Cigar Ratings & Reviews

#NowSmoking: Cohiba Riviera

#NowSmoking: Cohiba Riviera Cigar Review (Video)

Blend Details

Factory: STG Estelí, Nicaragua
Size: 6½”x52, box-pressed
Strength: Medium-plus
Wrapper: Mexican San Andrés
Binder: Honduran Connecticut
Filler: Honduran Jamastran, Honduran La Entrada, Nicaraguan Condega, Nicaraguan Estelí

Presented in boxes of 20

The Cohiba Riviera Cigar Back Story

The first new full-time collection release for Cohiba in three years, Cohiba Riviera cigars are named for the Riviera region of Mexico’s Tuxtla Valley where the cigars’ wrappers are grown. Plus, Cohiba Riviera marks the first time a Mexican San Andrés wrapper has been used in a Cohiba blend. Riviera is also the first box-pressed Cohiba. And as if all those firsts weren’t enough, they also chose some spectacular proprietary filler tobaccos from Honduras and Nicaragua with the blend adding up to six-regions in all. Additionally, one often-used Cohiba filler was conspicuous by its absence; there’s no Dominican Piloto Cubano in this blend. Suffice it to say, Cohiba was determined to make this new regular production cigar unique in more than a few creative ways.

Cigar Basics

The Cohiba Riviera Toro starts with a handsome dark natural wrapper that exhibits a smooth, leathery appearance with a rich-looking and even color. The box pressing is just right—not too soft or sharp—and the cigar is finished with a triple seam cap, which cut cleanly offering an excellent draw. The aroma at the foot of the cigar had a distinct cocoa scent, while the pre-light draw offered a wheat and honey cereal-like flavor.

Cohiba Riviera Toro Cigar Review

The opening puffs had a very wholesome and creamy feel on the palate. That creaminess also reminded me of light cream with a little added sugar. Early on, the body and strength of the cigar were impressively mellow and the cigar got off to a very clean burn. The first flavor that hit me reminded me of honey-wheat bread. Further along, notes of leather and baking spices joined-in. The result was a well-balanced and mellow mix of flavors. Approaching the midsection, the cigar remained pretty consistent in flavor and that creaminess wasn’t letting up. The burn remained very clean, too.

At the heart of the cigar, the body and strength shifted to medium-plus. Leather and baking spices remained as drive-by mocha java made several passes. I also started to appreciate the cigar’s sweet-spicy aroma and a newfound oaky note (my on-camera Riviera also revealed a floral note). At this point, everything was singing in-tune.

During the remaining inches, the core flavors were underscored by some earthiness. Also revealed was a curious pistachio nut flavor that finished with a slightly metallic taste. I stayed with the cigar until the last 1½-inches where the smoke remained creamy and balanced while the body and strength offered no drastic change.

Are Cohiba Riviera Cigars Worth Buying?

Yes, if you’re a dedicated Cohiba fan, if you’ve developed a taste for complex blends, and if you don’t mind paying more for an exceptional smoke.

As I said in the video, my pre-video Riviera Toro was excellent on every count, and that was before I knew it was a Honduran-forward blend, to which I admit I’m partial. More importantly, my on-camera Riviera was every bit as satisfying as the first.
I think experienced cigar smokers who choose the Riviera may agree that the construction, creaminess, balance, and complexity are all in there and I’m even tempted to call it a “perfect cigar.” True, it comes at a posh Cohiba price, but as I said in our Cohiba Serie M review, if you’re willing to spend upwards of $50 for a Cuban Cohiba, the Riviera will not disappoint. What I also like is its more medium-ish strength makes it approachable to most cigar smokers.