The Performance Rankings were introduced in 2012 as a statistical analysis based on the average numerical score of all cigars assessed on Cigar Coop.  It is meant to serve as a barometer in terms of how the cigars were assessed.

Today we slice this data by Factory – a category introduced for 2017. This is not meant to be necessarily an award, but a look at how the scoring went, and what can we learn from it.

We have returned to using the adjusted cigar year method that fits our site – in this case November 1, 2020, through October 31, 2021. For the 2021 year, a total of 163 (down from 172 in 2019) cigars were considered for this analysis. The average score for the entire set of 163 cigars was 89.06. (Statistically, this was down 0.39 points from 2020 when the average was 89.45)

We used the following criteria to implement the rankings

  1. The cigar must have its score published during the 2021 Adjusted Cigar Year on Cigar Coop – November 1, 2020, through October 31, 2021.
  2. All cigars scored were eligible regardless of release date. The goal here is to see how the factory performed during the Cigar Coop Cigar Year.
  3. Ties would be broken with the factory with more cigars assessed breaking the tie (there were no ties this year).
  4. A minimum of five cigars assessed made in a particular factory were required to make this ranking.  For reference purposes, we list all factories from all reviews.
  5. While for the Prime Time Awards we separated by small and large factories, this distinction was not made for the Performance Ranking. The Prime Time Awards factored in other intangible factors other than score. Performance Rankings are purely based on average score. The Prime Time Awards include intangible factors and are voted on by all three members of the Prime Time team while this author assessed all of the cigars scored on Cigar Coop.

The following are the nine factories (one is a “catch all” for Unknown factories) and their average scores that met the criteria above to qualify for this list. The number of cigars from the factory is listed in parentheses.


Rank Factory Average     Count
1 San Lotano 90.20 5
2 Tabacalera Villa Cuba S.A. (TAVICUSA) 90.00 6
3 Plasencia SA 89.86 7
4 La Zona 89.60 10
5 La Gran Fabrica Drew Estate 89.50 8
6 Tabacos Valle de Jalapa SA (TABSA) 89.09 11
7 Tabacalera AJ Fernandez Cigars de Nicaragua S.A. 88.94 16
8 Unknown 88.40 5
9 General Cigar Dominicana 86.40 5


  1. There were nine factories that met the minimum five cigar rule. Technically one factory (“Unknown”) was a catch-all for undisclosed factories for cigars reviews, so in reality, there are eight. It is important to note that 9th place doesn’t mean the worst factory, it just is the lowest average of those factories that met the minimum criteria.
  2. San Lotano tops the Factory ratings for 2021 for factories that made the minimum threshold. San Lotano also placed three cigars on the 2021 Countdown.
  3. The second place factory, Rocky Patel’s TAVICUSA facility, also placed three cigars on the 2021 Countdown.
  4. San Lotano’s 90.20 is the lowest score recorded for a factory to top the rankings. That is down a full point from Tabacalera Perdomo, which topped the rankings in 2021.
  5. General Cigar Dominicana was the only factory outside Nicaragua that had the minimum threshold to be included. This is a reflection of an abudance Nicaraguan cigars reviewed on Cigar Coop in 2021.
  6. AJ Fernandez’s main factory, Tabacalera AJ Fernandez Cigars de Nicaragua S.A., had the most cigars reviewed on Cigar Coop in 2021.

Other Factories

Those factories which did not reach the five review minimum are listed below for reference. There isn’t much to infer from these numbers as each computation was from a much smaller dataset.

Factory Average Count
Tabacalera Perdomo 91.00 3
Tabacos de Costa Rica 91.00 2
Tabacalera La Alianza 90.25 4
Fabrica de Puros Aladino at Las Lomas Jamastran 90.00 3
Tabacalera La Perla 90.00 2
De Los Reyes SA 90.00 1
J. Fuego Cigar Co. de Nicaragua 90.00 1
Quesada Cigars SA 90.00 1
Fábrica de Tabacos Joya de Nicaragua SA 89.75 4
Tabacalera William Ventura 89.75 4
Tabacalera A. Fuente y Cia 89.50 4
Fabrica de Tabacos Raices Cubanas S. de R.L 89.50 2
Fabrica Oveja Negra 89.25 4
Cigars Davidoff 89.00 4
Nicaragua Cigars America SA (NACSA) 89.00 4
Tabacalera Pichardo 89.00 4
Fabrica de Tabacos Nica Sueño S.A 89.00 3
STG Esteli 89.00 3
Honduran American Tobacco S.A. (HATSA) 89.00 2
Charles Fairmorn 89.00 1
Magica Cubana 89.00 1
My Father Cigars SA 88.80 5
Casa Favilli 88.50 2
La Aurora SA 88.33 3
OK Cigars 88.33 3
El Paraiso 88.00 4
Diadema Cigars de Honduras S.A. 88.00 2
Oscar Valladares 88.00 2
Micallef Cigars SA 88.00 1
Tabacalera El Puente 88.00 1
Tabacalera de Garcia 87.75 4
JC Newman PENSA 87.00 2
Flor de Copan 87.00 1
Manifatture Sigaro Toscano Lucca 87.00 1
Tabacalera Carreras 86.00 1
El Titan de Bronze 85.00 1

Top Factory Performers

Since 2017 when we introduced this metric, four different factories have had the highest average.

2017 La Zona (Nicaragua)
2018 Fábrica de Tabacos Joya de Nicaragua SA (Nicaragua)
2019 Tabacalera A. Fuente y Cia (Dominican Republic)
2020 Tabacalera Perdomo (Nicaragua)
2021 San Lotano (Nicaragua)