It has been an exciting and busy few months here at TU. We were at the Nicaraguan cigar festival in December (2009) and the Dominican Procigar festival in February, 2010. In the process I have spent hundreds of hours with great tobacconists, the Padrón family, the Garcia family (My Father Cigars), Pete Johnson of Tatuaje, Drew Estate, and I have had the pleasure of visiting with La Aurora, the Kelners at Davidoff, and the Quesada family at MATASA. In addition, I just returned from a week long visit with the Padrón family in Nicaragua. The Padrón family has been extremely generous with their time and I cannot find adequate words to express my gratitude. Their commitment to every step of the cigar making process, our industry, and supporting retail tobacconists is unrivaled. To date, we have over 300 Certified Retail Tobacconists and Apprentices at TU.
Even after more than twenty expeditions to Cuba, Nicaragua, the Dominican Republic, and Honduras, I manage to learn exponentially more every trip. The amount of knowledge, skill, labor, and organization that goes into great cigar making is staggering! Plus, there is artistry and intuition at play. Every trip leaves me more in awe of the process. And I have been particularly privileged to learn from the best cigar makers in the world – and had a great time in the process.
Moving forward, we will be developing content and disseminating much of our research through our facebook, twitter, and youtube channels. Furthermore, we will be developing new videos and content for our academic curriculum to enhance your educational experience and appreciation. I hope you will share this content with your friends and legislators as we strive to bring credibility to the luxury tobacco industry. And above all, I hope you enjoy!