Two different premium cigar brands use the name Hoyo de Monterrey. One is produced for the tobacco company owned by the state, Habanos SA on the island of Cuba, and the other cigars using this brand are produced by the General Cigar Company in Honduras. The Cuban cigars use premium tobacco grown in the lush region of Vuelta Abajo, while the cigars produced in Honduras use tobacco grown locally in that country.
Hoyo de Monterrey cigars offer a lighter flavor and are made in a variety of sizes, the largest of this brand are extremely popular. The large Le Hoyo series was originally introduced during 1970s, with a much more powerful flavor than the other cigars under this brand.
How the Brand Came About
In 1831, at the tender age of thirteen, Don Jose Gener y Batet moved from Spain to Cuba. Once here, he began working for his uncle on a plantation in the lush growing area of Vuelta Abajo. He worked hard for about twenty years until he able to save up enough money to open his own cigar company in Havana. He launched his own line of cigars which he called La Escepcion. By 1865 the factory had accumulated enough profits for Gener to buy one of the finest tobacco producing farms in Vuelta Abajo. The name of the cigar line, Hoyo de Monterrey, is named for this land.
Literally translated from Spanish to English, Hoyo de Monterrey means “the hole of Monterrey.” This refers to the concave shape of the land, which premium tobacco growers prefer for growing the best tobacco leaves.
Almost instantly, the brand became outrageously popular, especially with British customers. This resulted in Jose Gener’s factory to grow exponentially and becoming one of the largest cigar producing factories in Cuba. Gener died in the year 1900 in Spain, and ownership of the company was transferred to his oldest daughter, Lutgarda Gener. For another thirty years the business stayed in the Gener family.
The Gener family decided to sell their cigar brands in 1931. They wanted to put more focus into their properties that produced sugar cane. The Fernandea, Palicio y Cia firm bought the La Escepcion and the Hoyo de Monterrey cigar brands and added them to their already quite impressive line, which included the famous Belinda and Punch brands.
Shortly after wards, sometime during the 1940s, the Le Hoyo cigar series and the Chateaux cigar series (used later in the development of the Davidoff line of cigars) was created for A Durr Co, a Swiss distributor. Fernando Palicio became the sole owner of the company after the death of his partner, Ramon Fernandez. By 1958, the Palicio cigar lines produced 13% of all of the cigars exported by Havana.
After the unilateral expropriation of companies from their legitimate owners by the Cuban government, Fernando Palicio decided to leave Cuba and moved to Florida. Subsequently, he sold all of the cigar lines in his name to the Villazon family. The Villazon family continued to produce Hoyo de Monterrey, Belinda and Punch cigars using tobacco from Honduras in their factory in Tampa, Florida for the American market.
Production of the Hoyo de Monterrey continued in Cuba, as well as in Honduras. The brand is still an extremely popular Cuban cigar line and marketed globally. Cigar aficionados particularly treasure the Le Hoyo series, Double Coronas and the Epicure No. 2 blends.
As a globally marketed brand, the Hoyo de Monterrey brand cigars have often been selected for the annual Habanos Limited Edition releases since the year 2000. An unusual thing happened with the cigar named the Particular. During the first Limited Edition line up in 2000, there were some production problems with the Particular and very few of the cigars made it out to the vendors.
This prompted Habanos to release the Particular again the following year. This was the only cigar so far to be released as a Limited Edition cigar two years in a row. A new size of the Hoyo de Monterrey was added to the line in 2004, the Petit Robusto. This new size wore a slightly redesigned version of the Hoyo de Monterrey cigar band.
Red Auerbach, a well known basketball coach was famous for indulging in the smooth flavor of a Hoyo de Monterrey brand “victory cigar” before the end of a Boston Celtics basketball game. Auerbach coached the NBA Boston Celtics and worked as an executive for the team from 1950 to 1997 and then once again from the year 2001 until he died in 2006.
In addition to the hand made Hoyo de Monterrey cigars, there are also two versions produced by machine known as the Midi and the Mini.
Hoyo de Monterrey Line of Vitolas
This is a list of the commercially sold vitolas produced under the Hoyo de Monterrey brand of cigars. The size of the cigar and the ring gauge is included in both Imperial and metric measurements to demonstrate how big the cigars are and the different sizes available.
Hoyo de Monterrey Vitolas Made by Hand:
- Churchill – measures 7 inches × 47 ring gauge (178 × 18.65 mm), officially named the Julieta No. 2, but commonly called a churchill by fans all over the world
- Corona – measures 5 ⅝ inches × 42 ring gauge (143 × 16.67 mm), officially named the Corona, and commonly called a corona by avid cigar smokers
- Coronation – measures 5 ⅛ inches × 42 ring gauge (130 × 16.67 mm), officially named the Petit Corona, but commonly called a petit corona by smokers
- Double Corona – measures 7 ⅝ inches × 49 ring gauge (194 × 19.45 mm), officially named the Prominente, but commonly called a double corona by smokers
- Epicure No. 2 – measures 4 ⅞ inches × 50 ring gauge (124 × 19.84 mm), officially named the Robusto, and also commonly called a robusto by smokers
- Epicure No. 1 – measures 5 ⅝ inches × 46 ring gauge (143 × 18.26 mm), officially named the Corona Gorda, but commonly called a grand corona by smokers
- Palma Extra – measures 5 ½ inches × 40 ring gauge (140 × 15.88 mm), officially called the Crema, but commonly called a corona by smokers
- Petit Robusto – measures 4 ⅛ inches × 50 ring gauge (105 × 19.84 mm), officially named the Petit Robusto, also commonly called a petit robusto by smokers all over the world.
The Le Hoyo Series of Cigars:
- Le Hoyo des Dieux – measures 6 ⅛ inches × 42 ring gauge (156 × 16.67 mm), officially named the Corona Grande, commonly called a long corona by smokers
- Le Hoyo du Député – measures 4 ⅜ inches × 38 ring gauge (111 × 15.08 mm), officially named the Trabuco, commonly called a short panetela by smokers
- Le Hoyo du Gourmet – measures 6 ¾ inches × 33 ring gauge (171 × 13.10 mm), officially named the Palma, commonly called a slim panetela by smokers
- Le Hoyo du Maire – measures 3 ⅞ inches × 30 ring gauge (98 × 11.91 mm), officially named the Entreacto, commonly called a small panetela by smokers
- Le Hoyo du Prince – measures 5 ⅛ × 40 ring gauge (130 × 15.88 mm), officially named the Almuerzo, commonly called a corona by smokers
- Le Hoyo du Roi – measures 5 ⅝ inches × 42 ring gauge (143 × 16.67 mm), officially named the Corona, also commonly called a corona by smokers world over.
Limited Edition Releases of the Hoyo de Monterrey Cigars:
- 2000 and 2001 – the Particular – measures 9 ¼ inches × 47 ring gauge (235 × 18.65 mm), officially named the Gran Corona, but commonly called a grand corona by cigar aficionados
- 2003 – the Piramide – measures 6 ⅛ inches × 52 ring gauge (156 × 20.64 mm), officially named the Piramide, commonly called a pyramid by cigar lovers
- 2004 – the Epicure Especial – measures 5 ½ inches × 50 ring gauge (140 × 19.84 mm), officially named the Gordito, commonly called a robusto extra by cigar smokers
- 2007 – the Regalos – measures 5 ⅓ inches × 46 ring gauge (135 × 18.26 mm), officially named the Regalo, commonly called a corona extra by cigar lovers all over the world.
Hoyo de Monterrey brand cigars have come a long way since they were first created by Don Jose Gener y Batet. The brand is now world famous and enjoyed by wealthy cigar aficionados in every corner of the globe.