Through their charitable Carrillo Cares program, E.P. Carrillo Cigar Company and cigar heads across the country helped contribute over $46,000 to Els For Autism during January’s first Pledge 98 campaign. Referencing the Pledge’s rating of 98 when it was named 2020’s cigar of the year, $0.98 from every 5 x 50 Pledge sold went to the cause during the first campaign. The second time around, $9.80 of every single box of Pledge cigars sold between April 1, 2023 and April 30, 2023 was collected for the foundation. In less than a month, the Pledge 98 contribution total has jumped from $46,000 to over $58,000! To find out more about Pledge 98, and the Els For Autism organization, visit their website today.
Skip Martin, co-founder of RoMa Craft Tobac and part owner of Fabrica de Tabacos Nica Sueño S.A. – where Powstanie Cigars are made – recently teased the next SBC release. Originally launched in 2016, Powstanie’s SBC project, an acronym for “Surrounded By Champions,” has been released three times since. When the first SBC debuted, the company explained that “It’s important to recognize that great accomplishments require the team to be successful. Too often we see success only as a face of a single man. Surrounded by Champions is a cigar that pays homage to the people that made Powstanie possible. The main ingredient of greatness is the rest of the team.” Expected to be made available before the end of the year, the SBC 22 is Packaged 10 to a box. In total, just 500 boxes of this limited run of 5.5 x 46 Corona Gordas were produced. We’ll let you know when blend information and MSRP are disclosed.
Scheduled to have been made available Fall of 2022, issues related to packaging prevented La Palina from releasing their refreshed Nicaragua Connecticut and Nicaragua Oscuro blends last year. Those obstacles now overcome, both are arriving at brick and mortar shops all across the country right now. The blend and the branding have been updated, but the cigars remain 100% Nicaraguan. All three sizes – Robusto, Toro, and Gordo – are packaged in 20-count boxes. MSRP ranges from $9.50 to $11.50 depending on the format. If you’ve had the original recipe it will be interesting to compare, and if you haven’t then it’s a good a reason as any to try something new!
Distributed in the United States by Privada Cigar Club, the Casa Caraballo brand is set to introduce three new blends in July at the Premium Cigar Association trade show in Las Vegas. The Don Nelo is the result of an entire year of blending at the Don Nelo Cigar Factory in Esteli, Nicaragua. It is a regular production offering that will be debut in three wrapper variants: Maduro, Rosado, and Claro, and in Gordo, Toro, and Torpedo sizes. Each cigar is launching at an MSRP of $12.50, regardless of the vitola.
The Apache, also set to be a regular production selection, features an Ecuadorian Habano wrapper, Sumatran binder, and filler tobaccos from Nicaragua. All 4 sizes of new blend will be available in 10-count wooden boxes – Tradicion, Excelencia, Romance, and Necesario – with prices ranging from $13.25 to $15.50.
Originally announced in 2020, a press release sent around at the time explained that the La Tampeña project “pays homage to the women that worked the cigar factories of Tampa during its golden years especially the women in our family that came over from Cuba to Tampa in the late 1800’s due to the cigar trade.” Never actually released to the general public, the blend was assumed by onlookers to have been shelved indefinitely. As it turns out, work on the blend continued and has been completed. Launching at $16 for a single cigar, only 1,000 ten-count boxes of La Tampeña will be made available each year.
Announced last month, the “cuban-sandwhich” style Belleau Wood line of cigars blended by Indiana Ortez is currently en route to select shops across the US. Named for the 1918 battle that saw the U.S. Marines of the 2nd and 3rd Infantry Divisions fight for 20 straight days, the company explains that “our cigars namesake pays homage to the Devil Dogs we remember every day, by presenting an everyday cigar.” Ortez shares that “this project is very exciting for me! Learning about the history and significance of the battle really allowed me to take what is normally a regular cigar for this market segment and focus on a memorable blend using choice tobaccos, something I don’t think is given its due with these types of everyday cigars.” The value line is priced between $3.95 and $4.25 per cigar, with all three blends launching in 4 sizes – Toro, Robusto, Presidente, and Gordo.
The Procigar Festival has released an official “save the date” for next year’s gathering. Scheduled for February 18th to the 23rd of 2024, the festival was created by the Association of Dominican Cigar Manufacturers (Procigar), and offers an unforgettable experience that includes education, entertainment, and exclusive premium cigars. The festival promotes the Dominican tobacco industry’s reputation as global exporters of top-notch premium cigars while providing some of the most immersive programming being offered today. Registration costs have typically included field and factory tours, new and unreleased cigars, lunch with industry icons, insightful seminars and workshops, admission to all dinner parties including a premium open bar, excursions, and transportation to all tours and all dinners on the itinerary. Many attendees also received a gift gift bag last year valued at more than $400. Expected to go on sale this summer, registration will be open to the public. For more information, visit ProCigar.org.
Ahead of their upcoming launch of the NASA-inspired The Lunar cigars, Fratello Cigars has announced the discontinuation of four well known formats – Bianco I, Oro Shorty, Navetta Enterprise, and Inverso Corona Gorda – following an extensive evaluation of its product lineup. This decision, influenced by manufacturing costs and consumer demand, aims to enhance the company’s focus on high-quality products and superior customer service. Production will cease once the current stock is exhausted, urging fans to purchase while supplies last. Despite this change, Fratello remains optimistic about its future and committed to serving its customers with top-notch products and services. Fans of these sizes are encouraged to hunt down what they can, once the currently available supply is depleted, there will be no restocks.
“While it is always difficult to discontinue a product, we believe that this decision is in the best interest of our company and our customers,” said Omar de Frias, the founder of Fratello Cigars. “We remain committed to providing our customers with high-quality products and exceptional service, and we believe that this decision will help us achieve that goal.”
Wishing you all another great weekend full of your favorite cigars and your favorite people. Keep on sending in your favorite cigar related news stories, posts and video. If anything from this roundup catches your attention, let everyone know in the comments below!