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Connoisseur's Corner

Connoisseur's Corner: Well-Aged Cubans

(From the February 2010 issue of Cigar Aficionado) This special tasting of well-aged Cuban cigars led to a quartet of scores in the classic range, 95 points or higher on our 100-point scale. The best of the bunch was a 1991 Cohiba Robusto, a smoke bursting with flavor that editor and publisher Marvin R. Shanken dubbed “near perfect.” A 1993 Monte 2, a quite dependable Cuban for those who age their smokes, was in its prime, scoring 98 points. Thick Cuban cigars such as robustos and torpedos age quite well. A fat Juan Lopez Seleccion No. 2 from 1994 scored 96 points and had considerable power after more than 15 years of aging, and a ’94 Ramon Allones Specially Selected (a robusto) was also vibrant and powerful. A thinner lonsdale rolled in the same year, the La Gloria Cubana Medaille D’Or No. 2, seems to have peaked. It scored 93 points.

99 points

Cohiba Robusto (1991)

A reminder of how great Cuban cigars can be. This cigar is loaded with rich, succulent tobacco flavors that end up in chocolate and nutmeg notes. It is nearly perfect. —Marvin R. Shanken
98 points

Montecristo No. 2 (1993)

Every so often, I like to smoke one of my older Monte 2s. What else is there to say? This is one of Cuba’s benchmarks and it was at its best: highly textured, with wood chip and cinnamon notes. Given its age, it is still quite powerful. —Marvin R. Shanken
96 points

Juan Lopez Seleccion no. 2 (1994)

From a cabinet of 25, this is one of the unsung cigars of Cuba. There are pepper and cedar notes on the attack, and then a nice core of leathery and earthy flavors on the palate through the finish. It has perfect balance, but remains quite strong. —Gordon Mott
95 points

Ramon Allones White Ash No. 1 (1956)

At over a half a century old, this beautiful little cigar is going strong. It smells like Indian tea with light tobacco and cream. Similar flavors recur on the palate. Delicious and classy. —James Suckling
94 points

Ramon Allones Specially Selected (1994)

Very spicy and powerful smoke with loads of espresso and tobacco character that turns to bark. Full and rich with lots of Chinese tea, nut and tobacco flavors. —James Suckling
93 points

La Gloria Cubana Medaille d’Or No. 2 (1994)

This cigar comes from a great vintage and is beginning to show its age. Some cedar notes appear on the palate, with notes of tea and dry leather on the finish. A pleasant, medium-bodied cigar that should be smoked now. —Gordon Mott
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