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Top 10 Blind Reviewed Cigars of 2019

Top 10 Blind Reviewed Cigars of 2019

Every couple months, we send out 8-10 cigars to our Blind Review Panel.  They send their unfiltered and uncut thoughts on one cigar each week, and we combine them for a comprehensive review every Friday. As of today, we haven’t missed a Friday in almost two and a half years! 

  • You can review the 2018 Top 10 Blind Reviews here
  • You can read our interview with the Blind Review Panel here
  • You can read about some behind-the-scenes info on the process here

Below is a compilation of the Top 10 Cigars that they reviewed blind in 2019.  

We hope you enjoy this process as much as we do!

#10 Davidoff Especialies 7

 

Top 10 Blind Reviewed Cigars of 2019: Davidoff Robusto Real Especiales 7

California: Fiver

Wisconsin: Fiver

Oregon: Box

If You Like That, You Might Like This: Coffee cake. 

Quote from the Review: “Moving into the middle of the smoke, still getting floral up front with a nice creamy texture along with muted sourdough bread and that same red pepper flake spiciness.  The spiciness is very complimenting and not distracting at all.  Also, bountiful smoke and perfection in construction.”

 

#9 Aganorsa Leaf Signature Selección Toro 

Top 10 Blind Cigar Reviews of 2019: Aganorsa Leaf Signature Selection

California: Fiver

Wisconsin: Box

Oregon: Fiver

If You Like That, You Might Like This: Relaxing to some cool jazz.

Quote from the Review: “At its core, it was like a latte. And it had all sorts of other flavors going in and out of the profile: bread, cream, caramel, pepper, spice, hazelnut, leather, and a sweetness that reminded me of Werther’s candy (don't tell me your grandparents didn't have these when you went to visit).”

 

#8 Dunbarton Tobacco & Trust Sin Compromiso Espada Estoque

Top 10 Blind Reviewed Cigars of 2019: DTT Sin Compromiso

California: Box

Wisconsin: Single

Oregon: Box

If You Like That, You Might Like This: Sitting in front of a roaring fireplace during a thunderstorm.

Quote from the Review: “Lighting the cigar and only one initial impression: wow!  Leather, cream, hazelnuts, coffee, tobacco, and a mild, chalky cocoa all make up an interesting first layer of flavors. The smoke is heavy, and the retro-hale holds notes of coffee, bitter chocolate, black tea, and pepper spice.”

 

#7 Jas Sum Kral Toothpick 2.0 Maduro 

Top 10 Blind Cigar Reviews of 2019: JSK Toothpick 2.0 Maduro

California: Single

Wisconsin: Box

Oregon: Box

If You Like That, You Might Like This: Unrefined conversation about the latest UFC fight.

Quote from the Review: “Spice, earth, cocoa, a BBQ meatiness, caramel, bread, cinnamon, walnut, and vanilla make up the flavor profile in a dance of delicious flavor combinations.”

 

#6 JRE Tobacco Aladino Cazador

Top 10 Blind Cigar Reviews of 2019: JRE Aladino Cazador

California: Single

Wisconsin: Box

Oregon:  Box

If You Like That, You Might Like This: Contemplating your next cigar purchase.

Quote from the Review: “Vanilla, fresh oak, tart fruitiness, and a creamy texture start things out handsomely.  There’s a slight sweetness lingering in the mix as well as it finishes. The retro hale is all cinnamon raisin cookies, creamy coffee, hints at toffee and some white pepper.”

 

#5 Patina Connecticut Churchill 

Top 10 Blind Cigar Reviews of 2019: Patina Connecticut Churchill

California: Fiver

Wisconsin: Box

Oregon: Box 

If You Like That, You Might Like This: If you like 'em mild and balanced, but with a little something extra.

Quote from the Review: “Leather, mild honey and oak, floral highlights and just a bit of pepper spice lead the way.  Getting on and off again notes of butter toffee too... damn man.  It’s legit.”

 

#4 Balmoral Añejo Nicaragua XO Rothschild Masivo

Top 10 Blind Cigar Reviews of 2019: Balmoral Añejo Nicaragua XO

California: Fiver

Wisconsin: Box

Oregon: Box

If You Like That, You Might Like This: Gingerbread cookies.

Quote from the Review: “This cigar brought creamy sweetness and notes of wood, earth, cocoa, cinnamon, brown sugar, and gingerbread. A bit of spice complemented the profile nicely. I struggle a bit to describe the retro hale, but 'buttery cinnamon' is pretty close.” 

 

#3 PSyKo 7 Nicaragua Robusto

Top 10 Blind Cigar Reviews of 2019: PSyKo SEVEN Nicaragua

California: Fiver

Wisconsin: Box

Oregon: Box

If You Like That, You Might Like This: Finding out a reserved coworker has a great singing voice.

Quote from the Review: “This cigar starts with wood, cinnamon, and spicy red pepper.  Lemon and an herb that I can't quite place show up out of left field and roll with a gourmet tea type of vibe.  I'm interested what tobacco was used in this cigar because the profile is very different from what I usually smoke.  Interest piqued.”

 

#2 Foundation Cigars Highclere Castle Victorian Corona

Top 10 Blind Cigar Reviews of 2019: Highclere Castle Victorian

California: Fiver

Wisconsin: Box

Oregon: Box

If You Like That, You Might Like This: Carefree days with no demands.

Quote from the Review: “I found it to be interesting, enjoyable, and balanced. The draw, burn, rate of combustion - everything to do with the construction - was flawless.”

 

#1 United Cigars Atabey Ritos

Top 10 Blind Cigar Reviews of 2019: Atabey

California: Box

Wisconsin: Box

Oregon: Box

If You Like That, You Might Like This: Royal Flush hands on the flop.

Quote from the Review: “Two inches down and the predominant flavor shifts to nuttiness while still maintaining its caramel sweetness and creaminess.  This dude at the lounge just sat down next to me and my smoke is literally shrouding his face like Mount Sinai and I don't think he cares.  I know I wouldn't; this stick is so good he should be thanking me.”

 

A few observations and a recap: 

Last year, the Top 10 averaged out to just $11.49 per cigar.  This year, the average increased to $14.87 per cigar.  Taking a quick glance at what was reviewed, I don’t feel like we sent a significant difference in MSRP value for reviews if you subtract the $90 Cohiba Spectre from the equation, which ultimately didn’t make the list anyway.  Maybe there’s correlation somewhere… maybe not.  And maybe I’m wrong about the gut-shot MSRP difference and should work out all the math. 

2019 was also the first year to see the Triple Box recommendation!  Last year, we wondered if 2019 would be the year – and voila!  It’s come to pass.  So far, Atabey is the only cigar to be awarded that honor.  If my math is correct, there were only five cigars that came close with four of them having been reviewed in 2019.  The other was last year’s Blind Cigar of the Year, My Father’s La Gran Oferta. 

This means that 2019 received more consensus than previous years, with less divergence from a single reviewer.  A typical score from our 2018 Top 10 Blind Reviews list held two box recommendations with one single recommendation.  We’ve always assumed that this reflects on how different each reviewer is: one man’s treasure and all that.  Over two years’ worth of reviews is still a small data point, but it seems that the cigars from the 2019 list might be more well-rounded.  Or maybe our panel’s palates have shifted over time to become more aligned. 

Also, this year is spread out!  No one brand had two cigars make the list, unlike 2018 with two brands each representing with two cigars.  In fact, I don’t think even a single factory has two cigars on this list. Neat! 

Top 10 Blind Reviewed Cigars of 2019 Pack

 

View our Top 10 Blind Reviews Pack

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Comments
1/6/2020 11:31 AM
The Espada Estoque was definitely one of my favorites from 2019! JSK Toothpick didn't do much for me unfortunately. The Aganorsa was delicious though!