For several years, my cigars have rested patiently in a humidor that I made from lining an old Penfolds Grange box. This humidor was functional, something I was proud of, and a good conversation starter. It was unique. The cigars locked inside, however, are hand crafted treasures made to the highest standards by traditional, professional cigar manufacturers. A humidor of more noble character was in order. Not necessarily just one with improved aesthetics; there should be some accompanying improvements in functionality. Good ventilation inside the humidor and stable humidification were some of the things I was hoping to improve upon from my original. When looking for good design, a product from Germany is never a bad place to start. I procured an Adorini Santiago Deluxe, a gorgeous 150 count humidor that sports a lot of the traditional quality hallmarks as well as some innovations in both construction and humidification.
Let’s start with how it looks, since I plan to display this Humidor proudly on my desk or shelf. Before I even got to the humidor itself, I was impressed by the presentation of the Adorini packaging, which made opening it feel very special. Some glossy full colour documentation and a protective black bag were nice little touches that emphasize the quality of their product. Removing the humidor from its bag, the cherry wood gleams from up to 20 coats of hand-applied lacquer. The wood grain is flawless, intriquing and luxurious. The sensation of luxury is heightened when you grip the lid and ease it open. The gentle sliding of perfectly fit-together wood is accompanied by a waft of the spanish cedar lining inside. Adorini’s use of gold plated quadrant hinges hasn’t just made the inside look good, but has made opening the humidor an exercise in functionality. Inside you find the usual humidor fare: an acryl polymer humidifier and hair hygrometer. There are a few bonus inclusions such as the cedar dividing plates, label clips for the dividers, and a series of ventilation ribs lining the humidor interior.
The Humidor Guide included in the packaging gives a lot of background and technical information both for the Adorini product and humidors in general. I followed their advice for prepping the humidor with distilled water(included). I wiped the inside down with the distilled water, filled the humidifier and waited a few days to transfer over my cigars from my old humidor. Then I transferred most of my stock over. While 150 cigar count may be a bit of an exaggeration, most humidor cigar counts are more of a comment on relative volume anyways. With some creative organization, they fit quite snugly, but with ample room for airflow. I fit approximately 25 Robusto sized cigars, about 25 Corona Gorda size, and about 15 Lancero sized cigars before things started to feel like I needed to be creative in my organization. The upper rack can be adjusted by moving little wooden ledges in the ribbing up and down, allowing for some customization of the usable space.
It’s been several weeks and I’m quite happy with the Santiago so far. It was originally keeping the humidity inside a little high, at around 78%, but adjusting the plate opening on the humidifier fixed it to about 75%. Still a little high, although I will reserve judgement there until the humidor has had a bit more time to stabilize. I was expecting a bit of an influx of new wood aromas in my cigars that would take several months to blow off, however, this has not been the case at all. Clearly the cedar inside has been well selected and has a pleasant if mild aroma. In general the sensory experience of having a humidor like this is where the investment in a quality humidor really pays dividends. The exquisite richness of its appearance, the flawless nature of its wood construction and lid mechanics, and the gentle complexity of the wood aromatics combine in a way that is tough to describe. I’m very proud to display this humidor.
I do have a few criticisms about the Adorini’s design and features. The cedar dividers and tag system is a brilliant idea. However in this particular sized humidor I found that it was so easy to fill the space to the brim that there simply wasn’t the luxury of sorting space. It was easier for me to just stack different sized cigars side by side. The upper rack also presented a unique challenge for organization, because of the large space in the center that is designed to accommodate a digital humidifier/hygrometer. I’m torn about this large central hole. In one sense, it limits the storage and in particular the size of cigars that can be stored on the top shelf. The ability to peer down into the lower level and have improved airflow, though, is a big positive. Lastly, the magnetic plates that hold the humidifier and hygrometer on the underside of the lid provide a unique way to keep those elements inside the box without intruding on cigar storage-space. Having such quality instruments dangling, and sometimes sliding, precariously from the underside of a precision built box seems somehow contrary.
Overall I feel quite happy about the humidor. It feels like I own the pinnacle in classic cigar storage design. This product can be found on Amazon, but if you watch for sales or troll e-bay you can probably find one for under $300.