Cigars, cuba, H Upmann

18 Years in the Making

‘Mitch, I have a cigar for you tonight that not even YOU have ever smoked.’

(Video at the bottom)

I have been smoking cigars for twenty-five years, and in that time I have had some great cigars… and some not so great ones. When people asking me about aging cigars, I am usually on the fence. On the one hand, if you take a great cigar and age it properly, it will usually improve somewhat. On the other hand, there is no amount of age that can take a bad cigar and make it a good one. As for me, I don’t usually keep cigars around long enough to age them properly… I have a couple of boxes from 2016, but most of my cigars just don’t last long enough to be considered ‘aged.’

So when a buddy of mine offered me a cigar from a box from 2001, I was excited. I was happy to select a stick from his box of H Upmann Super Coronas, I jumped at the opportunity.

The Super Corona was discontinued in 2002, which is a shame because it really is very tasty. It is extremely smooth, with the creaminess that is tinged with notes of molasses and a bit of saltiness, which was interesting.

It is a medium-bodied cigar that is a perfect size for a nice after dinner cigar. It is 5 5/8″ x 46. Because of the way my friend stores his cigars, this one ended up with a minor box-press to it… which also tightened the draw somewhat. No matter, it was worth every puff.

This cigar paired perfectly with the Balvenie Caribbean Cask 14 year old single malt whisky, which is nice and smooth. A buddy wanted to pair it with an Islay malt, but I felt that the peatiness of the scotch would overpower the flavour of the cigar.

The construction was spectacular – the ash did not fall until it was much longer than an inch, and as you can see from the picture, it was burning perfectly.

It lit nicely with two wooden matches, and I never had to relight it. All in all, it was truly spectacular.

So the question remains: should you age your cigars? How good would this cigar have been fresh, compared to what it is now? That is a question you have to decide for yourself. There is no question that aging cigars would require an up-front investment that might be quite substantial. Imagine having a box of cigars – or ten boxes – that you cannot smoke for 10-20 years!? That would not only be the up-front cost of the cigars, but there is a storage cost as well, in addition to the labour (of love) that is involved.

I will likely keep up my pace of keeping 50-75 cigars aside for a few years, but long-term aging is out of my budget. With that said, if anyone ever offers you a 15 year old Habanos… TAKE IT!

Marca: H Upmann (Habanos)
Vitola : Corona Gorda
Size : 5 5/8 x 46 (143 x 18 mm)
Box date : HCA JUL 01
Discontinued in 2002


1 thought on “18 Years in the Making”

  1. You bring up an interesting point, that I think alot of cigar smokers, including myself, ever thought of. Aging a good cigar may get better. But aging a bad cigar may never get better. In sense. It was bad to begin with. Maybe with exception of “young, or green” tobacco that needs to put some time in. Thank you for sharing!


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