There are cigar smokers, and then there are cigar smokers. Plenty of people enjoy smoking cigars, but it takes an aficionado to truly appreciate the provenance, aroma profile, and pull of a fine cigar. This being the case, they won’t settle for any old stogie.
Sure, they might include a few middle-of-the-road options for their regular smoking sessions, but when they want something really special, that’s when they want a cigar that’s also a work of art.
Where can these cigars be found, you may ask? Some of the cigars on this list can be purchased at most cigar shops, while others may take some online searching to turn up.
Online stores like Renegade Cigars have a wide array of options, and it’ll be much easier to find exactly what you’re looking for compared to browsing a brick-and-mortar store. Regardless of where you buy your cigars, though, there’s no doubt that you’ll be glad of your purchase once you try them for yourself.
#1: Casa Magna Colorado Robusto
As the winner of Cigar Aficionado’s Cigar of the Year in 2008, this cigar is one of those blends that consistently impresses with each new iteration.
It’s the fruit of a collaboration between Plasencia and Quesada, two respected names in the industry. The Colorado Robusto is a stout 5 ½ x 52, made with top-shelf tobacco from Nicaragua. You’ll get a medium-strength smoke, with a mix of cedar, earth, espresso, nuts, pepper, and sweetness.
#2: Arturo Fuente Rare Pink Vintage 1960s Series Sophisticated Hooker
This is a cigar that makes routine appearances on “top 10” lists, which doesn’t surprise anyone who’s tried it before. Arturo Fuente cigars are beloved for their quality and consistency, and this one, in particular, is practically the stuff of legends.
The Ecuadorian wrapper encases fillers and binders from the Dominican Republic, bringing notes of pepper and sweet nuts. All in all, it’s a worthy contender for anyone’s personal top-10 list, thanks to its top-shelf quality and creamy, nutty smoke.
#3: Romeo y Julieta Reserva Real Nicaragua Churchill
Some cigar companies appeal to everyday consumers, while others target higher-end demographics. Romeo y Julieta is a brand that’s never really picked one or the other, and somehow they’ve managed to appeal to both types of consumers in a single cigar.
This Nicaraguan puro is expertly built, nuanced, and complex. You’ll find caramel and cream notes, plus balanced spicy undertones that make this one of the best Romeo y Julieta cigars produced in the last decade.
#4: Padrón 1964 Anniversary Series Principe
You pretty much can’t go wrong with a Padrón cigar. They’re routinely featured in Cigar Aficionado’s yearly Top 10 lists, and they’ve won Cigar of the Year on four separate occasions. This particular cigar, released in 1994, is still widely known as one of the best cigars ever produced.
A Nicaraguan puro that uses 100% aged Nicaraguan tobacco, you’ll get coffee, cinnamon, cream, and milk chocolate notes with every puff. Consistency is one of the cornerstones to success in this industry, and it’s hard to be more consistent than this cigar.
#5: My Father Le Bijou 1922 Churchill
First released in 2011, the My Father Le Bijou was meant to be the sequel to the My Father line. It was blended by Pepin Garcia, the brand’s fearless leader, as an homage to his father.
As the winner of Cigar Aficionado’s #1 Cigar of the Year in 2015, you won’t be disappointed with this one. It’s a Nicaraguan puro that uses an Oscuro wrapper, offering touches of cinnamon, dark chocolate, spice, and leather.
#6: Alec Bradley Black Market Churchill
Until Alec Bradley started making top-shelf cigars with Honduran tobacco, most manufacturers saw them as inferior to Dominican, Nicaraguan, or Cuban tobacco. However, that changed when the brand started releasing luxury cigars made with – you guessed it – Honduran tobaccos.
The Black Market Churchill has become a fan favorite thanks to its enticing blend and creative packaging, and smokers can find it across the globe. It’s made with a Nicaraguan wrapper, plus Panamanian and Honduran filler for a decadent, sweet, and rich smoking experience.
#7: Oliva Serie V Churchill Extra
This iconic cigar has been on aficionados’ radar for over a decade now and shows no signs of slowing down. It’s widely viewed as one of the most impressive full-bodied cigars that have ever been produced, as its strength is forceful without losing balance or complexity.
This cigar is hand-rolled with 100% Nicaraguan tobacco, which includes a sun-grown wrapper. You’ll notice leather and pepper, with a sweet and nutty center that most cigars can only dream of offering.
#8: Hoyo de Monterrey Elegantes
Fans of Cuban cigars are well acquainted with brands like Cohiba and Montecristo, but the pros will also be familiar with the less popular brands, such as Hoyo de Monterrey.
This cigar was released in 2021, and reviewers are saying that it’s one of the brand’s best blends in the last couple of decades. It offers a nuanced medium smoke, with notes of leather, cinnamon, caramel, and nutmeg.
#9: Davidoff Nicaragua Diadema
The brand is known for mellow, high-end cigars, but the Davidoff Nicaragua series changed the game. The Diadema is one of the most popular examples of this new direction towards flavor-heavy blends, with tobacco sweetness and spice that’s centered around a strong nutty aroma.
#10: Rocky Patel Sixty Sixty
Whether you’re talking about the quality of the cigars or the mastery of the man himself, Rocky Patel has only grown better with age.
His anniversary release in 2021 does him credit, with a Mexican San Andres wrapper that imparts a flawless, rich flavor profile with notes of coffee and dark chocolate. A fruity center balances out the blend, together with a nuanced tobacco sweetness.
If you’re a cigar aficionado who’s looking for your next obsession, look no further – it could be right here on this list. There are plenty of cigars out there to try, but if you want the best of the best, these top-shelf smokes will never fail to delight your palate.