A: Regarding knowing whether you’ll take to certain cigars or not, it is true; trying is believing. Plus, there’s no correlation between strength and price. Price is determined by the production costs: creating the blend, the vintage/quality of the leaves, number of sizes in the line, box design, labor costs, etc.
Regarding those so-called Havanas, I wouldn’t be surprised if some of them were counterfeits. If they were genuine, they wouldn’t be so consistently harsh unless they’re made either at an inferior or underground factory, or not properly aged, which wouldn’t surprise me either. Stop wasting your money.