Posts Tagged With: Plasencia

Cigar of the month September

It’s the end of the month, so it’s time to publish my list. What’s the best cigar I rated this month and what’s the worst?

The cigar with the highest rate in September  is:

My Father Commemorate 911 Rosado Habano

Now as for the complete list of cigars I published:

1) My Father Commemorate 911 Robusto (Nicaragua) 94 points
2) Alec Bradley Fine & Rare Torpedo (Honduras) 93 points
3) La Flor Dominicana Airbender Lancero (Dominican Republic) 92 points
4) Rocky Patel Royale Robusto (Nicaragua) 92 points
5) Undercrown Shade Flying Pig (Nicaragua) 91 points
6) Cornelius & Anthony Venganza Robusto (Nicaragua) 91 points
7) Arturo Fuente Opus X BBMF (Dominican Republic) 90 points
8) H. Upmann Mag 46 (Cuba) 89 points
9) Bunch Toro (Nicaragua) 88 points
10) Vega Fina Summum 2013 Toro (Dominican Republic) 87 points
11) Bunch Robusto (Nicaragua) 84 points
12) Amero Short Robusto (Dominican Republic) 82 points
13) Bunch Short Robusto (Nicaragua) 82 points

 

 

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Bunch Robusto, Short Robusto & Toro

Bunch is a private label made for a Portuguese cigar importer & distributer that imports several brands from Nicaragua and decided to have a label of his own. He ended up at Plasencia for his cigars, like many other people that want a private label, from retailers that want a house brand to big names that want something else they can’t make at their own factory, like the Casa Magna for the Dominican cigar family Quesada or at their regular factory like Alec Bradley who uses Raices Cubanas in Honduras for most of their productions except the Nicaraguan made Alec Bradley’s that are produced by Plasencia. And Rocky Patel’s operation in Honduras is actually a Plasencia factory dedicated to Rocky Patel, under supervision from Rocky Patel but still Plasencia owned.

I smoked the Bunch Petit Corona late 2015, today I’m reviewing the Robusto and I will review Toro and a Short Robusto in this series review too. The Petit Corona had a good start but a poor finish, let’s see what a little more length and the thicker ring gauge will do to the cigar.

Bunch Robusto


The wrapper looks amazing, dark, smooth, oily, shiny, the veins were obviously pressed before using the wrapper to create an even smoother look and it works. This wrapper is gorgeous. It doesn’t fit the ring, unfortunately, because the ring is simple and without class. Just a pale yellow to beige with a light brown letters Bunch and a simple tobacco leaf on each side and vertical stripes in two brown/green colors both on top and bottom of the cigar. The ring should elevate the cigar, persuade me to buy it but this one doesn’t. If I would buy this cigar it would be because of the wrapper. The construction is flawless, on the touch it feels evenly packed and the head is beautifully shaped, round and even. The aroma is quite strong, barnyard, stable, a little manure so typically a well fermented tobacco aroma.


I punched the cigar, the cold draw is good. I taste a bit of a raisin flavor, mild spicy. After lighting I taste a mild salty coffee and peanut flavor. After half an inch the flavor changed to a mild chocolate soil flavor with some acidity. After a third I taste pepper with some lemon and a little bit of nuts. The final third starts with a strong pepper over the soil flavor.


The draw is great and the smoke is voluptuous, thick and full. The ash is quite dark and with clear layers. The burn is pretty straight. The cigar is medium bodied and medium flavored at most. The evolution is non existent though. The smoke time is an hour and a half.


Would I buy this cigar again? No. It’s not an unpleasant cigar but boring because of the lack of evolution.

Score: 84
number84

Bunch  Short Robusto

The short Robusto measures 4½ x52 and has the exact same ring as the Robusto. The dark wrapper is oily, smooth and pretty. The construction feels good and the cigar looks well made. The aroma is  quite strong and a classic barnyard smell.


I punched the cigar, the cold draw is a bit tight. I taste raisin with some spice that I can’t identify. After lighting with a single jet flame I taste a mildly acidic dirt flavor. After a few puffs I also taste a decent amount of sweetness. After half an inch the acidity, which is lemon like, grows a bit in strength. After that there is no real evolution which makes the cigar quite boring. The flavors are not fantastic either, a bit rough around the edge. I don’t know the price of the cigar but it tastes like a budget cigar.


The smoke is thick and full. The draw is fine, but the burn is a bit crooked and I had to relight twice. The dark ash is quite firm. This is a medium bodied and medium flavored cigar. The smoke time is an hour and forty five minutes.


Would I buy this cigar again? No, boring cigar.

Score: 82
number82

Bunch Toro


The 6×50 toro has a nice, shiny, medium dark wrapper but I feel a few soft spots in the construction. The ring is the same as the other vitolas, so not too pretty. The cigar looks good when it comes to shape and triple cap. The aroma is strong and is a classic barnyard smell.


I cut the cigar with a xikar guillotine cutter and I taste spicy, peppery sultanas with a perfect cold draw. I lit the cigar with a single flame torch and taste coffee with wood. After half an inch I taste a mild bitter cedar with black pepper and some minty nutmeg. Halfway the cigar gets very peppery, classic Nicaraguan with a base of cedar and a little nutmeg. This is the best Bunch so far. The final third starts with strong pepper and dry wood and toast. The pepper is growing in strength and is overpowering all other flavors.


The draw is great and the smoke is full and thick. The ash is a little flaky, quite dark. The burn needs some correction. This cigar is full bodied and full flavored. The smoke time is two hours.


Would I buy this cigar again? This is the best Bunch but there are better cigars available.

Score: 88

Categories: 82, 84, 88, Bunch, Nicaraguan cigars, Tabacos de Oriente Nicaragua | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Royal Danish Regal Blend Queen #1

Danish cigars? Yes! But not made in Denmark though! The Danish have a long tradition with tobacco, dating back from the time when they traded with the West Indies as merchants and up till today Denmark is a major player in the pipe tobacco business, but back in the day the tobacco that the merchants brought from the West Indies was used for cigars too. And in the recent years two Danish entrepeneurs decided to go back into history and create their own brand & blend. I reviewed the Dominican made Splendid earlier this year and this exact same Royal Danish Regal Blend belicoso back in 2016, but since I now work with a 100 point scoring system I decided to do another review.


Royal Danish has cigars made in two different countries, Costa Rica and Nicaragua and as far as my knowledge goes, the Regal blend is made in Nicaragua at an undisclosed factory. The cigar should pack some punch as it has double ligero wrapped in a dark maduro wrapper. There is an ultra luxury edition of the same cigar with gold leaves and swarovski crystals but in my opinion, and without having smoked it, that is just a gimmick like the Daniel Marshall 24k gold torpedo that I reviewed last year too. I got this cigar as a sampler from the brand owner when my previous employer showed interest in distributing the brand, but the prices of these blends were just crazy high especially compared to other private labels made by the Plasencia family, so we said ‘no’. Another small distributer took Royal Danish on and Royal Danish added a few reasonable priced blends to the portfolio.


The first thing I notice when I want to release the cigar from the cellophane is how the cellophane is closed, not with a simple bar code sticker but a nice round, silver colored sticker with hologram and the text ‘2014 Royal Danish Cigars”. The rings and how the cigar is presented is so different and beautiful that in a shop it would worry me and would give me a Gurkha feeling. With that I mean that the packaging and marketing are more important than the cigar itself, and combine it with the ‘rare tobacco blah blah’ marketing of Royal Danish which I don’t fall for. But since I don’t score on marketing that won’t effect the score. The inch long foot ring is brown with red curly letters saying ‘Danish West Indies’, golden letters ‘Regal Blend’ and then a marketing story in black on a brown wrapper. On the bottom the roller had to put his initials. The oval top ring is black with the Danish crest and a golden crown. The crown has a crystal in it, which is unique, but what is most unique is the red ribbon running over the cigar from the foot to the top and then back to the foot. The construction feels good and the belicoso has a very sharp point. The wrapper is dark with one thin vein on the side of the cigar. The aroma is strong and I smell a mixture of barnyard, a dusty old abbandoned house and a foggy forest.


Punching is not an option with a belicoso so I used my Xikar to cut. The cold draw gives a bit more resistance than I prefer and I taste raisin and red pepper. After lighting it with my preferred soft flame I taste dark roast coffee with cane sugar. The sugar is quite strong. The sweetness is the strongest flavor but after half an inch i taste cedar and nutmeg too, with some white pepper on the background. Then out of the blue I taste a strong vanilla flavor. After a third I taste coffee with creamy vanilla and cedar. Halfway I taste nuts with still a little coffee, vanilla and a slowly growing pepper. The final third begins with cedar, vanilla, pepper and nuts, very flavorful and tasty.


The draw is fine, better than in the cold draw. The ash is salt & pepper colored and quite firm. The smoke is medium in thickness and volume. The burn is straight and slow. This cigar is full bodied and full flavored with plenty of evolution. The smoke time is an hour and fifteen minutes

Would I buy this cigar again? If it was a third of the price, yes, but with the close to €20 price tag, nope!

Score: 91
number91

Categories: 91, Nicaraguan cigars, Royal Danish | Tags: , , , , , | 1 Comment

Cigar of the month June

I reviewed a lot of cigars for the month of June, more than you are used to but that’s because of two reasons. The first is the ‘series review’, a review in which I reviewed 5 cigars from the same line yet rated them individually and the second reason is the ‘day – name of the cigar connection’ week in which I published a review every single day. I did that because I had too many unpublished reviews drafted.

Well, here’s the list for June, with a close finish but the cigar of the month is:

Jas Sum Kral Red Knight Toro with a 95 score.

Now as for the complete list of cigars I published at Cigarguideblog in June:

1) Jas Sum Kral Red Knight Toro (Nicaragua) 95 points
2) Warped Little Havana Corona Gorda (USA) 95 points
3) RomaCraft Wanderlust Prerelease Robusto (Nicaragua) 93 points
4) Fuente Añejo Shark (Dominican Republic) 92 points
5) Murcielago Churchill (Nicaragua) 92 points
6) La Flor de Cano Casanova (Cuba) 91 points
7) Nicoya Fuerte Robusto (Nicaragua) 91 points
8) Illusione ~hl~ Candela Lancero (Honduras) 91 points
9) Tatuaje Cojonu 2012 Reserve Toro (Nicaragua) 90 points
10) Santiago Habano Toro (Nicaragua) 90 points
11) Sosa Auric Perfectum Wavel (Dominican Republic) 88 points
12) Ramon Allones 898 (Cuba) 86 points
13) Taboo Sumatra Churchill (Honduras) 79 points
14) 04 (Dominican Republic) 77 points
15) 03 (Dominican Republic) 77 points
16) 02 (Dominican Republic) 77 points
17) 05 (Dominican Republic) 76 points
18) 01 (Dominican Republic) 72 points

 

 



All I can say: if you haven’t had the pleasure of smoking any Jas Sum Kral then ask your local shop for them or order online straight from the source.

Categories: Cigar of the month | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Santiago Habano Toro

There are a lot of cigar groups on Facebook and in some of those groups people like to combine days with cigar brands, like Tatuaje Tuesday and Fuente Friday. Since I have so many unpublished reviews and need to post a lot I decided that this week will be a week dedicated to the weekday – cigar combinations and I came up with a few of my own.

This week I will post a review every day, monday to sunday, all with the name tied to the weekday, here’s the list:

Murcielago Monday
Tatuaje Tuesday
Warped Wednesday
Taboo Thursday
Fuente Friday
Santiago Saturday
Sosa Sunday

Santiago Saturday – Santiago Habano Toro

Last september at Intertabac I met the guys from Santiago de los Caballeros cigars, a private label cigar company that have their cigars made in Esteli by the Plasencia Family. They gave me a few samplers and last January I reviewed the Santiago Maduro Robusto, last month I reviewed the Santiago Connecticut Robusto and today I’m reviewing the Habano blend in a 6×50 Toro shape. The cigar has a blend of Nicaraguan and Mexican tobacco as filler, a Nicaraguan binder and a Ecuadorean Habano wrapper. I don’t know what the MSRP for these cigars are or where they are for sale. To be honest, before I met the guys I never heard of the brand.


Now the Maduro was a pretty decent cigar, that raised my expectations for this habano. The wrapper is beautiful, very dark, mild shiny with a dry appearance. I see a few veins. The ring is beautiful, its a dark green, close to grey, with golden linings and white letters Santiago de Los Caballeros Nicaragua but what makes the band stand out is the shiny, black and slightly raised cross. The bottom ring is the same greenish gray with golden lining and blue letters Habano, something I would have done in white to make it matching. The construction feels evenly, but a little soft. The triple cap is gorgeous. The aroma is quite strong and reminds me of stray on the barn floor right before it’s cleaned out after being peed on by cows all night. Now that sounds disgusting, but cigar smokers know what I mean and that its not a bad thing.


I decided to punch the cigar and I’m glad I did as the cold draw is loose, cutting it might have made the draw even easier. I taste pepper and some cocoa. I used a soft flame to light the cigar and the start is bitter. After half a centimeter the bitterness tones down to a tolerable level and I also taste some sweetness and coffee. After an inch it’s still coffee but with cocoa. Halfway the flavor reminds me of roasted nuts. The flavor remains but after two thirds it get company from pepper, mainly on my lips. With an inch and a half to go I clearly notice the turning point and I toss the cigar.


The smoke is thick, white and luscious. The draw is a little too loose for my preference. The ash is silver gray and you clearly see the layers. The ash is frayed but firm. The burn is straight. This medium plus bodied cigar is medium bodied and the smoke time is an hour and twenty minutes.


Would I buy this cigar again? Depends on the price, it’s a good cigar but there are many good cigars comparable to this one so the price would be a factor.

Score: 90

90

Categories: 90, Nicaraguan cigars, Santiago | Tags: , , , , , | 1 Comment

Santiago Connecticut Robusto

At Intertabac 2016 I met the guys of Santiago cigars who shared their booth with Gerard from Nicoya. As we were talking about cigars, about their brand, a private label made by Plasencia as so many others they gave me a few of their cigars to review. I had very good cigars made by Plasencia, I had bad ones and I probably had a lot of Plasencia cigars without even knowing they are made by this very influential family that are the biggest growers of tobacco in Nicaragua and Honduras with huge cigar factories on both sides of the border too. If you ever happen to be in Esteli, try to visit the cathedral of tobacco as the Plasencia factory is being called by everybody and do yourself a favor, peek at the daycare centre Plasencia founded across the street too, if you’re lucky the kids will sing a song and do a dance for you, its adorable.


Now Roberto from Santiago handed me their three blends, a habano, a maduro and a Connecticut. I warned Robert as I hate Connecticut. To me it’s a demonic invention and I picture hell as a huge hipster filled cigar shop with nothing but Connecticut shade cigars, an alcohol free bar and only vegan food. But, and I have heard this from many manufacturers including some big names, Roberto swore me that their Connecticut shade is different than all other. None of the manufacturers that said this to me were right though, there is something about Connecticut shade that makes me despise it, the musty taste, the pale look, its not my thing but the same tobacco grown broadleaf is a whole different thing though, that I love.


The Santiago Connecticut Robusto is a 5×50 box pressed cigar, made in the Nicaraguan factory of Plasencia with Nicaraguan filler, a double binder, both from Nicaragua and a Connecticut Shade wrapper from the Talanga region of Honduras. The wrapper is typical Connecticut shade, pale, thin and it has a few veins. The construction is flawless though with a beautiful triple cap. The ring is beautiful, its a dark green, close to grey, with golden linings and white letters Santiago de Los Caballeros Nicaragua but what makes the band stand out is the shiny, black and slightly raised cross. The bottom ring is the same greenish gray with golden lining and red letters Connecticut, something I would have done in white to make it matching. This is the exact same comment as I made for the Habano version of the cigar btw and I do understand why they didn’t do it in white but in different colors to make the cigars stand apart more in a humidor, but I think the different colors of the wrapper should already do that. The aroma is a like walking into a dry barn where the farmer just put down some fresh hay before the sheep or cow come back in.


I punched the cigar and the cold draw is great. The flavor is mellow except for a strong pepper on my lips. I lit the cigar with my vintage Ronson, my favorite lighter. The flavor is actually quite nice, sweet coffee with some cinnamon except I also taste a little bit of the typical Connecticut Shade mustiness. After a centimeter I taste some cedar with a little bit of salt and sweetness but unfortunately the mustiness gets stronger too. After a thirds the mustiness is getting to the level I expect from a Shade cigar but surprisingly I also taste a pretty strong red pepper. Halfway the mustiness tones down, I now taste cedar again with cinnamon, some sweetness and a nice amount of pepper. Near the end I taste the mustiness again with some pepper and nuts.


The smoke is medium thick and medium in volume. The ash is light colored, dense and firm. The draw is just perfect. The burn is fine, not razor sharp but also not crooked. The cigar is mild bodied but medium plus flavored. The smoke time is an hour.

Would I buy this cigar again? No but if someone gifts me one I will smoke it again and that I don’t say about a lot of Connecticut Shade cigars. Roberto was right when he said that this cigar isn’t the same as other Shade cigars.

Score: 89

Categories: 89, Nicaraguan cigars, Santiago | Tags: , , , , , | 1 Comment

Gasparilla Pirate

Now this is a mystery cigar to me, I don’t know where its made, who makes it (although I have an idea), what year it’s from, what the blend is and what the msrp is since I can’t find any information online about this cigar. Another mystery is how I got this cigar, I really have no idea. But all the mystery makes reviewing this cigar extra fun, since I don’t know what to expect, my opinion can’t be tainted by reading other reviews or people telling me about this stick.


All information I have is from the cigar ring, which says ‘henco a mano’ so it’s a handmade cigar and ‘Florida’ and that throws me off the trail on the manufacturer since a sticker on the glass tube mentions S. Plasencia Tobacco 1885 so I would have guessed Honduras or Nicaragua and as far as I know Plasencia doesn’t have a factory in Florida. The sticker also mentions “Gasparilla Pirate Fest, official collectible premium cigar” and on that info I did find that this cigar must have been given out or sold in Tampa at the Gasparilla Pirate Fest that is held there every year. And I have been in Tampa a few times, but never during the Pirate Fest, and that will probably never happen either, and I know for sure I haven’t bought this cigar during my visits there so its still a mystery how I got it.


The cigar comes in a glass tube, as mentioned before, with a transparent sticker with golden print that makes it hard to read. The size is 7×48 and the vitola is called Pirate. The cigar feels good although the triple cap shows some curves. The wrapper has a chocolate color and has a lot of tooth, it feels a bit like sandpaper. The ring is gold with a black circle and a white pirate ship in the circle. Under the black circle it says Gasparilla in black letters. Above the black circle there is a cutout in white with some green, red and golden party decorations. On the back the ring is red, green and gold with golden letters honcho a mano Florida. To be honest, the whole color scheme makes the cigar look tacky. And then the aroma, have you ever been to the toilet of a pub or venue at the end of the night, or the next morning before the cleaners did their job? If you have, then you know what I’m talking about. It’s strong but not pleasant.


I cut the cigar with my xikar cutter, the cold draw is good. I hardy taste anything, just a little dry tobacco. I lit the cigar with my soft flame and taste an acidic coffee. After three puffs I also taste a little sweetness. After half an inch it’s lemon with some honey and that’s it. After a third I still taste the lemon but now with a faint chocolate and some musty cedar. The final third is wood with a little bit of pepper.


The salt and pepper colored ash is not firm at all. The smoke is thin and medium in amount. The burn is good though, just like the draw. The cigar is medium bodied and medium flavored. The smoke time is a boring hour and forty five minutes.

Would I buy this cigar again? No! Boring! This is a typical event cigar for tourist who normally don’t smoke cigars. It’s not a bad cigar, just boring.

Score: 73
number73

Categories: 73, American cigars, Gasparilla | Tags: , , , , | 1 Comment

Cigar of the month March

Over the last month I reviewed 9 cigars and the cigar of the month march is:

Undercrown Flying Pig XLR with a 92 score.

March was the first month I rated a cigar below 80 points, but then again, the Undercrown Flying Pig XLR was a very pleasant surprise so overall it was a good month with two cigars that let me down.

Now as for the complete list of cigars I smoked in March for Cigarguideblog:

1) Undercrown Flying Pig XLR (Nicaragua) 92 points
2) Rocky Patel Super Ligero Lancero (Honduras) 92 points
3) La Flor Dominicana NOX Toro (Dominican Republic) 92 points
4) Kristoff Pistoff Corona Gorda (Dominican Republic) 91 points
5) Alec Bradley Black Market Robusto (Honduras) 90 points
6) Don Labalet Robusto (Netherlands) 89 points
7) Fratello Boxer Torpedo (Nicaragua) 89 points
8) Viaje Circa 45 #1 Robusto (Dominican Republic) 83 points
9) Plasencia Reserva Organica Limitada 2001 Torpedo (Nicaragua) 77 points

The Undercrown Flying Pig was a huge surprise as it was not the gimmick I suspected it was.

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Plasencia Reserva Organica Edicion Limitada 2001 Torpedo

Plasencia is a very big influence in the cigar industry, the company is now in it’s 5th generation and is one of the biggest tobacco growers in both Nicaragua and Honduras and has factories in both Nicaragua and Honduras. Only a few months ago they came out on the American market with cigars of their own, instead of just making private labels for everybody that wanted private labels done (they make cigars for Alec Bradley, Casa Magna is made by Plasencia but also different other smaller boutique brands like Wilson & Adams and many many more). Jonathan Drew calls them ‘the octopus’ in an endearing way, as everybody has got something to do with the Plasencia family. In Europe however they’ve been on the market with cigars produced under the Plasencia label for a while now and one of the two lines they had out was the Reserva Organica, the brain child of Nestor Andres Plasencia who wanted to make a cigar the way his ancesters did so without chemicals for pest control and no artificial fertilizer, 100% organic tobacco and so the Reserva Organica was born.


When the company I worked for started to distribute Plasencia cigars we got them with the beige ring, as pictured above. When I parted ways with my employer last june I had the time to catalog my huge stash of cigars, sort them out and put them in my online humidor at stogierate.com and much to my surprise I found 2 very old Plasencia Reserva Organica Edicion Limitada 2001. Now don’t ask me how I got them because I wasn’t even a cigar smoker back in 2001. The ring is completely different and the wrapper is darker than the current production. It’s like a nice medium roasted coffee bean. The cigar is 6 1/4 inch long with a 52 ring. The cigar has 2 rings, one simple black band with a bright yellow ring and white lettering saying “edicion limitada 2001’ and the a bigger yellow ring, slightly darker than the yellow used on the bottom ring, with the Plasencia Reserva Organica name written in curly letters and 3 drawings, the vulcanos, the sun and the sea and I think that is ment to represent Nicaragua, since this cigar is 100% Nicaraguan.


The construction feels good, no soft spots noticeble upon touch, there is very little aroma coming from the cigar and it makes me wonder if there is any flavor left since the blend is mild and the cigar is 15 years old, it could be way passed its prime. But I guess I’ll find out quick enough. Because of the shape I can’t punch so I have to cut. The cold draw is perfect but I don’t taste much.


I light the cigar with my Ronson varaflame and I taste a mild coffee flavor and a charcoal flavor. I also taste a little bit of sugar. The coffee and sugar disappear and I’m stuck with the mild charcoal flavor. After a third I taste a dry bark. Halfway the flavor changes to cedar but with a bitter yet mild creamy sensation on the tip of my tongue. Slowly but surely the cigar gets more bitter and it’s really unpleasant.


The draw is perfect and the smoke is medium thick and medium in volume, I’m not to impressed with it. The ash is beautiful, white, layered and firm. The burn is beautiful too, straight as an arrow. The cigar is mild bodied and mild to medium flavored. The smoke time is little over 90 minutes.

Would I buy this cigar again? No, I love the idea of an organic cigar, less workers exposed to chemicals and less chemicals being smoked is nice, but the cigar was way passed its prime. And I hate giving such a low rating, I love the Plasencias, had great cigars from their factories so it sucks rating one of their cigars so low.

Score: 77

77

Categories: 77, Nicaraguan cigars, Plasencia | Tags: , , , , , , | 1 Comment

A great book about Nicaraguan cigars

Somewhere in the autumn of 2014 my then employer Sasja van Horssen was approached by his friend and lifestyle journalist Marcel Langedijk with the question if we could help him setting up a trip to Esteli, Nicaragua for him and photographer Jesaja Hizkia and get him in touch with some cigar manufacturers for interviews and pictures in the factories. Marcel, who has been to Nicaragua more often, thought it was time that Nicaragua got a beautiful coffee table book about the cigar lifestyle too, a book nobody ever did except about Cuba and that the time was right for a book about Nicaragua considering the growing sales numbers, superb quality and the growing appreciation for Nicaraguan tobacco, not just in the USA but also in the rest of the world. Nicaraguan cigars dominate the ‘top 25’ lists the last few years and so a book seems appropriate.

I set up a trip, meetings at Joya de Nicaragua, A.J. Fernandez, Rocky Patel, Plasencia, Oliva, Padron and Drew Estate as requested, personally I would have added Perdomo as a major player too, Nica Suenos from my friend Skip Martin and back then I hadn’t met Noel Rojas yet otherwise I would have added him too and interviews with a few boutique brand owners, and I got to come along as I made all the appointments and had all the contacts, my then employer went along as translator as he’s fluent in Spanish. At our hotel, Los Arcos, I met Hector from Espinosa Cigars/La Zona and after seeing the La Zona factory Marcel and Jesaja decided on the spot that they had to be included in the book too, just as the Fe Y Alegria school we visited, a school that’s being supported by Pronica, a foundation that I helped to get started for with & for my then employer.

The name of the book is Cigaragua, a name that Marcel came up with after a few glasses of Flor de Caña. We were having some drinks and cigars at the courtyard of Los Arcos when Marcel just blurted out that name and immediately said “no, that’s to cryptic” but Jesaja and I were sold, perfect name. The next morning Marcel changed his mind and started to like the name more and more, and decided to go forward with the name.

The 12×12 inch coffee table book is not just about tobacco but also shows Esteli, Jesaja Hizkia took a lot of great pictures that are included in the book. The book is now available in Dutch and English and Spanish, German and possible French translations could follow in th near future. I know there are plans to release it in the United States as well but Marcel didn’t say when even though I asked, so if you want to know when the book is being released in your country contact Marcel or Sasja van Horssen.

Other than setting up this trip and proof reading the book before it went to the printer, I am not involved with the book, I gain no money from sales or promoting the book. But I like the book (and Nicaraguan cigars) so much that I wanted to spread the word about the book anyway.

Here are some pictures I took from the book (with my iPhone):

 

And I shot a little video: Cigaragua video on youtube

Categories: Misc | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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