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Cuba might be famous for its cigars, but they are made in other countries too. Whether they use filler tobacco or provide the wrappers that hold the cigar together, each has its own particular flavour profile. Here are some of the places that produce some of the best cigars in the world so you can find alternatives to the classic Cuban cigars.
When many of the best cigar rollers left Cuba following the revolution, a number of them settled in Nicaragua. They passed on their knowledge to local brands, including Padron, Perdomo and My Father, who use the strong local tobacco.
Known for their strong and dark tobacco, Honduran brands, such as Camacho, Room 101 and CLE, are forging a good reputation. Honduras was the first place the famous Corojo tobacco seed was grown outside of Cuba, and the industry has gone from strength to strength since the 1960s.
Tobacco has a long history in the Dominican Republic, and is generally known for its light and smooth flavour profile. Look out for La Flor Dominicana, Arturo Fuente and the Dominican Montecristo brands.
The only African country that produces top-quality tobacco is Cameroon, but it has traditionally been difficult to access the fields. Cigars that use Cameroonian materials are rare, but definitely worth a try.
Not for beginners, Brazilian tobacco is known for its incredible strength. You might want to build up your experience on some lighter tobacco before getting involved with the intense Brazilian type.
Mild and creamy tobacco is the calling card of US production, including the famous Connecticut wrapper. Try the Kentucky Fire Cured by Drew Estate, or the Camacho American Barrel-Aged.
A relatively new player in the tobacco game, Ecuadorian production started up around 15 years ago. The humidity and cloud cover that is typical of many areas of the country make it a top spot for tobacco growing.