Many cigar aficionados have a special place for Davidoff cigars in their heart. Rooted in a tobacco specialist shop in Switzerland opened by a Jewish immigrant from Novhorod-Siverskyi in the 1930s, Davidoff today offers a broad portfolio of their own premium cigars, cigarillos and pipe tobaccos. The brands Camacho and Zino Platinum are a part of the same company.
Davidoff cigars are rolled in Honduras and the Dominican Republic. Some of the tobacco is grown in these two countries, while the rest is imported from selected fields in a wider range of countries in the Americas, including Peru, Ecuador, Brazil, Nicaragua, Mexico and the USA.
Zino Davidoff, the King of Cigars, launched his first cigar line right after the end of World War II, but his cigars didn´t carry the Davidoff name until the 1960s. The first Davidoff labelled cigars, released in 1968, were simply named Davidoff No.1 and Davidoff No.2. The first Davidoff Mini Cigarillos and the original Davidoff pipe tobaccos appeared in the early 1970s.
Examples of cigars and cigarillos from Davidoff
- Davidoff Aniversario
- Davidoff Colorado Claro
- Davidoff Escurio
- Davidoff Grand Cru
- Davidoff Millennium
- Davidoff Nicaragua & Nicaragua Box Pressed
- Davidoff Primeros
- Davidoff Signature
- Davidoff Winston Churchill & The Late Hour
- Davidoff Yamasa
There is also the special limited-edition releases, such as the Chinese New Year release and the Royal Release.
- Davidoff Mini Cigarillos Silver
- Davidoff Mini Cigarillos Gold
- Davidoff Mini Cigarillos Platinum
- Davidoff Mini Cigarillos Nicaragua
- Davidoff Mini Cigarillos Escurio
The history of Davidoff cigars: From Tsarist Russia to the tobacco fields of Las Americas
From 1936 to 1994, Zino Davidoff – known as the King of Cigars – ran a tobacco specialist shop in Geneva, Switzerland. Originally named Sussele-Meier Davidoff, he was born in 1906 to Jewish parents living in the city Novhorod-Siverskyi in the Russian Empire.
Eventually, simply selling tobacco products created by others were no longer enough to satisfy Zino Davidoff, and he decided to put his extensive knowledge into the creation of his own series of cigars. After the end of World War II, he acquired the required license and set to work. The result was the “Château” cigar series, comprised of cigars named after Bordeaux vineyard estates. The very first cigar in this series was the “Château Latour”, launched in 1946.
In 1967, Cuba´s state tobacco monopoly Cubatabaco struck a deal with Zino Davidoff that resulted in a line of Cuban cigars carrying the Davidoff name. The Cuban Davidoff cigars were rolled in the newly established factory El Laguito in Havana, the same factory that made the now so famous Cohíbas.
Eventually, the relationship turned sour and Zino Davidoff found himself embroiled in a series of disputes over cigar quality and ownership rights. In August 1989, Zino Davidoff publicly burned over 100,000 Cuban Davidoff cigars that didn´t live up to his specifications. By 1991, all Davidoff product lines manufactured in Cuba had been discontinued.
Dominican Republic cigars replaces the Cubans
During the process of cutting his ties with Cuba, Zino Davidoff set his eyes on the Dominican Republic, which offered similar environmental conditions for tobacco production but with a smoother political climate. After a lot of investigations, Zino found a suitable local partner: Hendrik Kelner who owned the local tobacco company Tabadom.
The first Davidoff cigars made in the Dominican Republic hit the shelves in 1991 and were largely a continuation of the product lines and cigar formats that Zino had developed for the Cuban enterprise.
The early 1990s
The early 1990s was an intense decade for the company, and the launch of the first Dominican-made Davidoff cigars was not the only high-point of this epoch. Among other things, the originally limited-edition cigar Aniversario became an ongoing series in 1991, and 1992 saw the release of the Special R – the first cigar in the popular Davidoff Special cigar series. As a part of the many transformation in the early 1990s, the Château series was renamed Grand Cru, and the vineyard names were exchanged for simple numbers.
In 1994, Zino Davidoff died in his hometown Geneva, aged 87.
The Nicaragua series – a first step to diversification
In 2013, Davidoff Cigars branched out from the Dominican Republic by creating a cigar blend featuring tobacco imported from Nicaragua. The release of the Davidoff Nicaragua series was well received, and Davidoff Cigars decided to diversify even more by sourcing carefully selected tobacco from a wider range countries. In 2015, the Davidoff Escurio series came out, containing tobacco from Brazil. Since then, tobacco from Peru, Ecuador, Mexico and the United States have also been added to Davidoff´s product range.