Brief History of Cohiba: Fidel Castro's All-time Favourite Cigar Brand

Brief History of Cohiba: Fidel Castro's All-time Favourite Cigar Brand

In this blog post, we are going to be giving our readers an insight into Cohiba; the brand is considered by many to be the most successful of all cigar brands and definitely one of our favourites. Cuban Cigars, since the very beginning have always been held in such high regard. An air of affluence, luxury and class have surrounded the product since its very conception. Many fine cigars have been made from the most delicate tobacco leaves in Cuba's beautiful regions, but one particular brand which is recognised as being the one that does it the best is Cohiba.

Cohiba is the flagship brand of Habanos S.A and was initially created in 1966 for the Cuban revolutionary Fidel Castro. During these years, Cohiba Cuban Cigars were made in a secret location, now globally known as the famous El Laguito Factory, and only given as gifts to those in political conduct such as diplomats and heads of state. The Cohiba brand really did begin their journey as an elite cigar brand which was only smoked by those worthy of it.

Fidel Castro, the Cuban revolutionary. 


The very name Cohiba derives from the Indian Taino word for 'tobacco' and is believed to be coined after the bunches of tobacco leaves Columbus first saw the natives of Cuba smoking. As aforementioned during its early years, only those who were of political importance and the select few were given a chance to smoke these fantastic cigars.

The mystical properties that surround the cigar are due to the Fidel Castro story. Cohiba's origins are said to date back to the mid-1960s, in which a local torcedor was giving Fidel Castro's bodyguard hand-rolled cigars. Fidel Castro enjoyed them so much that he asked for them to be made for his own personal use. This meant that the El Laguito Factory began producing regular cigars containing the unbranded tobacco blend which would later be known as the world-famous Cohiba.

In 1968, the brand was launched, and the cigars produced were manufactured on a very small scale, made from only the best quality materials. The success of these cigars in Cuba meant that Cohiba could expand their production line and make it a full one, making it more available in cigar stores worldwide. This led to the brand launching itself as a premium cigar brand in 1982. Notably, in markets outside of the United States, which led to the various lines that have come out of the brand since.



The leaves used in the Cohiba tobacco blend comes from various districts in the world-famous Vuelta Abajo region. The tobacco plantations used by Cohiba are recognised as Vegas Finas de Primera, which are confirmed by the Cuban Tobacco Institute as the best cigar tobacco growing regions. Zino Davidoff, an expert cigar connoisseur, also believes that the leaves from the districts of San Luis and San Juan y Martinez are the most sought after by cigar manufacturers. Therefore, it is absolutely no wonder the cigars from Cohiba are of high-grade quality and so popular amongst cigar aficionados worldwide. The cigars which contain the seco, ligero and the rare medio tiempo filler leaves have all undergone an additional fermentation process which is what gives the Cohiba brand it's distinctive and very popular flavours.

The Cohiba Behike; the brand's most exclusive and sought after product line to date.


Cohiba Cigars have been marketed worldwide since 1982. The initial sizes that were released were: Coronas Especiales, Lanceros and Panetelas. Later in 1989, the very popular Robustos, Exquisitos and Cohiba Esplendidos Cigar sizes were added to their line. And in 1989, to celebrate the 500th anniversary of the discovery of Cuba, Cohiba created five new formats to the range, which were the fantastic Siglo I, Siglo II, Siglo III, Siglo IV and Siglo V finally followed by the fantastic Siglo VI in 2002. Five years later, we welcomed the Línea Maduro 5, with the three sizes Magicos, Genios and Secretos. Finally, in 2010, the Cohiba brand released the most exclusive line yet, the Cohiba Behike. In our Cuban Cigar Shop, we have all these different cigars by Cohiba, be sure to browse our online store.

Cohiba has been recognised by cigar lovers all over the world as a brand that has consistently created exceptional cigars and bringing out new, exciting cigars. Using the most innovative thinking and most exceptional materials, the brand has managed to hold its position as a leading brand of the cigar world, and we do not expect that to change anytime soon.

For more interesting articles about Cuban Cigars, read our Cuban Cigar Blog:

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published