96 rated cigars are an exclusive grouping, comprised of some of the finest cigars ever made. At the time of this writing, there are only about a dozen cigars that can claim the rating from Cigar Aficionado (and only a handful higher, meaning that these cigars are in the top 20 of all time).
Cigars that are 96 rated are not limited to any particular type. There are Cubans, Nicaraguans, Dominicans, and more. Each soil imparts its own character and style to the tobacco, giving us a number of ways to experience excellent tobacco. They come in all shapes and sizes and include maduros as well as naturals (although there don’t seem to be a ton of Connecticut's rated this highly). But this demonstrates that there’s more than one kind of cigar that’s worthy of a 96 rating. 96 rated cigars include stogies like:
Alec Bradley Prensado Flor de las Antillas La Flor Dominicana Andalusian Bull Oliva Serie V Melanio Padrón Serie 1926 and Ramon Allones Specially Selected 2015
There’s no manufacturer that dominates the list, as you can see. Creating a 96 rated cigar typically marks a cigar maker as a top-tier producer, and it’s incredibly hard to repeat the feat. Undoubtedly, there are many companies that make great cigars, but these are ultra-premium luxury sticks that demonstrate when a blender is a cut above the rest and all the stars are in alignment. These are the true cigar artisans – those whose tastes and ability to select tobacco are so finely calibrated that, when you smoke one of their blends, you know you’ve got something special.
Cigar Aficionado rates dozens of cigars each month, but even in a whole year of smoking, there may not be a cigar that’s worthy of a 96 rating. If you see 96 rated cigars, don’t miss the chance to smoke at least one. Even years after the initial review, cigars like these can still be outstanding and unique. It’s a combination of amazing tobacco, impeccable construction, and blending that leads to incredibly enjoyable flavor.
Of course, a great cigar can reach heights for a variety of reasons, but 96 rated cigars almost always are nearly perfect in every dimension. They look great, they smell great, they smoke great, they have superb finishes, and the retrohale usually unlocks a whole new world of notes.
If cigar making is art, these are some of the masterpieces, without a doubt.
Please enjoy our selection of 96 rated cigars at your leisure.