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Top Holiday Cigar Gifts 2018

Shane K. K's picture

Shane K.

Happy Holidays from your pals at Holt’s! Fine cigars are an easy gift choice when you have a cigar lover on your gift list. However, a lot of folks aren’t sure where to begin when it comes to picking out the best cigars. We’re here to guide you through a solid list of gift recommendations for cigar lovers this holiday season.

Besides obvious details like brand selection, a convenient location, and a clean and well-organized humidor, often what separates great retailers of premium cigars from mediocre shops is a simple focus on customer service. Consumers want to be acknowledged, treated kindly, and confident in the product knowledge they receive from the sales staff, whether they’re shopping in person, over the phone, or corresponding online. Nowhere is the notion of customer service emphasized more than in the case of a gift buyer.

Wives, girlfriends, relatives, coworkers, and your good buddies – who may or may not know anything about cigars – have chosen to spend their hard-earned cash on premium cigars to say thanks or show the cigar lovers in their life their appreciation. At Holt’s, we place tremendous value in making your cigar gift buying experience a smooth, seamless, and completely pleasant experience.

We can arm you with as much cigar knowledge as you’d like and we guarantee our cigar gift recommendations will go over perfectly. With Christmas and New Year’s Eve just around the corner, we’ve compiled a list of our Top Holiday Cigar Gifts for 2018. Hands down, cigar samplers represent the most popular choices with gift buyers. We’ve focused our recommendations on ten top-selling samplers below. Each assortment represents a wonderful introduction to an iconic brand that a number of aficionados will recognize and appreciate.

1.    Ashton 5-Cigar Sampler

Five premium, ultra-popular blends from the iconic Ashton brand compose the Ashton 5-Cigar Sampler. Approachable, versatile, and perfectly aged cigars are blended in five distinctive profiles by legendary cigar-maker Carlito Fuente. Ashton Classic and Ashton Cabinet deliver mild, creamy notes of cashews, almonds, and a touch of creamy spice in an authentic Connecticut wrapper leaf over a premium interior of Dominican long-filler tobaccos. A dark and succulent Connecticut Broadleaf wrapper envelops an aged recipe of Dominican binder and fillers in Ashton Aged Maduro. Notes of dark chocolate, maple, and black pepper emerge. Ashton Heritage is drafted from an Ecuador Habano wrapper and a medium-bodied core of Dominican tobaccos with notes of leather and coffee beans and a luscious zest. And, Ashton VSG remains a benchmark for full-bodied, Dominican taste and consistency. A glistening Ecuador Sumatra wrapper leaf harbors a rich and complex profile of cedar, raisins, black pepper, leather and coffee bean notes.

The Ashton 5-Cigar Sampler retails for $48.95 and is among the bestselling cigar samplers ever created. Your cigar lover will be completely impressed with your selection. If you like the sound of this collection but you’re looking for a greater quantity of cigars, the Ashton 10-Cigar Sampler is also available with additional shapes and sizes of the same premium blends.

2.    Fuente Fuente Opus X Lost City Assortment

Following years of persistence, Carlito Fuente’s dedication to growing a perfect wrapper leaf in the Dominican Republic finally paid off in 1995 with the official debut of Fuente Fuente Opus X cigars. Today, the blend remains one of the most coveted and sought-after cigars in the world. Its all-Dominican profile is drawn from the oldest and rarest stores of select Fuente family tobaccos. In the Fuente Fuente Opus X Lost City Assortment, a special tobacco crop was grown for the setting of Andy Garcia’s 2006 film, The Lost City. Due to the blend’s popularity, the Fuente family still produces the ultra-limited cigar today.

Pristine notes of coffee beans, raisins, baking spices, and almonds accompany a chewy, peppery flavor with a silky aroma. The 5-cigar Opus X Lost City Assortment includes 2 Double Robustos 5.575 x 52), 2 Toros (5.25 x 50), and 1 Robusto (6.75 x 48). At $134.95, this premium Opus X collection is a superb gift for a true connoisseur or any cigar enthusiast who’s mentioned their love for rare Fuente smokes. It guarantees to excite and falls into the spectrum of cigar samplers a lot of cigar lovers might not buy for themselves, making it all the more special as a gift.

3.    Ashton VSG Assortment

Ashton VSG (Virgin Sun Grown) was among the first full-bodied cigars to achieve widespread demand and exceed consumers’ expectations in the U.S. when it debuted in 1999. Ashton VSG remains a sensation to this day and is considered a classic by critics and cigar lovers around the world. An ample number of scores over 90 points and top rankings from Cigar Aficionado have followed Ashton VSG since its initial release. The Ashton VSG Assortment presents a vertical tasting of the blend in 5 distinct sizes that express its flavor in an excellent range of intensities and smoking durations.

A shimmering Ecuador Sumatra leaf envelops a hearty core of premium all-Dominican binder and filler tobaccos blended by Carlito Fuente and matured to perfection. Notes of espresso, leather, raisins, and cedar meld with polished Dominican spices in a purely luscious profile. At $59.95, the Ashton VSG Assortment marries prestige and price in a collection that promises your favorite cigar lover will feel you went over and above with a top-shelf gift.

4.    La Aroma de Cuba / San Cristobal ’92-95’ Rated Assortment 

The La Aroma de Cuba / San Cristobal ’92-95’ Rated Assortment is blended by celebrated cigar-maker Jose ‘Pepin’ Garcia. Five top-selling cigars, 2 San Cristobal blends and 3 from La Aroma de Cuba, offer a brilliant batch of premium Nicaraguan profiles blended to an impeccable standard. The Garcia family has won a ton of accolades for the cigars they make. Included here are Cigar Aficionado’s 95-rated, former ‘#2 Cigar of the Year,’ La Aroma de Cuba Mi Amor, the 94-rated La Aroma de Cuba Mi Amor Reserva, and the 93-rated classic La Aroma de Cuba blend. In addition, the 93-rated original San Cristobal and the 92-rated San Cristobal Revelation complete this amazing lineup.

Extensively aged wrapper varietals are procured from Connecticut, Nicaragua, Ecuador, and the fertile volcanic soils of Mexico’s famed San Andrés region. Each cigar is drafted from a special recipe of handcrafted long-filler tobaccos grown on select Garcia family estates in Nicaragua. Signature Nicaraguan spices abound throughout rich and captivating profiles of fresh ground coffee, dark chocolate, almonds, cedar, hickory, and more. For just $38.95, prestige meets unrivaled value in an exquisite Nicaraguan assortment.

5.    Don Carlos Edicion de Aniversario Assortment

Don Carlos Edicion de Aniversario was originally blended to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the Fuente family’s bestselling Don Carlos line back in 2006. A rare and glistening Sun Grown Dominican wrapper is blended over a silky, complex amalgam of select Dominican binder and filler tobaccos. The Don Carlos Edicion de Aniversario Assortment includes 5 shapes, 1 Robusto (5.25 x 50), 2 Double Robustos (5.75 x 52), and 2 Toros (6.25 x 48).

A hearty profile of leather, cashews, chestnuts, wood, and caramel measures up with gorgeous aromas and signature Dominican spices in a hard-to-find Fuente cigar. The original Don Carlos blend premiered in 1976, pre-dating the Fuente family’s arrival in the Dominican Republic. To honor the occasion, Carlito Fuente unveiled an enticing and intense profile Cigar Aficionado awarded 94 points and a ‘Top 5’ ranking in 2008. Although it may be a pricier option at $134.95, your connoisseur won’t believe you were able to get your hands on a Don Carlos Edicion de Aniversario Assortment once they crack the package open.

6.    Padron 1964 Anniversary Sampler

Padron is a prominent Nicaraguan brand with no less than three ‘#1 Cigar of the Year’ titles from Cigar Aficionado to its credit as well as an extensive list of ratings over 90 points. Among the brand’s most successful and most requested cigars is its well-known Padron 1964 Anniversary line. The blend is handmade from select Nicaraguan binder and filler tobaccos and an extensively fermented Nicaraguan wrapper leaf. All tobaccos in the 1964 Anniversary blend are aged for a six-year minimum. The Padron 1964 Anniversary Sampler is an outstanding introduction to a much desired cigar in 5 traditional shapes, including an elongated and rare 8.25-inch ‘A’ format. Notes of cinnamon, nutmeg, cedar, cocoa, and baking spices accompany an alluring Nicaraguan zest. The sampler is also available in a Maduro wrapper which delivers an enhanced sweetness in taste.

Even cigar lovers who’ve never had the chance to try a Padron before are well aware of the brand’s illustrious reputation. For $90.95, this 5-cigar is an easy decision when you really want to wow an aficionado with an unforgettable birthday, Christmas, or special occasion gift.

7.    San Cristobal 60-Ring Assortment

Our list simply wouldn’t be complete without a cigar sampler specifically geared toward fans of big ring-gauge cigars. The San Cristobal 60-Ring Assortment fits the bill best with a complete collection blended by award-winning cigar-maker Jose ‘Pepin’ Garica in Estelí, Nicaragua. The San Cristobal brand has been a favorite for fans of premium Nicaraguan cigars for more than a decade. Three amazing blends (2 each) include the 93-rated original San Cristobal blend, the 92-rated San Cristobal Revelation, and the 91-rated San Cristobal Elegancia.

Pepin creates an exquisite series of profiles with three popular wrapper varieties and incredible recipes of select Nicaraguan binder and filler tobaccos beneath each. A decadent Nicaraguan leaf hugs a sumptuous pairing of long-fillers in San Cristobal for full-bodied notes of dark chocolate, black cherries, and rich spices. An Ecuador Sumatra leaf leaves a well-rounded, medium-bodied impression of cocoa and peppery caramels on the palate in San Cristobal Revelation. San Cristobal Elegancia is a mild to medium-bodied cigar with its nutty and approachable Ecuador Connecticut wrapper leaf. If you notice your favorite aficionado likes to puff on cigars that tip the scales of size and especially thickness, the San Cristobal 60-Ring Assortment is an unbeatable stocking stuffer for just $48.95.

8.    My Father Sampler

The Garcia family took home Cigar Aficionado’s ‘#1 Cigar of the Year’ title for the first time in 2012 with the 96-rated Flor de las Antillas, and again in 2015 with the 97-rated My Father Le Bijou 1922. The 94-rated original My Father is where it all began when Jaime Garcia blended a cigar in honor of his legendary cigar-making father, Jose ‘Pepin’ Garcia. Evidence of the family’s immense cigar-making heritage is purely accessible in the My Father Sampler.

Five classic shapes are drafted from a seamless Cuban-seed wrapper leaf grown in Ecuador over a full-bodied combination of premium Nicaraguan long-filler tobaccos harvested from select Garcia family estates. Notes of cedar, nuts, and earthy spices develop with superb aroma and lead to a welcome aftertaste. For $46.95, the My Father Sampler offers a mouthwatering vertical tasting of one of the industry’s hottest brands.

9.    Oliva 8-Cigar Assortment

In recent years, Oliva has made it onto the radar of nearly every premium cigar connoisseur you could meet. Cigar Aficionado bestowed a number of the brand’s bestselling blends with sky-high ratings as well as a ‘#1 Cigar of the Year’ title for Oliva Serie V Melanio in 2014. The Oliva 8-Cigar Assortment shows off the brand’s portfolio in a versatile collection of blends and sizes.

The 95-rated Oliva Serie V joins the 94-rated Oliva Serie O, 92-rated Oliva Master Blends 3, 92-rated Oliva Serie V Maduro, 91-rated Oliva Serie G, and the mild and creamy Oliva Connecticut Reserve. At only $34.95, you’re getting a tremendous selection of wrapper varietals, including cigars handcrafted with Cameroon, Nicaraguan, Connecticut Broadleaf, Ecuador Connecticut, and Ecuador Habano wrappers in a number of different classic shapes. Two uber-rare, limited edition Oliva Serie V Maduro Toros are included. Oliva is well-known for spicy and woody flavor profiles with notes of cedar, cayenne, espresso beans, leather, and earth featuring prominently. Oliva Connecticut Reserve delivers a creamier nutty taste. Get an awe-inspiring reaction from your favorite cigar lover without spending a fortune with an excellent collection from Oliva.

10.    Rocky Patel ‘Red Carpet’ Collection 

Rocky Patel adds an element of pizzazz and celebrity to cigar making few other cigar-makers possess. His portfolio is home to a number of wildly popular cigars like the 95-rated Rocky Patel Decade, the 92-rated Rocky Patel Vintage 1990, and the 90-rated Rocky Patel Renaissance. All three are included in the 20-cigar Rocky Patel ‘Red Carpet’ Collection with a host of other sought-after Rocky gems. Milder, medium-bodied, and fuller-bodied cigars are included in a deep collection of premium profiles that are handcrafted in Nicaragua and Honduras.

For just $59.95, you’re getting twenty high-quality, Toro-sized smokes your cigar lover will treasure. Ten different blends are represented (2 cigars in each blend) with a wide variety of wrappers, including Connecticut Shade, Connecticut Broadleaf, Ecuador Sumatra, San Andrés, and a rare barber-pole edition in Rocky Patel The Edge A-10. Tasting notes range from creamy, milder flavors of toasted cashews and oak to rich and decadent notes of dark chocolate, minerals, and zesty caramels. Give the gift of Rocky Patel this season and expose your favorite connoisseur to a famous brand name.

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