Tasting Panel

Cigar Journal Blind Tasting

Photo: Isabella Petricek

Cigar Journal’s cigar ratings rely on the expertise of experienced smokers from a variety of countries. During our blind tastings featuring dozens of individual smokes, we remove cigar rings to limit clues to a cigar’s identity, and our testers use a standardized rating protocol. This ensures that as few external factors as possible influence the smoking experience. The rating that finally appears in the magazine is a summary of 15 individual evaluations provided by our tasting panelists.

The following panelists regularly take part in Cigar Journal blind tastings:

Ryota Amagai (J)
Roko Bekavac (HR)
Marc Benden (D)
Marko Bili´c (HR)
André Bornecrantz Dias (S)
Reinhard Bösenkopf (A)
Val Bradshaw (CDN)
Alexander Brändle (D)
Jan Braun (CZ)
Felipe Rojas Bruna (QAT)
Torger Brunken (D)
Aniello Buonincontro (I)
Ray Callejas (USA)
Armando Cappuccio (I)
Darren Cioffi (USA)
Franca Comparetto (I)
Cem Erten (TR)
Gabriel Estrada (ARG)
Manuel Fröhlich (CH)
Johann Gallée (A)
David Garofalo (USA)
Peter Gaudenzi (A)
Katja Gnann (D)
Enrico Gunde (D)
Peter Hallwyler (CH)
Michael S. Hamilos (CH)
Nick Hammond (GB)
Guy Hancock (IRL)
Ercan Hazar (A)
Peter Hemmer (D)
Richard Hemzal (A)
Takekazu Honda (J)
Didier Houvenaghel (SGP)
Klaus Hruby (A)
Alexander Hübsch (D)
Gino Iannillo (I)
Mirko Ivanic (A)
Peter Jekov (GB)
Mr. Jonathan (USA)
Philippe Juliam (B)
Sari Juntunen (FIN)
Merja Juselius (S)
Mary Lynn Kane (USA)
Øystein Kleven (N)
Roland Krammer (A)
Andreas Kuffner (A)
Reto Kuhn (CH)
Maurits Leenheers (NL)
Lucie Lorenzová (CZ)
Robert Lunak (A)
Hugo Meeussen (B)
Stella Motyka (SK)
Nobuhiro Nakamura (J)
André Odermatt (CH)
Martin Odh (S)
John Paletta (USA)
Petteri Patjas (FIN)
Lorin Peccolo (CH)
Marc Peter (CH)
Heiko Poerz (D)
Reinhard Pohorec (A)
Ray Prodanov (GB)
Aldo Puncioni (I)
Jirˇí Rabel (CZ)
Timo Rau (D)
Ivo Rehberger (CZ)
Sam Reuter (LU)
Jakub Rolčík (CZ)
Eddie Sahakian (GB)
Edward Sahakian (GB)
Christian Schmid (CH)
Martin Socha (CZ)
Samuel Spurr (AUS)
Barry Stein (USA)
Heinz Steltzer (A)
Vlada Stojanov (SRB)
Ed Sullivan (USA)
Jorge Tapies (E)
Jeff Verreyken (B)
Ben Vinken (B)
René Wagner (CH)
Marco Weber (CH)
Stefan Weikamp (D)
Steven Weinberg (USA)
David Wells (USA)
Reinhold C. Widmayer (A)
Claudia Wiemer (D)
Christian Winkler (A)
Albrecht Wolf (FL)

We are not currently accepting applications for spots on our tasting panel.

Retired tasting panel members

Chase, Simon (GB)
Perelman, Richard B. (USA)

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