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FRATELLO BEGINS SHIPPING TRAY IN MAY

fratello trySpringfield, VA (April 18, 2016) – After a several delays, selected Fratello Cigars retailers should expect the receipt of the Fratello Branded Tray beginning this May. With a slight change on its design, the Fratello Tray will not come with the secret compartment as suggested in a prior company’s release.

“After revisions with the design team, we decided to not to include the secret compartment so that the tray would fit most retailer shelves.” This tray combines the power of engineering with functionality and style. Cutting the total Fratello shelve space by 30% while increasing our cigar output by 10% was one of our main goals”. - said de Frias.

Introduced last year, Fratello limited the production to 125 trays. The Tray was offered to retailers who placed orders at the IPCPR in 2015. With a capacity to hold 200 cigars and 10 modular divisions, the Tray has the flexibility to display and adjust the complete Fratello line.

About Fratello - Launched in 2013 Fratello, the Italian word for "brother", is a line created by Omar de Frias out of the Dominican Republic. The inspiration for the company came 20 years ago when Omar watched a torcedor (cigar roller) working on his art in the Dominican; when the torcedor finished the cigar he was rolling, he handed it to Omar and said "Kid, welcome to the true gentleman's club".

NOW SHIPPING: LA AURORA PURO VINTAGE 2006 111 ANIVERSARIO MASTER CASE SERIES

La Aurora Puro Vintage 2006 111 Aniversario Master Case PHOTO Credit William Cooper(Miami, Florida) March 11, 2016 – La Aurora is pleased to announce that they will begin to ship the Puro Vintage 2006 111 Aniversario Master Case Series today Friday, March 11. Limited to only 500 cases, the Master series features replica packaging of the same boxes that La Aurora used in 1906.

The Master Series houses the Puro Vintage 2006 111 Aniversario expressed in three different vitolas (Salomon: 6 1/2 x 50/60, Toro: 5 3/4 x 54 and, Preferido: 6 X 58). There are a total of 54 cigars divided into 18 of each vitola in the package.  The Puro Vintage 2006 Master Case Series made its debut at the 2015 IPCPR in New Orleans.

Puro Vintage 2006 Blend: Wrapper: Ecuadorian Havana  

                                               Binder: Brazilian

                                               Filler: Nicaraguan, Brazilian, Dominican

                                                            

                                

ABOUT LA AURORA

Founded in 1903 by the Leon Family, La Aurora is the original cigar factory in the Dominican Republic with a portfolio that includes its namesake brands, La Aurora and Leon Jimenes, as well as, La Aurora Preferidos, Guillermo Leon & Fernando Leon brands.

Follow La Aurora on Social Media: Facebook: La Aurora Cigars, Instagram: @LaAuroraCigars

ABOUT MIAMI CIGAR & CO.
Founded by Nestor and Mariana Miranda, Miami Cigar & Co. has become one of the premier distributors of premium cigars, boasting a portfolio which includes Tatiana, Don Lino and the Nestor Miranda brands. Miami Cigar &Co. also serves as the exclusive United States distributor for La Aurora, S.A, Viva Republica, and Toscano brands.

Premium Cigar Exemption Survives Committee Challenge

Today the House Appropriations Committee held a full committee mark-up to move the Agriculture Appropriations bill to the next phase of the legislative process. This bill contains important language that would exempt premium cigars from FDA regulation. 

During the committee meeting, an amendment was offered by Rep. DeLauro (D-CT) to strip the cigar language that defines premium cigars and exempts that category from FDA regulation. This amendment failed 14-34.

The House Appropriations Committee approved an amendment to include language that changes the predicate date for a new tobacco product from February 15, 2007, to the date of enactment for any new regulations. This amendment, sponsored by Reps. Cole (R-OK) and Bishop (D-GA), passed 31-19.

Both provisions are critical victories for our industry and strengthen our position against FDA as we move towards the release of the deeming rule. The Agriculture Appropriations bill now moves to the floor of the U.S. House for consideration. While the U.S. Senate remains a challenge, IPCPR continues to develop a strong coalition through our educational advocacy efforts. 

FOUNDRY TOBACCO COMPANY ANNOUNCES PLANS FOR GROWTH

chillinmooseMarch 3, 2016 – Foundry Tobacco Company (FTC) is expanding. The maverick cigar company has added two sales brokers and a brand manager to drive growth of its innovative portfolio of cigars.

FTC has hired Taven Johnson and Stephan Mayer of C.H.I.M.P., a broker agency, to represent the company’s brands in AL, DC, GA, MS, KY, MD, NC, SC, TN, VA and WV, effective today. As two of the nation’s leading cigar sales brokers, Taven and Stephan have built some of the most successful boutique cigar brands in the market today, and are poised to deliver increased distribution of the Foundry Tobacco Company brands. Over time, the plan is to increase Johnson and Mayer’s territories to additional geographies across the U.S.

In addition, Justin Andrews has recently been hired to support Michael Giannini, FTC’s creative director, in leading the day-to-day operations of the company. Prior to joining Foundry Tobacco Company, Justin served as vice president of Lou Rodriguez cigars.

FTC BolivarThis is an exciting step in the development of Foundry Tobacco Company,” said Giannini. “The addition of these players to our team will allow us to deliver increased flexibility in tailoring programs to retailer needs and the ability to deepen the support of our brands on both the retailer and consumer level.”

To mark its expansion, Foundry Tobacco Company is offering retailers a special discount on its popular Bolivar, Ramon Allones, Compounds/Elements and Musings and value-priced Chillin’ Moose lines for the month of March. Retailers who purchase five boxes will receive a sixth box free.

For more information on the Foundry Tobacco Company portfolio, please visit www.foundrytobaccocompany.com.

FTC Ramon Allones

LA COLECCIÓN DE ELEGANCIA By Gran Habano

collecion1Miami, Florida, April 13, 2016 – Gran Habano announces the pre-release of La Colección de Elegancia, or The Elegance Collection, a collection of Gran Habano’s best-selling Corojo #5 blend in smaller ring gauge sizes.
Gran Habano introduces its Colección de Elegancia for the discerning smoker, seeking a unique Corojo #5 experience. The Corojo #5 Elegance sizes have the strongest blend in the Gran Habano profile with rich, full-bodied flavors further enhanced by the smaller ring gauge. Gran Habano is now taking pre-orders from retailers for La Colección de Elegancia Sampler containing 10 cigars of each ring gauge size. Gran Habano will also be releasing three new sizes of Corojo #5 cigar boxes as part of the Elegance Collection series, the 5 ½ x 42 Petite Corona, the 6 x 44 Corona, and the 5 x 48 Figurado #200.
La Colección de Elegancia
Country of Origin: Honduras
Factory: G.R. Tabacaleras Unidas, S.A.
Wrapper: Nicaraguan Corojo
Binder: Nicaraguan Corojo
Filler: Nicaragua & Costa Rica
Sampler Box Count: 50 (10 - 4 ½ x 40 Lunch Break, 10 - 5 ½ x 42 Petite Corona, 10 - 6 x 44 Corona, 10 - 7 ½ x 38 Lancero, & 10 - 5 x 48 Figurado #200)
Sampler MSRP: $280.00

Famous Smoke Shop Announces the Exclusive Release of the Romeo y Julieta Capulet and Montague 75th Anniversary

CI RYC 75ANV 400Easton, PA – With over 75 years of serving the industry, Famous Smoke Shop has been a leading online distributor of discounted premium cigars, with its humble roots tracing back to a small shop in New York City. The company specializes in offering the web’s widest selection of cigars at the lowest prices. It is with great excitement that Famous has just announced the release of two exclusive limited edition special-sized cigars to help celebrate Famous Smoke Shop’s 75th anniversary, both of which are line extensions of the widely popular Romeo y Julieta Capulet and Montague lines. Offered in a rarely seen 6 1/2 x 54 vitola, the first shipment has just arrived at the company’s warehouse and is currently available for sale on their website. The company has expressed that the new brand will be available in limited quantities, but is not a one-time release and will be a consistent offering for the foreseeable future.

The Romeo y Julieta Capulet 75th Anniversary features Honduran and Nicaraguan longfillers, and a Nicaraguan binder, all wrapped in a massively flavorful Ecuadorian Connecticut wrapper for a smoke that’s easy and smooth, yet loaded with enticing flavors. The Romeo y Julieta Montague 75th Anniversary is a bolder blend than its sister cigar with a hearty blend of Nicaraguan, Dominican, and creamy Brazilian longfillers, a Dominican Olor binder, and a Brazilian Maduro wrapper. The result is an astoundingly rich and complex cigar from start to finish.

CI RYM 75ANV 400“75 years is a major achievement for any company,” Cigar Advisor reviewer and Famous Smoke Shop copywriter Jonathan Detore remarked. “But to remain family owned throughout all those years makes this occasion that much more special. And what better cigar to celebrate with than the Montague or Capulet? Both have been stellar lines since their release, and this limited edition size will only offer more of that impeccable core flavor to the mix. I was especially excited to try out the Montague because of the Brazilian longfiller which was outstanding, but the Capulet was a rock star in my taste tests as well. Very well done by the men and women at Romeo y Julieta, and a big thank you for commemorating our anniversary with this specialty cigar.”

Both Romeo y Julieta Capulet and Montague 75th Anniversary cigars will be offered in a special 6 1/2 x 54 Double Toro. With Famous’ special full box pricing, customers can enjoy this new offering with individual retail prices which range from $5.85 to $6.40 per cigar respectively, with production being limited to 1,000 boxes in the Capulet blend, and only 500 boxes in the Montague blend. People interested in learning more about Romeo y Julieta cigars or Famous Smoke Shop should visit www.Famous-Smoke.com or call 800-564-2486.

Famous Smoke Shop

90 Mort Drive

Easton, PA 18040

800-564-2486

LA AURORA 1962 COROJO AND LA AURORA 1987 CONNECTICUT NOW IN STORES

(Miami, Florida) March 5, 2016 – La Aurora is pleased to announce that the La Aurora 1962 Corojo and the La Aurora 1987 Connecticut are now in stores. La Aurora is celebrating their 113 years in existence. These two blends are dedicated to the years in which they began working with the types of wrappers used on each.

The La Aurora 1962 features a corojo wrapper, from the Cibao Valley in the Dominican Republic, wrapped over an Ecuadorian binder, and fillers from the Cibao Valley and Nicaragua. The La Aurora 1987 sports a Connecticut shade grown wrapper, over a Dominican binder, and Dominican and Nicaraguan fillers.

La Aurora offers both cigars, in four sizes in 20 count boxes: Robusto (5 x 50), Churchill (7 x 50), Toro (5 1/2 x 54) and Gran Toro (6 x 58). The low MSRP of $5.50 to $6.00 is to pay tribute to the consumers who have supported La Aurora for 113 years.

About La Aurora Cigar Factory

La Aurora is the oldest cigar factory in the Dominican Republic. Masters artisans elaborate manually the best handmade cigars, since 1903, almost 113 years ago today. Located in Santiago de los Caballeros, world capital of Premium cigars, in the center of the best tobacco-growing area in the world, El Valle de Cibao, La Aurora Cigars is a family-owned company chaired by Guillermo León. He represents the fifth family generation at the forefront of the company and a symbol for all Dominicans. La Aurora is the leading company of the Dominican tobacco market and is present in more than 60 countries – among which United States, Spain, Russia, France and Germany

Follow La Aurora on Social Media: Facebook: La Aurora Cigars, Instagram: @LaAuroraCigars

Punch Rare Corojo Returns with A New Frontmark

GCC 35125 Punch Rare Corojo OPEN BOX v1General Cigar announces that Punch Rare Corojo has begun making its annual return to retail. The seasonal collection welcomes a new, limited edition frontmark, while one of its original sizes will be retired this year.

The 2016 release of Punch Rare Corojo marks the addition of Regalias Perfecto, a 7.25” x 54 perfecto, available exclusively as part of a trade offer. Regalias Perfecto will be packaged in a sleek wooden box containing 10 cigars and will sell for an SRP of $7.99 per cigar.

The Double Corona size (6.75” x 48) will retire this year, once the limited allotment of this vitola has been depleted.

Punch Rare Corojo is handcrafted in Honduras and features a lustrous Sumatra wrapper cultivated in the mountains of Ecuador. Grown only in limited quantity, these rare, reddish leaves give Punch Rare Corojo its uniquely smooth taste. Bound with hearty Connecticut Broadleaf, the blend features a spicy blend of Nicaraguan, Honduran and Dominican tobacco for a uniquely-flavored, complex smoking experience.

Ed McKenna, senior brand manager for General Cigar’s Punch brand said, “The trend of seasonal cigars started with Punch Rare Corojo, and each year, cigar lovers eagerly anticipate the return of this exceptional blend. Given the range of frontmarks and the addition of Regalias Perfecto to this year’s lineup, we are confident that the limited supply of Punch Rare Corojo will be depleted quickly.”

Reintroduced in 2001 after a shortage of wrapper leaves caused the product to disappear at retail for several years, Punch Rare Corojo sold out as quickly as it returned that year.  Since then, General Cigar has been able to secure a sufficient amount of the rare Ecuadoran Sumatra wrapper for a limited annual release of Punch Rare Corojo. This year’s allotment is available in nine sizes, ranging in SRP from $4.19 to $8.29 per cigar.

FAMOUS SMOKE SHOP DEBUTS REMAINING FOUR KICKS BLACK BELT BUCKLE CIGARS

CI BBB SUBMFAMOUS SMOKE SHOP DEBUTS REMAINING FOUR KICKS BLACK BELT BUCKLE CIGARS

New shapes in the Crowned Heads Cigars' line extension will be limited to 500 boxes

EASTON, PA – Famous Smoke Shop, the leading online distributor of discounted premium cigars, specializing in offering the web’s widest selection of cigars at the lowest prices, has released the two remaining vitolas in their exclusive Four Kicks Black Belt Buckle selection by Crowned Heads Cigars. Named "Sublime" and "Robusto," the new sizes join the Black Belt Buckle Corona Gorda, which was released in November of 2015, and will be limited to only 500 boxes each.

Four Kicks Black Belt Buckle cigars are made using the same Nicaraguan long-filler and binder tobaccos used in the original "91-rated" Four Kicks blend, except the wrapper is a toothy, ebony-hued Connecticut Broadleaf wrapper which adds a note of sweetness to the flavor profile. The blend is medium-bodied and well-balanced as notes of honey, chocolate, hints of light peppery spice, and cedar combine for an intriguingly complex smoke.

CI BBB SUBM5PKWe’re excited to bring Black Belt Buckle into a regular production brand for Famous Smoke," said Jon Huber, Crowned Heads Cigars co-founder. "It’s always been a dream of mine to work with Ernesto [Perez-Carrillo] on a project that involved a [Connecticut] Broadleaf wrapper, as I think he’s one of the best in the business at working with that particular wrapper leaf. And to be able to create this blend for our friends at Famous is a bonus.”

The Four Kicks Black Belt Buckle selection will now be presented as follows in boxes of 20 cigars:

Sublime (6" x 54 Toro) @$8.95 msrp

Robusto (5" x 50) @$8.45 msrp

Corona Gorda (5 5/8" x 46) @$7.95 msrp

CI BBB SUBMZ"The success of the Corona Gorda has definitely proven that Jon and Ernesto were on to something," said Jim Charnley, Famous Smoke Shop Sr. Project manager. "I see the Black Belt Buckle Sublime and Robusto taking the brand to the next level of consumer awareness and expect sales to be even higher, now that cigar smokers will have all three sizes available to them."

Find more information on Four Kicks Black Belt Buckle cigars here.

About Famous Smoke Shop 
Famous Smoke Shop is the nation’s #1 discount retailer of premium cigars online, offering one of the largest selections of handmade cigars, machine-made cigars, cigar humidors and accessories. Famous offers the web’s lowest prices on a wide selection of cigar brands including Acid, Davidoff, Macanudo, Romeo y Julieta, Ashton, Padron, Oliva and Perdomo cigars, and many more. Famous offers their customers the best prices on all premium cigars as well as friendly and knowledgeable customer service.

Famous Smoke Shop

90 Mort Drive

Easton, PA 18040

800-564-2486

VILLIGER CIGARS NORTH AMERICA NAMES RENE CASTANEDA AS NEW PRESIDENT

(Miami, Florida) February 2, 2016 — Villiger Cigars North America proudly names Rene Castaneda as their new President. In this new role, Castaneda will oversee all aspects of US operations, including sales and marketing. Castaneda will work in tandem with managing director Michael Blumendeller. Villiger Cigars North America goes forward with their plans to restructure and stay true to their commitment of providing the cigar industry with the best quality cigars.

Rene Castaneda has an expansive tenure in the premium cigar industry, where he was previously the Vice President of Sales & Marketing for Miami Cigar & Co. Most recently, he held the same position for the Orleans Group International, and spearheaded the hugely successful Dram Cigars for Whiskey campaign. Castaneda is an Industrial Engineer with extensive knowledge in operations, distribution, logistics and inventory management.

Rene Castaneda stated: "It is truly an honor to be chosen for this position, at a company so rich in history. We plan on being an innovative company while bringing Villiger back to its roots. I have all the confidence that Villiger Cigars North America will soon be the standard. Our plan is to develop brands that connect with the consumers while working alongside retailers, and all partners, providing the best products and service. We want the consumer to know that Villiger Cigars has a deep history, originating in 1888, and represents the 'original classic'."

The hiring of Rene Castaneda is one of the many changes occurring at Villiger Cigars North America. One of many announcements in the near future will include changes in the Villiger Cigars North America portfolio, which will encompass new premium cigar brands.

Michael Blumendeller, Managing Director for Villiger Cigars North America, states: "Mr. Heinrich Villiger is as committed as ever to the U.S. market. We are looking forward to bringing back VCNA headquarters to Miami. Rene is a true cigar man and there is no doubt, that he will represent the Villiger Cigar brand with passion, and respect."

ABOUT VILLIGER SONS LIMITED AND VILLIGER NORTH AMERICA:
Villiger Sons Limited was established in 1888 by Jean Villiger in the small town of Pfeffikon, Switzerland, where Villiger remains headquartered to this day. The company manufactures and sells more than 1.5 billion cigars annually, world-wide. Today, under the leadership of Heinrich Villiger, the company prides itself in its commitment to quality, in all their products made in many countries around the globe.

Villiger Cigars North America was established to service the premium cigar enthusiast primarily in the United States. With production from some of the most respected manufacturers in Dominican Republic, Central America and elsewhere, it is the goal of the company, to introduce the finest smoking experience a premium handmade cigar has to offer. Today, and in the future, one can rest assured that when they choose a Villiger cigar, the quality of the leaf, the manufacturing, and even the packaging will be second to none.

For media inquiries and interviews, please contact Creativas Group at:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Follow the NEW Villager Cigars North America on social @VilligerCigarsNorthAmerica #TheOriginalClassic

VIVA REPUBLICA ANNOUNCES “STEALTHY” CIGAR SERIES: CLOAK & DAGGER

vivarepublicaVIVA REPUBLICA ANNOUNCES “STEALTHY” CIGAR SERIES: CLOAK & DAGGER

Jason Holly to release “Ojos Verdes”, the first blend under the Cloak & Dagger series.

Miami, Florida- Viva Republica, the premium handmade cigar manufacturer announces a new series named Cloak & Dagger. This new effort will allow the company to quickly release an array of limited edition blends. The Cloak & Dagger program is unique, as the blend contents will not be released to the public. The first blend under the Cloak & Dagger series is the: Ojos Verdes cigar.

The first release, Ojos Verdes or “Green Eyes”, is a 6" x 47 Corona Gorda, featuring a Dominican Candela wrapper. No other information on the blend will be released, and future blend information on cigars brands under the Cloak & Dagger series will be withheld. Production is limited to 250 bundles of 20 cigars with an MSRP of $8.50.

Jason Holly stated:” It's my belief that to enjoy a cigar you needn't know the blend components, in fact I think it's better to smoke a new cigar without being prejudiced by tobacco origin, marketing/positioning, proclaimed strength, etc. ”Cloak & Dagger was born out of the desire to create a vehicle, to quickly market test blends and unique concepts. Cloak & Dagger will be a limited production line, with an irregular release schedule.”

Keeping in the political vein, Viva has themed its previous releases, and this one takes on the personality, of clandestine operations (or the Dark Arts). These releases will be non-boxed and shipped in mazos of 20. Each different release features the same Cloak & Dagger band, with a hang tag indicating the vintage, and codename for each release.

“I'm excited about this line, because it will allow me to get projects out of the factory much quicker, than we have been doing in the past. With standard packaging prepared, we can turn out a wet-shipped release, in less than a week, or 30-40 days, with traditional minimum aging, stated Holly.

Consumers should expect to see more releases under the Cloak & Dagger program this year, featuring different sizes, different blends and some novel concepts regarding both blending and construction.

The theme for Viva for 2016 will be to reinforce our theme of "Where the Wild Things Grow" and Cloak & Dagger will certainly serve as one of the expressions of the brand.

Miami Cigar & Co. is the exclusive American distributor of Viva Republica.

ABOUT VIVA REPUBLICA
Viva Republica is a boutique premium handmade cigar manufacturer, with all production being provided by La Aurora, S.A. Miami Cigar Co. serves as exclusive United States distributor www.vivarepublica.com.

About Miami Cigar & Co.
Miami Cigar & Co. , founded by Nestor and Mariana Miranda, Miami Cigar & Co. has become one of the premier distributors of premium cigars boasting a portfolio which includes Tatiana, Don Lino and the Nestor Miranda brands. Miami Cigar &Co. also serves as the exclusive United States distributor for La Aurora, S.A and all Viva Republica brands.

MIAMI CIGAR & CO. ANNOUNCES EXCLUSIVE DISTRIBUTION DEAL WITH ITALIAN CIGAR MANUFACTURER TOSCANO

(Miami, Florida) February 3, 2016 -- Miami Cigar & Company proudly announces that it has reached an agreement to become the exclusive distributor of Toscano Cigars in the United States. Based in Tuscany, Italy, Toscano produces high quality fermented Kentucky tobacco. The brand has forever been immortalized through film and television, most well known as Clint Eastwood's 'go-to' cigar in Sergio Leone's 'Dollars Trilogy' film series and other Spaghetti Westerns.

Toscano has been producing cigars for 200 years. The unique flavors of the Toscano brands have made them easily the most dominant cigar brand in Italy. Made with only Kentucky fire cured tobacco, the uniquely shaped cigars are known for their intense strength, aromas and flavors of wood, roasting, peat, leather and stable. Because of the unique fermenting process, the Toscano cigars do not need humidification, and can be stored at room temperature for years without losing quality. An interesting quality about the Toscano cigars is that most of the brands are meant to be cut in half before smoking (two cigars per stick).

Miami Cigar & Co. will distribute a wide variety of the Toscano brands, to include both the classic and the flavored Toscano cigar brands. Brands to be distributed include the Classico, Antico, 1492, Toscanello, the flavored Toscanello Aroma Café, Toscanello Aroma Vaniglia and the Toscanello Aroma Grappa. Most Toscano cigars are between the lengths of 5.9 to 6.3 in. Each Toscano box holds 50 sticks, which would be traditionally cut in half to make 100 cigars. The boxes range in price from $135.00 to $200.00 MSRP.

Jason Wood, Vice President of Miami Cigar & Company, said: "We take pride in distributing a variety of different products, and Toscano Cigars offers a change of pace for smokers who may be looking for something different. Toscano is a lifestyle brand that offers unique flavors, sizes and smoking experience. We are happy to welcome the Toscano Cigar family into the Miami Cigar & Co. portfolio."

About Miami Cigar & Co:  Founded by Nestor and Mariana Miranda, Miami Cigar & Co. has become one of the premier distributors of premium cigars, boasting a portfolio which includes Tatiana, Don Lino and the Nestor Miranda brands. Miami Cigar &Co. also serves as the exclusive United States distributor for La Aurora, S.A and all Viva Republica brands.

StogieFest 2016!

CigarWeekly was invited this year to cover StogieFest 2016 event in Jacksonville, FL.  This was the fifth annual 20160320 164413 smallevent, and we're happy to have been invited!  The adventure began (for us) on Saturday afternoon, with a long drive from Atlanta to Jacksonville. Gary (Doc) Laden, of Smooth Draws Radio show fame and I climbed into the Mustang and headed south.

A really uneventful Five and a half hours later (with the exception of one pit-stop and a ton of excessive road noise from defective Pirelli tires (which they claim are perfectly fine - and that's another subject altogether) we arrived at our hotel, just a few miles from the event.  After dropping off the bags and grabbing a quick bite, we're off to the event, hosted at Aromas Cigar and martini bar.

Locals really benefit from the VIP acess, with a couple of special events on Friday and Saturday evening. We missed Friday's (had to do the radio show on Saturday morning) but Saturday was Partigas night.  got to enjoy a very smooth Partigas 1845 while chatting with folks in the VIP lounge.

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Saturday morning VIP access started at 11am, and we got there just in time to avoid the long line.  It's a mult-vendor event, and they do something quite unique.  Guests are each given a poker chip, and, with that chip they vote on the vendor who's cigar they like the most, or who's presentation/pitch about the cigars they prefer.  We spent a good part of the day visiting with these vendors - some already knew of CigarWeekly, others were introduced.  Meeting the reps from companies like Arandoza Cigars, Sindicato, Drew Estate, Rocky Patel, General Cigar and more, getting a sample of their wares, took us a good hour or so, and after that, while the non-VIP members were taking their turn under the tents, we paused for some more good conversation with other attendees and a beverage or two.

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Aromas sports a full service food menu and a couple of very well stocked bars.  About 1/3 of the square footage is a night club, but today it was the location of several of the beverage vendors.  Can't forget, Sam Adams and Guinness were represented, as well as several Scotch Whiskies and good old American Bourbons.

More good conversations and friendships were made - we met a very large ladies cigar club called Stogies and Stilletos - and enjoyed smoking a few tasty cigars as the afternoon wore on. Around 4pm the raffle began - lots of cigars and accessories, beer glasses and ashtrays were given away to the attendees.  So much that they had to temporarily suspend the raffle to take care of the Bikini contest - crowning Miss Stogiefest2015.  For some, the culmination of the raffle and bikini contest marked the end of their day.  For others, well, Aromas does not close until 2am.  Your humble reporter and his cohort from Smooth draws Radio settled on something inbetween.

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If you are a lover of cigars and the cigar lifestyle, stay tuned for StogieFest next year!  We will be, that's certain, and hopefully we'll be able to get the word out earlier than we did this year. If you live in the area, or want to make a weekend of it and travel down, the VIP ticket is the way to go.

Thanks to the staff and all the vendors in attendance for a really great time.

Cigarweekly.com and Smooth Draws Radio (Smoothdraws.com) ended our weekend with breakfast and a cigar, and a combined donation of cigars to the Cigars for Warriors project via Howard Gross.  Thank you StogieFest - See you next year!

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CASA DE MONTECRISTO BY PRIME CIGAR & WHISKEY BAR SET TO OPEN IN BRICKELL

CASA DE MONTECRISTO BY PRIME CIGAR & WHISKEY BAR SET TO OPEN IN BRICKELL

One-of-a kind venue set to open its doors early 2016 in the epicenter of Miami’s Downtown Brickell area.

comingsoon2January 5, 2015- Brickell-Miami is ready to welcome Casa De Montecristo by Prime Cigar & Whiskey Bar, a sanctuary where “sophisticated relaxation” isn’t just their motto, but a way of life. Prime Cigar’s first location in Boca Raton, set them apart as the premier cigar bar in South Florida. They will now partner with Altadis USA, one of the world’s top premium cigar manufacturers, to unveil a one of kind cigar and whisky lounge, with a Miami twist. The new establishment opens its doors in early 2016, located in the heart of Miami’s business district, at Brickell’s newly built 1100 Millecento residential tower.

Read more...

PRESENTING THE NEW HOYO

Hoyo monterrey toro left openGeneral Cigar will launch a new version of Hoyo de Monterrey exclusively for brick and mortar retailers. The new collection called Hoyo will be available in four sizes ranging in price from $5.49 to $6.99 and begins shipping to all retailers on April 1.

According to Alan Willner, vice president of marketing, “We’re taking the legendary brand Hoyo de Monterrey and moving it into the future. The new Hoyo is about keeping the brand’s rich history of Honduran craftsmanship and infusing it with new ideas, new tobacco and new packaging.”

Hoyo was inspired by Hoyo Edición de Cumpleaños 150, a successful, limited edition cigar released last year. Hoyo 150th anniversary took the first step toward breaking the conventions of the brand by featuring a new variety of Nicaraguan tobacco, a shade-grown wrapper never used before in any other cigar. With sleek new packaging and a contemporary logo, Hoyo Edición de Cumpleaños 150 represented a new wave of the brand.

Continuing along the path carved by Edición de Cumpleaños 150, Hoyo is an artisanal line featuring special tobaccos, proprietary aging techniques and old world craftsmanship. Hoyo takes the same Esteli-grown Habano shade wrapper used in “150” and adds extended fermentation to deepen the flavor. The blend was also updated to complement the wrapper and features longer aging on the filler and binder to deliver a deep, rich smoking experience.

Hoyo begins with a proprietary wrapper called Esteli Habano Shade. Cultivated by the Plasencia Group exclusively for Hoyo, it is the first Cuban-seed, shade-grown wrapper, and is also one of the heaviest wrappers used in premium cigars. The Plasencias use special cultural practices to deliver a thick, pliable leaf with bold, peppery flavor. Given the power of the leaf, the Hoyo blending team chose to apply increased fermentation, taking place over two years, to bring deeper dimension to its taste.

Hoyo monterrey toro cigarThe blend consists of three different tobaccos – a Pennsylvania Ligero, plus Nicaraguan Esteli and Nicaraguan Ometepe leaves. Each of the filler leaves was aged for more than 18 months. The Pennsylvania ligero is a powerhouse, balanced by aged Ometepe leaves. The Esteli leaves lend a familiar earthy flavor that increases the cigar’s complexity.

An aged Ecuadoran Sumatra binder lends great combustibility and ensures an even burn.

Each of the four vitolas will be packaged in sleek, 20-count black boxes with silver branding elements. They are:

Gigante (6” x 60) – SRP per cigar is $6.99

Toro (6” x 50) – SRP per cigar is $6.79

Robusto (5” x 54) – SRP per cigar is $6.59

Rothschild (4.5” x 50) – SRP per cigar is $5.49.

Future new releases will be branded under the name of Hoyo. In keeping with the brand’s artisanal approach, new products from Hoyo will showcase the craftsmanship and expertise of our Honduran factory.

Small batch cigars, collaborations and other exciting special projects are all possibilities under the new Hoyo,” noted Willner.

MIAMI CIGAR & CO. EXPANDS SALES TEAM WITH THE ADDITION OF NATE MCINTYRE

nate(Miami, Florida) January 6, 2016— Miami Cigar & Company continues its growth, as the group welcomes Nate McIntyre to the family.

Nate McIntyre brings with him a strong resume, long tenure of great relationships and extensive knowledge in tobacco.  McIntyre served as the National Sales Director for House of Emilio, and later as the US Director of Sales for Cubanacan Cigars. McIntyre will now oversee sales in the South Eastern region for Miami Cigar & Co.

Jason Wood, VP of Miami Cigar & Co. stated: “Nate McIntyre brings the experience, passion, strong relationships, and industry knowledge which will only strengthen our team. We feel strongly that the addition of McIntyre will help us better serve our consumers.”

Nate McIntyre said: “The rich history of Miami Cigar & Co., brand awareness, and family culture is a natural fit for me. I look forward to working alongside Jason and the rest of the Miami Cigar family.”

About Miami Cigar & Co.
Founded by Nestor and Mariana Miranda, Miami Cigar & Co. has become one of the premier distributors of premium cigars boasting a portfolio which includes Tatiana, Don Lino and the Nestor Miranda brands. Miami Cigar &Co. also serves as the exclusive United States distributor for La Aurora, S.A, Viva Republica and

Hf Barcelona brand of accessories and humidors.

Follow Miami Cigar & Company on Social Media here: Facebook: Miami Cigar & Company, Instagram: MiamiCigar, Hashtag: OneLife


For media inquiries and interviews, please contact Creativas Group at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

VILLIGER-GROUP ANNOUNCES NEW CEO

Robert Suter Villiger CEOPfeffikon/LU, March 15, 2016Heinrich Villiger, Chairman of the Board of the Villiger Soehne AG hands over his function as CEO of the Villiger Group after 65 years in charge. The new CEO of the Villiger Group is Robert Suter (M.sc. Swiss Instiute of Technology) who has extensive experiences in international Swiss industries. In his last position he successfully acted as Group CEO of Conzzeta AG a Swiss holding company. 


“We are very pleased that we were able to hire with Robert Suter a renowned and experiences Swiss manager as CEO for the Villiger Group. Robert Suter has a long and exceptional career as top executive in industrial groups. Among other positions he acted successfully as Group CEO and Chairmen of the Executive Committee at Conzzeta Ltd.” Heinrich Villiger said who will remain Chairman of Villiger Soehne AG and the Villiger Holding.

“It is the right time” emphasizes Heinrich Villiger. For 65 years tobacco was his life as being in charge as entrepreneur of the tobacco group. Heinrich Villiger hands over his responsibility with immediate effect. Starting from March 2016 Robert Suter will take over his new role as CEO. The board of Villiger Soehne Holding AG and Villiger Soehne AG remains unchanged.

This news comes on the heels of Rene Castaneda being named President of Villiger Cigars North America. Robert Suter will work together in tandem with Castaneda as Villiger Cigars North America continues to make big strides in 2016.


The Villiger Group is a Swiss family company in the international tobacco industry in the fourth generation. The group has 1500 employees globally and has sales of about 200 Million Swiss Francs a year. Production locations are Europe, Americas and Asia.

ABOUT VILLIGER SONS LIMITED AND VILLIGER NORTH AMERICA:
Villiger Sons Limited was established in 1888 by Jean Villiger in the small town of Pfeffikon, Switzerland, where Villiger remains headquartered to this day. The company manufactures and sells more than 1.5 billion cigars annually, world-wide. Today, under the leadership of Heinrich Villiger, the company prides itself in its commitment to quality, in all their products made in many countries around the globe.

Villiger Cigars North America was established to service the premium cigar enthusiast primarily in the United States. With production from some of the most respected manufacturers in Dominican Republic, Central America and elsewhere, it is the goal of the company, to introduce the finest smoking experience a premium handmade cigar has to offer. Today, and in the future, one can rest assured that when they choose a Villiger cigar, the quality of the leaf, the manufacturing, and even the packaging will be second to none.

Gran Habano Welcomes New Vice President of Sales

gran habano logoGran Habano Welcomes New Vice President of Sales

Miami, Florida, January 8, 2016 - Gran Habano is proud to announce the appointment of John A. Gonzalez as their new Vice President of Sales. Gonzalez will be working closely with owner, George Rico, to manage Gran Habano’s sales team to design and implement sales promotional programs to further cultivate customer relationships. He joins Gran Habano Cigars at an exciting time for the company as it is expected to announce the release of several new products and revamp packaging this upcoming year to invigorate the brand’s image.

John is an exceptionally seasoned executive in the field of sales and marketing, bringing 45 years of professional experience to Gran Habano in his new position, where he has implemented sales supervision and managed top-line revenues in domestic and international markets. He spent the last four years with Kuuts LLC/Tabacalera Zapata LLC as its Vice President and General Manager, where he dedicated himself to direct management of operation and supervisor of sales and marketing, successfully increasing the company’s brand recognition in the cigar industry. Prior to working with Kuuts Cigar Brands, he devoted eight years as Vice President of Sales to Don Pepin Garcia/My Father Cigars, Inc. exceedingly achieving sales goals by strategizing marketing events to develop and introduce product line, managed its independent sales agencies, worked with customers to develop private label brands, and was responsible for startup sales with international distributors in several European countries.

Picture of JohnIn a statement made by John Gonzalez he says, “It is my pleasure to have become part of the Gran Habano company and the Rico Family, working closely with George Rico. It is an exciting time for me and the company as we move forward to the release of the new products and programs during this New Year. I am looking forward to the company’s growth in the domestic and international markets.”


For more information about Gran Habano, please visit www.ghcigars.com.

CAO Steel Horse Will Welcome Two New Vitolas

CAO Flathead Handbrake left openWe’re pleased to let you know that CAO Steel Horse Will Welcome Two New Vitolas.

 

CAO Steel Horse is launching two smaller-format smokes -- Handbrake (4.5” x 50 – SRP per cigar is $6.99) and Roadkill (5.5 x 54 – SRP per cigar is $7.00) will be available at retail beginning next week.

A spin-off of CAO’s wildly-popular Flathead line, Steel Horse is wrapped in a proprietary Connecticut CAO Flathead RoadKill left openHabano Grueso leaf and features a four-country blend. Made with a signature flat-head top, Steel Horse was released in 2015 and is known for its easy-smoking flavors of leather and spice. 

ICONIC MACANUDO BRAND LAUNCHES NEW LOOK

macanudoPRESS RELEASE

Jan. 12, 2016

ICONIC MACANUDO BRAND LAUNCHES NEW LOOK

General Cigar announces today that the company has modernized the design of its iconic Macanudo logo for the U.S. market. Beginning on January 15, 2016, Macanudo Café, Macanudo Maduro, Macanudo Crü Royale and Macanudo 1968 and will feature the brand’s new look.

“The Macanudo logo has evolved to a more contemporary design, and packaging has been updated for visual consistency throughout the portfolio. The changes will make Macanudo even more appealing on shelf and more relevant to current and new cigar smokers,” said Alan Willner, vice president of marketing for General Cigar.

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