases a tad and the natural tobacco notes are predominant now along with cedar notes. The burn line continued straight from start to finish. The ash was tight and solid with a beautiful gray color. This cigar fall into the mild to medium range in terms of strength. I found the body of the Flor de Selva Connecticut Toro started out mild-medium-bodied and becomes a solid medium by the second half, keeping that strength until the end. This cigars is flavorful, along with it’s flawless construction guarantees a joyful experience. Picked on 03/18/2019
Rene L.
AGE:32
TASTE:Wood, Earth, Leather
HOBBIES:Guitar, Beer, Sarcasm
STRENGTH:Medium/Full

FAVORITE BRANDS
Padron 1964 Anniversary Maduro
Liga Privada No. 9
Eiroa CBT Maduro
Kristoff GC Signature Series
Tatuaje Miami Seleccion del Cazador

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Liga Privada Unico Serie Nasty Fritas 4 * 52
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It's no secret that Drew Estate is responsible for some of the most acclaimed and sought after premium cigars in the world, and the Liga Privada brand is not only one of them, but one of my personal all-time favorite smokes. And thus, I was extremely excited to light up the new Liga Privada Unico Serie Nasty Fritas. This cone-shaped little stogie has a charmingly rustic look to it, and is part of the renowned Unico line of Drew Estate's catalog, which feature specially selected aged tobacco based largely on the vitola at hand. Eager to begin, I forgoed the cutter and simply twisted off the pigtail cap at the cigar head and started giddily torching the shaggy foot. Immediately, I was greeted with a noticeable yet manageable pepper blast that lasted for the first couple of puffs, that led way to a rich profile consisting of notes of dried earth, leather, molasses, and oak. The slick USA Connecticut Broadleaf wrapper has a beautiful oily sheen to it that hinted at the boldness this cigar was about to provide, and in no way was I disappointed. I would classify the Nasty Fritas as medium to full-bodied during the first two thirds, with it picking up strength closer to the finish line. Underlying pepper remained for the entire duration of the smoke, but expertly so as it never once became overwhelmingly spicy, but 'just right'. The pyramid form factor of the Nasty Fritas contributed to its nearly flawless burn line, and also allowed it to billow out smoke relentlessly (Don't have a chimney in your house? Now you do.) All in all, the Liga Privada Unico Serie Nasty Fritas is a superb addition to the highly-respected Unico line from the mighty Drew Estate, and is perfect for when you want a short-ish smoke that doesn't sacrifice one single bit of flavor. Pair it with a quality single malt scotch to amplify the deliciousness even more! Cheers. Picked on 01/06/2019
Emmanuel Bermudez
TASTE:Earth, cedar, woody, Spicy
HOBBIES:Photography, Music Production, Sampling Wine/Whiskey, Cooking, Art, Nature, Sunbathing, Reading, Meditation
STRENGTH:Mild To Medium

FAVORITE BRANDS
Ambos Mundos No. 1 Habano
Rocky Patel Olde World Corojo
Brick House
Perdomo Double Aged 12 Year Connecticut
My Father

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Ambos Mundos No. 1 Toro Habano 6 * 50
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After building my palate with milder, Connecticut-wrapped cigars, I wanted to expand and develop it further with the next natural step - a Habano wrapper. The Ambos Mundos No. 1 Toro Habano is from Nicaragua, and has a smooth Ecuadorian Habano wrapper along with Nicaraguan binder and filler. After lighting and getting a couple of puffs in, I immediately noticed the aroma... burnt cedar and cinnamon. This complimented the earthy, spicy notes found from the get-go extremely well. Midway through the cigar, the taste took a turn towards the cedar side, while still maintaining the earth and spice throughout, adding some nice complexity. I also have to mention that the draw was perfect, the burn was even from beginning to end, and no relights were needed. I highly recommend this cigar to both new smokers trying to broaden their horizons, and experienced smokers who enjoy a flavorful Habano wrapper. Picked on 11/28/2018