As part of my Annual Thanksgiving “Smoke your Rare Smoke” weekend, one of the sticks I decided to smoke was a Farach Farachitos Pre Embargo Cuban from the 1950s.

This was an interesting smoke, not only because of the age, but also because of the extremely small size. Seriously, I have taken pills that are larger then this stick, and the fact that it is a perfecto is even better.

I could not find much background info on this cigar, other than the fact that it was produced in Cuba and they were shipped from Havana to Spain in 1958. Their destination was the largest cigar distributor in Spain. Shortly after delivery, Castro took power. After the owner of the distributor passed, the estate fell into the equivalent of Spanish probate. 

It took literally 20 years for them to clear from the nasty court battle that ensued. Ultimately they were purchased by an individual in the U.S. and because they were deemed to be pre-embargo, they are legal to own in the U.S. In 1978 and then again in 1982 they were put up at auction in New York City and Las Vegas.

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  • Cigar Reviewed: Farach Farachitos
  • Country of Origin: Cuba
  • Wrapper: Cuba
  • Binder: Cuba
  • Filler: Cuba
  • Size: 3 1/4 Inches
  • Ring Gauge: 34
  • Vitola: Perfecto
  • Est. Price: n/a
  • Date Produced: Mid 1950s

As I said, the most striking thing about this cigar is the small size, and the fact that it is a perfecto. The band is great, but the wrapper is totally odorless and is extremely rough. Interestingly enough, the wrapper is fairly dark, and the construction seems to be spot on, even though the cigar is very brittle when squeezed.

The cold draw was musky and dry, as I expected, but there was a flavor I had never tasted before in a cigar and I spent quite a while trying to pinpoint it, without much success. I hoped that I would have more luck when I lit it up and was not disappointed.

After lighting the stick, I did not get any pepper or spice, but instead, that unnamed flavor from the cold draw was back, but with a vengeance. It was overwhelming any other flavors that could be there, and I finally put my finger on. It tasted kind of like what I would imagine smoking a old rolled up newspaper would taste like. Not totally unpleasant, if only because I had never tasted it before, but I knew it could get very annoying if I did not start getting some other flavors.

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The second third started much the same as the first, no pepper or spice, but with that same rolled up newspaper taste. However, I also tasted just a hint of a wood flavor, most likely cedar, …but it was way in the background, there and gone almost before I knew it. The newspaper flavor was starting to turn nasty, and I could tell that it was not going to get much better.

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As the final third started, there was bit of pepper, but the taste turned bitter and sour almost to the point of being unsmokeable, but I muddled through to the bitter end somehow. It was not a pleasant experience and I shudder just thinking about it at the moment.

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Final Notes:

  • Despite the horrible ending to this cigar, I have to admit the burn and draw was amazing. In fact, all of the vintage smokes I have tried have been that way, and I find that very interesting indeed.
  • The cigar was so small, I felt like I was smoking a joint the whole time.
  • Final smoking time was 35 minutes and I was taking a lot of breaks from it.
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Brooks Whittington

I have been smoking cigars for over eight years. A documentary wedding photographer by trade, I spent seven years as a photojournalist for the Dallas Morning News and the Fort Worth Star Telegram. I started the cigar blog SmokingStogie in 2008 after realizing that there was a need for a cigar blog with better photographs and more in-depth information about each release. SmokingStogie quickly became one of the more influential cigar blogs on the internet, known for reviewing preproduction, prerelease, rare, extremely hard-to-find and expensive cigars. I am a co-founder of halfwheel and now serve as an editor for halfwheel.