Arturo Fuente Drink Pairings Part 1
Not only is Arturo Fuente one of the best selling cigars in the country, it is also one of the highest rated in the industry. Each year when the ratings come out, it has become common place to see one or several Fuentes right at the top of that list. Considering paring fine libations with a good cigar is an aged old tradition, it only makes sense to have a good idea of which Fuente cigar you should pair with which beverage. So for this first list lets take a look at 3 of the most common and popular Fuente cigars: 8-5-8 Maduro, Hemingway Best Seller, and the Cuban Belicoso Sungrown.
First lets take a look at the 8-5-8. For the price, it is one of the best cigars on the market. It is mild to medium with aged Dominican filler and is available in either the natural Cameroon or the broadleaf maduro. The maduro happens to be a fan favorite so lets pair that one up. The leaf is dark and rich, with notes of espresso, chocolate and the hint of a sweetness. Glenlivet is an excellent match up, particularly the 18 year old. It is light and rich, with the hint of a sweetness. If you are more of a beer drinker, a dark and rich stout is a great companion.
The Hemingway Best Seller posed a little bit more of a challenge. It is also Dominican, but utilizes a toothy Cameroon wrapper. It has great hints of wood and earth with a delightful spicy finish. For this cigar I went with an unsual scotch. Unusual in the sense that legally it is not even really scotch. Yamazaki is a single malt Japanese “whisky”. It has recently one several top awards including Whisky of the Year. It shares the same spice and wood aroma as the Hemingway. For the craft beer fan, I paired this up with a Dogfish Head Burton Baton Double IPA. The wood, oak and vanilla notes were sensational
For the final one on the list we look at the Cuban Belicoso Sungrown. A personal favorite of several of the JR employees, this cigar uses a sun grown Ecuadorian wrapper. It is red and spicy, with hints of leather and slight pepper aroma. For a medium body in this price range, this cigar is a must have. For this smoke, I dived deep into my personal stash and dug out a whiskey many probably haven’t heard of. I chose Highwest Campfire, a blend of scotch, bourbon, and rye with a complex and spicy flavor profile. It was a good day. Beer drinkers should choose something complex such as an IPA.
Try out these pairings and let me know what you think. Do not try them out in one day, I did and lets just say I’m banned from the state of Indiana. Stay tuned for more great pairings here on the Blending Room.