Many will remember that the Oliva Serie V Melanio Figurado was named Cigar of the Year in 2014. The brand continues its trajectory of excellence with the Robusto. It’s a far more compact format, and perhaps more approachable, as not everyone is inclined to light up a large double figurado as their everyday smoke. The blend is centered around a Sumatra-seed wrapper grown in Ecuador paired with Nicaraguan tobacco. This combination isn’t terribly common in the premium cigar world, but the Oliva Cigar Co. seems to understand the tobaccos and how they fit together for harmony and balance.
Earlier in 2016, Oliva Cigar Co. was acquired by J. Cortez Cigars N.V., a Belgian tobacco company that wanted a premium cigar operation in its portfolio. Now they have one. Assurances have been made that nothing will change under the new ownership, and that J. Cortes will maintain Oliva’s high standards. We certainly hope so. With the Oliva Serie V Melanio, they now have an extraordinary cigar blend on their hands. The smoke is silky, sweet and, at times intense with toast and cedar. The brand name commemorates Melanio Oliva, who first grew tobacco in Cuba in the 1800s.