Posted by Jeff Oda on September 12, 2018
Do you consider yourself a cigar connoisseur? If so, you probably know that the world's finest cigars hail from Latin American and Caribbean countries like Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Brazil, and Honduras. But did you know that Nicaraguan cigars are arguably the best cigars money can buy?
New to Nicaraguan cigars or simply curious which choice cigars are worth buying from there? In this article, we're covering what makes cigars from Nicaragua better than other options, and offering our take on some of the top cigars on the market.
Of all the premium cigar countries in Central America, Nicaragua is hailed as one of the top countries and growing regions. The country's nutrient-rich volcanic soil and weather make it the ideal climate to grow flavorful, top-quality tobacco.
A decent amount of Nicaragua's tobacco leaves come from Jalapa and Esteli, two fertile valleys that are responsible for producing some of the world's best filler, binder, and wrapper. The area of Condega, which is close to the Nicaraguan-Honduran border, has become a hotspot for tobacco cultivation, and the tobacco grown in the rich soil of the volcanic island of Ometepe has also recently emerged as a vital finishing component in many highly regarded cigars.
Thus, while it is similar to Cuba, another massively popular cigar tobacco country, Nicaragua is composed of several distinct regions with unique soils and minerals, which results in the creation of a special and distinct cigar flavor, unlike any other country.
Now that you know why Nicaragua is a choice country for cigars, you're probably wondering what cigars are worth taking home. Here's a breakdown of the best cigars Nicaragua has to offer.
Padrón 1964 Anniversary Series is one of the most popular hand-rolled cigars in all of Nicaragua. This maduro wrapped version offers rich, full flavors of mocha, spice, toasty cedar and pepper, making it a fantastic cigar to sit back and relax with, especially after a satisfying dinner. Would a bourbon, rum, Scotch, port, or stout to go with it? Yes, all would be a great match for this flavor bomb.
La Mission du L’Atelier is Pete Johnson’s nod to the renowned Bordeaux winery Chateau La Mission Haut-Brion. Although the very dark wrapper hails from San Andrés, Mexico, the rest of the tobacco comes from Nicaragua. Oak, chocolate, spice, dark fruit, and molasses-like sweetness exude from this cigar. True to its inspiration, a rich red wine would be a great complement for this smoke.
Crafted by Jose “Pepin” Garcia in honor of his father, My Father Le Bijou 1922 is a step into what intrigues so many about Nicaraguan cigars. Deep, rich flavors and abundant strength are a hallmark of this line. Sweet coffee, oak, spice, and pepper aren’t shy about making themselves known here. Yes, there’s a reason Cigar Aficionado made it their #1 cigar of 2015.
You can’t go anywhere these days without encountering a cigar made by AJ Fernandez, but that’s only because he is not only a hot commodity in the cigar world, but has earned that distinction by putting out a boatload of great cigars. His knowledge and experience gleaned from his father Ismael, whom he worked with to produce this line, shows in the New World Puro Especial. Earthy sweetness, coffee, oak, pepper, and musk, along with mineral notes play on the palate in this medium-full bodied smoke.
Warped Cigars is a relatively new player on the market, but has quickly earned a slew of accolades for their mostly medium to medium-plus bodied smokes. Most of their offerings are a result of collaboration with the venerable tobacco grower and cigar maker Casa Fernandez, known for their Aganorsa tobacco, and Maestro del Tiempo is one of them. Unlike the previous four cigars mentioned, the flavors are nowhere near as dark, but every bit as much rich and enjoyable. Cedar, spice, honey, and floral notes make for a fantastic medium-plus experience.
La Imperiosa began its life as the wildly acclaimed, limited edition Las Calaveras in 2014. The next year Crowned Heads introduced the same blend in alternate sizes as La Imperiosa. Blended by Jose “Pepin” Garcia and produced at the My Father factory in Nicaragua, La Imperiosa utilizes an Ecuadorian grown Habano Oscuro wrapper surrounding a Nicaraguan binder and filler. The result is an amazing amalgam of cocoa, spice, cedar, pepper, sugar cookies, and dark fruit that never gets overbearing, but simply balances beautifully on the palate.
The last entry here is undoubtedly one of, if not the, best values for cigars on the market. While Dion Giolito has constantly put out a ton of widely acclaimed cigars, this is 4.5x 50 stick coming in at ~$5 (or less), offers so much more than one should expect from such an affordable cigar, it’s kind of crazy. Everyone should have at least a few (or a ton) of these in their humidors.
When it comes to choice cigars, Nicaraguan cigars can't be beaten. This list of cigar options barely scratches the surface of what Nicaragua has to offer. So if you're a true cigar connoisseur, explore every option on this list, and then some!
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