It is time for a Top Five Habanos Cigar of the Year list for Habanos Critic and What Embargo. I wanted to keep the list short, as truly you could add any handmade Habanos to my list, as they all are made with superior tobacco. So for this list, I included cigars that were reviewed on Habanos Critic, that I personally reviewed. Granted, you could easily add a Behike to the list, but I wanted to keep this list somewhat realistic, keep to cigars I reviewed, and stay true to the information readily available on Habanoscritic.com.
1. Hector Luis Prieto Farm Roll August 2014: Reminiscent of old school Upmann flavors, this farm roll was both mild, yet bold in flavor, bringing the flavors of the Pinar Del Rio region to the palate. This was the best of the custom and farm rolls I smoked in 2014 hands down, and worthy of long term aging.
2. H Upmann Connoisseur 1 2008: As a lover of all things Upmann, I was late to the party when it came to the Upmann Connoisseur 1. However, I joined the party, and now am a loyal follower. The 2008 version is a fantastic cigar, and for the money makes it hard to chase RE and EL releases. The Connoisseur 1 is arguably the best Upmann blend in terms of price to flavor value.
3. Hoyo de Monterrey Epicure No 2 2011: Being a fan of the Epicure Especial, the No 2 hit me be surprise, as a bit milder version of a personal favorite. Being a huge mild fan, I gravitated to the blend naturally, and the complexity sealed the deal.
4. Saint Luis Rey Regios (GAT JUL13): Talk about a surprise changeup that rocked my palate. Spice, nuts, coca, and rich flavors abound. I loved this cigar. If you can find them from 2013, buy them.
5. Ramon Allones Small Club Corona 2012: Another cigar I was late to the party on, and made up for. Honey, tea, earth, and signature Ramon Allones flavors in a small package knocked me on my feet. Multiple box buy here, and I see why so many folks freak out over this quick cigar.
Honorable mention: Por Larranaga Encantos, Juan Lopez No 1, Quai D’Orsay Coronas Claro. In other words, I just have not bought boxes of those yet.
Oddly enough, I did not notice until I posted this, that three of the cigars are robusto size. I find that a bit interesting, as for quite some time I was not a fan of many robusto or hermoso 4 sizes. Just goes to show how taste changes over time, or maybe I just got bored with all my old go to Habanos. Stay tuned for our show with Tuna, Surgeon, and myself this Saturday!