The Felipe Gregorio line of cigars is beloved worldwide. Born and raised in Switzerland, founder Philip Wynne worked a number of years in the Middle East selling helicopters before deciding to start his own cigar business in 1988. Because he grew up in Europe where Cuban cigars were legal, when he decided to get into the business the haunting flavors of all the Cuban cigars smoked in his youth were still a vivid memory. He wanted to produce cigars similar to the many Cuban brands he grew up with; in other words, strong. Fortunately for stogie lovers, the cigar was such a huge hit that Philip Wynne decided it deserved wider exposure. Over thirty years later, the Fat Boy has developed a large and loyal following.
The Felipe II Fat Boy Extra Short Robusto you have in your shipment today was handmade at the famous La Aurora factory, the first established factory in the Dominican Republic. This chunky stick features a beautiful Indonesian Maduro wrapper that hugs an Indonesian binder and Dominican long-fillers from two different leaves from the Cibao Valley. Pour yourself an aged rum like Havana Club Añejo Clásico on a warm summer evening and enjoy mild to medium notes of robust earth, leather, and wood tones, and a touch of pepper.
Though tobacco is indigenous to Hispaniola, the tobacco industry in the Dominican Republic existed in the shadow of Cuba’s dominance through the 1960s. When the exodus of Cuban cigar makers began in the wake of the revolution, many decided the Dominican Republic would be ideal for the resumption of their livelihoods. Unrest in Nicaragua in the 1980s fueled the Dominican cigar industry further. The country now makes more than half of the premium cigars imported into the U.S.
The Cibao Valley and the nearby city of Santiago are the center of cigar production in the Dominican Republic. Three main varieties are grown here: the mild and native Olor Dominicano; the intense Piloto Cubano, brought from the Vuelta Abajo of Cuba; and San Vicente, a milder and more acidic Piloto hybrid. Dominican puros were once unheard of as it was widely thought impossible to grow quality wrapper leaf on the island, but new growing techniques are now allowing some exceptional puros to be produced.
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