Casa Cuba, the first new cigar brand from the Fuente family in many years, has gone on sale in a limited capacity throughout select cigar stores.
The cigars are made by Tabacalera A. Fuente y Cia. in the Dominican Republic, the makers of Arturo Fuente and many other brands. While there have been several line extensions to the Fuente portfolio in recent years, such as Arturo Fuente Rosado Sungrown Magnum R, and many brands made for clients such as Ashton and Prometheus, Casa Cuba is the first completely new brand for the company since the late-1995 launch of Fuente Fuente OpusX. And it's the first cigar that Carlos Fuente Sr. has blended in decades.
Fuente Sr., the 78-year-old patriarch of Tabacalera A. Fuente y Cia., was 11 years old when his father Arturo turned the back porch of their family home in Ybor City, Florida, into a cigar factory. By the late 1950s, when he took over the business from his father, Fuente Sr. had a company making only a few thousand cigars a year. He began expanding to other parts of Florida with his cigars, which were made from Cuban tobacco shipped from Havana to the port of Tampa. The family home remained the factory for many years.
Today, the Arturo Fuente cigar brand is the linchpin in a cigarmaking empire overseen by Fuente Sr. and his son Carlos Fuente Jr. The company makes more than 30 million cigars a year, all of them by hand. For decades, Fuente Jr. has blended the company's cigars: Fuente Fuente OpusX, Arturo Fuente Rosado Sungrown Magnum R, even the Arturo Fuente Don Carlos, which is named after Fuente Sr.
Fuente Sr. blended Casa Cuba himself, using Ecuador Havana wrappers and a mix of Cuban-seed Dominican filler and binder. With Casa Cuba, Fuente Sr. set out to recreate a taste of his early days in the cigar business. "I blended this cigar the way I used to blend Cuban tobacco," he told Cigar Insider during a 2011 interview.
The long-delayed cigars finally debuted and have already begun to sell out at the limited retailers that have them. Packed in boxes of 30, Casa Cubas come in four sizes and retail for $8.75 to $10 per cigar. Each one is named after Cuban dominoes. There is Doble Tres, measuring 5 1/2 by 44; Doble Cuatro, 4 1/2 by 54; Doble Cinco, 5 by 50 and Doble Seis, 6 by 52. Each size is made by a single cigar roller at Fuente's factories in the Dominican Republic.