All posts by Swiss Cuban Cigars Reviews

SwissCubanCigars.com is the largest online retailer of authentic Cuban cigars on the Internet. We sell a wide variety of high-grade Cuban cigar brands, complete with authenticity marks that can be checked on the official Habanos SA site.

How good is the Hoyo De Monterrey Epicure No 2? Swiss Cuban Cigars reviews the best seller

One of the iconic Robusto cigars, the Hoyo de Monterrey Epicure No 2 is complex yet smooth and offers a sophisticated smoke without too much heaviness.

Before we go through the details in our review of the Epicure No 2, here’s a bit of background on this much loved brand of Cubans.

Swiss Cuban Cigars reviews | the Epicure No 2 from Hoyo de Monterrey

Hoyo de Monterrey is a Cuban cigar brand synonymous with quality and the finest tobacco. Owned by Habanos SA, which is the state-owned tobacco company in Cuba, the Hoyo de Monterrey brand is consistently up there among the favourites for cigar smokers.

All the way back in 1831, a young Spanish boy called Don Jose Gener y Batet landed in Cuba. At the age of 13, he started work on a tobacco plantation in Vuelta Abajo, which is one of the five tobacco regions in the country.

By the 1850s, Jose Gener had decided his future lay in Cuban cigars and he started his own factory in Havana. The first line of cigars produced was called La Escepcion, and he was immediately successful.

Using the profits from his Havana factory, Jose Gener acquired one of the finest farms in the best growing area – Vuelta Abajo.

The birth of Hoyo de Monterrey as a brand

That’s the background leading up to Jose Gener giving his brand a name: Hoyo de Monterrey. This translates as “the hole of Monterrey”, which derives from the kind of terrain that premium tobacco farmers prefer.

Very quickly, the Hoyo de Monterrey brand of cigars became very popular, particularly with the well off customers in Great Britain. Their patronage helped the factory to become of the biggest in Cuba.

Jose Gener died in 1900, but the family remained under his daughter’s leadership for the next 30 years.

Growing in popularity during the 1950s in pre revolutionary Cuba

In 1931, Fernandez, Palicio y Cia bought the brand from the Geners. They also bought the original La Escepcion brand from the family and brought them into their existing range.

By the 1940s, demand was increasing and the factory produced the Le Hoyo series of Cuban cigars specifically for the Swiss Cuban Cigar distributor A. Durr Co. And while half of the partnership, Ramon Fernandez, died soon after, the remaining owner Fernando Palicio continued to grow the brand. By 1958,13% of all Havana cigar exports came from his lines.

It wasn’t to last much longer as Palicio fled the country when the Revolution broke out. Safely ensconced in Florida, he then sold all of his cigar brands to the Villazon family, who continued to make the same high quality Hoyo de Monterrey specifically for the American market.

Back in revolutionary Cuba, the Government nationalised all the manufacturers of Cuban cigars in 1959. Hoyo de Monterrey continued to be produced in Cuba as well, and today is one of the best known and most loved Cuban cigar brands in the world.

The Epicure No 2 is very popular with cigar aficionados

Cigar connoisseurs regularly tout the Epicure No 2 as a big favourite. It has a ring gauge of 50 and is 124mm (4.7 inches) and is part of the Epicure line of cigars from Hoyo de Monterrey.

The other cigars in this range are the Epicure Delux (Petit Robusto), the Epicure Especial (Toro) and the Epicure No 1 (Toro). And when it comes to flavour and smokability, there are a number of reasons why the Epicure No 2 consistently ranks as one of the most popular Cuban cigars around the world.

Hand rolled using the finest tobacco that can be found in the best growing region in Cuba, perhaps it’s not surprising to find out how much it’s liked. Flawless construction with a double band also adds to its elegance, and hits the mark for aesthetics.

But it’s all in the flavour. When you smoke a Hoyo de Monterrey Epicure No 2 you can expect a very smooth and pleasantly enjoyable smoke undercut with a robust taste.

While the flavour is stronger than some other Cuban cigars, it’s not at all over powering, instead finding a very balanced flavour profile. You can definitely taste the notes of dried fruit, cinnamon and cocoa through the creamy smoke.

A quick but satisfying smoking experience

The Epicure No 2 can be smoked well straight away, even when the tobacco leaves are young. However, we’d always suggest storing it in your humidor at least for a while.

It’s a popular choice with aficionados, and is great for cigar novices to give a fine cigar a go. They will quickly discover just how complex a Cuban cigar can be, when made from the finest leaves.

Even when the leaves are young it has an even combustion – although it’s best left stored in a humidor for a while. The Hoyo de Monterrey is a cigar for seasoned smokers, however, novices are encouraged to give it a try to see just how complex and flavoursome a fine cigar can be.

As we’ve seen the Epicure No 2 remains one of the most popular Robustos from Cuba. The variety of flavours and relative accessibility of the flavour profile work in its favour.

It takes around 45 minutes to smoke a Hoyo de Monterrey Epicure No 2, making it a fast yet very smooth smoke. If you’ve never tried an Epicure No 2, you should give it a try. You may be surprised how delicately complex a fine cigar can be. As it’s a wider ring gauge than lots of other Cuban cigars, when you draw in the smoke it’s cooler and smoother than those with smaller gauges.

Of course, because it’s a wide Cuban, it also feels great in the hand and is ideal for special occasions as well as quick but sophisticated smoke breaks. Ideal, in fact, when you need a bit of headspace and are looking for a way to relax.

Swiss Cuban Cigars reviews the Cohiba brand

One of the largest sellers of Cuban cigars online, Swiss Cuban Cigars have lots of knowledge and experience with the best Cuban cigars on the market. The customer service team not only provides great service to customers looking for a deal, they also have opinions on their stock.

Satisfied customers write and post reviews on the Swiss Cuban Cigars they have purchased, while the business finds out which cigars are popular and which aren’t.

The best way to buy Cuban cigars online

For those looking to find cigars to buy online, Swiss Cuban Cigars offers secure payments, fast shipping, a fair price and better assistance than you’d find from most retailers.

Based in Spain, the company’s website shows different reviews for the same cigar and guarantee to never sell fake Cuban cigars. This is a growing problem in the market, with lots of unsuspecting customers unwittingly buying fake cigars online.

The customer service team provide the kind of excellent service that should put cigar lovers’ minds at rest. And with easy and secure payments, fast worldwide shipping and the extra guarantee of products sold in their original sealed box, you can’t really go wrong.

Don’t get caught out with fake Cuban cigars

Of course, a business like Swiss Cuban Cigars only works this well because of a collective love for the product. This is why they have a large selection on the site, and promise authentic Cuban cigars at a fair price.

The availability is generally decent as they have a lot of brands in stock, meaning buyers rarely have to wait too long for their precious boxes. But what about the Cuban cigars themselves?

If you’re a newcomer to the world of Cubans, you need more than fast delivery and a great price. You need someone to kindly explain what makes Cuban cigars so special, and the differences between each box and brand.

Delivery is free, which means cigar lovers can look forward to their purchases being shipped in a stress-free way.

Reviews can help you make up your mind which cigars to try

While customer reviews can help to find out what others think, it’s also useful to have the company experts review brands for you before you place your first order. Luckily, for Swiss Cuban Cigars, this is all part of the service.

If you need to select a cigar for a wedding or a business event, then finding out the history of the brand is a reasonable way to ensure you make the correct choice. You may never have smoked a specific brand, but with experts ready to write reviews, you’ll find that there are no mistakes in your choice of boxes.

Swiss Cuban Cigars regularly reviews different brands of authentic Habanos cigars regularly. Here’s their account of the history of the Cohiba brand.

The Swiss Cuban Cigars review of the Cohiba brand of cigars

Cohiba is a premium cigar brand made by Habanos in Cuba and the word itself derives from a Caribbean word for ‘tobacco’. Cohiba is a word used by the Taino indigenous people in the Caribbean, who mostly lived in Cuba, the Dominican Republic and the Bahamas.

They were the first indigenous people to meet a Western invader, and actually encountered Christopher Columbus when he made his 1492 voyage.

Each box of Cuban Cohiba are made with tobacco that comes from one of the five best tobacco growing regions in Cuba, the Vuelta Abajo region. This makes the cigars exceptionally fine and gives them a rich quality that many reviews cite as a major positive.

Background on the Cohiba cigar brand

Established in 1966, this brand was originally meant as a limited private brand specially for Fidel Castro himself, as well as some of the highest level officials in the Government and Party.

This meant that the Cohiba often reached other world leaders in the form of diplomatic gifts. Over the years, this helped them become a cult brand of cigars, renowned for their fine quality.

Eventually, the Cuban Cohiba brand became commercially available to members of the public. But it wasn’t until 1982 that the general population could buy a box. Perhaps the origins of the brand go some way to explain the pleasure taken in acquiring the exact boxes that Castro himself purchased.

The Cohiba brand regularly gets high review scores

When it comes to blind reviews, the Cohiba Siglo VI has consistently reached some extremely high scores. These reviews are from expert buyers, who take into account everything from pricing and value for money to the sheer quality of the smoking experience.

This means that reviews like these aren’t aimed at a sale, but give you plenty of assistance in understanding how a cigar brand will smoke before you decide to buy. Of course, Internet reviews can’t give you the exact experience of smoking a cigar, but definitely do help to not only compare the quality of a good selection of brands and to weed out attempts to sell fake Cuban cigars.

Swiss Cuban cigars may be based in Spain, but their website has the largest selection of non-counterfeit Cubans on the Internet. The site also offers reviews for each cigar. Given the guarantee for quality and authentic derivation of each cigar brand, the website offers the kind of service that buyers can trust.

Now let’s dig a little deeper into the history of the Cuban Cohiba cigar brand to find out just why it has become such a popular company on the market.

How Castro helped to launch the Cohiba brand

Synonymous with Castro himself, the Cuban Cohiba actually originated with one of his bodyguards. When Castro was offered one of the bodyguard’s private supply of cigars that turned out to be made by Eduardo Rivera.

Always on the lookout for the perfect cigar, Castro asked for a special run just for him of the then unbranded cigars. He did allow some of his colleagues to have them too, but the production run was very small.

In 1994, Castro related the story of the establishment of the Cohiba brand and the business that manufactures it. After learning from his bodyguard that the fine, aromatic cigar was made by a friend of his, Castro said: “Let’s find this man. I tried the cigar and I found it so good that we got in touch with him and asked how he made it.”

After learning from Rivera all about the specific leaves used and how the unbranded cigar was wrapped, Castro set up the El Laguito factory for him. And the rest is history with Castro saying: “Now Cohiba is known all over the world”.

Castro said that in 1994, but it remains true in 2022.

Private production evaded threats of assassination for Castro

Interestingly, another reason Castro was keen to have special cigars produced in small quantities just for him, is that at the time the CIA was allegedly working on ways to assassinate Castro (and other revolutionary leaders like Che Guavara).

One of the assassination tools was the development of exploding cigars by the technical department of the CIA. No wonder that Castro preferred a private service and a strictly controlled manufacturing site for his cigars.

By setting up the business and providing the money, cigar makers and other elements of the service, Castro was therefore integral in launching the Cohiba as a brand and business.

During the first years of Cohiba production, there were very few boxes rolling off the line. This is because they were only for high ranking Government officials. But they were, as we mentioned earlier, often given out to other leaders and diplomats as gifts. So, we can be sure that the superior Cuban Cohiba was being appreciate outside of Cuba too.

Cohiba launches to non American markets in 1982

It was the 1982 World Cup, which was hosted in Spain), that served as a launchpad for the Cuban Cohiba cigars to new markets around the world.

At that date, there were three vitolas produced by the company. These were the Lancero, the Corona Especial and the Pantela. Seven years later, the site began producing the Esplendido, the Equisito and the Robusto. These are now collectively known as the classic line (or Linea Clasica) of the company.

At a later date in 1992, the company launched another line of cigars. Called Linea 1492, this line was produced on site to mark the 1492 voyage of Columbus. Each vitola was therefore named as markers of the centuries since the voyage.

Often, the Habanos company releases special runs to make events or festivals. For example, every year they release a limited edition with a range of different sizes of their most popular cigars. These are differentiated by the fact that they are wrapped in different leaves – a darker vintage.

You may notice that the Cohiba brand name is also used by the company for different products too. These include a range of cigarettes that have been produced on site since 1987. Another example is the Cognac called Extra Cohiba. This has been made by the company since 1999.

Which leaves are used to make Cohiba cigars by the Habanos company?

One of the reasons that Cohibas consistently garner high review scores and very appreciative consumer reviews online is the fact that they use some of the very best tobacco Cuba offers.

This brand exclusively uses only the very best leaves from top rated fields (Vegas Finas de Primera) found in the San Juan y Martinez and San Luis zones. These zones are located in the famous Pinar del Rio Province of Vuelta Abajo.

You won’t easily find the site of the exact fields as they are closely guarded Cohiba trade secret. An average year of production on site uses leaves from just five of these carefully guarded fields.

What makes the production of Cohiba so special?

The factory provides an extra service when producing Cohiba products – a third process of fermentation at the factory in wooden barrels. This, according to reviews, works really well to make a cigar with the smoothest possible flavour.

This attention to detail, and meticulous service goes a long way to explaining the high level of reviews you can find online for Cohiba Cubans.

While the brand was originally only made at the factory that Castro set up – El Laguito – eventually some production moved to another factory. This one is called Partagas and is based in Havana.

Which is the best Cohiba vitola?

Cohiba as a brand is the best known around the world, and one of the most popular products in the range is the Cohiba Siglo VI.

This is one of the 1492 Line that we mentioned earlier, which launched in 1992. According to a blind review, the Siglo VI scored highly on just about every aspect, including 88/100 for appearance, 89 for aroma, 91 for the first third in terms of flavour, 93 for the second third, 88 for the final third.

Overall impressions came in at 91, with 87 for how it burns, 89 for construction and an overall score of 90.

Descriptions in the review include: “… this was a very good, smooth and velvety smoking experience,” and “… The cigar is fairly nuanced without having the spice to eat you over the head).

A great choice for a wedding or other special occasion

This review was blind and conducted by four reviewers, and we have to agree with its main points.

Anyone who is looking for the ideal smoke for a wedding, other special occasion or wants to be sure to avoid fake products should take advantage of the service that ensures a bona fide product.

Any of the Cohiba line is ideal for special occasions, or just as your everyday smoke. It’s for discerning smokers who want to enjoy a superior smoke, a smooth flavour and something a little bit special.

The brand has come a long way since it started as Castro’s private production line, but the very high quality remains the same.