Cigar Aficionado

The Right Smoke for Cuba

What would you bring to Cuba for your first smoke? I always have that “problem” when I go to cigar smokers’ paradise. I like to light a cigar as soon as I arrive on the island, and that normally means at the VIP lounge in the José Martí Airport as I am waiting for my luggage.

How cool is that? Smoking in a cigar in the airport. Wow. And in Havana no less.

Sometimes I run into someone I know on the flight and they offer me a smoke if we both happen to be in VIP. Or maybe a friend of mine will meet me at the lounge and bring something. But usually it’s just my cigars, and I love to light up after more than nine hours in the plane from London or Madrid. It’s relaxing, but also there’s something almost mystical about it. It makes me change gears and immediately become part of the island culture or tempo.

This time I brought a couple of 1998 Trinidad Fundadores. I brought these because they are from the original batch of cigars produced for the launch of the brand in March 1998. I love the long and slender cigar that measures 7 1⁄2 inches long by 40-ring gauge. It is essentially the same cigar as the Cohiba Lanceros but a tiny bit thicker. So it usually draws better.

I love the spicy, tobacco and coffee character of the 1998 Fundadore. It has so much character for a long, slender smoke, and with age, it delivers such finesse and freshness. It keeps your palate clean and satisfied.

Can’t wait to smoke it. Stay tuned for tomorrow when I light it up in Havana and begin my daily blogs and videos from the island.

"The same thing happens to me when I go to Santiago, Dominican Republic. Although there is no smoking (anymore) inside the airport, as soon as I get outside I light up. Mostly, anything from my private brand or La Aurora and Le¿n Jimenes. It sures gets the rythm rolling. Luis." —June 4, 2008 10:28 AM
"I'm just smoking 1998 Fundadores: what a beautiful smoke, really spicy, complex and satisfying. Enjoy your stay in Cuba. Luigi" —June 4, 2008 03:17 AM