Meaning ‘the friendship’ in Spanish, this is one of the more full-bodied cigars to come out of Hoyo de Monterrey and is a collaboration from General Cigar and legendary cigar maker and farmer A.J. Fernandez. Hailing from Nicaragua, this limited-edition cigar is hand rolled at A.J.’s own factory, Tabacalera A.J. Fernandez Cigars de Nicaragua. This bold blend features tobaccos from not one, not two, but from four different growing regions in Nicaragua including Estelí, Condega and Jalapa, all hugged by a Nicaraguan binder, and completed with a stunning and masterful Habano Ecuadoran wrapper that is cured to perfection. Pairing with your favorite bourbon after a hearty meal, you can expect flavors of pepper, cocoa, earth, and leather. A modern interpruation of the classic brand, here is what A.J. himself had to say about this cigar: “I grew up very near to the Hoyo de Monterrey farm and I have always had a love for the brand. When it came time to develop this blend, I put my heart and soul into it. To me, this project represents how far my family and I have come since Cuba, and how our expertise in tobacco continues to be recognized. This cigar represents the best of me and my factory and I am proud to be a part of this collaboration.”
The Nicaraguan cigar industry originated when Cuban cigar makers escaped the revolution and re-established their livelihood in Nicaragua with Cuban-seed tobacco. Blessed with dark, rich soil, their new home was ideal for tobacco cultivation and Nicaragua quickly became known for cigars that rivaled Cuban quality. Unfortunately, revolution and war came to Nicaragua in the 1980s and devastated the industry, but it’s rebounded dramatically and is once again producing tobacco considered by many to be the finest in the world.
The Esteli Valley is in many ways the heart of Nicaraguan production and is known for its very powerful and spicy tobacco. The Jalapa Valley produces arguably the finest tobacco in the country: somewhat sweeter and less intense than Esteli, but extremely complex. The tobacco of the Condega Valley is often described as a blend of the other two regions.
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