- Craftsmanship of the cigar -
From the coveted fields to our signature curing barns and facilities, to our bustling factories, our tobacco moves from one premium establishment to another – because everything we do is premium. Anything less wouldn't be worthy of the label.
Our cigars are premium inside and out. But it’s not just the quality that makes it premium; it’s the delicate nature in which each individual tobacco leaf is sorted. After curing and prior to fermentation, every single leaf must be classified as either: wrapper, binder, or filler.
Type 3: WRAPPER
Wrapper leaves are the last and outer most layer to our cigars and are the absolute finest tobacco leaves in existence. A wrapper leaf is pristine with no water spots or tears, minimal veins and an even color. Nature’s beauty and man’s ingenuity are truly realized in every single leaf.
After the curing process, the real healing can begin in fermentation. Fermentation is designed to remove unwanted nutrients within the leaves to supply a clean fresh tobacco flavor. The process begins with the rehydration of every leaf.
Once the tobacco is evenly dampened, it is placed by hand into large stacks called pilons. Weighing approximately 2,500 pounds, each of these pilons utilizes their immense weight to create pressure. This coupled with the added moisture of the leaves, creates heat - allowing the tobacco to ferment, releasing all of the nutrients that were used to grow the leaf: leaving the leaves with a clean tobacco taste.
Each individual pilon rests in place until it reaches a certain temperature (110-130 degrees). Then, the pilon is rotated into the next resting position. The pilons are flipped from top, to middle, to bottom, every 7-10 days to ensure that the leaves are evenly dried out. This painstaking process takes anywhere from six months to more than a year. That’s time well worth it.
QUALITY CONTROL "CONSTRUCTION"
Once rolled, each cigar goes through a series of quality control steps. Every cigar is carefully examined to guarantee that only excellence gets our stamp of approval. Each cigar is meticulously judged on its color consistency, veins, soft spots and ring gauge. Any cigar that falls short of perfection is classified as a “Factory Select” or a “Second"
After quality control, the cigars are sent to an aging room for a minimum of 90 days. This final aging period allows for the different layers of tobacco within the cigar to fuse together.
After the aging room, each cigar goes through yet another round of quality control. We sacrifice nothing when it comes to flavor. We don’t cut corners and we don’t compromise. We make every effort, no matter how tedious, to clean up any and all rough edges. The result: the smoothest tasting cigars known to man.
After the second quality control a cigar may journey down a number of different roads. The first choice of which is if the cigar is box-pressed or not. Box-pressed cigars are a specialty that we take much pride in. The cigars are laid out on trays and are separated by individual slabs of wood.
A SIGNATURE LOOK
After they are laid out and separated, the trays are stacked and then compressed - the pressure from which causes the cigar to press out against the wood slabs surrounding it, forming the cigar into a box shape. Once released from the tray, the cigar is no longer round but instead boxed.
Whether box-pressed or left round, our cigars are then branded with our label. Carefully, decisively and proudly we band each of our cigars. The band is not just a label to queue what tastes will be revealed within the cigar, it is a testament to the labor and craftsmanship that went into every individual leaf. Each exhale is worth a thousand tired breaths in another part of the world. Because quality isn’t just a sacrifice, it’s a gift.
The creation of a cigar is finished once it is placed next to its brother in a Rocky Patel box. It took our tobacco at least 5 years to get to this point. It took 300 hands almost 2000 days to make it this far.