Earlier today, cigar industry veteran Enrique “Kiki” Berger passed away. Berger recently suffered a heart attack and complications from the event are said to be responsible for taking his life.

He was best known for Cuban Crafters, his Florida-based retail stores and mail order business, and Tabacalera Estelí, a Nicaraguan-based cigar operation. In 2009, he and the Argenti brothers teamed to make Berger & Argenti, although that company is now defunct. 

“When I moved to Esteli I lived across the street from Kiki’s farm and he always treated me with great respect and made me feel at home,” wrote Nicholas Melillo. “I can’t believe the news today. God rest your soul Don Kiki.”

Melillo was one of a host of Nicaraguan-based cigar manufactures who have already expressed their condolences. Many reached by halfwheel were too distraught to comment.

Services have not been announced.

Charlie Minato

I am an editor and co-founder of halfwheel.com/Rueda 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.