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Interview: Francisco Padron, Cubatabaco

Marvin R. Shanken
From the Print Edition:
Groucho Marx, Spring 93

(continued from page 5)

"The new cigars are made from the very best tobacco just like all Cohibas," says Rafael Guerra, assistant director of El Laguito, who is overseeing the production of the new line with Cuba's top tobacco man, Avelino Lara. "The tobacco is fermented three times, which is unique to Cohiba."

The proof is definitely within the wrapper. All the Cohiba Siglos are outstanding smokes. Like other great Cohibas, such as Robusto and Esplendido, they are rich and opulent yet maintain a remarkable delicacy and refinement. Annual production is expected to reach about one million cigars in total or about 200,000 of each size. That will increase overall Cohiba production to 4.4 million cigars.

The five Linea 1492 cigars are expected to reach key export markets by late spring. Siglos come in varnished wooden boxes of 25 cigars rather than pressed in paper-covered wooden boxes. Prices have not been officially set, although Siglos are expected to fit into the current price range for Cohiba, from $8 to $23 a cigar.

When asked if other sizes or shapes for Cohiba are being considered for the future, Cubatabaco officials would not reply; however, sources in the organization say that a pyramid-shaped cigar is not out of the question.

-- James Suckling

SIGLO I (Ring Gauge: 40 Length: 4")
A lot of flavor in a small cigar. Beautifully crafted with a rich chocolate wrapper, it is soft-textured and sumptuous to smoke with dark chocolate and spice aromas and flavors. 93

SIGLO II (42 x 5")
Another beautiful cigar with loads of earthy, spicy character. Like other Cohibas, this one is full-bodied and rich in flavor with a long aftertaste. 90

SIGLO III (42 x 6")
A great addition to a great line of cigars. It is gorgeous to look at with its rich brown, smooth wrapper and gives loads of pleasure with every puff. An opulent smoke with great finesse and class. 95

SIGLO IV (42 x 5 2/3")
A blockbuster of a cigar. Try it after a hearty meal. It gives a blast of cinnamon, tobacco and cedar flavors and seems a little rough for a moment. A few months of aging may soften some of the rough edges. 92

SIGLO V (43 x 6 2/3")
It's a shame when you finish this cigar. You can't get enough of it. It is full-bodied and rich yet maintains superb harmony. A truly refined cigar. 96 A Cigar for Columbus


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