Occasionally, a cigar comes along that is unique in every way—interesting blend, innovative shape, intriguing story—and, at the same time, can still maintain the classic standards of excellence. This is the case with the Arturo Fuente Don Carlos Eye of the Shark, Cigar Aficionado’s 2017 Cigar of the Year.
The Arturo Fuente Casa Cuba was blended by company patriarch Carlos Fuente Sr. His intent was to create a blend that reminded him of the cigars he smoked and rolled in his youth with his father, Arturo Fuente, using Cuban tobacco. The sizes in Casa Cuba are named after Cuban dominoes. Doble Cinco, which is a robusto size, was the most outstanding in the line. Complex and nuanced, the cigar scored 91 points. Read full review here
Fuente has owned the casa cuba brand for so many years. Why was the brand never really brought to market earlier?
Casa Cuba was a brand that my father bought way back during the early days of the embargo. The gentleman who owned the brand and a small factory, was very good friends with my grandfather. He was very old and his children were not interested in the business, so my father bought the brand. I have to tell you, it was one of my all-time favorite labels. It was an old-world label with beautiful illustrations. It represented the fusion of Cuba and America—Lady Liberty on one side and the goddess of the Siboney (native Cuban tribe) on the other. It represented a lot to me as a young man and that label was very important, so we saved it. It was particularly important in the ‘70s, when my grandfather always said, “When we go back to Cuba…” So that was a brand that I saved thinking that we would be back in Cuba someday making that brand. And time goes by; my grandfather passed away in 1973 and the situation in Cub a remains the same.