As a cigar enthusiast, we’ve been blessed with many years of new and exciting releases. Sometimes there are so many new releases that we forget about a truly remarkable cigar that dropped earlier in the same year, much less in previous years.
For this reason, I’d like to look back on a few cigars of years past that still hold their own. These cigars are definitely worthy of contending for space in a modern humidor – and they’re also iconic blends that every enthusiast should try at least once.
Considered one of the best value propositions in the cigar industry for years, Perdomo’s Lot 23 utilizes binder and filler tobaccos exclusively from a specific plot of land (Lot 23) cultivated by the Perdomo family. Lot 23 is one of the most consistent cigars on the market today, hitting the same strides now that I remember from over a decade ago.
It’s hard to imagine that this cigar was only released nationwide three and a half years ago, but once it landed Flor de las Antillas Maduro became an instant classic. The recipe was simple: take another classic like My Father’s Flor de las Antillas and amp it up with stronger filler tobaccos to accommodate a darker, maduro Ecuadorian Habano wrapper. Not every blend needs to be completely reinvented, and a more intense Flor de las Antillas is exactly what this cigar enthusiast never knew he needed until it was in my humidor.
In a time where new methodologies and ideas can be hit and miss, it’s refreshing to smoke an Ashton VSG that always delivers the goods. It’s bold where it should be, charming where it should be, and is crafted with the impeccable construction that we’ve come to expect from the Fuente family. I’ve heard it discussed as a Dirtier ESG, and I think that’s spot on: it’s a little rowdier than the ESG in a delightful way that imparts more character and personality.
One of the cigar world’s most favored sons, the Padron Classic can be found in humidors that have just recently been commissioned to humidors that have serviced cigars for decades. What the collector and new cigar enthusiast recognize immediately is the sheer potential of this cigar! It’s unassuming, amazingly consistent, and for less than $9 will age into something truly incredible in only 18-24 months. You’d be hard-pressed to name a cigar that could emerge from a Two-Year Humidor Challenge any better in this price range, and yet it’s entirely enjoyable with minimal rest.
Oddly enough, Drew Estate’s Undercrown Corona Viva blend isn’t a good representation of the Undercrown line overall. This blend was tweaked significantly, deterring from the earth and pepper scene that Undercrown is mostly known for. In Corona Viva, we experience a lot more finesse and subtlety, giving it a sophisticated experience that shines in the entire Liga Privada series. In fact, the Undercrown Corona Viva still remains my absolute favorite cigar from Drew Estate to date.