WHAT IS THE CLOSEST CIGAR TO A CUBAN?
“Eating and sleeping are the only activities that should be allowed to interrupt a man’s enjoyment of his cigar.”
— Mark Twain
Because Cuban cigars are not legal to purchase or smoke in certain parts of the world, many cigar aficionados turn to other, similar brands and flavors. The very unique flavors of a Cuban cigar can be difficult for blenders to duplicate, making the quest for a similar product quite difficult when Cuban leaves are not being used to create the cigar. Although there is no cigar that is quite as good as a Cuban, there are some out there that come in a close second.
DIFFERENT CIGARS OFFER DIFFERENT FLAVORS
Judging the similarities between different types of cigars such as Cubans, Hondurans, Nicaraguans and Dominicans is not easy. Because each of these cigar types come from a different part of the world, they are very different in texture, flavor and quality. One of the best ways to find out what you like and what you find to be closest cigar to a Cuban is to try out different brands yourself. Not only does this allow you to refine your tastes, but it provides you with a new and exciting experience each time that you open a different wrapper. Cigar enthusiasts long for the thrill of trying new brands and flavors on occasion.
CUBAN CIGARS VERSUS NICARAGUAN CIGARS
In most instances, the closest premium cigar is terms of quality and flavor to a Cuban are Nicaraguans. Nicaraguan cigars are easier to acquire and are very common to see as the standard cigar in America. This is partially because the location of Nicaragua is convenient for distributing and is home to several valleys, including the Condega, Estelí and Jalapa valleys, in which the soil and climate is said to be the most similar to those found in Cuba. Although similar, these cigars still use tobacco from a variety of different countries, whereas Cuban cigars only use internally produced tobacco, making them one-of-a-kind.
MACARIO AND HUMBERTO CASILLAS CIGARS
If you’re truly looking for the closest thing to a Cuban cigar in the United States, there’s no better place to shop than in Sacramento, Calif., at a small shop owned by Macario and Humberto Casillas. This Cuban father-and-son team make Churchills, Coronas and Torpedos on an everyday basis. From the judging and blending of the tobacco leaves to the rolling and packaging, each step is completely done by hand for the most authentic alternative to Cubans. Each day, it is common to roll around 1,000 cigars, which are blended with tobacco from countries such as Nicaragua, Mexico and the Dominican Republic. At just $2.50 for each cigar, enthusiasts will find a great bargain at this family-owned shop that provides them with a truly flavorful, high-quality cigar that is about as good as it gets when compared to Cubans.