Hoyo de Monterrey Epicure de Luxe

Hoyo de Monterrey Epicure de Luxe

Origin : CubaHoyo de Monterrey
Format : Petit Robusto (Magicos)
Size : 115 x 21 mm (4 1/2 x 50)
Released in : 2012
Packaging : box of 10
Hand-Made
Price : ~10 EUR
More info about purchasing Hoyo de Monterrey cigars...

The Hoyo de Monterrey Epicure de Luxe is a Cuban puro released by Habanos S.A. in October of 2012. The cigar was released as a retail exclusive for La Casa del Habano stores, and comes packaged in wooden slide boxes. Each box contains ten stogies. After giving the Hoyo de Monterrey Epicure de Luxe a try, I was very glad I’d picked up a box; just like the H. Upmann Royal Robusto, this LCDH release is a success.

Read the full review of Hoyo de Monterrey Epicure de Luxe...

CheapHumidors.com Contest Winner

CheapHumidors.com Contest Winner

Thanks everyone for participating in the contest sponsored by CheapHumidors.com. The winner of the engraved humidor filled with 10 cigars & gear was randomly selected and it's Kyle Tripp, congrats!

Stay tuned for more contests very soon!

CAO Extreme

CAO Extreme

Origin : Honduras
CAO CigarsFormat : Toro
Size : 6 x 52
Wrapper : Ecuadorian Habano Ligero
Filler : Nicaraguan & Honduran Ligero
Binder : Nicaraguan
Strength : Full
Hand-Made
Price : ~$9 each

Construction

CAO has long been known for its unique blends featuring small batch and specialty tobaccos to create new and interesting smoking experiences. Extreme, the newest line from CAO, features ligero fillers grown in Estelí and La Entrada. The wrapper is a deep brown Ecuadorian Habano ligero leaf. Concealing the majority of the wrapper leaf is a large black and orange band. Underneath the large band, the Ecuadorian Habano Ligero wrapper is dark and oily and smooth with a slightly mottled appearance. The length of the six-inch stick is plump and nicely rolled. There are no noticeable soft spots. The thick cap cuts cleanly using my Colibri V Cutter.

Read the full review of CAO Extreme...

Recluse Draconian

Recluse Draconian

Origin : Dominican RepublicRecluse cigars
Format : Robusto
Size : 5 x 52
Wrapper : Ecuadorian Maduro
Filler : Brazilian Hybrid, Piloto Cubano, Dominican, Iconic Leaf Ligero
Binder : MBC (Proprietary Binder)
Hand-Made
Price : ~$7.5

This pre-release Robusto was sent to me by Iconic Leaf but in no way was my review impacted by this. 2 cigars were provided and both were smoked for this review.

They were sent to me for review last autumn. Given my smoking climate, I let them rest over the winter in my humidor and while these cigars are now available I have finally gotten around to smoking my two samples for the purpose of this review.

Iconic Leaf (Recluse) rolls all of their cigars in the entubado style and all are rolled at their Tabacalera Leyendas Cubanas factory in the Dominican Republic.

More information about the company and their methods can be found in my review of their initial offerings (The Recluse and uniquely-shaped Kanu).

Read the full review of Recluse Draconian...

Contest: Humidor Giveaway with CheapHumidors.com

Cigar Inspector & CheapHumidors.com contest

Hello cigar aficionados! Today we teamed up with our friends from CheapHumidors.com to give you a chance to win an engraved humidor filled with 10 quality cigars (including a Brickhouse, an Undercrown, and an Ortega Serie D), a cutter and a lighter - a great starter's kit or a secondary humidor.

In order to enter, have a look at the widget below. You can get multiple entries by answering cigar-related questions or sharing the contest both on Facebook and Twitter. Just click on one of the buttons below "Enter now" to get started. Good luck!

PS Contest is open to US residents of legal smoking age. The winner will be chosen at random in 10 days.

Cordoba & Morales 19th Hole

Cordoba & Morales 19th Hole

Origin : Nicaragua
Cordoba & Morales cigarsFormat : Toro
Size : 5 1/2 x 54
Wrapper : Ecuadorian Habano Maduro
Filler : Nicaragua
Binder : Nicaragua
Hand-Made
Price : $8 MSRP

Over recent months, the limelight has started to shine on Córdoba & Morales. The boutique cigar brand is operated by Azaires and Emile Mustafa, who were taught how to hand roll fine cigars by their grandmother. Right now, the company only offers a handful of cigar lines, but they appear to be off to an auspicious start. Our own DrFever already reviewed the Family Reserve around one year ago. The Córdoba & Morales 19th Hole, that we are examining today, contains a Nicaraguan binder and filler inside an Ecuadorian Habano Maduro wrapper.

Read the full review of Cordoba & Morales 19th Hole...

Top 10 Cigar Books

This article, initially published in 2009, has been updated in May 2014.

If you’re new to the world of cigars, you may not only be overwhelmed by the number of stogies out there, but also by the number of cigar books. Like cigars themselves, some cigar books are good, some of them are less good and some of them are, let's admit it, almost useless. I've been checking out some books lately and I also asked people around to recommend their favorites, so we came up with this list. Feel free to let us know if we missed some in the comments area. We’ll update the article accordingly!

Disclaimer: links lead directly to the corresponding Amazon pages of the books. For each sale through these links, Amazon gives us a small %. All the affiliate earnings from these sales will be used to hand out gift certificates to the readers. Subscribe not to miss the giveaways!

The Ultimate Cigar Book

The Ultimate Cigar Book

This is the all-time bestseller and considered by many readers in the cigar world to be the definitive guide on the subject. It is indeed quite a nice read, not too simple and not too technical. The author concentrates mostly on non-Cuban cigars. The 2003 edition is quite expensive, but you can get the old one cheap (check the used prices in particular if you want to save money).

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Cigars: Revised & Updated

Cigars: Revised & Updated

Written by a renowned cigar expert, Vahé Gérard, Cigars: Revised & Updated deals with the history and traditions of cigars. There are some great photographs made by Matthieu Prier. Cigars: Revised & Updated concentrates mostly on Cuban cigars. Unfortunately, this one is pretty expensive, but it makes a great coffee table book for any aficionado who is looking for a great collector’s item.

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The Complete Idiot's Guide to Cigars

The Complete Idiot's Guide to Cigars

This is, in our opinion, the best book for newbies. It is not an expensive title, unlike some of the other books we’ve listed here. If you have more than one year experience in cigar smoking, then you probably won't learn much from this read, but if you're just getting started, there's a ton of valuable information. Extremely easy to read and understand, it will make a nice gift.

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The Illustrated History of Cigars

The Illustrated History of Cigars

This appears to be the best all-around coffee-table book about cigars. Thorough explanations, interesting history, great illustrations - we should also mention the quality translation. The authors seem to overestimate Cuban cigars, but we'll pardon them. The price isn’t bad either.

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Playboy: The Book of Cigars

Playboy: The Book of Cigars

This coffee table book includes a lot of information about the history of cigars, how they are made, and tips for cutting and smoking. Sprinkled with photos of celebrities and Playboy ladies, this book offers a fun look at the cigar world and a nostalgic tone.

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The Complete Guide to Cigars

The Complete Guide to Cigars

This hardcover book offers a comprehensive look at the history of cigars and a detailed directory of well-established premium brands. A lot of the information is focused on New World settlement history, so if you are a history buff, this one’s for you. You will also learn how cigars are made step by step from start to finish, and there is some good general advice on choosing cigars for beginners.

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Nat Sherman's Passion for Cigars

Nat Sherman's Passion for Cigars

This one was a recommendation from one of our readers. One of the most renowned cigar makers/shop owners in the world describes his passion for cigars in a simple, accessible, un-snobbish manner. A very enjoyable read that provides inside insights into the cigar industry and also includes some great graphics.

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Tobakkonacht - The Antismoking Endgame

Tobakkonacht - The Antismoking Endgame

Tobakkonacht is a must-read for any cigar aficionado concerned with all the hatred his or her hobby receives all over the world. The book explains how statistical data is misused to promote smoking bans, who benefits from this, and what the real dangers of tobacco are. You can read our full review of Tobakkonacht here.

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Blowing Smoke: Being a Compendium of Amusing Anecdotes, Witty Ripostes, and Lengthy Literary Passages on the Glories of the Cigar

Blowing Smoke: Being a Compendium of Amusing Anecdotes, Witty Ripostes, and Lengthy Literary Passages on the Glories of the Cigar

Blowing Smoke is a nice collection of anecdotes, quotes and stories about cigars. Suitable for smokers and non-smokers alike, this little book is a good addition to your library.

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Cigar Dossier

Cigar Dossier

This is not actually a “book” in the standard sense. It is probably the best pre-filled cigar journal. If you are too lazy to make one, this hardcover, stylish book will help you record your experiences with different cigars. It is extremely easy to use and has enough pages to store hundreds of reviews. This is an excellent choice if you want to easily keep track of the cigars you’ve smoked, brands, tobacco leaves, and notes you have enjoyed, and start discovering patterns in your tastes.

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Cigar Guide

Bonus: Cigar Guide

Again, this is not a book, but a Quick Reference Guide (if you were in school at all recently, you may remember purchasing some of these for calculus, chemistry, and other classes that required a lot of formulas or memorization). It’s a laminated sheet which includes a summary of information on the front and back which is perfect for a novice to check while visiting the tobacconist. As one laminated sheet, it is easy to carry, and can help a newbie make informed decisions about purchases.

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As you can see, we didn't include any "cigar encyclopedias" in our list (though several books on this list contain similar sections). There are several reasons for this - first of all, there are so many released and discontinued cigars each year that it is really impossible to have a very reliable printed resource that doesn’t just go out of date again a year later. Secondly, this information (most of it) can be easily found online in an up-to-date form.

I hope you enjoyed this selection. Don't forget to let us know about your favorite cigar books!

Cult Ometepe

Cult Ometepe

Origin : Nicaragua
Format : Robusto GrandeCult Cigars
Size : 5.5 x 54
Wrapper : Ecuadorian Habano
Filler : Ometepe
Binder : Ometepe
Strength : Medium to Full
Hand-Made
Price : $8.75
More info about purchasing Cult Ometepe...

Construction

Painstakingly created in Esteli, Nicaragua by the owner of Quality Importers, the Cult brand is a labor of love. Since its launch in the beginning of 2013, the Cult brand has been earning mixed reviews from cigar lovers all over the world. The Cult Ometepe is swaddled in a dark, ruddy colored Ecuadorian Habano leaf. The wrapper leaf is veiny and rough, giving the Ometepe a desultory look. The five-and-a-half inch long stick is banded with a drab brown and white “Cult” band. All in all, the Cult Ometepe is not a stick that would catch my attention on the shelf of a brick and mortar.

Read the full review of Cult Ometepe...

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