Season’s greetings! As the song goes, Christmas is the most wonderful time of year and a fantastic opportunity to enjoy a fine cigar with a glass of sherry. Whether it’s during Advent, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, or even Boxing Day there’s nothing beats a fine cigar across from a glowing, crackling fire.

In this yuletide guide, we’ll be presenting the Best Cigars For Christmas to enjoy or to give as a gift for a loved one:

  1. JC Newman The American
  2. Fuente Fuente OpusX
  3. Avo Syncro Nicaragua
  4. Camacho Coyolar
  5. Oliva Serie V Melanio
  6. Rocky Patel Vintage 1990
  7. Cohiba Maduro
  8. Montecristo Línea 1935
  9. Man O’ War Armada
  10. Cain Daytona

You can use the links above to jump ahead. You can also head to the menu below to see what else we’ll be covering.

What Are The Best Cigars For Christmas?

Before you discover our selection of the Top 10 Cigars For Christmas, please bear in mind that the following blends are featured in no particular order of preference. Each cigar listed here has its own merits and unique benefits as to why you should consider it for the Christmas period.

Similarly, feel free to leave a comment if you have any personal favourites that we should include!

In This Guide

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1. JC Newman The American

JC Newman The American & Omega Seamaster
  • Filler: Havana Seed, Mennonite
  • Binder: Connecticut Broadleaf
  • Wrapper: Florida Sun Grown
  • Preferred Vitola: 6⅛ x 52 Torpedo
  • Assembly: El Reloj [Tampa, Florida]
  • Handmade: Yes
  • Body: Medium – Full
  • Smoking Time: 70 Minutes
  • Pricing: $16 / Single
Read The Review

If you’re feeling particularly patriotic and want to enjoy a more domestic treat, The American is a unique homage to the USA’s vibrant cigar culture. Its filler consists of Connecticut Havana Seed and Pennsylvanian Mennonite while the binder and wrapper are Connecticut broadleaf and Florida Sun Grown respectively.

This medium to full-bodied blend offers rich gourmand notes such as molasses and chocolate. An excellent evening smoke by the fire, it would pair beautifully with a unctuous glass of port and a mince pie.

"What better way to enjoy a cool Yule with a rich American-made cigar that offers opulent and gourmand flavours throughout?"
Bespoke Unit Rating: ★★★★★

2. Fuente Fuente OpusX

Arturo Fuente Opus X
  • Filler: Dominican Republic
  • Binder: Dominican Republic
  • Wrapper: Dominican Republic
  • Preferred Vitola: 5¼ x 50 Robusto
  • Assembly: Château de la Fuente [DR]
  • Handmade: Yes
  • Body: Medium – Full
  • Smoking Time: 60 Minutes
  • Pricing: $22.38 / Single
Read The Review

Funete’s much-hyped and iconic range may occasionally roll eyes when featured in guides like these. However, the OpusX is a wonderfully mouthwatering choice for Christmas. Its opulent oily wrapper releases atmospheric aromas of exotic woods and spices that are perfectly fitting for the festive season.

With a touch of salted caramel and subtle hints of cognac, its overtly gourmand profile pairs beautifully with the aforementioned drink and homemade gingerbread. Alternatively, consider enjoying it with red wine leftover from a Christmas dinner or even a glass of sherry and a mince pie.

3. Avo Syncro Nicaragua

Avo Nicaragua Ash Burn
  • Filler: Piloto, San Vicente Mejorado, Hybrid Olor/Piloto, Ometepe, Olancho
  • Binder: Dominican Republic
  • Wrapper: Ecuadorian Connecticut
  • Assembly: OK Cigar Corp [Dominican Rep.]
  • Handmade: Yes
  • Body: Medium
  • Smoking Time: 80 Minutes
  • Pricing: $11 / Single [Buy Now]
Read The Review

As an overall milder blend, the Nicaragua is perhaps a better cigar to consider on a frosty afternoon. Whether it’s to keep your warm or to enjoy with a friend, it’s an excellent choice for both enthusiasts and novices alike.

Composed of no less than seven different tobacco varieties, the use of Nicaraguan Ometepe and Peruvian Olancho add some hints of sweet spice. Although a traditionally English beverage, it’s marries will with a glass of sloe gin.

4. Camacho Coyolar

Camacho Coyolar Perfecto First Third Notes
  • Filler: Honduran Criollo
  • Binder:Honduran Criollo
  • Wrapper: Honduran Criollo
  • Preferred Vitola: 6.5 x 52 “Super” Toro
  • Assembly: Diadema Cigars [Honduras]
  • Handmade: Yes
  • Body: Full
  • Smoking Time: 80 Minutes
  • Pricing: $9 / Single [Buy Now]
Read The Review

An unapologetically heavy Honduran puro composed only of Criollo sourced from a single 15-acre farm near Danlí, this is a blend for serious cigar enthusiasts. Its notes of agarwood, walnut, and leather are evocative of a tarry log fire, which makes it an interesting nighttime choice.

There’s also a hint of crème brûlée, which adds a touch of creaminess that could be considered with a glass of Irish Cream. However, if this is too sweet to your palate, there are plenty of smokey Scotch whiskies from the Isle of Islay.

5. Oliva Serie V Melanio

Oliva Serie V Melanio
  • Filler: Nicaraguan Jalapa, Condega & Estelí
  • Binder: Nicaragua
  • Wrapper: Ecuadorian Sumatra
  • Preferred Vitola: 6.5 x 54 Figurado
  • Assembly: Oliva Cigars [Estelí, Nicaragua]
  • Handmade: Yes
  • Body: Medium – Full
  • Smoking Time: 60 Minutes
  • Pricing: $14 / Single
Read The Review

Another celebrated cigar, the Melanio V is essentially Oliva’s flagship blend that is heralded for its aromas and consistency. Despite its filler consisting of Nicaraguan Ligero from Estelí, Condega, and Jalapa, it offers a balanced body that still offers full flavours.

With notes including cocoa nibs, cappuccino, and yeasty toasted brioche, we would recommend enjoying it with a coffee or even hot chocolate. However, you could have a well-aged rum or possibly consider a touch of Irish in your coffee instead.

6. Rocky Patel Vintage 1990

Rocky Patel Vintage 1999
  • Filler: Dominican & Nicaraguan Ligero
  • Binder: Nicaraguan
  • Wrapper: Honduran Maduro Broadleaf
  • Preferred Vitola: 6.5 x 52 BxP Toro
  • Assembly: General Cigar Co [Honduras]
  • Handmade: Yes
  • Body: Medium – Full
  • Smoking Time: 80 Minutes
  • Pricing: $10 / Single
Review Coming Soon

Rocky Patel’s Vintage 1990 is a box-pressed cigar that features a stunning 12-year old Honduran Maduro broadleaf wrapper. Sweet with a caramelised profile that exudes notes of coffee, cocoa and a few hints of spice, it’s an easy and meditative smoke for the winter months.

We actually paired this once with Italian Grappa and were very surprised by the results. However, this isn’t really in the Christmas spirit. Alternatively, we would likely turn to a light-bodied spirit like a sherry or even an Irish whisky.

7. Cohiba Maduro 5

Cohiba Maduro Cigar With Petite Fine Champagne Cognac
  • Filler: Cuba Puro
  • Binder: Cuban Puro
  • Wrapper: Cuban Maduro
  • Preferred Vitola: 4⅓ x 40 Petit Corona
  • Assembly: Partagás [Havana Vieja, Cuba]
  • Handmade: Yes
  • Body: Medium – Full
  • Smoking Time: 50 Minutes
  • Pricing: $12.60 / Single [Buy Now]
Review Coming Soon

A renowned and cherished blend by many, the Cohiba Maduro 5 features a Ligero (termed “Corona” in Cuba) wrapper that has undergone 5 years of ageing. Furthermore, it was also intentionally harvested late so that the leaves were riper than usual.

The Maduro 5 is bursting with character with lively and rich aromas that generously enveloppe the palate. A perfect choice to pair with cognac as hinted above, it also goes beautifully with port.

8. Montecristo Línea 1935

Montecristo Linea 1935 Dumas In Old French Town
  • Filler: Vuelta Abajo [Cuba]
  • Binder: Vuelta Abajo [Cuba]
  • Wrapper: Vuelta Abajo [Cuba]
  • Preferred Vitola: Maltés 6 x 53 Toro
  • Assembly: Romeo y Julieta [Cuba]
  • Handmade: Yes
  • Body: Medium – Full
  • Smoking Time: 90 Minutes
  • Pricing: $23 / Single [Buy Now]
Read The Review

Time will tell whether this 2017 release will become a contemporary classic. Until then, we can enjoy it to its full potential. With notes a grapefruit, bay leaf, beech, and lapsang souchong, it delivers aromatic flavours that are reminiscent of smoked salmon or indeed smoked meat.

Despite Montecristo’s claim to have creating a full-bodied blend, it is far from overbearing. Therefore, it’s a great evening option to savour the post-dinner flavours. Consider pairing it with a peated single malt to really bring out the combined smokiness.

9. Man O’ War Armada

Armada Man o' War Cigar
  • Filler: Nicaraguan
  • Binder: Nicaraguan
  • Wrapper: Ecuadorian Sumatra
  • Preferred Vitola: 6.5 x 56 Toro
  • Assembly: AJ Cigars [Estelí, Nicaragua]
  • Handmade: Yes
  • Body: Full
  • Smoking Time: 70 Minutes
  • Pricing: $20 / Single
Review Coming Soon

Man o’ War achieved cult status some years ago and AJ Fernadnez continues to blow his fans away with his new releases. The Armada features a toothsome Ecuadorian Sumatra wrapper, which boasts a rich tableau of flavour.

Its resulting character is earthy overall with accompanying gourmand notes of coffee, nutmeg and a soothing vanilla finish. If you’re feeling daring, this one could go well with a homemade mulled wine.

10. Cain Daytona

Cain Daytona Cigar Look & Feel
  • Filler: 100% Jalapa Ligero
  • Binder: Nicaragua
  • Wrapper: Nicaraguan Habano
  • Preferred Vitola: 6 x 60 Gordo
  • Assembly: Oliva Cigars [Estelí, Nicaragua]
  • Handmade: Yes
  • Body: Medium – Full
  • Smoking Time: 70 Minutes
  • Pricing: $8 / Single
Read The Review

A daring release by Oliva’s creative department, Studio Tobac, the Daytona is another straight Ligero cigar but this time features only Jalapa tobacco. While it’s a fun smoke when young, it really gains its appeal after being aged for at least 6 months.

If you have time to plan ahead or can acquire pre-aged ones, it’s well worth the efforts. Its brandy butter aromas on the foot become much more prevalent during the smoking experience. As well as bay leaf and citrus, you will also discover notes of caramelised spices, which are tantalising to say the least!

What Cigars Embody The Christmas Spirit?

Caol Ila Hepburn's Choice Single Malt Whisky & FireplaceAssembling a selection of fitting cigars for the festive season was nothing short of challenging. When writing this guide, we noted a variety of factors that would help in deciding the best cigars for Christmas.

Firstly, we considered the setting in terms of both climate and environment to take into account the effects it would have on people’s tastes. With Christmas taking place at the height of winter for most cultures, we imagined frosty mornings and dark evenings.

Consequently, we turned towards the traditional Danish Hygge custom and how this could be interpreted for selecting and enjoying cigars. An untranslatable word, Hygge is the practice of seeking cosiness and well-being during the harsh winter.

Translating Hygge To Cigars

Longines watch by fire pit and cigarThis often revolves around comfort, which includes food and drink as well as friends and family. Imagine being wrapped in a wool blanket in front of the glowing flames of an open fireplace with a cup of hot chocolate between your hands. This is a quintessential Hygge situation.

Such comfort and cosiness can translate well to cigars. Although it might be challenging in most homes that tend to be “smoke-free”, there may be many opportunities to cosy up with a fine cigar and a beverage of choice.

Camacho Nicaraguan Barrel Aged Cigar & Rolex GMT Master IIAlternatively, you may be looking for cigars to celebrate the festivities. Even in these circumstances, we would still consider something that offers the same comforting aromas and smoking experience than the previous example.

Otherwise, you might be looking to buy some cigars are a Christmas gift. If the cigars are to be smoked when given, you might want to opt for something that embodies the season’s spirit.

Whatever the circumstances, the cigars would likely be for a special occasion so we sought to take that into account with some premium options.

Consider Caramelised & Spicy Notes

Oliva Serie V Melanio & RumWhen you think about the smells and tastes of Christmas, there may be a plethora of things that come to mind. At some point, you will likely imagine spices, candied fruit, pine, smoke, and different types of rich food roasting in the oven.

When seeking out a festive cigar, we would look for options with a similar appeal. Olfactive memory, the way we remember smells, is extraordinarily powerful. Even the faintest smell can quickly whisk us away to our earliest childhood.

We studied a wide variety of cigars that we have tried and tested to find those that feature notes that may create or enforce that association. You’ll note that many of the above options have spicy notes. However, they are rarely peppery and tend to lean towards things like nutmeg, chocolate, cinnamon, bay leaf, and citrus.

Furthermore, we found that medium to full-bodied blends were the most successful at create that ambience. These are also the most versatile that could be enjoyed during a Christmas afternoon or much later in the evening.

That said, there are a few full-bodied options that would be perfect for a late-night cigar.

Nicaraguan Tobacco Varieties

Rocky Patel Vintage 1999 & GrappaDespite a few Cubans, most of the cigars featured Nicaraguan tobacco, which hosts varieties that are often prized for their spicy character. Varieties such as Ometepe, Condega, and Jalapa are well known for producing such flavours.

Another excellent variety that we find offers a more caramelised yet bold experience is Ecuadorian Sumatra, which was a wrapper on two of the cigars listed above.

However, there were also some Honduran and Dominican varieties that have their own benefits. Honduran Criollo, for example, is bold and leathery. Meanwhile, the Dominican Piloto is known for its rich and spicy flavour.

Of course, a cigar blender will use a combination of varieties in order to create his or her intended flavours. Similarly, a blender will often use varieties that have been aged for different lengths of time as well as different primings.

Ageing tobacco doesn’t necessarily make it stronger. In fact, it tends to instead mellow our the flavour and render it more complex. There is a common misconception that a maduro cigar is always stronger. However, this is mostly the case now because brands do it to cater to our expectations.

Finally, tobacco leaves are harvested in primings. The first such as the Volado, are large leaves that are aromatic and burn well. Yet, they’re not overly strong. Meanwhile, later primings like the Ligero are found at the top of the plant and are harvested later.

Ligero is indeed strong in nicotine but it doesn’t necessarily feature an abundance of flavour. Therefore, a combination of different primings from a selection of varieties of different ages will produce a truly harmonious blend.

Christmas Cigar Pairings

Amrut Fusion Single Malt Indian Whisky & Spices LandscapeThroughout this guide, we actually touched on a few specific suggestions for each cigar. Nevertheless, we’ll briefly take a look at the options from a higher level.

Indeed, one of the highlights of the Christmas season is the rich variety of food and drink. Sometimes it’s difficult to include it all, which can lead to regret if you tried too hard to do so!

When it comes to beverages, sherry and port are by far the most celebrated. However, whisky, cognac, brandy, and a variety of liqueurs also have their place. There are also traditional cocktails such as Irish cream, eggnog, and mulled wine.

Interestingly, all of the above options can likely be paired with some sort of cigar if you’re feeling creative. While most of them are relatively easy, eggnog, Irish cream, and some liqueurs can be more challenging.

Champagne Bouché Cuvée Saphir In Front Of Christmas TreeDuring all of this, there will probably be an abundance of wine and Champagne too. If you’re happy continuing with these after a meal, you can still enjoy a cigar. Some cigars are wonderful with red wine or Champagne and it’s well worth exploring.

Finally, don’t forget that there may be plenty to nibble as well! From gingerbread to chocolate, these are wonderful treats to have with a cigar.

If you’re struggling to decide on a pairing due to an abundance of options, we suggest basing it around what is the most limited. For example, if you have a few cigars but lots to drink, choose the cigar first then work it around that.

You can do this by smelling the cigar’s foot (or even starting it), then imagining how it will pair when you proceed to nose the bottles in front of you. A successful pairing doesn’t always just consist of complementary flavours. Indeed, sometimes they can contrast in harmony too!

How Did We Rank These Cigars?

Cain Daytona Cigar On BoxAs we briefly mentioned above, we have tried and tested every cigar that is featured in this guide. In fact, we based the rankings on only cigars that we have either reviewed or tested using the Bespoke Unit Cigar Formula.

The Bespoke Unit Cigar Formula was pushed lived with our review of the Avo Nicaragua in August 2019. However, we had been developing it since 2017. Disappointed by the seemingly arbitrary scores awarded to cigars by some publications, we wanted to create an accurate and fair system.

The Bespoke Unit Cigar Formula is essentially a review matrix that uses quantifiable data in order to produce a final score. We also made sure that we based it on a true 100-point scale rather than just scoring cigars between 85 and 95 as can be seen in some cases.

After consulting with industry professionals, the system went live but we also went back and scored all of our previously reviewed cigars. While this isn’t published on the site, we use it regularly for creating guides like this one. As a result, we can create rankings with conviction and not by random.

What Next?

Firstly, did we miss anything out? Feel free to let us know in the comments below! Otherwise, now that you’ve seen the best cigars for the morning, why don’t you also check out our related guides below?

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