The Best Cigars of the Year
Posted: Oct 4, 2007 3:15pm ET
I’m a happy man. My humidor is full of great cigars and I have to smoke them all.
I test cigars all the time here at Cigar Aficionado, but with each test I have no idea if the cigars I’m testing are going to be great, good, bad or absolutely awful. But this test is different.
This is the test for our Top Cigars of the Year, a ranking we publish every January. We assemble the best-scoring cigars from a year’s worth of Cigar Aficionado magazines and Cigar Insider newsletters, remove duplicates (we only choose the best of each brand) and then begin testing them again. Our tasting coordinator, Greg Mottola, gets the cigars, chooses and order and a code, removes the cigar bands and replaces them with file labels marked TT1, TT2, etc. He then passes them out to the tasting panel, in batches. Every cigar is a winner already, but now it’s time to see which are truly the best.
Last year I likened the tasting process to a tournament of champions. The ultimate winner was a phenomenal smoke, a Bolivar Royal Corona from Cuba. In a very close second place was the Coronado by La Flor Double Corona from the Dominican Republic.
This is the best test smoking I do all year. There aren’t any dogs here. The question is, just how good are the best of this batch?
So far I’ve had some great smokes, but I don’t know what they are. I haven’t received the whole batch: Greg is keeping some in reserve, and we’ll be adding more if and when cigars in upcoming Cigar Insiders score high enough to justify their inclusion in the Top 25 test.
So I have a lot of smoking to do in the next few weeks. But don’t feel so sorry for me.
[Note: this blog was originally posted last week, but due to a software switchover it was deleted—along with several comments that had been made—and needed to be reposted. We apologize for the inconvenience.]
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