A quick word on cigars

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Cigars come in all sizes and shapes.
CigarsGenerally the length is measured in inches and the girth in ring gauges.  The ring gauge is the diameter of the cigar in 64th of an inch.  So a ring guage of 32 is 1/2″ across.

The fattest of all is probably the recently introduced “Nub” range with a 64 gauge.
Every brand has its own name for various sizes.  The biggest standard Cuban cigar is 9 1/4″ long and 47 gauge.   Romeo y Julieta call it the “Fabuloso” whereas Montecristo refer to it as simply “A”.

After Castro’s revolution the manufacture and sales of cigars became state controlled.  Many of the well known brand owners fled and, with American aid, continued to produce cigars under their mark in Nicaragua and the Dominican Republic.  Consequently many of the big names have two “brands”, one Cuban and one made elsewhere. The non-Cuban version is effectively exclusive to the USA market.  Anyone selling them in the UK would be in serious trouble!  Many other excellent Nicaraguan brands are freely available though.
With the exception of St Luis Rey, Hunter and Frankau were granted the monopoly on Cuban cigars imported into the UK.   If you are offered brands such as Romeo y Julieta or Montecristo on the Internet or overseas, and they look like a good deal, they may well be the genuine version of the other brand rather than the Cuban.  Outside the UK they may well be referred to as “Habano” from the leaf, leading you to believe they are Havanan-made.  So a word of caution;  If it doesn’t say Cuba on the seal, tube or band, it is not the genuine article.