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Cigars/Advice on Non-Cubans


Hi Bill
I reside in Canada and have for the most part smoked Cubans, but, here in the frozen north, even a bad cigar is $10.00. I visit the US several times a year and have recently started picking up US sold non-cuban cigars. Here lies my problem I have recently tried a Gispert Toro and found it tasted like an old pair of leather running shoes and also a Saint Luis Rey Reserva Especial much to the same end. I have bought here in Canada and very much enjoyed a La Flor Dominicana Reserva Especial. But at $15.00 plus 13% tax it's not an every day stick. Can you recommend some modest to medium priced US non-cubans that wouldn't sport the leathery flavour. I've had a Bolivar Double Corona that wasn't too bad, and am set to try an Upmann Havoc this weekend. Any suggestions would help.


I apologize for the late response - I have been out of the office and failed to set my vacation days on the AllExperts site.

I am not much of a fan of the Gispert or St. Luis Rey brands either, so I understand your disappointment. La Flor Dominicana are full-bodied mostly Dominican tobacco cigars. Since you enjoy these, I think you might also enjoy some of these:

  EPC (Ernesto Perez Carrillo) La Historia ($8.25 to $9.50)
  EPC Seleccion Oscuro ($6.50 to $8.25)
  Arturo Fuente Rosado Sung Grown ($7.15 to $11.75)
  Partagas Black Label ($6.50 to $8.50)
  La Gloria Cubana ($5.40 to $7.30)
  PDR 1878 Habana ($6.10 to $7.45)
  Fonseca Cubano Limitado ($5.50 to $8.20)

Obviously there are many, many more great cigars to try, but I think these would give you a good start in figuring out what you like. If you need help tracking any of these down or would like more suggestions, don't hesitate to contact me through this site or directly at



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Bill Finck Jr.


I'm a fourth generation cigar maker and have spent 25+ years operating our factory as well as a mail order cigar company. I belong to cigar manufacturers associations as well as retail cigar associations so I'm usually up to date with current events relating to cigars. I've smoked the majority of brands on the market and would be happy to share my opinions of them with you. Since I live in the U.S. I have very little experience with Cuban cigars, but other than that I know a least a little bit about almost every brand of cigars on the market.


In addition to growing up in and now managing our cigar factory for 25+ years, I've spent time in many factories in Honduras, Nicaragua, The Dominican Republic and Mexico. BR>
Cigar Association of America, Retail Tobacco Dealers Association

BS Texas A&M University

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