Cigars need to be grown in humid and warm regions. The most popular is in the Caribbean with the Dominican Republic being the most popular. Other popular countries in which cigars are grown is Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica and Jamaica.

Cuba had historically been the leading country from which premium cigars were exported to the United States. However, in 1962 the United States Congress enacted the Trading With the Enemies Act and a trade embargo has since been enforced against Cuba.   Since that time it is illegal to bring Cuban cigars into the United States.

Even with the U.S. embargo of Cuban cigars, that tiny island nation continues to be the premier cigar manufacturing center in the world. All Cuban cigars are called ‘Puros’ meaning pure. A ‘Puro’ cigar is made purely of tobaccos from the country where the cigars were rolled. This is by law (in Cuba). In recent times, Cuba has been hit hard by nature and the collapse of the former Soviet Union, it’s former and primary supporter. The resulting loss of economic aid from the former Soviet Union and a series of tobacco blights have combined to potentially undermine the consistency of Cuban cigar production and tobacco quality.

In the year’s since the embargo, the legend and inaccessibility of the Cuban cigar has combined in the psychology of the American consumer, making the Cuban cigar a coveted status symbol that is difficult to compete with. The best comparison to be made between illegal Cuban cigars and other legal ones is to compare French wines with California wines. One is different than the other. Is one better than the other? That is a matter of opinion!