Is it fair to say that Fonseca is back and, perhaps, better than ever? The first thing I’d say is read the rest of the review and find out. The second thing I’d say is probably, yes.

My Father Cigars bought the rights to the Fonseca name (U.S. only) from Quesada Cigars during the winter of 2019. That was probably the first time most hobbyists heard the name Fonseca (or Quesada, for that matter) in a long while, and it was a pretty big deal. The Fonseca brand has been available in the U.S. for a long time, and it’s rare to see a mark of this caliber change hands. It’s an even bigger deal when the company acquiring the name is My Father Cigars.

This first release, simply called Fonseca by My Father Cigars, hit the market in fall of 2020 with six different sizes. The MSRP ranges from $7 to $11—depending on the size—and the look is a perfect combination of “classic Fonseca” and My Father elegance.

Fonseca Cedros Breakdown

  • Wrapper: Nicaraguan Shade Grown Corojo ’99 Rosado
  • Binder: Nicaragua
  • Filler: Nicaragua
  • Factory: My Father Cigars S.A. (Nicaragua)
  • Production: Regular Production
  • Vitola: 6¼” x 52 “Cedros” (Toro)
  • Price: $11.00 (MSRP)

Fonseca by My Father consists solely of Nicaraguan tobaccos grown on the García family’s own farms throughout the country. The highlight ingredient is a shade-grown Nicaraguan Corojo ’99 rosado wrapper.

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Appearance

I dig it. Take the classic Fonseca “F” and add some My Father flair and you have a very good looking cigar. I smoked the Cedros format, which is the only vitola in the line to sport a cedar sleeve. The cedar has the name FONSECA stamped on it, just in case you missed the big F or the name FONSECA on the main band. It’s classic. It’s ornate. It’s dope, and I love it.

The Nicaraguan rosado wrapper is also quite stunning. It has that perfect look of soft, worn leather. It has a bit of a sheen to it and it is smooth to the touch. I don’t want to get too sensual here (cue the candles and Kenny G), but this is a very sexy cigar. Do you all even know who Kenny G is?

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Smoking Experience

Enough about Kenny G. Seriously, just look him up on YouTube. The man was a genius with some seriously luscious locks. So, the cigar… The wrapper, while beautiful, was also very aromatic. Notes of cinnamon, hay, grandma’s baking spice cabinet, and leather were very pronounced. The cold draw was smooth and tasted of sourdough bread, molasses, and black pepper.

My Father Fonseca Cedros cigar smoking

The first few puffs offered up a pretty good idea of where this flavor… odyssey… was going to take us. There are notes of chocolate-covered malt balls (I would have just said Whoppers, but I have no idea if they make those anymore and the Kenny G thing already made me sound old), honey, leather, sweet cream, and a blast of (yep, you guessed it) black pepper. This Fonseca was packed with flavor right out of the gate, checking in at a medium strength. A note of charred oak showed up around the one-inch mark and brought an earthiness to the profile.

As we approached the midpoint of the show, a nice roasted peanut note showed. This happened right as the sweetness from the honey and Whoppers began to subside. The overall profile took a turn for the earthy—with leather, peanuts, and fresh dirt (more of an aroma than a flavor) leading the way. There was a bit of a salty component in there as well, which was very nice, once the sweetness returned in the final third. We closed with notes of sea salt and honey, roasted peanuts, sweet cream, and a tiny bit of molasses.

My Father Fonseca Cedros cigar ash

Would I Smoke This Cigar Again?

Oh, fo-sho! I have actually worked my way through a fiver of these and we are about to feature it on Flavor Odyssey.

Additional Info
  • The Quesada family owned the Fonseca mark in the US for 45 years.
  • The Cuban mark has a history going back to the 1800s.
  • I didn’t want to say it in the body of the review, but this blend is very Cubanesque.

Profile
  • Flavor: Medium-plus
  • Strength: Medium
  • Body: Medium-plus
Core Flavors
  • Honey
  • Leather
  • Peanuts
  • Sweet cream
  • Molasses
  • Black pepper
Tips
  • Smoke Time: 1 hour, 55 minutes
  • Pairing Recommendation: E.H. Taylor, Jr. Straight Rye | Manhattan | Cigar City Maduro Brown Ale (of course) | Aberfeldy 12 Scotch
  • Purchase Recommendation: This is an easy 5-pack buy. I rarely pull the trigger on 20-count boxes, but if it were a 10-count, then I’d be close to a box buy.

My Father Fonseca Cedros cigar nub finished

Fonseca by My Father Cedros
This Fonseca is right in my wheelhouse. When I get to throw around descriptors like honey, sweet cream, roasted peanuts, and leather, then you did something right. My one complaint is that it kind of lacked transitions. The experience was pretty linear, except for an inch or so in the middle. If there was more of a crescendo of flavor or an additional blast of pepper in the middle, then we’d be on Box-Buy Train, destination: My Humidor. All told, this is a very good cigar and a fun reinventing of a brand that deserves to be celebrated.
Appearance90%
Burn/Construction89%
Draw90%
Flavor90%
Complexity89%
Price/Value88%
Pros
  • Reliably good flavor
  • Endless pairing possibilities
  • Leaves the palate clean enough for back-to-back smokes
Cons
  • Lacks transitions
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