I am a big fan of the Padron natural cigars. For their price point, I think they are the best cigars you can buy in most stores. I have yet to try one of the more expensive cigars but will likely pick one up for a special occasion. I am coming close to agreeing with you on the Padron naturals being among the best in the $5 price range but have recently had some fantastic smokes, including CAO La Traviata robusto, Brickhouse, and Casa Magna, that at least give them a run for their money, although these are all very different cigars. In a pinch, I might even take the CAO over the Padron, but I've had so many Padrons over the last couple of years, it may just be fatigue..