Jonathan Drew and the Drew Estate team are coming to a tobacco barn near you.
The dates have been set—and tickets are on sale—for the 2018 Barn Smokers, a series of celebratory and educational events that brings cigar smokers to the forefront of tobacco growing, processing and manufacturing. The events, which begin in May and continue through November, will take place in Florida, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Kentucky and Louisiana. Each stop on the tour will explore the unique facets of American tobacco cultivation associated with that region.
The 2018 Barn Smoker kicks off on May 19 at the Florida Sun Grown farm in Clermont, Florida. Here, Orlando cigar retailer Jeff Borysiewicz grows the filler tobacco used in Drew Estate’s Florida Sun Grown blend. This event will examine the “climate, the soil and farming techniques” that make Florida-grown tobacco unique. A host of spirits brands will be in attendance, including John Drew Brands, Jim Beam, Macallan, Partida Tequila, Brugal Rum, Debonaire Rum and MB Roland. Guests will also be given a voucher to receive 12 cigars for $10 from an on-sight retailer, five of which will include the entire Florida Sun Grown vertical.
On June 23, Drew Estate will hold its first-ever Barn Smoker in Pennsylvania, where master blender Willy Herrera will preview a new cigar from Drew Estate that features a Pennsylvania broadleaf wrapper. Held in Strasburg, Pennsylvania, the event will pay tribute to the tobacco-growing traditions of Lancaster County, where early Mennonite and Amish settlers have grown tobacco since the early 19th century. John Drew Brands, MB Roland and Buffalo Trace spirits will be in attendance. In addition to receiving two “experimental Pennsylvania broadleaf blends,” the $10 voucher will include 10 additional cigars from a host of Drew Estate brands.
At the height of the summer season, the Barn Smoker will return to the location where it all began four years ago: the sprawling tobacco fields of the Connecticut River Valley. The event will take place on August 4, at the Foster Farm in South Windsor, Connecticut, where the first Barn Smoker was held in 2014. This year, Drew Estate is celebrating the 10th anniversary of its lauded Liga Privada blend, which is wrapped in tantalizingly dark, broadleaf grown in Connecticut. Included in the voucher will be several Liga Privada cigars. But if you don’t have tickets, you are out of luck. The event is already sold out.
As the northeastern growing season comes to an end, Drew Estate will head south. The first stop on the Dixie leg will be in Hopkinsville, Kentucky, where the company will explain the process behind its Kentucky Fire Cured brand of cigars. Set to take place on September 29, attendees will have a chance to learn about and sample the unique fire-cured tobacco cultivated for this brand. Seven of the 12 cigars included in the Kentucky voucher will feature some form of fire-cured leaf. John Drew Brands, Angel’s Envy, MB Roland will also be on hand.
The final stop on the 2018 tour will mark the Barn Smoker’s second visit to Louisiana, where Drew Estate’s Pappy Van Winkle Barrel Fermented cigar will take center stage. Guests will learn about the unique practice of barrel fermentation (as opposed to traditional fermentation of premium tobacco, which is done in pilóns). The 12-cigar voucher will also provide the chance to taste the tobacco inside several of Pappy Van Winkle vitolas, including the elusive Pappy Van Winkle Barrel Fermented Limitada.
Included in the ticket price of $90, each Barn Smoker event will provide catered meals from various local restaurants. Each event will also feature a raffle for Drew Estate gear, with all of the proceeds going to the Cigars For Warriors foundation.
“Our deployed men and women deserve the ability to enjoy a cigar if they want it, and Cigars for Warriors needs our support now more than ever,“ said Jonathan Drew, in a press release. According to Sam Morales, director of marketing at Drew Estate, each event raises around $10,000 for the foundation, which includes the raffle proceeds and a $5,000 contribution from Drew Estate.For more information, and to purchase tickets, visit barnsmoker.com.