THE top 10 Cigars of 2022

2022 brought out the best in the Bob the Cigar Guy Multiverse. Surpassing 6k subscribers and well on the way to 7, the family continues to grow over there despite YouTube cracking down on tobacco content creators. We also launched Chaveta Report in 2022! A mammoth sized undertaking where experience is limited and ambition is full. A whole new frontier for some country boys in the North West of South Carolina.

2022 brought back in-person events after a seemingly eternal time period where reps were off the road and cigar hang outs were barren wastelands or chatrooms. It was really good to be back out across the States seeing thousands of your closest cigar smoking buddies.

The cigars didn’t disappoint either. 2022 brought out a slew of blends from the top factories of the world. Giants dominated the market while even some boutique companies made giant sized waves in the market. Old brands were brought back to life through newer techniques and unlikely master blenders.

You didn’t come here to read all of that, though, did you? You’re here for some top 10 goodness. Below the article will be a link to a video that walks you through the list and some superlatives in case you’re not really into reading why I chose what I chose.

The List

Room 101’s FARCE Maduro was an unlikely surprise for my list. When I picked up the cigar it was primarily to take pictures of in Instagram and also dip my feet into the Matt Booth creation of the FARCE line. Almost immediately I knew this was going to be a stick to make a run at my list. I’m glad I hopped on it for some photo clout, because the true reward was getting to smoke such a good Cigar.

Wrapper: Mexican San Andreas
Binder: Ecuadorian Sumatra
Filler: Connecticut Broadleaf, Pennsylvania Broadleaf, and Nicaragua
Get it: FARCE Maduro

Dunbarton Tobacco and Trust always finds a way into my top 10 list. Steve Saka has a direct line from his blending bone to my palate it seems most times. Rarely do I find a reason to celebrate something about a blend. Originally smoked in 2021, I didn’t consider to for the list because I only smoked it once. Having smoked it again in 2022 it was up for consideration. All year this cigar had to stand the test of time and newer blends, but here she is…standing strong at the number 9 position for 2022.

Wrapper: Mexican San Andrés Negro
Binder: Ecuadorian Habano
Filler: Nicaragua & Pennsylvania
Get it: Paladin De Saka

Drew Estate’s H99 has made a previous list. This time, though, it is the H99 Robusto instead of the Toro. In previous years this cigar wouldn’t have been considered for a top 10 list for me because it has been previously smoked, just in a different vitola. This year that format changes because the taste of a cigar can drastically vary from vitola to vitola…and this one did!

Wrapper: Connecticut Corojo
Binder: San Andres Otapan
Filler: Honduran, Nicaraguan, Pennsylvania
Get it: H99

Didn’t I already mention something about Steve Saka having a direct line to my palate? Taking home 2 of my top ten spots is only reserved for elite companies in my book. Steve, you really knocked it out of the park with The Bewitched, amigo! I don’t know what I was expecting going into this cigar originally, but what a blend. I’m sure that if I had smoked this cigar all year like I did for a few other blends that made it higher, it would have been a podium shaker. Great job Steve and DTT team! (Especially you, Cindy…what we wouldn’t be able to do if it weren’t for you, ma’am!)

Wrapper: Ecuadorian Habano Maduro
Binder: Mexican San Andres
Filler: Nicaraguan & USA
Get it: The Bewitched

Originally sourced from a Cigar of the Month Club from Corona Cigar, it’s another blend that I dint really expect anything out of. I’m rarely finding myself on the A&B side of the humidor when I go shopping, but now I am hunting this stick down when I walk into a shop that I know carries my #6 stick. Full of flavor and a volume of smoke that you may be able to see on the other side of the mountain, the Gatekeeper is a sleeper smoke for sure!

Wrapper: Ecuadorian Habano
Binder: Nicaragua
Filler: Nicaraguan & Dominican
Get it: Gatekeeper

Debuted in a Freestyle Live event, the Nica Rustica Adobe ticked every box you want when it comes to a quality Drew Estate cigar. Flavor, Smoke, Construction and burn all collect accolades at the top. The only cigar that Drew Estate has introduced through the Freestyle Live events that tasted great and performed as well as the fully launched product for me. I usually enjoy the full production blend better than the pre-release, but the Adobe did so well that it made top 5 out of 2022’s offerings.

Wrapper: Ecuadorian Habano
Binder: Brazilian
Filler:  Nicaraguan
Get it: Nica Rustica Adobe

Another unlikely candidate to crack the top 10 for 2022. Ashamedly, I’ve never actually smoked anything from HVC previous to this Black Friday 2022. Ive heard and seen many people say fantastic things about them, but have never ventured out to smoke any of their blends. After stopping into a shop on vacation to pick up some other cigars, I was encouraged to take a shot at the HVC and I’m glad I did. This cigar reminds me of cigars of old, but without the negative sides of bland blends or raunch smoke. Full flavor and great burn time, the 2022 Black Friday just misses out on the podium.

Wrapper: Ecuadorian Habano
Binder: Nicaraguan
Filler:  Nicaraguan Esteli and Jalapa
Get it: 2022 Black Friday

Olivia being so high on a top 10 list is no mistake. A company who has forged a path through the years of cigar culture shifts, the 135th Anniversary cigar makes an entrance and stays until the last puff. Quality flavors and decent smoke volume, the only drawback I have from this particular cigar is the shape. The foot of the cigar is almost half the size of the head which leads to a slightly uncomfortable first 15 minutes. Besides that, there’s no complaints for the Bronze Medalists!

Wrapper: Ecuadorian Habano
Binder: Nicaraguan
Filler:  Nicaraguan
Get it: 135th Anniversary

Foundation making it to the top of the list is almost as predictable as the sun beginning the day rising over the horizon. The Olmec Claro knocked me off of my feet. Another Cigar of the Month jewel from Corona Cigar Co, the Olmec Claro is as premium as it gets for under $20 a cigar. The Olmec line has also made itself into the core line from Foundation Cigar, so hopefully the cigar is available close to you so you can go ahead and give it a try! I’m sure you’re going to enjoy it just as much as I do.

Wrapper:  Mexican San Andres Claro
Binder: Nicaraguan
Filler:  Nicaraguan (Esteli & Jalapa)
Get it: Olmec Claro

As if number 2 wasn’t high enough, Nicholas Melillo hits an absolute BOMB out of the park with the Senetjer. One of my most anticipated cigars of 2022 and easily the most difficult to get my hands on when they originally dropped, the Senetjer is the greatest cigar I’ve ever smoked in my life. The Senetjer is blended to honor the 100 year anniversary of discovering the tomb of King Tut. If I had to have a cigar blended for a hundred years of anything connected to my name, the Highclere Castle Senetjer would be my baseline for inspiration!

Wrapper:  Ecuadorian Habano
Binder: Brazilian Mata Fina
Filler:  Undisclosed
Get it: Highclere Castle Senetjer

The Video

A little Nerd Moment

Ecuadorian Habano stole the show when it came to wrapper leaves and 2022 for me. 6 of my 10 picks were of an Ecuadorian Habano variety. Mexican San Andreas has always been my number 1, but maybe its a shift in the tides!

Nicaraguan tobacco is king! Whether it was typing up the edits on the video or writing them again in the article, Nicaraguan tobacco reigns dominant through binders and fillers.

7 companies are represented across 10 cigars. The most diversity displayed in a top 10 for me since I’ve actually put effort into them. The flip side to that is that 3 companies made the exclusive “multi-company” representation. Drew Estate, Foundation and Dunbarton all took home multi-company accolades.

HVC was a butterfly effect of the group. If I don’t take a trip for thanksgiving to find some cigars, that a shop in my area used to carry but no longer does, I don’t end up getting talked into my number 4 cigar of the year from the lounge expert.

Foundation takes number one yet again! The Menelik in 2021 and now the Senetjer…The man knows how to blend!

That’s it for 2022! See you next year!

Published by: Stephen “Chief” Finley

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: