Cain Daytona to be released in the first week of March. Sizes and MSRP below, all sold in boxes of 24, except the Shot Robusto orders for retailers have started:

  • Petite Corona No. 4 (5 x 43) – $4.70
  • Robusto (5.7 x 50) – $5.80
  • Corona (?) (6 x 44 46) $5.50
  • Torpedo (6 x 54T) – $6.80
  • Double Toro (6 x 60) – $7.80
  • Short Robusto (4.5 x 50)*

*Short Robusto only offered in the Studio Tobac Limited Edition Sampler. More info below.

The thought behind this is that the smaller ring gauges will benefit the lighter Cain. It will be interesting to see just how much the Jalapa Valley Ligero lightens the blend, but everything I’ve heard is that this is the best Cain yet. Grant it, that all comes from Oliva folk.

And the press releases… Oliva promoted a few of it sales staff. Congrats to Dave, Ian, John, Jeff and my local rep, Jack.

MIAMI, FL – January 3rd, 2010 – Oliva Family Of Cigars CEO Jose Oliva today announced that National Sales Manager Dave Wagner has immediately been promoted to Vice President Of Sales. Additionally, four Oliva Account Executives were promoted to the newly created positions of Regional Managers. Oliva’s Regional Management Team will be: John Gazerro (East), Ian Hummel (Midwest), Jack Sandlin (South), and Jeff Nolen (West). Jose Oliva commented, “Over the last few years, our sales have grown exponentially. Much of that growth was due to the tireless efforts of Dave Wagner. Dave grew and molded one of the finest sales forces in the industry. Our numbers prove that.” Oliva continued, “Dave has more than earned the title of VP Sales and I look forward to his continued success at Oliva.” Dave Wagner stated, “It’s an incredible honor to work for The Olivas and manage this team. From day one as an Oliva salesman this has been my dream job. It’s been hard work, but every day I still feel like the luckiest guy in the world.” Wagner also said, “I’m also extremely fortunate to have a very supportive family. My wife and children have made tremendous sacrifices for my career. None of this happens without them.” Wagner also had this to say about the new Regional Manager positions: “We have incredible sales coverage across the US with one of the largest sales forces in the premium cigar industry. As we continue to grow, the addition of regional managers was an absolute necessity. Each manager brings a unique set of valuable strengths and skills that will ensure our continued success.“ With this team in place, we’ll continue our pattern of growth,” Wagner continued. “Even in a down economy we’ve seen increased sales. There’s more to come. We’re not done. Not even close.”

Studio Tobac, formally announced. What the hell was this post about then?


MIAMI, FL – January 4th 2011 – The Oliva Family Of Cigars today announced the formal creation of Studio Tobac, a collection of Oliva’s most creative minds. Studio Tobac is tasked with research and design within Oliva Cigar. The group’s primary goal is to create excitement and innovation in the tradition-heavy world of cigar smoking.

“Today we’re introducing cigar smokers worldwide to Studio Tobac” said Oliva Cigar CEO Jose R. Oliva. Oliva went on to say “Studio Tobac has worked for years behind the scenes on the highly successful Nub and Cain cigars. The time has come to bring down the curtain and get more cigar smokers involved with our creative process. As with all Oliva cigars, anything introduced by Studio Tobac will be of the highest quality and provide exceptional value to our customers.”

Oliva Vice-President of Sales Dave Wagner commented “We (Studio Tobac) would meet over cigars and maybe dinner, drinks, or coffee. We will continue these meetings but the time is right to formalize the group and also provide a mechanism to get more cigar enthusiasts involved. Look for big things from Studio Tobac in 2011 and beyond.”

ORGANIZATION: Studio Tobac will consist of an Executive Board of Directors, a Studio Ambassador, an advisory board, and general membership. The Exective Board is comprised of hand-picked Oliva Cigar employees and affilliates; chosen for their knowledge, creativity and vision. The Studio Ambassador is charged with the day-to-day operations of The Studio, including execution of any promotional activities. The advisory board is an invitation-only group of cigar ultra-enthusiasts; and the general membership consists of any independent cigar consumers who want to be updated with the latest Studio Tobac news. Anyone 18 years or older may join the general membership at

HISTORY: Studio Tobac was born in 2007 as informal meetings of Oliva Cigar’s most innovative thinkers. For the last 3 years The Studio has conceived ground-breaking projects like the renowned NUB Cigar (a short-format cigar that previously did not exist) and the CAIN Cigar (the world’s only straight-ligero cigar). These and many more projects exist within the portfolio of Studio Tobac.

FUTURE: Expect much more for Studio Tobac in 2011. There will be new cigars released to the general public, small-batch prototype cigars, exclusive Studio Tobac merchandise, and a world tour that will bring Studio Tobac to some of the finest cigar retailers in many different countries. Expect future press releases on these projects and much more.

Studio Tobac “officially” named its Executive Board… There actually were additions, Fadi Kerio and Sasja Van Horssen, who will handle the international distribution and perhaps something else.


MIAMI, FL – January 4th 2011 – Studio Tobac today announced the members of it’s Executive Board. The Executive Board are the leaders of Studio Tobac and all decision making must be approved by the this board.

The Chairman of the Executive Board is Oliva Cigar CEO Jose R. Oliva. Oliva commented “I’m thrilled with the talent we have on our E-Board. The members of this board have time and again proven that they are among the most knowledgeable, creative, and visionary people in our industry. I’m expecting a lot out of this board but I know they will exceed even my high expectations.”

The Studio Tobac Executive Board is comprised of:

Dave Wagner- Proud Army veteran and cigar smoker for over 20 years. Dave states“I am the luckiest man in the world in that my family, passion, and career, are all extremely supportive of each other. The premium cigar industry is built on heritage, relationships, hard work, and pride. These factors drive and inspire me daily.” He continues “Working with the Oliva family has given me the opportunity to do what I love with people who share the same passion for premium handmade cigars. I can’t imagine doing anything else.” Dave Wagner was one of Oliva’s “Original Five” Sales Representatives when Oliva started their in-house sales force in 2005. In 2007 he moved from Regional Representative to National Sales Manager of the greatest cigar sales force in the industry. In 2010 Dave was again promoted to Vice President Of Sales. He is most proud to be a part of the Oliva family, Studio Tobac, and both their incredible successes in the premium cigar industry.

Cory Bappert- A St.Louis, MO native, began smoking cigars in his late teens while going on fishing trips with his uncle in Missouri. It quickly became a passion that he brought with him when hired in 2002 with an online cigar retailer based in Chicago. In 2005, Cory became Oliva Cigar’s first sales representative for the upper Midwest. Bappert quickly rose through the ranks; earning accolades such as Salesman of the Year and the “Oliva Familia” award (for outstanding service). As Senior Account Executive, he currently handles Oliva’s national accounts as well as in store promotional programs. He was heavily involved in the creation of Cain as well as upcoming Studio Tobac projects.

Fadi Kerio- Fadi joined the Oliva family in September of 2005 as one of the first five sales representatives covering The West Coast. Recently, Fadi accepted a new position based in Miami as an Oliva account manager. Fadi has been around the cigar industry for 18 years experiencing the changes and challenges to stay on top. His previous background is in the jewelry business, particularly in designing and product development to suit the fashion industry. Fadi says “I am honored to be a board mem ber of the innovative Studio Tobac, a team responsible for making the smoking experience for our fans more special, different and exciting.” John Gazerro- John began smoking premium cigars in 1990 while still a student. He is a 1992 graduate (BA in Political Science) from Providence College. John’s professional career began as an undergrad when he became a College Marketing Representative for CBS Records/Sony Music Distribution. After graduating, John became a Field Marketing Representative for Sony Music and had the privilege of working with artists such as Bruce Springsteen, Pearl Jam, Stevie Ray Vaughan, and many others. After the record business, John transitioned to broadcasting and was a marketing/promotions director for various radio stations in Providence RI, Greensboro NC, Boston MA, and New York City. John’s first step in the cigar industry came in 2004 by doing freelance promotional work for The Oliva Family of Cigars. In 2005, John became the Northeast Representative for Drew Estate Cigars. 2007 saw John return to Oliva Cigar as their Account Executive in New England. In 2010 he was promoted to Regional Manager covering the East Coast from Maine down through The Carolinas. John presently lives in Providence with his girlfriend. John has no hobbies worth listing here; except, of course, smoking really good cigars. Ian Hummel- In January of 2008, Ian was hired as Oliva Cigar’s 10th Sales Representative and started his career covering the states of Michigan and Indiana. In mid-year 2009, Oliva expanded their sales force and Ian switched territories to take over Ohio, Kentucky, West Virginia, and Southern Indiana. Ian was recently named Oliva’s “Salesman Of The Year” for 2010 and he was subsequently promoted to Mid-West Regional Manager. He has always been extremely interested in new product development and in the process of bringing new products to market. This side of the business has intrigued him to get more involved in every aspect of the process – from starting out with an idea, building upon it, and eventually seeing it come to life in the market place. Recently, Ian was asked to be a member of the Executive Board for Studio Tobac and he is excited to be a part of something that he is passionate about in so many ways. Ian states “It’s an honor to have the opportunity to work so closely with the greatest family in the cigar industry.”

Brian Shapiro- Brian has been around the cigar business almost his entire life. His grandfather, Morris opened Shapiro’s Smoke Shop in New York City in 1932. His father Ron Shapiro took over the family business in 1960 and is still a partner in the family retail store The Cigar Factory Outlet in Norwalk, Connecticut which is also an Oliva Store and Lounge. Brian joined the Oliva Family after a chance meeting with Jose Oliva in 2004. He began the first year by assembling the first in-house U.S. Sales Force, which has now grown to 19 strong. Brian started moving Oliva into International markets in 2005 exporting cigars into The Netherlands. In 2010 as International Sales Manager, Brian, along with a great international team expanded Oliva exports into nearly 30 countries with a main European office and distribution center in Sliedrecht, Holland. Recently Brian and Jose Oliva celebrated the opening of the 2nd European Oliva Cigar Lounge in Berlin,Germany. The first lounge opened in Den Bosch, Holland nearly 2 years ago. More lounges are planned this coming year in Zurich and Basel Switzerland, Moscow Russia and London, England. Brian lives in Connecticut with his wife Gail and his sons Aaron and Eric.

Bryan “The Show” Scholle – Bryan has been enjoying fine cigars since 2006, which started as an occasional hobby but quickly formed into a very strong passion. Bryan started with Oliva family in February 2010 as an account executive covering the West Florida Territory. Bryan began his sales career for Coca-cola, following in his grandfather’s footsteps. He was inducted into the Top Performers Club in 2004 for being Salesman of the year for Florida. Then in 2008 Bryan followed his passion and went to work for Tampa based cigar shop Tampa Humidor, which also has one of two Oliva Lounges in the USA. Bryan’s passion and knowledge for cigars grew exponentially while at Tampa Humidor. Bryan grew up with a very supportive family and group of friends that always told him to “aim for the stars.” With this support he has been able to accomplish many great things in his short life. Bryan is currently the Studio Ambassador for Studio Tobac, in charge of The Studio’s day-to-day operations and promotions. “I can’t wait to get on the road and start doing Studio Tobac promotions” says Scholle. “I want to deliver Studio Tobac’s message to as many cigar smokers as I can.” Sasja Van Horssen – Sasja’s company is the importer and distributor for all Oliva Cigars in The Netherlands. “It’s important that Studio Tobac be a truly international organization” says Oliva International Sales Manager Brian Shapiro. ”Sasja’s input is more than welcome so we can shape our ideas not only for The United States; but also for Europe, The Far East, and the many other countries where Oliva Cigars are sold.”

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The Studio Tobac cutters, which Ian Hummel alluded to on his Twitter account.


MIAMI, FL – January 4th 2011 – Today Studio Tobac’s Executive Board announced that renowned artist and cigar enthusiast Rick “HutcH” Hutchings will make very special, limited edition Studio Tobac cigar cutters.

The cutter is built on the popular XIKAR “Xi” style frame, but nothing except this mechanism is stock. HutcH’s specialty is scrimshaw and he hand-carved each cutter’s handles; plus the Studio Tobac emblem is screened on each cutter’s body. Every cutter will come with a custom leather pouch that is also stamped with the Studio Tobac logo.

The cutters will not be for sale at any price. They will be available at select tobacconists as grand prizes during the 2011 Studio Tobac World Tour. Details of this tour are forthcoming in early 2011.

Rick “HutcH” Hutchings began carving custom cigar cutters in 2002. His scrimshaw work is featured on the Bowie knife carried by Dolph Lundgren in the 2010 movie “The Expendables.” He also carved a “skull” cigar cutter that was gifted to Slyvester Stallone at the wrap of that movie.

Studio Tobac Executive Board member Ian Hummel states “When I approached HutcH about doing these cutters I didn’t think he’d be available to do 100 hand-made pieces. I was surprised and very happy that he made time for this project. The cutters look absolutely fantastic.”

HutcH comments “I got a call from Ian [Hummel] and was asked to design a custom cutter for Studio Tobac. The tattoo-style leaf and logo were naturals for scrimshaw on a cutter. I hope anyone that gets one of these cutters will appreciate the fact that each and every one will be hand-made by me; from the scrimshaw-carved handle down to that hand-sewn leather pouch.”

Rick “HutcH” Hutchings can be reached at[email protected] or call 502-836-2871. He expects to have a website up after January 1st, 2011 featuring his art work.

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Ian Hummel also posted pictures of the new NUb Tubos. I’m not sure if these are going to be event exclusive, in boxes or what… A press release for the Cain F Lancero, also unnecessary…?


MIAMI, FL – January 4th 2011 – Studio Tobac’s Executive Board voted unanimously to begin production of a new cigar: The Cain F Lancero. This Nicaraguan puro is a classic lancero size (7×38) with a finished three-seam cap instead of the traditional pig-tail cap. The blend is based on the popular Cain F line of cigars, but adapted to fit the lancero format. As with all Cain F cigars, the lancero will be extremely full-bodied but smooth. Cain F achieves this delicate balance in two ways: First, the cigars are composed almost entirely of 3 types of ligero leaf from the three major growing regions in Nicaragua: Jalapa, Condega, and Esteli. These ligeros give the cigar incredible strength. Second, the tobaccos in Cain F are all triple fermented. Triple fermentation tempers the harshness and bite of the ligero leaves; leaving nothing but rich flavor and spice.

“I really don’t care if anyone else likes this cigar. I love lanceros so I’ll smoke every one of them myself. The blend on this cigar is fantastic. They nailed it at the factory.” says Executive Board member John Gazerro. “Seriously, lanceros are the perfect size for something limited like this. It’s not a size that sells well, but it’s probably the most respected size in the super-elite cigar community.” Gazerro continued “This cigar isn’t for novices. It’s definitely strong; but the real aficionados will appreciate the huge flavor and lack of harshness.” The lancero will not be in regular production and therefore will not be for sale to the general public. The Cain F Lancero will only be available in The Limited Edition Studio Tobac Cigar Sampler. Expect to see The Cain F Lancero packaged in an aluminum tube, making it one of the only lanceros ever available in the “tubo” format. The Cain F Lancero, and the entire Studio Tobac Cigar Sampler, will be available as a “gift with purchase” at Studio Tobac World Tour events in 2011. Locations and details of these events are forthcoming.

Studio Tobac starts its tour in February, there are six cigars that will be exclusively available in the samplers given at the events.


MIAMI, FL – January 4th 2011 – Studio Tobac today announced that they are beginning production on a very exclusive cigar sampler. The Studio Tobac Limited-Edition Cigar Sampler will contain six cigars; all of which will not be available as regular production.

The Limited Edition sampler will be available in 2011 as a “gift with purchase” at Studio Tobac World Tour Events. These events will take place across the entire United States and at select European destinations.

“We wanted to do something special for the 2011 Studio Tobac World Tour” states Executive Board Director Jose R. Oliva.

Board Member Ian Hummel continued: “It’s important to offer some unique cigars to the retailers and consumers that come out and support our events. We set sales records with the Nub Tour in ’08, the Cain Tour in ’09, and the Cain-F Tour this past year. The bar is definitely raised for 2011; and part of our response is this sampler.”

The Executive Board’s Cory Bappert commented: “The current economy dictates that there’s a lot less discretionary income out there. When somebody steps up and buys a box of cigars at a Studio Tobac event, we want to give them something they can’t get anywhere else.”

The six cigars contained in The Sampler are listed below. Included is a basic description of each blend. However, exact details of each cigar remain the proprietary information of The Oliva Family Of Cigars and Studio Tobac’s Executive Board.

The Studio Tobac Limited Edition Cigar Sampler will contain:

Cain F Lancero: (7×38 parejo) a classic lancero finished with a triple-cap instead of the traditional lancero pig-tail. This is the production Cain F blend tailored to fit the slender lancero format. This cigar will be presented in an aluminum tube, making it one of the only lanceros ever presented “en tubo.”

Cain FF Torpedo 654: (6×54 torpedo) The Cain FF (“Double F”) is an even stronger version of the already robust Cain F blend.

Cain Daytona Short Robusto: (4.5×50 parejo) Early in 2011 Studio Tobac will release it’s first regular production cigar: The Cain Daytona. Cain Daytona will stay true to its Cain roots with a “straight ligero” blend; but the Daytona’s ligeros will be entirely from The Jalapa Valley. This type of ligero is less potent than most. Expect the Cain Daytona to be flavorful, refined, and elegant. The Daytona in the short robusto vitola is exclusive to this sampler and will not be for sale.

Nub Habano Perfecto: (4.5×60 perfecto) This is the Nub Habano blend in a perfecto format. At 4.5”, this is one-half inch longer than any other Nub.

Nub San Andreas Maduro: (4×64 parejo) This is a completely unique Nub size. It is the Nub maduro blend but with a Mexican, San Andreas wrapper as found on the Cain Maduro. The regular production Nub Maduro has a Brazilian, Arapiraca wrapper.

Prototype Cigar: Designation “ST/DS-001”: (6×54 parejo) This is a prototype of a future Studio Tobac project. The only detail known is that it will be a full-bodied maduro blend.

And now the legal stuff…


Studio Tobac is the research and design group within The Oliva Family Of Cigars. Studio Tobac’s goal is to provide excitement and innovation to premium cigar smokers worldwide.


All product and company names herein may be trademarks of their respective owners.


For more information please go to:

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Charlie Minato

I am an editor and co-founder of Media, LLC. I previously co-founded and published TheCigarFeed, one of the two predecessors of halfwheel. I handle the editing of our written content, the majority of the technical aspects of the site and work with the rest of our staff on content management, business development and more. I’ve lived in most corners of the country and now entering my second stint in Dallas, Texas. I enjoy boxing, headphones, the Le Mans 24-hour, wearing sweatshirts year-round and gyros. echte liebe.