While retail tobacconists and aficionados may commonly refer to their cigars by size, complexity, or wrapper options, there's been a major shift in recent years in regards to classifying cigars by their region of origin. While this was once a more general term for cigars among both casual and even non-smokers, even the most seasoned connoisseur has begun searching their shops or online retailers by country of origin, when looking to re-stock their personal cigar humidors. Leading the pack, are the rich, robust blends found by some of today's Nicaraguan manufacturers. Grown in the nutritious soils of this Central American nation, these bold, aromatic gems have become some of the most revered cigars available in today's current market.

The volcanic, and highly-fertile soils of Nicaragua have routinely produced some for the most esteemed crops of the past decade, attributing to some of the most popular premium cigars of today. Their high-quality Cuban-seed and Connecticut-seed tobaccos, and wrapper leaves, have left an unpresented effect on the industry, homing in on a market once dominated only by Cuban-grown cigars. With demand increasing each year, these full-bodied tobaccos have become renowned for their deep, spicy flavors, and often hearty aromas.

Nicaraguan cigars first came into the fray years ago, after the nationalization of the industry by the Cuban government. The ramifications of nationalization had severe ramifications on cigar businesses, specifically with the trade embargo set into effect by the lucrative American market. To combat this, many of the top Cuban cigar makers of the time either relocated, or began completely new operations in Nicaragua, which was an ideal location due to the country's tremendous growing regions. After planting some of their best Cuban seeds, and implementing their cigar knowledge across the land- a major cigar empire was born, with business flourishing in the 1970's.

Though the country now had the seeds, tools, and skills of the most regarded cigar products in the world, coupled with the lands near perfect growing climate, another major disruption would eventually damper the Nicaraguan cigar market for years to come. A civil war caused many tobacco plantations to be completely burned, or taken over by the country's military. But once peace was regained, with it came the rebirth of their cigar industry, with Nicaragua again becoming one of the world's top producers of premium cigars, and a modern-day staple of excellence throughout the industry.

With the country's tobaccos are regarded as some of the best in the world, there's no shortage of great Nicaraguan selections to choose from. There are currently over 50 name brands being produced throughout the country, offering an outstanding smoke for every palate, and even every budget. But not all Nicaraguan cigars are created equal- as with anything, there are some that stand proudly above the rest. So, in closing, let's take a quick glance at some the finest, and most popular Nicaraguan labels available today:


The crème-de-la-crème of Nicaraguan cigars. Padrón is one of the most established and successful brands of any cigar out there. Coming from the beloved family of the same name, Padrón cigars often rank as some of the best in the world. These ultra-premium varieties are handmade in Nicaragua, by some of the most skilled artisans in the land. You'll find a Padrón line-up on virtually every 'best-of' list year after year, and for good reason. There's little that compares to this full-flavored portfolio of perfection.


The Perdomo brand can trace its roots back to pre-Castro Cuba; where founder, Nick Perdomo Sr., was imprisoned for years before escaping to the U.S., and launching what would become one of the greatest portfolios of cigars in the world. Currently based in Estelí, Nicaragua, Perdomo offers a wide-range of premium selections, with flavorful cigars of every complex, wrapper, size, and more. To boot, Perdomo varieties not only taste and burn great, but many lineups are some of the most reasonably priced of any out there.


Launched in Cuba in 1886, Oliva completely moved their operations to Nicaragua in the early 1960s. Today, Oliva is one of the most iconic names in Nicaraguan cigars, and is notably the country's second largest supplier of Cuban-seed tobaccos. These flavorful varieties are specifically revered for their ultra-premium binders, and flavorful filler blends.

Don "Pepín" García:

This legendary lineup also produces their popular smokes in Miami, but their factory in Estelí, Nicaragua is equally as great, and perhaps even more celebrated. Each top-notch Pepín García lineup exclusively uses choice Nicaraguan tobaccos, hand-selected and rolled by some of the best cigar makers in the world, delivering some of the most luxurious cigars out there today.


The CAO brand began its days as a pipe-producer back in 1968. Fast-forward to the 1990's, and CAO has become one of the industry's most popular manufacturer of flavored cigars, using their proprietary blends of both Nicaraguan, and complementary tobaccos from the Dominican Republic.

Rocky Patel:

Talk about a passion project. Famed attorney Rakesh Patel launched this ultra-premium banner in the mid-1990s, developing a longstanding identity that exudes elegance. Thanks to their luxurious blends of vintage, private, and contemporary blends, each comprised of top-quality Nicaraguan tobaccos; Rocky Patel has become not only a mainstay in any modern smoking environment- but a celebrated icon as well.

AJ Fernandez:

While not a brand per-se, in terms of the others listed above, AJ Fernandez has become one of today's most influential and in-demand cigar masters; and his roots, and everything since, can all be traced back to Nicaragua. Fernandez' now-iconic factory, Tabacalera Fernandez, was formed in a rundown section of Estelí, Nicaragua, with only six rollers and minimal capital. But with passion and diligent effort, his company has since grown into one of the largest in the nation, producing millions of cigars annually, for some of the biggest, and most prolific names in the industry.

So, while region has become one of the most frequently used classifications in any cigar circle, perhaps only second to Cuba, Nicaragua remains among the most cited, and desired. There's no disputing the superiority of the country's crops, and the amazing talent that operates throughout the land. And the great options don't stop at the asterisk above. This was just a top-line overview of the history of these great cigars, and a quick look at some of the best. There are plenty of other Nicaraguan cigars out there worth a smoke or two. Other great choices available are the Nicaraguan selections from popular brands like Romeo y Julieta, H. Upmann, Joya de Nicaragua, La Gloria Cubana, Tatuajé, and Drew Estate.

POSTED ON Mar 28, 2018


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