Cigar review of Fonseca 5-50, Ted Turner autobiography, Ted Turner smokes cigars

Fonseca 5-50

Cigar Reviews / Vices Channel / Bullz-Eye Home

A good book and a good cigar pair well together

For those of you out there who want read an autobiography of a real self- made, man’s man, I have to recommend Ted Turner’s autobiography, “Call me Ted.” Now you may be asking yourself: “Is the Professor of the Leaf becoming a book reviewer? What does a book of this nature have to do with cigars?” Well, let me tell you.

First, I find that combining a good read with a good smoke can be a truly relaxing experience, allowing you to transport yourself from the challenges of reality, find some entertainment, and gain fresh perspective. Secondly, Ted Turner himself appreciated a good cigar every now and then. In fact, he has been known to smoke with Fidel Castro in Cuba; there is a photograph of this occasion in the book.

Finally, like a good cigar, a good piece of literature can be inspiring. In the case of Turner’s book, you will get:

  • A fascinating look at the birth and growth of the cable industry, the impact it had on the broader media industry, the behind-the-scenes view into big deals that did or did not happen, and how the disruptive force of the Internet and its associated hype at the turn of the century skewed the thinking of some brilliant business minds.
  • It also reminds you of a few life lessons: (1) Failures can be overcome. (2) Hard work and perseverance pay off. (3) No matter how rich, famous and glamorous another’s life may seem, it doesn’t guarantee unending happiness. (4) We continually evolve and are shaped by our experiences. (5) Nobody is perfect.

For all his successes and faults, you have to respect Ted. He would be a great guy to sit down with and have a cigar! Let’s get smoking!

Cigar Review:

Fonseca 5-50

Size: 5 inches long, 50 Ring Gauge
Price: $5.50

Fonseca is one of the long-time, respected Cuban brands that are still smoked in Havana today. However, it is also one of the brand names that left its home country and was established in another country, the Dominican Republic in this case. One of masters in cigar making, Manuel “Manolo” Quesada, is behind the Dominican-made Fonseca 5-50 that I review today.

Wrapped in a beautiful, light-colored Connecticut shade wrapper, the Dominican Fonseca combines a superior, well-aged mixture of Dominican long-fillers bound by a tasty Mexican leaf. The result is a smooth and deliciously creamy smoke delivered in an enjoyable, well-balanced fashion.

Tobacco blend:

  • Wrapper: Connecticut Shade (reportedly grown in Ecuador)
  • Binder: Dominican
  • Filler: Dominican


Though I am partial to a medium-bodied smoke, I both like and owe it to the Bullz-Eye faithful to smoke full and mild cigars too. (It’s a tough job, but someone has to do it!) The Fonseca 5-50, with its light tan Connecticut shade wrapper, is tasty, but it is a mild cigar. A mild cigar is best paired with something light, like a light beer, a standard cup of coffee, or even ice water. In this case, I chose the latter.

Look & Feel

This is a classic, nicely rolled cigar. It does not rely on a fancy band to give it a quality look. The simple thin band, with the ornate “F” is secondary to the look of the flawless cigar, which takes center stage. It is 5 inches in length with a 50 ring gauge, hence its 5-50 name, again pretty straightforward

Aroma & Taste

It fired right up and opened with an obvious cedar, which moved to the background, but never fully dissipated. It provided a smooth, creamy flavor throughout the smoke. At times, it exhibited a toasty or fresh bread-like flavor. Though I was sipping water, I committed to smoking my next 5-50 with a cup of coffee, and I can’t help but wonder if it would have been an even better choice. This is one of the cigars that I can easily recommend for any type of cigar smoker. It is mild enough for the newbie, but flavorful enough for a good, relaxing daytime smoke, or anytime for those who just prefer the milder touch.

Other characteristics worth noting included an even burn and easy draw. The length of the cigar also does not commit the smoker to a long smoking process. Finally, the aroma was pleasing.

Rating: 8.9 (on a scale of 1 to 10)

In my case, I made the right choice for a Saturday mid-afternoon break from all the chores that I had been putting off.

Keep the comments and recommendations coming – email:

Cigar Quote

"There are two things a man never forgets -- his first love and his first cigar." -John Bain, cigar lover