The Cohiba Robustos, pictured above, was not my first experience with this stately Cuban brand, in fact my first experience with a cigar sporting a Cohiba label wasn’t a Cohiba at all… Not even close..
This is how my love for Cuban cigars began…. With a lousy counterfeit !
OK, so I hated every inch of the fake Cohiba Esplendidos that came in the acrylic top box of 25. I hated them to the point that I didn’t want to see or smoke anything with the gold and yellow band for a number of years, so I moved on to get to know every other brand out of Cuba and really developed a passion for Partagas, RyJ, Hoyo de Monterrey, H. Upmann and well, I guess every other brand that I could get my hands on. I really got to understand how a cigar evolves as you smoke it and started tasting some of the most beautiful flavors I could imagine in a Cuban cigar then something wonderful happened.
Trevor, from “The Vancouver Cigar Company” gave me a Cohiba Robustos and told me to try it out with an open mind, which is what I did one Sunday morning. I couldn’t believe how beautiful that cigar was and felt really foolish about my opinion of Cohiba until that point in time. The Robustos was about a year old and revealed all of my favorite flavors in one cigar. I could taste dried fruit, white pepper, leather, cedar and strong coffee notes and NONE of the harsh bitter tobacco flavor I initially had in my experience with the counterfeits I thought were the “real thing”..
Needless to say, I now KNOW how an authentic Cohiba should taste and have no problem shelling out the money it takes to smoke the real thing. The one thing that I AM grateful for is the time I took in getting to know all of the other Cuban brands, there are some beautiful cigars out there and I love 99% of them, even some of the machine made cigars have their moment in the sun but Cohiba stands out as being the pinnacle of quality.