Founded by Graycliff Resort owner, Enrico Garzaroli, the Graycliff Cigar Company has achieved fame worldwide for high-end, handcrafted cigars produced in the lush tropical setting of the prestigious Bahamian resort by the same name. The site of the Graycliff Resort was originally a church built in 1666, one of Nassau's first structures and certainly most prominent. Known as the "Pride of the Bahamas," this historic site later served as a fort before becoming home to the 5-star resort it is today. Winston Churchill, Aristotle Onassis, Paul Newman, King Constantine and the Beatles are among the many who have visited over the years.
An enthusiastic cigar aficionado, Garzaroli dreamed of producing truly top-shelf cigars to complement the fine wine and cuisine in his first class restaurants. He partnered with Cuban cigar legend Avelino Lara to create Graycliff Cigar Company. Lara was responsible for Castro's personal smokes and then the Cohiba line. Graycliffs—initially offered as an amenity for guests at the hotel—are handmade in a small area behind the renowned Nassau resort. With an unyielding devotion to superior quality and consistency, Lara oversees the production of each cigar. Only a few hundred are rolled each day, and they're known for exceptional body and flavor without being overly harsh. Because of their focus on quality, they have thrived in spite of entering the premium cigar business in 1998 at the end of the cigar boom. Demand has mushroomed so much that Graycliff has expanded their manufacturing operations to Nicaragua, exporting their exacting standards as well.
Consistently ranked among the finest cigars in the world, Graycliff is among the most prestigious—and expensive—brands on the market today, out of the reach of many of us. Happily, the new G2 has a significantly ‘lighter’ price tag but represents the same standards for quality and care. Note the silky-smooth Ecuadorian-grown Connecticut wrapper with its oily sheen. It cloaks an exquisitely aged blend of long-fillers from Costa Rica, Nicaragua and the Philippines. Expect nuances of nuts and toast, a pleasant touch of leather and some sweet elements complemented by a unique doughy aroma—spicy but subtle. As it burns, its richness becomes even more evident and the stogie builds from mild to medium in body toward the nub. Complex but sophisticated and well-balanced, the G2 is Graycliff’s ultimate anytime cigar. Panelists complimented its crisp, clean finish with a hint of pepper on the aftertaste. Try it with a smoky single malt scotch—Laphroaig and Lagavulin, for instance.