Padrón Cigars Inc. is adding a size called the No. 4 to its immensely popular and highly rated Padrón 1964 Anniversary Series of cigars. But unlike Cuban cigars bearing that name, which are diminutive petit coronas measuring 5 1/8 inches long by 42 ring, these cigars will be among the biggest ever made by Padrón, 6 inches long by 60 ring gauge. The No. 4 will become the first new Padrón Anniversary since the launch of the Toro two years ago.
The cigar gets its name from the December 4 birthday of Saint Barbara, or Santa Barbara, a Catholic saint held dear by Cubans. "Cubans feel she is a protector," said Padrón president Jorge Padrón in a phone call this morning. "When my father was in Cuba, he prayed to Santa Barbara to help him get out."
The elder Padrón left Cuba on April 1, 1961 and went to Spain. He waited several months before finding a way to get to the United States, and in late November of that year he set sail for America. "The boat that I came on arrived in New York on December 4," said José Orlando Padrón, speaking through his son Jorge. "The birthday of this patron saint."
St. Barbara is revered by many, not only Cubans. According to legend, she was beheaded by her father in the 7th century, and he was struck down by lightning after committing his crime. She has long been associated with lightning and explosions, and is prayed to by soldiers, particularly artillerymen, and is also known as a patron saint of miners. José Orlando Padrón worked in a copper mine as a younger man in Cuba.
The Padrón Anniversary No. 4 will come out in the next few months. Jorge Padrón said his family aimed to have it on sale prior to the International Cigar & Pipe Retailers (IPCPR) trade show, which begins in August. He said pricing for the cigar had not yet been determined.
The size was originally to be called the Patriarch, but Jorge Padrón later realized that Tabacalera Perdomo makes a cigar brand with that name, so he changed plans.
Padrón has made a 6 by 60 Anniversary before, but it was a special release for a retail shop. Jorge Padrón said this cigar would have a different blend and different taste. As part of the company's 1964 Anniversary line—which was launched in 1994, on the company's 30th anniversary—the Padrón Anniversary No. 4 will be made with tobacco aged for four years. There will be both a natural and a maduro version.
Jorge Padrón said there were no plans to add a 6 by 60 size to the Padrón Serie 1926 line, as has been reported elsewhere.