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Ok being a poor American, I have not had the opportunity to smoke many Cubans. The first chance I got was in the mid 90's. A couple of very nice fellow cigars lovers (on ASC) sent me some through the mail, I would say about 15 to 20 cigars of various brands. I do remember that there were Bolivars and Cohiba robustos and some Partagas; there were a few other brands as well. I was excited, and made sure these babies were properly humidified, and I waited till just the right moment. I have to say, however, that I was underwhelmed. There was no "wow" factor as I had anticipated there would be. I was crestfallen. On reflection, over time, I think that there simply were not enough cigars to provide a good sampling, and, therefore, my judgment of Cubans should be softened by this fact. I am thinking that to provide a true assessment, one needs to smoke, say, 10 to 20 cigars of the same brand and smoke them in varying conditions. I do believe Cubans are superior; I have too many friends, whom I trust, that support that view. What do you guys think? Was there simply too small a sampling? Were you blown away by the first Cuban? Perhaps my expectations were just too high. What say you?
 

· Götterdämmerung
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Cubans aren't necessarily "superior" cigars. They are made of "superior" tobacco, but they just provide a different taste. There's nothing in particular about them that would immediately present itself as amazing. Either you like the type of flavor they provide or you don't. My first Cuban cigar did, actually, blow me away. It was a Cohiba Siglo VI. I didn't go right out and buy them though; I just collected a small stash from other members who decided to gift me one here and there, and after I had smoked a number of cigars of different marcas and different years, I decided to buy them. Some people don't like the flavor of Cuban cigars, and there's nothing wrong with that. I like it very much though. I think perhaps it wasn't your sample size - I think it was more like you were expecting something that they just aren't. You can't really go in expecting the best cigars of your life, just a different taste.
 

· Smoked Walleye
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1,093 Posts
Pretty much agree with Snake Hips and share similar preferences. In Canada, Cubans are readily available and non Cubans are tougher to find. So, I've trained my pallate early, I guess, to the Cuban flavor profile. I've been on a tear lately, trying various non Cubans. And although I've enjoyed many of them, I've come to the conclusion that what I really crave, is that Cuban flavor. And I will be transitioning my collection from a current 15% CC/85% NC to more of a 65% CC/35% NC.
I think you are similar to me, but in opposite direction. You've grown accustomed to the NC flavor profile, and found certain types that satisfy you. And all the hype around CCs is probably creating an unrealistic expectation. So you may have unwittingly set yourself up for a dissappointment.
You didn't have to smoke 15-20 of the same nc in various stages, to know that you like them.
I've seen enough posters here say they dislike Cubans, or don't see what the hype is all about. I've also seen many heaping praise on cigars that I found underwhelming. When I'm enjoying a particularly wonderful Cuban, I often wonder how someone else can not get the same pleasure out of it. Everybody is different that way. No right or wrong.

But it's been around 15 years since you've last tried one. Think back, hasn't your current preferences changed over that time? It's like anything, the more you try, the more you define what tastes good to you. As has been stated so often, smoke what you like, like what you smoke.
The fun is in the journey.
 

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My experience (short as it is) is 90% cuban... and genuinely I've really tried to avoid the hype. I've smoked some terrible ones and some mediocre ones; but the Partagas D4 I just smoked was simply amazing. Seriously. Stunning, from start to finish (as was the Cohiba Siglo IV I had last week).

For me, I think when I smoke a great cuban it really hits the bullseye that is cigar perfection, and I realise that a good proportion of lesser cubans were not too far off... while most of the NC's I've smoked didnt even see the target. But maybe I just havnt tried enough NC's. Dunno.
 

· Smoked Walleye
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I am hoping to go to Quebec this summer for a vacation and I plan to spoil myself with as many Cubans that I can smoke while I'm there.

John
and adding " that you can afford"
Better bring a lot of cash. They are expensive up here. Although legal, the governments love their sin taxes, so smoking and drinking come at a price.:(
 

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well, i have smoked cubans primarly, but i would have to say that, yes cubans are good, but not all...there are some great smokes outside of cuba that i have been dying to try....opus X....the padron 1926 is awesome...so i guess its a personal preference i guess..
 

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The few cubans I've had didn't blow me away. Maybe I'll try one some day that will change my mind, but I'm not going out of my way to find out - there are just too many good NCs out there that I can get hassle-free (and probably cheaper).
 

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Ok being a poor American, I have not had the opportunity to smoke many Cubans. The first chance I got was in the mid 90's. A couple of very nice fellow cigars lovers (on ASC) sent me some through the mail, I would say about 15 to 20 cigars of various brands. I do remember that there were Bolivars and Cohiba robustos and some Partagas; there were a few other brands as well. I was excited, and made sure these babies were properly humidified, and I waited till just the right moment. I have to say, however, that I was underwhelmed. There was no "wow" factor as I had anticipated there would be. I was crestfallen. On reflection, over time, I think that there simply were not enough cigars to provide a good sampling, and, therefore, my judgment of Cubans should be softened by this fact. I am thinking that to provide a true assessment, one needs to smoke, say, 10 to 20 cigars of the same brand and smoke them in varying conditions. I do believe Cubans are superior; I have too many friends, whom I trust, that support that view. What do you guys think? Was there simply too small a sampling? Were you blown away by the first Cuban? Perhaps my expectations were just too high. What say you?
I had a similar experience with cc's. I expected some sort of "awakening" to occur when I puffed my first Cuban. It didn't happen, and now I'm more realistic. Cuban cigars taste different than nc's, for sure.
 

· Paid Smokesmodel
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I am sorry cubans did not blow you away I think a little bit of it is over expectations. Going in you probably had very high hopes maybe so high that even a great cigar couldn't match what you built up in your head.

As for most of the poster they seem to be from nonUS locations and you will find most nonUS cigar smokers/collectors toy with noncubans to see what all the hype is and to expand our knowledge the vasr majority of those with access to cubans and noncubans are smoking cubans.

Cubans can be bad most are good to great and some are mind blowingly stellar, but half the fun is sorting them out.

PS any time your smoking a cuban you have to ask what its authenticity is. Alot of people have smoked a "bad" cuban that might not even been a cuban some might not even have passed as cigars.

But smoke what you love I hate Gurhkas and have a dislike for BFFs but I have a box of 1950s Robert Burns 7 cent cigars I love.
 

· One Shot
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11,208 Posts
Its all about personal taste. I wouldn't say Cuban cigars are superior to all others. But you can't say others are superior to Cubans either. I have smoked my fair share of CC and would say that there are others I like better. And for me its not worth the trouble to try and get them. At the same time if my local B&M carried the Cohiba Maduro 5, then it would be one of my reg smokes.
 

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i've smoked a fair deal of cubans and a fair deal of non cubans. The major difference I've found in the two (really generally speaking obv.) is that with the non cubans I wasn't as impressed/satisfied as much as with cubans. i'd say 2/5 non cuban cigars I really dug and it was more like 3.5-4 /5 with the cubans. And this was when I was trying a lot of singles of recommended brands in both nc and cc.

Probably the best cigar i've ever had was a cohiba siglo II. it was definitely wow factor. stood out head and shoulders above the rest. i've had more siglo II's since then and while they've been good not as good as that (different box).
 

· Zen Master ZingTwang
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Many years ago a friend of mine gifted me a RyJ tubo of some sort from Cuba. I tried it with great anticipation but found it quite ordinary and gave Cuban cigars no more thought. Then, when I was in London a few years ago I was staying near a cigar shop so I stopped in. It was nothing but Cubans! I was entranced. You cannot be a cigar smoker and not have just a little bit of reverence for Cubans, especially being an American. So, even though my first Cuban experience was so-so, I was still very much taken by a whole shop full of the Holy Grail, as it were. What I noticed was the packaging. The boxes looked, well, 3rd world is all I can say. Like they tried really hard but the boxes still had an ameturish look to them. But they were very beautiful also. They looked as if they had been sitting there for a hundred years.The white paper with the old-style artwork on them. What a sight! Anyway, finally I bought a few stogies and choked when I did the math and realized what they cost me! The first one I smoked was a St. Louis Rey Regio. I was amazed at the depth of flavor! The SLR Regio is still one of my favs. Anyway, in the course of my visit I smoked a lot of cigars, mostly robustos; Bolivar RC's, ERDM Choix Supreme, RyJ Exibicion #4, RASS, PSD #4, and on and on. Every chance I got. Now, I think that Cubans are a cut above non-Cubans. Not for great construction, but the flavors. If I have a clean palate and a couple hours to kill, I will smoke a Cuban over any other cigar. But that's just me.
 

· BORK BORK BORK!!!
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I've tried a few and I wouldn't say that the CC's are better but I do like them quite a lot. Like someone else posted, I've noticed fewer dog rockets with CC's than with NC's.

However I love Anejo's and Padron Anny's and wouldn't want to give them up for all CC's.
 

· Gentleman Jim Stogie
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Personally it took me a few tries to get the wow factor of Cubans, I really didnt get it until I was about 6 months into Cubans. At first I didnt like them as much, then I did like them equally to NCs and now I almost solely smoke CCs.
 

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I agree with most everything posted above - being new to cc's I did not know what to expect but the hype did affect my expectations. They are different from the Nics, DRs and Honduran I regularly smoke but all 3 I've had have been great but they won't keep me from enjoying all the other ones I love. I really like the Cuban flavor profile and it makes a great change of pace - they will be a regular addition to my repetoire from now on - variety is the spice of my life! I love good to great cigars no matter where they are from.
 
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