A small amount of prerelease versions of the Liga Privada Único Serie UF-13s have appeared on the market via Pennsylvania catalog retailer Cigar.com. The cigars were originally slated for the 2012 Cigar.com Gala, a charity event originally scheduled for September, but cancelled due to venue issues.
The 2,000 cigars Drew Estate provided for the event are now being offered for $20.00 $15.00 a piece with a portion of the proceeds benefitting the Centro Sor Maria Romero orphanage in Estelí, Nicaragua, the planned beneficiary of the gala. The cigars are prerelease versions of the UF-13, which is slated for formal release later this year. According to Drew Estate CEO Steve Saka, the cigars do not feature the new proprietary head Drew Estate will use for the production 5 1/4 x 52 versions.
Originally the cigar were being sold for $15.00, but Cigar.com made the decision to raise the price in order to make more money for Centro Sor Maria Romero. However, as of Friday evening the cigars are back down to $15.00.
Cigar.com’s Chief Merchant Alex Svenson told halfwheel the cigars are being offered only via phone, but if there are cigars left on Monday, they will be added to Cigar.com’s “Luxury Collection” page on its website.
“We have been actively raising money to build them a new soccer field for the last year and have been doing several different sales initiatives with various vendors to help raise the necessary money,” said Svenson.
Early last year, Svenson wrote the following about the charity:
Several years ago a friend of mine took me to the Centro Sor Maria Romero Orphanage in Esteli, Nicaragua. This facility feeds and educates over 100 young children; including a small residential area which houses 15 girls between the ages of 5 and 13 who, due to horrible circumstances and abuse, are now cared for by the sisters at the orphanage. Walking through the gates, you’re always anxiously greeted by many young and needy children, so much so that your heart literally melts as you realize how a lack of love and care has dramatically affected these young individuals. Needless to say, our wallets are always much lighter leaving the orphanage than when we enter. The Centro Sor Maria Romero Orphanage remains a focal point of charitable giving from cigar makers in Esteli, given its important contributions to the community. For example, the Plasencia family donated the land for the orphanage while the Oliva family constructed the wall that surrounds its property line. Still, there are so many things the sisters need as needs of local children far outweigh the resources. These needs include such daily items as school supplies, medicine and food to much larger projects such as a computer labs and athletic equipment.
The “soft launch” follows Drew Estate’s pattern with new releases. In the past year, the Ratzilla, Feral Flying Pig and Velvet Rat have all been sold in limited quantities at a single retailer before larger releases.
Cigar.com can be reached at 1.800.357.9800.
(Update: The original published version listed the price as $15.00. As noted above, the price was raised to $20.00, but, shortly after 8:00 PM EST Cigar.com lowered the price back to $15.00.)