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An Interview with Jose Padrón

Chairman, Piloto Cigars Inc.
Marvin R. Shanken
From the Print Edition:
Gina Gershon, Sep/Oct 98

(continued from page 1)

CA: Where was the farm?

Padrón: Las Obas; it was one of the first farms in the Pinar del Río. But the family was very poor. There was very little money then.

CA: Did they grow wrapper or filler tobacco?

Padrón: They grew both wrapper and filler. It all depended on the quality that was being produced; much like today, really.

CA: The family started with a small farm. What happened after that?

Padrón: His sons continued the same traditions as my grandfather, and they kept buying farms. The second one was in Consolacion del Sur, also in the Pinar del Río, and then they bought another one in Piloto, which is the name we've used for our company today.

CA: So your father was a tobacco grower; did he also make cigars? Or did he just sell tobacco to cigarmakers?

Padrón: During the era of my grandfather and my father, we only handled the pre-manufacturing phase: tobacco growing, fermenting, sorting and deveining.

CA: In other words, they finished the tobacco and then shipped it somewhere else for the actual rolling.

Padrón: Yes, but we have always believed that those phases of the production process are the most important steps in making great cigars.

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