The beginning of FDA regulation of premium cigars has forced every cigar company to reevaluate its portfolio and strategy for the future, and in the case of Southern Draw Cigars, it has expedited the release of two blends that the company was planning for 2017 and 2018. While those two blends, Rose of Sharon and Jacobs Ladder, had been off in the distance, today they are officially on the horizon as the company has announced both have gone into production to get them on the market ahead of FDA’s Aug. 8 deadline for new products to be released prior to getting the agency’s approval.

“After the great disappointment of missing IPCPR last week to focus our efforts in Nicaragua, these new releases are extra special to the company and to me personally, said Robert Holt, founder and chief evangelist of Southern Draw. “With these new blends, Southern Draw puts an exclamation mark on our commitment to this fine industry while paying homage to influential references and family that sacrifice daily to bring Southern Draw Cigars to our valued partners. We pray these premium blends are enjoyed and our messages are shared,” he added.

Rose of Sharon continues the company’s theme of flowering plants for its core blends and refers to a passage in the Song of Solomon from the King James Bible, “I am the rose of Sharon, the lily of the valley.” The name also celebrates “the Belle of Southern Draw,” Sharon Holt.

Southern Draw Rose of Sharon

The box-pressed line uses an Ecuadorian Connecticut wrapper, Nicaraguan binder and fillers from Nicaragua and the Dominican Republic.

Jacobs Ladder is a flowering plant that has been praised for its medicinal value dating back to ancient Greece, but it is also the colloquial name for the connection between heaven and earth that Jacob, son of Isaac, dreamed about in the Biblical book of Genesis. The brand also has a connection to the Holt family, a nod to Ethan “Jacob” Holt, son of two of Southern Draw’s founders and who provides sales, shipping and technical support to the company.

It’s a cigar wrapped in leaf from Pennsylvania, with an Ecuadorian binder and Nicaraguan filler.

Southern Draw Jacobs Ladder

Both new lines are being released in seven sizes: Belicoso (5 1/2 x 50), Robusto (5 1/2 x 54), Toro (6 x 52), Gordo (6 1/2 x 60), Lancero (6 1/2 x 40) and a pair of Perfectos, one 5 x 58 and the other 6 x 56. The Perfectos will be priced at $11.79 per cigar, while the other five sizes will be priced between $8.50 and $10 and will match the price of the corresponding cigar in the company’s Kudzu and Firethorn lines.

Each of the seven new sizes will be offered in 20-count boxes and bundles, as well as DRAWpak samplers of between two and five cigars. Production is handled by Tabacalera AJ Fernandez Cigars de Nicaragua S.A.

Select retail partners will be getting the new lines this year due to limited production, while regular production for both lines is scheduled for 2017 and 2018.

Images courtesy of Southern Draw Cigars.

Avatar photo

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, plus I'm a voice over artist. I previously covered the Phoenix and national cigar scene for, and was an editor for Cigar Snob magazine.