Located along one edge of the show floor, the La Galera booth felt a bit more open this year as opposed to previous years, a move that cleared space to put its new products front and center, including a new Greek-themed line that pays tribute to the winds.

While the booth had plenty of traffic from retailers looking to bring the line in, there seemed to be an even longer queue to get to talk to Jochy Blanco, who has solidified himself as one of the most respected growers and cigar makers in the country and quite likely beyond. In just a short visit to the booth there was no shortage of fellow cigar industry personnel stopping by to shake hands with him and share a few laughs.

La Galera Anemoi

The new La Galera comes wearing a blue band and sporting a fair amount Greek. It is named in honor of the winds, which Blanco says play a vital role in the growing of tobacco by showing farmers where the best spaces are to plant seeds. The ancient Greeks also knew the importance of the winds, and it is the name of their collective god of wind from which the line gets its name, while the names of individual gods of winds that grace the vitola names. As an extension of that, the company is only releasing certain vitolas to certain regions of the country. While the Anemoi vitola will be available nationwide, regions will get the vitolas named for their respective winds. For instance, the Southwestern U.S.—southern California, southern Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas—will get Notus and Zephyrus, the two vitolas named for the gods of the southern and western winds. There are four other regions: northwest, midwest, northeast and southeast.

  • Wrapper: U.S.A. (Connecticut Broadleaf)
  • Binder: Dominican Republic (Jacagua)
  • Filler: Dominican Republic (Criollo 98 & Piloto Cubano La Canela)
  • La Galera Anemoi Boreas (4 3/4 x 46) — $8.50 (Box of 20, $170)
  • La Galera Anemoi Zephyrus (6 x 60) — $11 (Box of 20, $220)
  • La Galera Anemoi Anemoi (6 3/8 x 52) — $12 (Box of 20, $240)
  • La Galera Anemoi Eurus (5 1/2 x 48) — $9.25 (Box of 20, $185)
  • La Galera Anemoi Notus (5 x 56) — $10 (Box of 20, $200)

Production: Regular Production

Release Date: July 2019

La Galera Minis

From what I was told, these arrived at the show not long before the doors opened, and many of the specific details about the release are still being ironed out. It’s a machine made cigar that comes in 20-count tins and uses a wrapper similar to that of the La Galera Connecticut. Blanco said it should be widely available in about 30 days, which would be late July or early August, and priced around $15 or $16 per tin, before taxes.

  • Wrapper: Ecuador (Connecticut)
  • Binder: Indonesia
  • Filler: Dominican Republic
  • La Galera Minis (5 x 20) — 80 Cents (Tin of 20, $16)

Production: Regular Production

Release Date: August 2019

Overall Score

Davidoff is the official sponsor of halfwheel's coverage of the 2019 IPCPR Convention & Trade Show.
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Patrick Lagreid

I strive to capture the essence of a cigar and the people behind them in my work – every cigar you light up is the culmination of the work of countless people and often represents generations of struggle and stories. For me, it’s about so much more than the cigar – it’s about the story behind it, the experience of enjoying the work of artisans and the way that a good cigar can bring people together. In addition to my work with halfwheel, I’m the public address announcer for the Colorado Rockies and Arizona Diamondbacks during spring training, as well as for the Salt River Rafters of the Arizona Fall League, the WNBA's Phoenix Mercury and the Arizona Rattlers of the Indoor Football League. I also work in a number of roles for MLB.com, plus I'm a voice over artist. I previously covered the Phoenix and national cigar scene for Examiner.com, and was an editor for Cigar Snob magazine.