Thursday, May 27, 2010

Don Pepin Garcia cigar event

Last night I had the honor of meeting up with one of the legends in the cigar industry, Don Pepin Garcia over at Burning Leaf in Plainfield. Anyone who reads this blog knows how big a fan I am of Pepin's cigars, including the My Father line, Cuban Classics, DPG Blue labels, the new Jaime Garcia Reserva Especial (ok, its his son, but it comes out of his factory)....the list goes on for a while. Not only does he make cigars under his own name, but for other companies such as Ashton, 601, and one of my favorites, Tatuaje. Speaking with Pepin (through a translator since he doesnt really speak any English) was really educational. He has been in this business for a very long time, and it shows. Because of the language barrier, he was a fairly quite and humble man, but you could tell he was enjoying himself and had a smile on his face the entire evening. He signed many boxes, shirts, humidors, even a bottle of rum, and seemed happy to do so for everyone who asked.

As for what we talked about, we started by talking about the new Jaime Garcia cigars we were smoking and how wonderful the new broadleaf wrappers are. He went on to discuss the special edition My Father cigar that will be released later this year. This cigar will be exclusively made by him and his son Jaime. Pepin will apply the wrapper to the filler/binder made up by Jaime. Only those two know about the blend of this cigar. 2,000 numbered boxes of 12 will be produced, making this a very limited release cigar. The projected price per cigar is around $20 before tax. I will definitely pick one up if given the opportunity, not only because Pepin/Jaime are making all of them themselves, but because of the unique tobacco being used; Pele De Oro, a tobacco that the Cuban government banned the use of many years ago because it is very susceptible to blue mold. Pepin acquired these seeds and planted a very small amount of this tobacco at his farms in Nicaragua. No one else is using this strain of tobacco, and from what I hear, it will be very good. This cigar will be a 6 1/2 X 52. I can't wait.
Another few tidbits of information that I picked up is that Pepin smokes around 15 cigars a day (WOW) and usually goes with the robusto. He is constantly taste testing his blends in the factory to make sure they are what they should be, hence the 15 cigars a day. I asked him if hes just smoking an inch of these 15 cigars, and he says he usually smokes half to two thirds of each to make sure they taste how they should.

I picked up a box of the Jaime Garcia Reserva Especials, which I reviewed this week. I also received a My Father shirt and 5 pack of Pepin cigars. If you ever get a chance to meet Don Pepin Garcia, I really recommend doing so. Having the opportunity to sit down and talk/smoke cigars with the man behind them is a real treat.

1 comment:

Matt's Cigar Journal said...

Looks like it was a fun and special event Ben. Nice box of cigars you got there made more special by the signature. Very cool. I believe I will get a chance to meet the Don as well as long as plans hold for him to attend the Summer Pork n' Puff event at Empire this year.

Enjoy those cigars.