Does Country of Origin Make a Difference in Cigar Tobacco?

tobacco regions mapThe country of origin can be an indicator of the type of cigar you are smoking. But to make a blanket statement such as “All Dominican cigars are mild” would be wildly inaccurate. What we will address here is the general tendencies of tobaccos from different regions; just bear in mind that these are very broad guidelines.

Dominican Republic

This country produces some excellent quality cigar tobaccos, and is home to some of the biggest names in premium cigars (i.e. Arturo Fuente, Macanudo, Montecristo and many more). The overall profile of Dominican tobacco tends to be mild, but this is certainly not true is all circumstances.

Honduras

Honduran tobacco is usually medium to fuller-bodied, and the typical flavor profile tends toward earthy and flinty. Some of the Honduran cigars you may have tried might include Punch, Hoyo de Monterrey, Gispert and Camacho (among many others).

Nicaragua

This country had made huge advances in the quality of their cigars, and, as a result, the popularity of their products as well. Nicaraguan leaf tends to be robust and spicy, with very complex flavors. Brands from Nicaragua include Padron, Joya de Nicaragua and many of the cigars made by Don Pepin Garcia.

Mexico

The popularity of Mexican cigars has waned in recent years, but they still have some excellent tobaccos, such as San Andres maduro for wrappers. Some of the bad rap comes from the harshness of some of the cheaper grades of tobacco. Brands using a significant amount of Mexican tobacco include TeAmo and A. Turrent.

Peru

Peru produces some wonderful, rich and complex tobacco, but it is normally used as a small amount of the overall blend. There’s a lot of body to most Peruvian tobacco, and there’s a smooth spice note without a lot of the harshness found in many heavier cigar leaf. This tobacco is used in a number of cigars, including some of the Montecristo line.

Brazil

Tobacco from Brazil, especially the Mata Fina and Arapiraca varieties are being used in more and more cigars as time goes on. They tend to have rich, toasty and spicy notes, and the maduro versions tend to be outstanding. Cigars containing Brazilian tobacco include CAO Brazilia and Gurkha’s Ancient Warrior. Costa Rica- One leaf in particular, Costa Rican Maron, has become very popular. This tobacco has a terrific nutty toastiness about it, and is used in such brands as St Luis Rey and Mayorga. Expect to see more and more Costa Rican tobacco used in new brands.

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About Russ

Russ Ouellette is the blender/creator of the Hearth & Home series of tobaccos for www.pipesandcigars.com in Bethlehem, PA. He has been a pipe smoker and blender for over 30 years, and enjoys feedback from the pipe smoking public. You can reach Russ at russo@pipesandcigars.com or by calling 1-800-494-9144.