Some of you may have a special retreat you can go to during the colder months of the year, when you can enjoy a cigar undisturbed by the weather. But many of us have to brave the cold to enjoy a good smoke; with summer coming on, we’re free to enjoy those cigars in the great outdoors. We wanted to share a few cigars for your consideration for those long summer afternoons and evenings ahead.
Setting the Table
For those who might be worried about the heat of a cigar against the backdrop of rising temperatures, a smart way to take the edge off the heat of a smoke would be to enjoy a cool gazpacho, some olives, or smoked fish. For those who prefer to dive right in, remember that burgers, steak, and barbecue pair best with a robust cigar. Whichever route you take, you’ll often find a cigar is the perfect way to finish a summertime meal.
Punch Signature. This is a refresh of a classic and well-known brand. The wrapper tobacco is grown in a volcanic province of Ecuador, which imparts a sweet and spicy flavor. It has a Nicaraguan binder and a Nicaraguan and Dominican blend. It’s a full-bodied smoke and would pair well with a bourbon.
Camacho Powerband. The name might sound a bit technical, but don’t be scared off. The “powerband” just refers to a proprietary technique for bunching the tobacco that maximizes airflow: the makers wanted to make a cigar with a consistent feel and taste from start to finish. With an Ecuadorian wrapper, a Mexican binder, and filler from Nicaragua, Honduras, and the DR, you’d expect a complex smoke, and this delivers.
Liga Privada #9. What do people who own cigar plantations do? They occasionally make cigars just for themselves, not for sale to the public. Such was the case for the Liga Privada #9: the makers had originally destined these smokes for their private humidors, but word got out and they do a limited production. These smokes are made from seven different tobaccos, with a wrapper that is hand fermented for 18 months. The finished cigars are aged for at least 12 months before being released to dealers. A Connecticut wrapper also means this cigar is rich without being harsh.
Joya Red. Joya de Nicaragua is a very well known house in Nicaragua, and this particular cigar is a puro: 100% Nicaraguan in wrapper, binder, and filler, which means you get a lot of those flavors associated with that country’s tobacco: nuts, earth, toast, spice. They use a milder leaf to this is a great smoke for someone new to cigars and cigar smoking, but is also an enjoyable smoke for the seasoned cigar lover who wants to get to know Nicaraguan tobacco a bit more. It pairs very well with a dark rum or a red pale ale.
Rocky Patel 20th Anniversary. Just north of Nicaragua is Honduras, which provides the wrapper and binder for this full-bodied smoke. It’s got a Honduran/Nicaraguan filler and you’ll get notes of espresso, chocolate, cedar, pepper, and leather, among others, as you enjoy it. Don’t be intimidated by all the flavors this one features: remember that the key part of enjoying a cigar is that you enjoy it, not just that it gets great reviews.
Have some favorites you’d add to this list? Share them in the comments below!