Robusto Cigar Babe's Top 10 Cigars of 2015

So many cigars, so little time! First off, I'd like to thank all the cigar companies who graciously sent cigar samples to smoke. For the most part, I can find enjoyment in most every cigar I smoke. The best part is even if I don't review the cigars on Twitter or the blog, I talk about every cigar to the Meetup Groups I attend, Cigar Parties I organize, talks at cigar events, etc.

Also a big TY to the managers and owners of all of the cigar lounges I frequent in the TriState area as well as on Twitter: You guys/gals really know what customer service is and I'm so grateful to know you.

If you aren't on Twitter or Instagram or Facebook you are missing a whole world of knowledge and friendships in the cigar world! Just get on and start following people and chatting with them. I've learned so much from all the magazine and professional reviewers online as well as the cigar company owners, sales reps, marketing people, radio shows, cigar lounges, and other bloggers. We started #SundayCigarHerf on Twitter because it's the best place to LEARN how to taste cigars.

Why did I do a Top 25 Cigar List? Overkill, nah, it's just that I have smoked so many good sticks in 2015.  I could go on and on with companies like Camacho, La Aurora, Joya De Nicaragua, Jordon Alexander, Sindicato, Virtuoso, Arturo Fuente, LFD, and so many more ! 

My Top 5 Favorite Cigars: I've smoked more than 20 of each of the cigars. They are consistently my go-to cigars for full flavors & pure satisfaction.

My Top 6-12 Cigars are worth the hunt. These cigars are on my mind & have bewitched my senses.

My Top 13-25 Cigars are delicious sticks that are constantly being replenished in my humi.

My Top 10 Cigars of 2015

1. Oliva Series V Melanio Maduro

Consistently delicious, completely delectable and sumptuous smoking experience. Well, you know how I feel about Melanio Maduro. This is pure luv !

2. Camacho Barrel Aged

I know this will sound weird to my cigar friends but the Barrel Aged cigar flavors are as close as you can get to an infused cigar without it being one. The story I read about how this cigar was blended intrigued me so much, I had to try it. Love the wide dimensions of flavors, smooth and creamy smoking experience with a touch of bourbon-soaked wood taste and smell. Delish! Buy 1 and join us for #SundayCigarHerf in the coming months.

3.  Las Cumbres Tabaco "Senorial Maduro"

The moment I knew I loved the Senorial cigar, I was waiting for the Maduro to appear. It's a really good cigar blended by Jose Blanco whose reputation in the cigar industry speaks volumes. I can't get enough of this cigar and I had the opportunity to introduce it to many friends at lounges and on Twitter. Supremo ! Boxworthy! Tune into #SundayCigarHerf in coming months to herf this LIVE online.

4. Ashton Symmetry

I first became intrigued by the cigar because @cigarzonave store tweeted about it and then I read about it in Cigar Aficionado Magazine. It looked and sounded like it was in my wheelhouse. I'm really high on Ecuador Habano wrappers lately. The Symmetry is beyond great! Loved it so much I bought a box after smoking my first Symmetry. It's underrated in my opinion. I think the ESG gets more play, but this is truly a great smoke. YUMSymmetry !

5. Las Cumbres Tabaco "Freyja"

Simply it's a cigar that continues to change and delight with every puff I take. The range of flavors blended into Freyja makes a great pairing for coffee, whisky, craft beer, and even Coney Island Rootbeer! Completely Delish ! See full review on the site.

6. Oliva Serie V (also Maduro Especial)

I know! How could this NOT be in the Top 5 ! I hear your thoughts believe me. I love it. I really really do. But lately, hmmmmm, I'm just craving a less full strength. Don't get me wrong, Oliva Serie V is still my FIRST TRUE LOVE, and you never forget your first. Absolutely lovely, dark and handsome smoke. Wait ... maybe this should be #5 part 2 ... You know what I'm talking about !

7. Punch Rare Corojo
Such a satisfying smoke. My #SundayCigarHerf co-host @HN_JAD turned me onto it during a planned meetup of co-hosts and Twitter friends during #Houston2015. From the first few puffs, I was hooked. Now every time I go to a lounge I look for it. If I could find it more, it might have ended up in the Top 5. Really, really great stick !

8. American Kick Ass (AKA) Nth Degree Cigar

Another cigar company that @HN_JAD got me to try and love is AKA Cigars. I think last year my fave from AKA was the Hybrid. I still love it, but it's the Nth Degree this year that seems to be the one I reach for. It might be the captivating smoky scent or the complexity of the coffee, chocolate and creaminess that makes me want more. Made in the Davidoff Factory, this cigar is packed with top shelf tobacco. So Damn Good ...

9  MBombay Kesara Nikka
So, here's the deal. Sometimes I want lighter strength but still full flavor. I've been searching a long time for a cigar like this and Nikka just does it for me. I first became intrigued by @CigarzonAve posting pics on Twitter. Then Mel from @Mbombaycigars graciously sent me some to try. I took the Kesara Nikka with me to a party and WOW, everyone wanted to know what smelled so good. Plus, the BAND is so beautiful, I feel it's attractive to women and men!  I love this cigar and really need to buy more of it. This cigar is Container Worthy ! Yes, I would have said Boxworthy but it's sold in these really cool containers. Innovative and delicious!

10.  1502 Ruby

I've loved the Ruby since it was first introduced to me by #SundayCigarHerf co-host @CigarChairman on Twitter. Love it. But sometimes I can't decide whether I want the Ruby or the Black Gold. Different but equally delish. Company owner and blender Enrique is also a crazy cool sort of guy who owns the most colorful wardrobe. That's the way I think of this cigar, as an expression of Enrique's personality -- fun, unique and talented. It's a very satisfying cigar!

Thanks for reading!

Well, that's all of it. Were you surprised at my Top 10 picks? If you follow me on Twitter, IG or take part in our #SundayCigarHerf, you probably realize what I really enjoy smoking. I look forward to hearing your reactions and tasting notes about these cigars.

Have an amazing 2016 filled with LONG ASHES, delectable CIGARS, lots of FRIENDS on and off line, & a PROFITABLE working year so you can afford all these great sticks !

Robusto Cigar Babe


Robusto Cigar Babe's Top 11-25 Cigar Faves of 2015

So many cigars, so little time!

Why did I do a Top 25 Cigar List?
It's because I have smoked so many good sticks in 2015 and I could go on and on  adding to this list with companies like Camacho, La Aurora, Joya De Nicaragua, Jordon Alexander, Sindicato, Arturo Fuente, LFD, and so many more ! Plus, this list doesn't even include house brands by some of my favorite cigar lounges like Santana Cigars in Lefforts Garden, Brooklyn (great owners!) or Oro Cubano Lounge in Vineland, NJ (a swanky lounge), or the much anticipated Martinez Cigars in New York City.

Here is how My List is separated: 
My Top 5 Favorite Cigars are comprised of sticks that I've smoked more than 20 of each of the cigars. They are consistently my go-to cigars for full flavors & pure satisfaction.  See the Top 10 list next week.
My Top 6-12 Cigars are worth the hunt. These cigars are on my mind & have bewitched my senses.

My Top 13-25 Cigars are delicious sticks that are constantly being replenished in my humi.

Here are my Top 11 - 25 Cigars of 2015

11. Curivari Buenaventura BV560

As you can tell I get a lot of my cigar tips and cravings from friends and reviewers on Twitter. This little yummy is from @HN_JAD. This cigar tastes as close to enjoying a cookie as you can get. The graham cracker taste is very distinct and enjoyable. Who doesn't like Cookies!

12. Davidoff Cigarz on the Avenue 20th Anniversary blend

This cigar was graciously gifted by @CigarzonAve to try along with a Davidoff The Artist, which is also very delicious. But the Cigarz on the Avenue 20th Anniversary blend is smooth and rich in flavors. So good and only available at this shop in Florida. They deliver, but I suggest a road trip anyway!

13. Casa Fernandez Aganorsa Leaf Maduro

Truly the hot chocolate stick, this cigar won my heart immediately and has opened my senses to all of the Casa Fernandez lines. The Aganorsa Leaf Maduro is robust with a San Andres Maduro wrapper blended with Aganorsa fillers and binder tobaccos from Nicaragua. Every stick I've had -- and I buy a box every time I see it -- is a treasure and a treat !

14.  Joseph NicaVana "Mesmerize"

The Mesmerize is a stunner. The blend was introduced to me by @cigarchairman and I really progressed my palate with this cigar. One of four blends created by Alan Fonseca for his new company, the Salamanca Cigar Group (@The_DonFonseca ), Alan was the founding partner of Ezra Zion Cigars. While smoking this cigar, I could actually detect and taste orange peel! It was quite an awakening in my cigar journey. It's a fine cigar that I need to buy more of as of this writing.  Available in AZ and CA right now, but making national distribution in Spring, 2016.
15. Nat Sherman Sterling

In my opinion the Sterling is the most underrated Nat Sherman cigar and probably the best one in their line. The Sterling is a little expensive in NYC, but it's worth every penny. These cigars combine aged Dominican fillers with a Dominican binder and a stunning Ecuador-grown wrapper. It provides a creamy smoke with complex flavors and a long finish. 
16.  Las Cumbres Tabaco "Senorial"

A favorite in my household this cigar is impeccable and flavorful. It's a go-to cigar for when I'm having tea or amaretto. It's an enjoyable smoke any time of the day. Was a favorite in 2014 and it's a wonderful blend for 2015 too. In fact I smoked one yesterday, so it's continues to be freaking awesome any year. Boxworthy!

17.  Acme Cigars "Route 66"

In partnership with AKA Cigars, Acme's Route 66 has a medium to full body, with rich tobacco, sweet and creamy flavors that included cocoa, molasses, coffee, and wood. I can see this cigar becoming a huge seller because it can be smoked in about an hour and is very flavorful. Perfect after dinner smoke. Yumdillicious !

18.  House of Emilio AF2

It's hard to separate my love between AF2 and AF1 but here is the difference: AF2 blended by AJ Fernandez is crafted from rich Nicaraguan fillers with PA Ligero and shows off with a beautiful Ecuadorian Habano Oscuro wrapper. Flaves are caramel, coffee, cream and spice. It's an amazing smoke. I always have several in my humi and you should too!

19. Emilio Cigars Draig Cayuquero

One of my favorite Emilio cigars, I believe it is underrated because of the band which does not photograph well. If you overlook that aspect you will find a flavorful and satisfying smoke with accented red and black pepper. Cayuquero is a Nicaraguan blend with a lighter shade Brazilian Arapiraca wrapper. I buy it at Cigar Federation in 5 packs. Which reminds me I need more!

20. Camacho Ecuador

I loved this cigar from the first time I tried it at Cigar Aficion in Staten Island (thanks Passat). This cigar boasts a gorgeous Ecuadorian Habano wrapper with Honduran and Dominican tobaccos bound in an earthy Brazillian Mata Fina leaf. It's potent but really good with coffee and bourbon.

21. House of Emilio AF1

Yes, I love another Emilio Cigar and it's the brother to the AF2. This cigar is loaded with Nicaraguan tobaccos in the filler, covered with a slow fermented San Andres Maduro wrapper. Flaves are rich with spice and sweetness. In limited production, I sometimes have to wait to buy these beauties.  Buy it on Cigar Federation. Worth the hunt for this one !

22.  Camacho Shellback

A limited release from Camacho, in a line known as the Brotherhood Series. The cigar features an Ecuador Habana wrapper and a binder and filler from Nicaragua. medium to full body, this cigar has an initial pepper kick then it is SMOOTH with nutmeg/cinnamon, cedar and earth with underlying sweetness. Buy a box before this goes away. I have 2 boxes in my humi ... ha ha ... I'm no fool. Might do very well with a little bit of age!

23.  1502 Nicaragua

Enrique teased Twitter with the idea of Nicaragua long before I ever smoked this cigar by the same name as the country, so his marketing genius worked in my opinion. Besides that, the cigar is the perfect addition to the two other 1502 cigars I treasure -- the Ruby and Black Gold!  Nicaragua contains tobaccos from the four main growing regions: Esteli, Jalapa, Condega and Ometepe. It exudes honey and vanilla, with a delicate fruitiness and some nuts. You gotta try this cigar!
24. Ventura Cigars, Psyko Seven

Many people will be surprised that I didn't list the Maduro version in the Top 25, which is unusual given my love for Maduro, but I really find it takes away from the complexity of the original Psyko Seven.  First, I love the mixture of the 7 regions in this cigar. It's a fantastic idea that introduces the great flavors that can be achieved through thoughtful blending. Haven't tried this cigar? You are definitely missing a great smoke. Yep, it's a good one !
25. Nat Sherman Timeless 556 Nicaragua

On twitter I would see @cigarchairman smoking this cigar every weekend. So, I bought a few and tried it out and wasn't impressed at all -- which surprised me because I find the CM and I have similar likes in cigars. Then I realized that I bought the Dominican version by mistake ! The moment I tried THIS cigar I realized how much I love spice ! A Nicaraguan puro, it is rich and full bodied creamy experience. I like to smoke it with an alcoholic beverage and it goes very nicely with Johnny Walker Blue (but really what wouldn't) and a Maker's Mark 46. Everyone should have this stick in their humi!

Thanks for reading!

I look forward to hearing your reactions and tasting notes about these cigars. Tune in next week to read about my Top 10 cigar picks for 2015.

Don't forget to put your guesses of what you think are my Top 5 Cigars of 2016 below in the comment section before January 10th.

Robusto Cigar Babe